LONRHO PLANS RETURN TO KENYA’S HOTEL SCENE WITH EASY HOTEL BRAND
The emerging partnership between Lonrho and Sir Stelios, already evident in the aviation sector with the joint venture called ‘FastJet’, appears set to intensify when plans became known during the just ended Africa Hotel Investment Conference at the Nairobi InterContinental Hotel, that the two corporate giants were about to introduce the ‘Easy Hotels’ brand to Kenya.
Lonrho had sold their hotel interests to Fairmont, a brand of Kingdom Hotels, before then divesting of a number of other key holdings in Kenya, reducing their corporate footprint in East Africa considerably while maintaining if not increasing the same in West Africa. It is expected, that the hotel deal, which reportedly is valid for the entire continent, not just Kenya, will see a number of these branded hotels come up in future years, probably alongside the roll out of ‘FastJet, covering the destination cities the new airline is aiming to fly to. Information from Nairobi in fact speaks of an advanced stage of these plans with the first hotel already coming on line in the second quarter of 2013, though no specific location has been given at this time other than a wish list of places where the promoters are looking for suitable spaces or available buildings, if not operating hotels which could be acquired and converted. Watch this space for regular and breaking news from East Africa’s vibrant hospitality sector.