Alum Ventures: The Kyagar – Rinchen Kalon, PGP 2008

Rinchen Kalon returned home to Ladakh after a brief but successful stint working for a corporation, to launch her own venture in the hospitality industry. The Kyagar is a unique boutique hotel that is situated in the picturesque Nubra Valley. Kyagar is bridging the gaps between traditional hotels and carving out a unique niche for itself among tourists and travellers. The creator of Kyagar, Rinchen, works arduously to promote what her region has to offer and how visitors may make the most of it.

In this interview, Rinchen shares his learnings, experiences and much more..

Rinchen with her Husband and son

Can you please tell us about your latest venture – The Kyagar?

Kyagar, situated in Nubra Valley, is an attempt at offering something pure and experiential in the travel space of Ladakh, which definitely is still not as diversified in its offering to travellers. We aim to be a socially responsible, community-driven project while offering guests experiences that are mindful and memorable.

Kyagar has something for everyone. We have designed the property and its amenities so that everyone who comes here can take home a chest of memories.

What is the unique offering by Kyagar and you for the visitors/ guests?

Nubra Valley is a treasure of ruins, forts and ancient routes, and we can customize these experience for the guests. Apart from the fantastic views from the property, we offer tailor-made experiences for guests, from stargazing, customized hikes, to cooking classes, and movie nights in our dedicated cinema. We also have a well-stocked library, enticing guests to particularly relax and unwind on their holiday in Ladakh.

From a corporate to an entrepreneur, how had this journey been for you? And what have you enjoyed more?

I came to IIMB as a fresher straight out of college and only started working in the corporate sector post my diploma. Post my diploma, I worked in a bank for three years, which was my first real-world experience working at all, and therefore invaluable in teaching me how to work in an organization, with a team, with set goals. Once I came back to Ladakh, and started working for myself, those years of experience definitely helped. Working for myself back home is definitely the dream, but I could not have made it if not for all the experiences earlier.

What is your advice or suggestions for people who want to visit Ladakh?  

Get in touch with me 🙂

But seriously, Ladakh is a vast beautiful area, and much more than just the Pangong lake. I would urge visitors to come with enough time to do justice to the place while they’re visiting and absorb Ladakh in all its glory. Take time to experience the rich culture of the region apart from its jaw-dropping views.  

What have been your key learnings as an entrepreneur?

Entrepreneurship teaches a lot. I think it’s the process of unlearning and relearning. My biggest takeway from my experience is that its okay if things don’t work out initially. I have learned to persevere and keep going.

How has your experience at IIMB influenced your journey?

The time spent at IIMB were two of the best years spent. Apart from making some of the deepest friendships, I learnt the importance of grit and resilience while at IIMB. More than any tangible skills, the time spent here taught me the value of putting my head down and working towards a goal.

Any advice for alums who want to walk the entrepreneurial path?

If you have the passion and the opportunity, go for it! You may not reap immediate rewards but as long as you have a clear vision of where you want to go, and are not afraid to work towards it, things will work out.