Region overview: 62,000 new rooms to expand Africa’s hotel offering [Construction Report]

by | 14 Aug 2020 | Projects

Africa’s hotel market is growing at speed thanks in no small part to the development of an impressive number of five-star properties, the TOPHOTELPROJECTS construction database reveals.

Across the continent, 279 new hotels and 62,137 rooms are on their way soon, according to our researchers. Below, we take an in-depth look at some of the key facts and figures behind Africa’s development boom.

Consistent growth in the coming years

Although the impact of Covid19 is still casting its shadow over the hospitality industry, 70 openings with 13,156 rooms are planned throughout Africa in the remainder of 2020. Another 78 projects are in the works for 2021, followed by 55 more in 2022.

Looking further ahead, 23 properties are currently scheduled for 2023, while 53 hotels have been lined up for 2024 and beyond, although both these numbers are likely to increase nearer the time.

Of these 279 planned hotels, 137 will be in the four-star bracket, and 142 will be five-star schemes – highlighting Africa’s penchant for welcoming luxury properties and high-end travellers.

Egypt leads the way in the development stakes

Next, we turn to the question of which are Africa’s top ten countries in terms of hotel development.

Well Egypt, already a well-established tourism destination, tops the charts with 56 properties and 17,351 rooms in its pipeline. Morocco comes second with 34 new hotels and 8,069 keys, ahead of Nigeria in third with 25 openings and 5,974 rooms.

Ethiopia, Kenya and South Africa follow with 21, 19 and 14 launches respectively. And the list is completed by Cape Verde and Algeria (both 11), Côte d’Ivoire (nine) and Senegal (six).

Cairo’s hotel market firing on all cylinders

Egypt’s capital Cairo takes the title of Africa’s fastest-growing urban market for hotel development with 15 openings and 4,621 new rooms in the pipeline. But Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, share second place with 12 projects each (2,468 and 2,360 rooms respectively).

Elsewhere, Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire) and Abuja (Nigeria) will see nine and eight properties go live. Algiers (Algeria), Marrakech (Morocco), Lagos (Nigeria) and Rabat (Morocco) each have seven projects in their pipelines and, last but not least, Sharm El-Sheikh (Egypt) has six.

World-famous hotel brands eye African opportunities

There is a tie for the crown of Africa’s fastest-growing hotel brand, with Hilton Hotels & Resorts and Radisson Blu Hotels & Resorts both planning 19 openings across the continent. However, Hilton’s signature brand takes the lead in terms of room count, with its 5,187 keys beating Radisson Blu’s 4,061 rooms by some distance.

Meanwhile, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts and Radisson Hotels & Resorts each have a pipeline of ten properties with 2,886 and 1,271 rooms respectively. And Marriott Hotels & Resorts (2,101 rooms), Novotel (1,407) and Park Inn by Radisson (1,254) all have nine hotels underway.

Four Points by Sheraton follows with eight projects and 1,882 keys, before Fairmont Hotels & Resorts and Hilton Garden Inn complete the list with seven upcoming openings each and 2,262 rooms versus 1,178 rooms.

This shows Radisson Hotel Group is pressing ahead with its ambitious expansion plans in Africa and is taking the lead with group-wide openings (38), way ahead of Hilton Worldwide (26), Accor (26) and Marriott International (17).

Noteworthy hotel projects in Africa

Africa’s largest hotel project, according to the database, is the 2,500-room Marina Resort Chbika in Egypt, which was planned to house at least three hotels and a combination of rooms, suites and villas. The opening date was set for Q2 2023, but construction is currently on hold.

The biggest project underway today is the 835-room Melia White Sands Hotel & Spa in Boa Vista, Cape Verde. Slated to open in Q3 2020, this hotel complex will be split into family and adult-only sections, ensuring all guests enjoy the highest quality of service tailored to their needs. The family-oriented facilities include two children’s pools, a baby pool and adventure playground as well as a kids’ club; there will also be a wet bar and poolside restaurant serving up first-class refreshments. The main hotel building, moreover, will offer a selection of fine-dining restaurants and themed bars.

At Fuka in Egypt, by contrast, the CityStars Al Sahel development will include both the 300-room Swissotel Fuka and the 350-room Fairmont Fuka Bay – CityStars Al Sahel. Fairmont Fuka Bay and the Fairmont branded residences will benefit from lush landscaping, turquoise waters and perfect weather year-round. The hotel, set within an upscale residential community in one of the most desirable vacation spots in the country, will offer several speciality restaurants, a private beachfront and a marina once it opens in early 2022.

Finally, the 600-room Transcorp Hilton Ikoyi in Lagos will be an iconic modern new structure, creating a new world-class luxury destination for travellers when it launches in late 2023. The design takes its inspiration from two curling waves, symbolising Nigeria’s waterfront and maritime culture. Its 20-storey landmark tower will offer stunning views of Lagos Lagoon to the north and Victoria Island and the Atlantic Ocean to the south.