Making a trip to Maun on holidays without secured accommodation may very well qualify as throwing caution to the wind. But I have always approached hotel accommodation with the same philosophy I have adopted for a busy shopping mall parking; there is always someone leaving.
The risk has invariably paid off.
There is just something about organised planning that takes the thrill off a holiday trip. The less prepared the more fun you stand to have (I believe). It was this lack of planning that would land my partners and me at the far side of Maun at Sedie ward on Easter holidays.
Our lack of planning and last minute search for available accommodation revealed a brand new addition to Maun’s hotel industry.
Located along the Matlapane Road that leads to Shorobe and other neighbouring villages, Adansonia Hotel is the newest kid on the Maun hospitality industry. It is an addition to the Adansonia group with other notable hotels in Francistown and Gaborone.
Opened just a couple of days earlier the hotel had been fully booked prior to our arrival and as I mentioned earlier, there is always somebody leaving. We were lucky to be at the right place at the right time. At the front desk are the tall and beautiful Kempho Anarea and an equally handsome Ofentse Christopher.
With 25 fully furnished rooms, 3 conference facilities, and a functioning restaurant for 60, the two storey hotel opened its doors for the first time on March 23rd. We were some of the first customers. And the silence at the other end on my extension line at room 22 as I tried to call for room service bore testimony to that.
Telephones had not yet been connected. “We are still in the process of connecting telephone lines and free Wi-Fi,” said General Manager, Moemedi Rannoba. The plasma screens in the standard and luxury rooms provide an endless list of DStv channels to select from. It is not something you get with most hotels who offer just a select dozen of channels at most.
In a country with severe water shortages, the luxurious rain shower heads should be made illegal. They provide full showering spray that evokes a sensual illusion of actual rain making it difficult to leave the shower. But Ludo Cheshango would rather have a glass door instead of their shower curtains. “Nobody does shower curtains anymore,” she said.
The black-out curtains on the windows are just what you need after a late night out partying and the Adansonia rooms provide just that. As much as being awoken by the rising sun can be an incredible experience, there are times when a dark room aides in sleep especially when your bed had been vacant for most of the night. Dark curtains are also energy saving in that they keep heat from escaping when it’s cold and the sun from heating up the room when it is hot.
After a hectic night and a well needed shower, what better way to start your day than with some rich breakfast? The restaurant’s three lady chefs Botho Thatayaone, Gontlejang Kamela, and Evelyn Williams serve just the right buffet.
Unlike some of the big hotels in the area Adansonia is not located right on the river bank and without a garden, does not provide much to do outside the two storey building. “We are looking to partner with local tour guide operators in order to provide our clients with fun activities to do outside of the hotel,” Rannoba said.
The manager said they also have an expansion plan to add 50 more rooms to the hotel. The hotel employs 30 staff (all natives of Maun). While hospitality companies go to great lengths to satisfy their clients, unfortunately the same cannot be said of their treatment of staff. Treatment of staff by management in many of these companies leaves much to be desired. At worst, it even borders on violation of basic human rights. If what the staff told Sunday Standard Lifestyle is anything to go by, it seems the new Adansonia Hotel Maun is by no means different. We hope management will take heed of staff complaints without victimising complainants.
Given the high rate of unemployment it has been common knowledge that staff tends to take all the abuse without seeking recourse, while counting their blessings. We see many a contrived smile in the hospitality businesses as staff are forced to keep up appearances and hide the abuse that goes on behind the scenes. The hospitality industry should learn to extend to their staff the same degree of courtesy they expect the staff to pass on to their clientele. A happy employee equals a happy customer.