A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Mashonaland Holding Limited and Touchroad International Holdings Group will see Harare getting a new five-star luxury accommodation.
The development is a significant one as it comes at a time the Tourism Industry in Harare is in dire need for revitalisation, new offerings and above all need additional luxury hotels, Minster Mupfumira said in a speech read on her behalf at the signing ceremony held in harare on 14 March 2019.
“This MOU Signing occasion is really a testimony that President E.D. Mnangagwa mantra “Zimbabwe is Open for Business” is bearing fruit.
“The project is poised to change the face of tourism in the capital by adding a five-star luxury accommodation. Currently, Harare in particular and the country at large has limited 5-star accommodation facilities,” said Dr. Precious Sibiya, the Director of Legal Services in the Ministry of Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry who was standing in for Minister Mupfumira.
In the pipeline is the conversion of Charter House into a luxury hotel in a deal that will see at least 80 hotel rooms being added to the current hotel room capacity of 2371 in Harare.
Even with this additional capacity Harare would still be lagging behind other cities in the region such as Johannesburg and Lusaka hence the need for more tourism investment not only in accommodation facilities but also modern conferencing facilities and amusement parks to mention just a few.
Going by the renewed confidence in destination Zimbabwe in general and Harare in particular, arising from visitor friendly policies being implemented in the Second Republic, key destinations including Harare, Victoria Falls and Bulawayo are bound to run short of hotel accommodation by 2020, the minister said.
To cater for the anticipated increase in tourist arrivals there need for increased investment in the accommodation room stock needs not be overemphasised.
“As we move to promote tourism investment by local and foreign investors it is also imperative to attract international brands to Harare and other key destinations so as to enhance our competitiveness as destination Zimbabwe.”
Mashonaland Holdings Limited is providing the base for such investment to take place in the capital. The company has set its foot onto the tourism sector and it is hoped it will participate in other tourism investments throughout the country.
Touchroad International was applauded for living up to its word for regarding Zimbabwe as a priority investment destination.
“I am informed that the conversion of Charter House into a hotel is estimated to cost close to US$20 million. This is a testament of commitment to the Memorandum of Understanding signed by Ministry and its implementing agency, the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and Touchroad International Holdings Group in April last year. I know that this is just but the beginning of good things to come as there are other multimillion dollar projects in the pipeline,” the Minister added.