Diana Fossey must be turning with joy at how her name has been kept alive in Rwanda’s tourism industry, an industry to which she sacrificed all her energies and life. He legendary gorilla conservationist who lost her life while advocating for the protection of the endangered gorillas has several institutions and entities named in her honour, but outside the current profile of the gorillas in the tourism industry none of the memorabilia is as close to environmental inspiration as Diana Fossey Hotel run by Catholic sisters in the area.
Situated in the outskirts of Gisenyi resort town, Diana Fossey Nyiramacibiri is one such feature named after the great conservationist. Lined along most pavements in the hotel are caricatures of wild animals, while the accompanying thick green gardens give a close feeling of what it is like to be in a jungle.
It makes sense therefore, that Diana Fossey Hotel currently undergoing expansion is almost situated right next to the boarder line between Rwanda and DR Congo’s North Kivu province, whose major resort city, Goma is a rich source of clients for Diana Fossey Hotel.
Currently the hotel has 19 self contained rooms and 5 suites when completed the hotel will expand to 35 rooms. The rooms are extremely spacious perhaps such that the guests can view the in-house crested cranes when they land in the evenings and leave early mornings.
The cranes are another amazing feature of the hotel, walking about gracefully in the large compound. Also of interest is the wealth of collection of caricatures, sometimes they appear like human beings in darkness, which is quite often outside the fence of the hotel.
There are four beautiful crested cranes that hang around the gardens every morning and disappear till later in the evening. They flap their wings while making funny noises as the Gidenyi sun sets on Lake Kivu, with no doubt this is the of the hotel.
For idol clients, the hotel’s wallpapers, which are also found inside the guest rooms can provide visual entertainment, most are a depiction of George Orwell’s satirical novel The Animal Farm, most of the moments captured in the wallpaper drawings are the one that involved Napoleon and his trusted lieutenants indulging in food. Quite an ironical picture to have on a dining table of a hotel!
In the in-house restaurant, there’s hot coffee till midnight, while the traditional meals are highly popular with many of Gisenyi and Goma’s moneyed class.
Unfortunately, the hotel’s main bar is as simple as your local kiosk, it serves only ordinary beer, and even then, the brands are limited.