Kisumu hoteliers seek to gain from Madaraka Day celebrations
Hoteliers in Kisumu town are registering a robust business boom as the county prepares to host this year’s Madaraka Day fete next week.
A spot -check by People Daily revealed that a number of hotels in the lakeside town are already recording increased business volumes, barely four days to the celebrations to be held at the newly constructed Jomo Kenyatta International Stadium at the Mamboleo ASK ground.
President Uhuru Kenyatta will lead the nation in marking 2021 Madaraka Day celebrations in Kisumu where other dignitaries will join him.
Yesterday, hotel industry players who spoke to this writer, while lauding the government’s decision to decentralise hosting of the national events celebrations, remained upbeat their businesses will benefit immensely from the opportunities that have come in handy by hosting the event in Kisumu.
Lake Victoria Tourism Association chairman Robinson Anyal says the industry has witnessed slight improvement on accommodation and conference business attributed to the opening of Nairobi and activities that are happening in relation to the preparation for hosting the function.
Currently, Anyal says majority of hotels are recording averagely between 15 to 20 per cent in room occupancies.
He says they hope to record a further increased booking, especially a day to the fete.
“We expect to be doing 30 per cent and above days to the event and beyond 80 per cent night to the celebrations day,” he said, noting that such events will help the industry gradually pick up in business after experiencing the devastating negative effects of Covid-19.
David Omollo, Victoria comfort hotel manager, says the facility has had a slight progress in accommodation bookings, majorly for State officials doing supervision roles in the projects set to be completed before the Madaraka Day such as the new stadium.
Anyal points out that the association has lined up certain recreational activities to be undertaken ahead of the celebrations among them excursions involving cruise tourism on the lake, visits to Impala sanctuary, Dunga boardwalk and the legendary Kit Mikayi.
“The association has dedicated the next few days to showcasing what the region has, what activities it offers and the attraction sites to keep our guests who may arrive early or extend their stay after the event.
We believe this is the right moment to promote local tourism,” he said.
Anyal says hotels have also ensured stringent compliance with Covid-19 protocols.