PRESS RELEASE: Marriott International continues extensive expansion in Africa: Targets over 200 hotels with more than 37,000 rooms by 2022 expecting to generate $8.5 billion of capital investment and 50,000 direct and indirect jobs

Today Announces Seven New Hotels, Marking a Debut in Ivory Coast and Strengthening Presence in Ethiopia, Ghana and Nigeria

KIGALI, Rwanda, October 10, 2017/ — From the Africa Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF) ( in Kigali, Rwanda, Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) ( today announced further expansion plans in Africa with seven new hotel signings. Marriott International was the first global chain to make a significant investment in Africa with the acquisition of Protea Hotels for $210 million in 2014. The company is targeting over 200 hotels with 37,000 rooms open or in the pipeline by 2022, equating to around $8.5 billion of capital investment by its real estate partners, reinforcing its continued commitment to expansion in Africa and solidifying its leadership on the continent. The investment is expected to generate substantial economic activity and around 50,000 direct and indirect jobs once the hotels open.

“Africa today makes a very compelling story. We are seeing unprecedented traction for our compelling brands, driving our momentum of growth,” said Alex Kyriakidis, President and Managing Director, Middle East and Africa, Marriott International. “We have always believed in the potential of Africa and the opportunities the continent has to offer. With economic growth, a rising middle class and rapid urbanization, the demand for travel and high quality lodging is growing, providing us with a significant opportunity to enhance our footprint and play our part in supporting many emerging markets across the continent,” he added.

Today Marriott International hotels are present in 20 African countries: Algeria, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritius, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda and Zambia. The company is expected to foray into new markets including Benin, Botswana, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, and Senegal and has signed 1300 new rooms marking the debut of Marriott International into Ivory Coast while strengthening its presence in existing markets including Ethiopia, Ghana and Nigeria.

Abidjan Marriott Hotel, Ivory Coast

Within walking distance from the Presidential Palace, the 200 room Abidjan Marriott Hotel is strategically located in the heart of Plateau, the central business district and the commercial, financial and administrative center of Abidjan. Owned by Ivory Coast Investissement, the hotel is slated to open in 2021 and will be part of a mixed-use development that will include a conference center, offices, retail and a national library.

Sheraton Abidjan and Four Points by Sheraton Abidjan, Ivory Coast

Slated to open in 2022, both Sheraton Abidjan and Four Points by Sheraton Abidjan will also be part of a mixed-use development which will include a convention center, a marina, a shopping center and an office building. The 259 room Four Points by Sheraton Abidjan will be a conversion of an existing hotel, which will be rebranded following extensive refurbishment, while the 300 room Sheraton Abidjan will be a new build property. Owned by the Societe Des Lagunes, the hotels will be set on the waterfront in the affluent neighborhood of Cocody, an upmarket residential commune that also houses the embassy district.

With Ivory Coast being celebrated as one of Africa’s fastest-growing economies, and re-emerging as the gateway to Francophone Africa, the new hotels in the capital city of Abidjan are ideally placed for a long and thriving future.

Renaissance Landmark Lagos Hotel and Marriott Executive Apartments, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

Owned and developed by Landmark Africa Group, Marriott International will manage the 216 room Renaissance Landmark Lagos Hotel, as well as a 44-room Marriott Executive Apartments. Slated to open in 2020, the hotels will be located within the Landmark Village precinct, a premier mixed-use, business, leisure and lifestyle development along the Atlantic Ocean waterfront in Victoria Island, the central business district of Lagos. The 25-floor hotel will offer a wide range of amenities, including local and international restaurants, spa facilities, a fitness center, and an infinity pool with access to a 100-meter-long boardwalk overlooking a vibrant beach club offering exciting watersports.

Speaking on the increased interest in mixed-use development projects, Kyriakidis said, “As cities evolve and grow into flourishing urban centers, we will continue to see a lot of activity in this space. An international hotel brand can bring cachet to a project that positions it significantly above its peers and differentiates it from its competitors. Our compelling brands spanning every segment from Luxury to Premium to Select to Extended Stay, lend themselves to grow in all markets, city and resort as well as standalone and mixed-use formats, providing developers the flexibility and choice to identify the right brand for the right location.”

Le Meridien Accra, Ghana


The 160 room Le Meridien Accra, owned by 4-Mac Limited is strategically located close to the international airport, within the prestigious Airport Residential Area of Accra. It will provide easy access to key commercial, diplomatic and government nodes as well as to major city attractions. Scheduled to open in 2021, the hotel marks the debut of Le Meridien brand into Ghana.

