My name is Mihir Ignatius Nayak and this is the story of how I started the Mitaroy Goa.
From a very young age (I think I must have been 2 or 3 years old), my parents used to take me on a number of holidays across India. My father was one of India’s first travel journalists and he got to stay at many hotels as part of his work. My mother, who had a really stressful job as a Doctor, loved to travel.
My earliest recollections as a small boy, were packing our stuff, getting into our small car and driving away to some new, exciting place. And when my little sister was born, we used to bundle her into the car too, nappies and all!
When I started school, we used to go every summer for a week’s holiday to Goa. Delicious Goan food, miles of untouched beaches and the knowledge that school was a full 2 months away meant that I looked forward to the summer holidays the whole year round. For me, the summer holidays were undoubtedly the best time of my childhood.
It was then at the tender age of 10 that I had a dream. One day I would open my own hotel in Goa and it would be called “Mitaroy”.
When I told my mother about my dream to open my own hotel someday, she must have smiled to herself, wondering how I could ever dream of owning my own hotel.
When I finished high school, my parents wanted me to study law like my grandfather. But I was determined to study hotel management and pursue my childhood dream. After looking at a number of hotel schools in the UK, Switzerland, Australia and Austria, I finally decided on the Salzburg Tourism School in Austria, where many famous hoteliers from across the globe had studied.
5 years later, I graduated with excellent grades, topping my class, even though all the subjects were in German! From making beds and polishing cutlery to checking in dignitaries and cooking with a Michelin chef, I worked my way from small bed & breakfasts to Grand Hotels. But I never forgot my boyhood dream of opening my own hotel some day.
When I returned to India, I was looking to start out on my own. My parents owned an old house in our ancestral neighbourhood of Fontainhas. They didn’t know what to do with it and it was lying in a dilapidated condition. I decided that I would take up the job of restoring the old house and convert it into a hotel.
And 15 years later, I actually did open my first hotel, thus making boyhood dream a reality.
In the future, I plan to open hotels in Salzburg, London, Berlin and Cape Town.
But whatever the future might hold for me, I have learnt that if you dare to dream and believe in yourself, all your dreams will come true…