President Samia Suluhu Hassan on Monday lured more investors into the hospitality sector, saying it has vast areas to tap in the country.
The Head of State assured potential investors that the country was now a safe place despite the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. The President, who was speaking while inaugurating the Gran Meliá Hotel, a five-star facility in the city said Tanzania was now a safe destination for both tourist and investors willing to open up businesses in the country.
“Tanzania is home to many renowned national parks, you therefore, have more areas to invest in,” she pointed out. Elaborating, she noted that Tanzania was one of the few countries in the world which continues to receive tourists and other guests; hence they have every reason to invest in the country. That was after the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) once endorsed Tanzania as the safest destination in Africa, something she said will restore tourists and investors’ confidence in the country.
“We were worst hit by the pandemic, but thanks to several interventions such as the vaccinations against the deadly virus and the rolling out of the standard operations procedures during the pandemic, we can confidently say that we are now safe,” said the President amidst a thunderous applause from the guests, who attended the colourful event at the newly established facility. In a related development, President Samia asked owners of the new establishment to utilise the locally produced foods and beverages, saying such a move would promote their economies.
“Do not import such things… We have Dodoma wine and local recipes that will attract more guests to your hotel,” she said. The President also thanked the Dubai based Albawardy’s Investment Group, who own the five-star-facility for choosing Tanzania as their preferred place for hosting another exquisite hotel from a long list of hotel chains under their name. She further pledged to patronise the facility.
Apart from Gran Meliá Hotel, the group also owns three hotels in the country which include Hyatt Regency Kilimanjaro, Melia Zanzibar and Melia Serengeti lodge. The Investment group has more than 380 hotels in 40 countries around the world. In his remarks, the Chief Executive Officer of the hotel chains, Gabriel Escar described the opening of the Gran Meliá Hotel in Arusha as their major investment in the region. “We are very grateful to the government for the unwavering support,” he explained.
Located on Simeon Road, the facility has now become the talk of the town, with tourists and other enthusiasts visiting it. It now sits where Hotel 77 once stood, over a decade ago.
The hotel, among other things features 171 exquisitely decorated rooms and suites designed with earthy interiors and contemporary furniture to provide a relaxing atmosphere for guests.