Sheraton heading to Kigali

SHERATON SET FOR KIGALI ENTRY

Information from Kigali indicates that a Chinese owned company, Century Park Hotels and Residences Ltd. has acquired part of a 75 hectares large piece of land, adjoining Lake Nyagahene, in order to commence the construction later this year of a new luxury hotel which will be managed by Starwood’s Sheraton brand.

After the 7.5 hectares piece has been developed the company intends to purchase the balance of the land from the Rwanda Development Bank to develop both leisure and residential facilities.

A source at the Rwanda Development Board has confirmed the report in principle but could not go on record for not being the official spokesperson of RDB. ‘The city council of Kigali has as far as we are concerned sanctioned the transaction. What the developer is doing is to start the project on one section of the land while the rest is surveyed and wetland areas marked. Those cannot be developed and must remain intact. The EIA will deal with all that but the hotel project is going ahead already and the rest will follow’.

Going by conventional wisdom the hotel will take between 1 ½ to 2 years to build when construction kicks off which would see a full market entry by Sheraton some time in 2015. Starwood is the latest from among a number of international hospitality giants eyeing Rwanda, with Marriott set to open their Kigali hotel later this year, then competing with regional market leader Serena Hotels. Watch this space as more global names will soon be making similar announcements.

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