Africa’s tourism bounceback will need healthy hotel pipeline
Africa’s tourism industry is targeting a post-covid recovery which will require an uptick in hotel developments.
The issue was discussed at the recent Africa Tourism Leadership Forum held in the Botswanian capital, Gaborone, with the country’s president, Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi, setting out the market’s aims.
Masisi addressed delegates in a keynote speech, saying: “Our continent is renowned for its beauty and the quality of establishments and high service excellence. However, to harness this potential we have to work together. The only way to achieve success and unprecedented tourism growth, and job creation, is by coming together, capitalising on each other’s strengths and working as one.
“This I believe will get the tourism industry back to its pre-pandemic and 2019 performance levels, which we hope should be reached by 2024.”
After covid hit Africa hard, most countries on the continent have now eased restrictions, making it easier for travellers to visit. Of course, the hotel sector will be vital in bringing about a bounceback, and according to the TOPHOTELPROJECTS database, there are already at least 267 high end projects in the pipeline, totalling 56,661 rooms.
Current completion peaks will definitely help to reach the recovery target year, as 2023 deliveries lead the pack with 94 high end projects finishing, approximately 35% of this market’s pipeline. 49 sites will complete in 2024 itself, while third in the list is this year, with another 35 deliveries. A further 89 hotels on the books have either yet to receive an end date or will complete in 2025 and beyond.
In terms of segments, the data is fairly evenly split between upscale and luxury builds, with 140 (52%) of sites in the four star category, while the remaining 127/48% are five stars.
Geographically, Egypt is top of the high end hotel stakes in Africa, with at least 58 projects underway. Fellow north African nation, Morocco, takes the runner’s up spot with 29 properties, while Nigeria the only sub-Saharan country making the podium, on 22 sites.
Drilling down into individual cities, we find that it’s the battle of the capitals, Egypt’s Cairo likewise heading the list on 15 hotels, while Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa is closely behind on 12 sites, alongside Kenyan capital Nairobi with 11 properties.
Specific brands making a splash in the continent are led by Hilton Hotels & Resorts, with 18 high end projects underway. In second place is Radisson Hotels & Resorts, constructing at least 16 hotels, with Accor group’s Novotel rounding out the top three with 12 sites.
Epitomising these major marques’ constructions are projects including Hilton Secon Nile Tower, a 257-room hotel taking shape as part of the two Secon Nile Towers, a mixed use development in Cairo. The site is due to complete by the end of this year.
Another exemplar of the continent’s leading hotel brands is the 184-key Radisson Hotel La Baie d’Alger underway in Algerian capital, Algiers. The hotel – consisting of standard rooms, junior suites and suites – will feature a modern all-day dining restaurant, a lobby lounge, a fully equipped gym and spa and 308 sq m of meetings and events space.
And in the Novotel stable, the 200-guestroom Novotel Abidjan Marcory will be delivered in Abidjan, on Ivory Coast’s southern Atlantic shore, in Q3 2023. It is a dual development alongside the 110-key Adagio Abidjan Marcory.
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