On Friday Serena staff and management received good news since they were voted and rewarded a trophy for being the best hotel chain in Uganda. This was announced by the minister of tourism in Kampala at the Serena Victoria Hall.
This was announced by the minister of Tourism when Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) was launching their first ever hotel classification to categorize hotels into five, four, three, and two stars. This exercise of rating and categorizing these hotels into several categories was done and conducted by the East African Assessors who were employed by Uganda Tourism job for this credible job.
Only three hotels managed to be categorized in the five star and these include Serena Hotel Kampala, Sheraton Hotel Kampala and Munyonyo commonwealth Hotel. Out of the three, Serena Hotel emerged the best in as far as service provision is concerned.
In the four star category, East African Assessor had Speke Resort Munyonyo, Royal Suites,
Hotel Africana , Protea Hotel and Imperial Royale
Hotels in the two star hotel included: Speke Hotel, Metropol Hotel, Hotel Triangle, Hotel Triangle, Hotel Ruch, Hotel Ureka & Suites, Arch Apartments, Sir Jose Hotel, Sky Hotel International, Shangrila Hotel Kampala and Mt Zion Hotel.
While presiding over this function, the ministry of tourism honorable Miria Mutangaba noted that this classification and standardization of hotels into several categories will help in the development of Uganda’s tourism sector since it will set standards for both domestic and international tourists visiting Uganda as a tourism destination. Many tourists have been hesitant to visit Uganda since they are not sure of whether they will get value for money but now that that before they book in any Kampala hotel, they will first look at the category before booking anything. This will help tourists to make proper choices based on the available categories. It should be noted that ever since Uganda got independence and even before, the government had never classified hotels even when this was brought up in the tourism master plan.
The executive director of Uganda Tourism Board Mrs Steven Asiimwe added his voice by saying that they have started with Kampala hotels and they will follow this up with up country hotels since many tourists that visit Uganda not only stop in Kampala but go up country to visit national parks for wildlife viewing and primate tracking.
The president of Uganda Hotels Association Ms Susan Muhwezi said that Uganda hotels will now be easy to sell since they are now classified. During the process, seventy six hotels were visited and inspected but only twenty six were categorized. Other Hotels were left our as they did not meet the standard as set by the assessors. While other could meet the set standards, they did not registered because they did not take part in the exercise. Those that did not conform to the standards set should work hard to attain them otherwise will lose on business.
There is no doubt that Uganda is heading in the right direction having increased its budget for tourism from sixteen billion to thirty billion, establishing an independent ministry for tourism and sighting tourism among the three key sectors in Uganda.
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