As consumers all over the world get more discerning and conscious of their spending pattern, so are discerning brand owners raising the bars of value addition in a bid to meet, and even surpass consumer expectations. Making conscious efforts to fill identified gaps in the demand-supply ends is one area that cannot be overlooked in this regard.
Globally, hospitality and tourism is one of those sectors where investment analysts have predicted huge opportunities especially in developing countries like Nigeria. Available records has shown that Nigeria as a fast growing destination for international and local investors and tourists alike would require more hotel facilities. Lagos, one of the world’s fastest mega cities, in particular is even tipped to top this need list.
According to a recent Hotel Survey by Hogg Robinson Group, Lagos ranks second as the most expensive city for business travellers with an average room rate (ARR) of N28,248.46 (117 Pounds) after Moscow with ARR of N63,499.83 (263.07 Pounds). A global economic analyst, David Grossniklaus, in another study said demand for hotel rooms in Lagos increased by 7.3 per cent in 2012 while supply was 6 per cent. Focused on its business intent to expand its footprint of quality 5-star hospitality brand offerings,
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has opened InterContinental Lagos, its first hotel in Nigeria and the company’s first InterContinental hotel in West Africa. InterContinental Lagos is also the first luxury 5-Star hotel to be built in the history of Nigeria and the tallest hotel in West Africa.
The 358-room InterContinental Lagos is located on Plot 52, Kofo Abayomi Street, Victoria Island, the Nigerian city’s business and diplomatic hub, home to numerous embassies and multinational companies. Close to Lagos Creek, the 23-storey hotel offers guests stunning panoramic views of the Gulf of Guinea. Lagos is the largest city in the country, as well as one of the biggest and fastest-growing cities in Africa.
The hotel is set to appeal to local residents and international travellers alike with four restaurants and stylish bars on offer. Ekaabo, the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant, serves up a blend of Nigerian and international cuisine and overlooks a majestic waterfall, while Milano offers contemporary Italian cuisine.
For those after Far Eastern fare, the hotel’s Chinese restaurant, Soho*, is the ideal option. At the hotel’s poolside restaurant, PS/SP, guests can choose from a variety of healthy lunch and dinner choices and enjoy a relaxed atmosphere, while seated next to the hotel’s Zen garden. For event planners and business travellers, the hotel offers state-of-the-art facilities.
Its Grand African Ballroom can seat up to 1,400 people with an additional six other meeting rooms, a boardroom and business facilities available. The hotel also features a luxurious health and fitness centre, which includes a sauna and steam room, and Club InterContinental.
The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola, who was joined by other eminent persons from all walks of life, performed the grand opening of the hotel at a colourful ceremony characterised by glitz and glamour.
Fashola in his speech commended the promoters of InterContinental Lagos for their vision, saying the building of the hotel was a welcome development at a time Nigeria was yearning for foreign direct investments to grow the economy. He noted that continuous investment in the local economy was the answer to creating more jobs for the teeming unemployed Nigerians.
“It is clear that there is growth on the African continent. But growth is a cycle as economists will tell you, and if we do nothing with the cycle of opportunity, it will move on. It is here now but we are dealing with growth without enough jobs. There is no miracle about it, the answer lies in continuous local investments, continuous pushing of the frontiers of commitment, continuous investments at home and emphasis on the possibilities that lie here”, he stated.
The question pundits are asking is whether the new entrant would unsettle the market. Whichever way, competitions are already bracing up to respond to any card put forward by IHG.