Strategically located along the Serowe-Orapa and Maun high way, Thakadu hotel is just 2 kilometers into Letlhakane village in the Boteti area and about 20 kilometers to the mining town of Orapa.
The hotel, which also doubles as a Casino and conference center provides a convenient stop over to those travelling to Maun and into the Makgadikgadi Pans.
It has been classified as Boteti’s first ever Casino and hotel which opened its doors to the public on the 20th of August 2015. The splendid sprawling facility with two wings gives a scenic arrival into Letlhakane Village.
It is a citizen owned two star Hotel comprising of 30 fully serviced rooms, 2 executive rooms, 18 single rooms 10 double twin rooms.
Boteti District is one of the major diamond hubs in the world, hosting four diamond mines within a radius of 20km.
Situated in the heart of the mining area, the exquisite hotel is surrounded by Debswana’s Orapa, Letlhakane, Damtshaa and Karowe of Lucara Diamonds.
These have become Thakadu’s biggest clientele, followed by corporate, cooperates, private individuals and the government.
It is of no doubt that the hotel operates in a very competitive space of the hospitality industry, hence the need to have own strategy to outcompete the competitors or atleast to be the best. Other service providers found around the area are guest houses and small lodges.
Lexie Moses, Thakadu Hotel- Public Relations and Marketing Executive shared with this publication that, “we are the biggest facility and the only hotel in Boteti area, which is one other aspects that singles us out from other service providers, running with two conference rooms and the lucrative location allows the hotel to be conveniently placed between the tourism areas and the business hubs of the country, allowing it to be easily accessible. We are also the only facility with a casino in the Boteti area.”
Considering that Thakadu is a business hotel and not a tourism attraction destination, Moses indicated that the business goes a little low during holidays since most people opt for tourism attraction areas. Nonetheless, the facility still hosts private individuals coming over during the low times. The hotel also embarks on promotions that keep its brand in the minds of the customers which helps stimulate demand for the product. Sale promotions are the set of marketing activities undertaken to boost.
The hotel runs with a great food and beverage team that always come up with mouth watering recipes and has a long course swimming pool and a bar.
Then Thakadu also offers a Casino business operation, operating in a very small mining town as opposed to the urban cities, one may ask the amount of clients this one receive as opposed to the usual bed bookings and conference bookings.
The hotel operates a 50 slot machine casino which is operated by the state art cashless system using magnetic smart cards. It is quite a relaxing environment for gamblers since whilst the smarting with the machines, they could access beverages of their choice from the casino bar which remains open throughout the casino operating hours, that is from 10am to 3 am.
According to Moses, the Casino is just doing moderately, considering that the hotel is in a rural area where most of the residents still don’t have a light on what a casino is and some having a different perspective about gambling. “I take it that with time some people will change their mind set and look at it in a different way,” she said.
The two-storey facility co-owned by Elijah Katse who is also sitting as its Managing Director was funded by Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) and P45million was spent to achieve full completion of the property. The hotel currently employs 50 people.