The Kigali Marriott Hotel officially launched its operations on Oct.4 at a ceremony attended by the Marriott International President and Chief Executive Officer, Arne Sorenson. Following the hotel’s launch, Sorenson met with President Paul Kagame and discussed Rwanda’s hospitality industry and the hotel group’s interests in Rwanda.
Sorenson said he was impressed by Rwanda’s future prospects, especially in tourism.
“Rwanda’s visibility in Africa and the rest of the world is a key factor in attracting investments in different sectors,” he said after meeting with President Kagame on Oct.05, “Marriott looks to come to Rwanda and take advantage of the economic growth.”
The opening ceremony was attended by political dignitaries and executives including Alex Kyriakidis, Marriott’s President and Managing Director, Middle East and Africa region.
“I have the privilege of being able to open hotels in one of the most fascinating and fastest-growing parts of the world,” said Kyriakidis. “But there is something about this project that is particularly fulfilling. Every time we open a hotel, we know there is an enormous positive impact on a community. But here, in Rwanda, that impact is magnified by the sustainable approach we have taken to both staffing and supplying the hotel.”
According to USA Today, Sorenson says Africa is an important market for Marriott because of its growing middle class, which is expected to drive tourism and business travel.
“These are all places that seem to have some opportunities available and some stability and capital and commerce that allows that development to happen,” USA Today quotes Sorenson saying.
Sorenson said Rwanda is going through an economic transformation and Marriott International is proud to be a part of it.
“Coupled with that transformation is a mutual promise for opportunity — both for Marriott as a hospitality company and for the associates and partners who will help us succeed in this market.”
The entry of Marriott Hotel into Rwanda would boost Rwanda’s hospitality industry, said Francis Gatare; the Chief Executive Officer of the Rwanda Development Board.
Gatare said the Marriott Hotel would boost the country initiative to be the leading regional destination for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Events (MICE) tourism considering their standing in the global hotel industry.