Louvres Hotel Group has signed a 20-year management agreement with Begez Business Group to run the Royal Tulip Plaza Addis Abeba Hotel Luxury Style Collection. The agreement was signed by Sebsebe Teklu, the chairman of Bengez and Alain Sebah, President of the Golden Tulip for French and East African countries.
Royal Tulip is currently under construction and is 40pc completed, with 470 million Br already spent on the construction. The total cost of the construction will be around one billion Br, and the hotel is scheduled for completion by mid-2018.
Begez has signed deals with Ethiopian companies Jefor Contractors and BIGAR architects for the work on the constructions. The contract for the interior and exterior design was given to a South African company, Ngonyama Okpananum Associates (NOA).
Founded in 1980, Begez began as importer of textiles.
The 13 storey hotel is expected to employ around 200 people. Louvres will receive its first dividends from Begez after the hotel becomes fully operational and makes a profit.
In addition to providing the branding, the group will also manage the hotel.
The negotiations took more than a year.
“The negotiation process took more than a year, as the company was vigilant with the design and legal matters involved,” said Kumneger Teketel, founder and managing director of Ozzie Business and Hospitality Group, a company known for organizing the annual Hotel Show Africa.
Ozzie, which brokered the Royal Tulip deal, consults for over 35 international and local hotel projects.
“Our aim is to incorporate our service with the increase of growth of the tourism business in Africa,” commented Alain Sebah of Golden Tulip.
The Sheraton Starwood Hotel and Resort, Park plaza, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, Novotel and Wyndham Hotel Group have entered into similar agreements with local companies since December, 2015.
Tourism earnings in Ethiopia increased by 65pc per year between 2010 and 2015. The country made an aggregate of 8.7 billion dollars during the same time. However, this year, the tourism industry had a slow start due to the aftermath of the of anti-government protests and the imposition of a state of emergency.
The entities engaged in trying to reverse the effects of the political turmoil include the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the Addis Abeba Hotel Owners’ Association and the Ethiopian Tour Operators’ Association.
The Addis Abeba Hotel Owners’ Association has submitted a letter to various embassies requesting that travel warnings for Ethiopia be lifted.
More than 35pc of visitors to Ethiopia come for recreational purposes.
Over the last two years, Louvres Hotel Group properties have begun operations in eight sub-Saharan African countries, with a total of 15 hotels.
Meanwhile, as a part of the tenth masterplan, Addis Abeba is planning to open five five-star hotels in the next decade. Currently, Addis Abeba is home to over 200 hotels – three of which have five stars and 13 of which are under international brands.
Ethiopia ranks eighth on the continent in terms of hotel development with 1,000 rooms, with 84pc of hotel development in the pipeline, while Egypt leads the continent, with 18 international brand hotels.
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