PHOTOS & VIDEO: We are proud to be part of Rwanda’s transformation – Marriott CEO

The President and CEO of Marriott International, Arne Sorenson, has said that his company is proud to be part of Rwanda’s remarkable transformation journey.
Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi and Arne M. Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, during the grand opening of Kigali Marriott Hotel located in....
Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi and Arne M. Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, during the grand opening of Kigali Marriott Hotel located in....

The President and CEO of Marriott International, Arne Sorenson, has said that his company is proud to be part of Rwanda’s remarkable transformation journey.

 

VIDEO: Kigali Marriott Hotel Officially Opens. Source: TheNewTimes/YouTube

 

Sorenson was speaking Tuesday evening at the grand opening of Kigali Marriott Hotel located in downtown Kigali.

 
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Arne M. Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, gives his opening remarks during the launch. / Timothy Kisambira

“Rwanda is going through an economic transformation and we are proud to be a part of it,” said Sorenson, adding that the country’s vision to place travel and tourism at the heart of development convinced Marriott to select Rwanda as host to its first sub-Saharan property.

Speaking at the opening, Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi hailed the global hotel chain for its decision.

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A guest uses VR headsets to fly to China during the launch of Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira

Murekezi noted that Rwanda has positioned itself as an attractive destination for high value service investments, through Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events (MICE) and tourism among key priorities for employment and foreign exchange income.

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Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi gives his remarks during the launch of Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira

Because of this, he added, there couldn’t be a better timing than Marriott’s joining the sector.

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Chefs prepare fish brochettes during the launch of Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira

Alex Kyriakidis, Marriott’s president and Managing Director for Middle East and Africa region noted that, there is something about this project that is particularly fulfilling.

“Every time we open a hotel, we know there is an enormous positive impact on a community.  But here, in Rwanda, that impact is magnified by the sustainable approach we have taken to both staffing and supplying the hotel.”

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Guests chat at the hotel lobby as they wait for the guest of honor. / Timothy Kisambira

He added that, “Coupled with that transformation is a mutual promise for opportunity — both for Marriott as a hospitality company and for the associates and partners who will help us succeed in this market.”

Rwanda’s travel and tourism industry generated 7.1 percent of the country’s GDP in 2015 and is predicted it to rise at 4.1 per cent annually through 2025.

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Guests enjoy different dishes during the launch of Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira

“The government also thanks the New Century Development for having sponsored this project and attracted Marriott to Rwanda as a strategic partner. Equally important, we thank Equity Bank, KCB and Bank of Kigali (BK) for having financed and believed in this ambitious and transformative project,” the Premier said. 

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Guests interact as they wait the arrival of the guest of honor. / Timothy Kisambira

The hotel, has partnered with the Akilah Institute for Women to recruit and train Rwandan women for supervisory positions at its Kigali location.

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Guests pose for a photo on their arrival at Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira
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Guests serve food during the launch of Marriott Hotel. / Timothy Kisambira

Among the key features of the Kigali Marriott Hotel include four restaurants and lounges and 18 meeting rooms, among other facilities.

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