The Cresta Marakanelo Group, the country’s leading hotelier group, is shoring-up its image ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup with a view to becoming an international household name.
The group, which has nine hotels in Botswana that are being supported by four in Zimbabwe and in Zambia and Ghana, said Thursday that it is currently engaged in a massive face-lift of its entities which help it in transforming their chain of hotels from an African brand into an international brand.
The Group Sales and Marketing Manager of Cresta Marakanelo, Patrick Chivese, told a group of their clients that the aim and vision of the group is to retain the existing clientele while acquiring new ones at the same time.
“We at Cresta are continuing to invest in the infrastructure to help us understand the service that is required and then deliver it,” he said.
The group, which is on a profit growing path from P 50 million per annum ÔÇösome four years ago – to P101 million to date, has just completed the refurbishment of its oldest operation, Cresta President Hotel, to the tune of P 25 million.
The project involved a complete remodeling of its bedrooms, restaurant, conference rooms and reception.
At the moment, Thapama Hotel in Francistown is currently undergoing a similar exercise and other developments are planned for Rileys in Maun and the Cresta Lodge in Gaborone in the next year.
The face-lift exercise is expected to help grow the occupancy rate at the group, which currently stands at around 65 percent. Further, a new aggressive drive centered on the Club card membership is also taking off to entrench the hotel in the local market.
All these developments are expected to be completed before the 2010 Soccer World Cup to be staged in South Africa. Thousands of soccer fans from all over the world are expected to flood the southern African region around that time to cheer their national teams.
Chivese further stated that they pride themselves with their Cresta card loyalty program and believed it is an investment customers and their employers need to have as it saves companies’ money in terms of Cresta Hotel usage. “Supporting all these is your investment in staying loyal to Cresta,” he said.
He said Cresta Marakanelo is starting a new campaign of running various year-end specials from its customers’ corporate office in a bid to lure clients.