Protea Hotel by Marriott Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Projected to open in 2021, the 165 room Protea Hotel by Marriott Addis Ababa, located on Churchill Avenue will mark the debut of the brand into Ethiopia. The hotel will offer a specialty restaurant, a lobby bar and lounge and meeting facilities as well as a fitness center and spa.

Earlier this year, Marriott International had announced the debut of The Ritz-Carlton brand in the exotic Zanzibar Archipelago with the signing of The Ritz-Carlton Zanzibar, the 90 room all suite and villa luxury resort as well as the debut of Aloft into Mauritius with the signing of Aloft Port Louis, the brand’s first adaptive reuse project in Africa.

Commenting on the extraordinary pace of hotel signings and openings this year, Kyriakidis said, “Signings and openings form the cornerstone of our aggressive growth strategy. Our history and legacy on the continent and the strong foundations we have built over the years serve as a springboard for our future growth. Our brands are resonating with the aspirational and fast growing middle class in the region. Our strengthened footprint and increased distribution is driving market share and building loyalty which makes us more attractive to investors than ever before.”

The company debuted the Four Points brand in Tanzania last week with the opening of Four Points by Sheraton Arusha, The Arusha Hotel and is now gearing up to open the Four Points by Sheraton Dar es Salam, New Africa Hotel. Earlier this year the brand debuted in Kenya with the opening of Four Points by Sheraton Nairobi Hurlingham and is now expected to open its second hotel in Kenya, Four Points by Sheraton Nairobi Airport in the next couple of weeks.

In Egypt, the company recently reopened Sheraton Cairo, a city icon for over four decades, after extensive renovation. It is now looking to debut its renowned luxury brand St. Regis, with the opening of the spectacular St. Regis Cairo, a highly anticipated addition to the company’s luxury portfolio in the country.

Marriott also recently opened Protea by Marriott Owerri Select in Nigeria. Other forthcoming openings over the next couple of months include Sheraton Bamako which marks the debut of Marriott International in Mali, Protea Hotel by Marriott Constantine, the brand’s debut in Algeria and the Accra Marriott Hotel, the debut of the flagship Marriott Hotels brand in Ghana.

Today, Marriott International has a strong footprint across the continent operating 140 hotels with close to 24,000 rooms across 12 brands.

Project Management Good Practice – Development Management

About ten years ago in South Africa companies were happy to have their quantity surveying consultants doubling up as project managers for their property investments. Quantity surveying companies were in return also quite happy to handle this specialised function as part of their normal services. Prior to that, companies were content with one of their property managers handling the project management function on their hundreds-of-million Rand projects.

In both cases the outcome was less than what investors were expecting, as the result was cost and or time overruns or poor quality delivery, or worse, all three of these less than desirable outcomes. As investors started to learn these lessons at a high cost, a new industry was waiting in the wings in the property development industry. Project management is a specialised skill which brings together the elements of people, resources and processes to reach a goal. In this case our goals are successful property development projects.

Due to the nature of property developments costing millions of Rands and taking huge amounts of time to deliver upon, much ‘projecting’ into how the future is going to behave must necessarily be engaged in as a matter of course. Predicting the future does not have to be unscientific though. There are very many variables that can be controlled. As long as there exists a proper ‘connect’ between future activities and the present, then much of the risk in projects can be reduced substantially.

I wish to share to share two of the disciplines I go into whenever I get an opportunity to run a property development project.

The first relates to an analogy that explains a fundamental principle of project management.

Every project is implemented under three const...
Figure 1: Image via Wikipedia

Projects are run over a set time period (programme), at a budget (cost) and at a specification (scope). This principle states that a satisfactory level of quality has to be reached, or that a balance exists between the budget, programme and project specification has to be reached before project commencement. The analogy of a three-legged stool explains balance very well. The legs have to be of equal length in order for the user to be comfortable seating on it. If one of the legs had to be changed in any way, that balance is no longer present, and this can only be restored through adjusting the other two. In the case of a project, the consequence is that quality then suffers.

Another tool I have developed and used with success is what I call the Dynamic Preconstruction Framework.  This framework illustrates a multidimensional planning process on a single page. The project phases are depicted vertically on the left and elapsed time horizontally, whilst the various activities are  depicted in-between. The lines show the flow of activities from concept development through to construction commencement.

Project phases typically follow the steps shown in the illustration. A lot of effort is expended in putting the project plan together. This is usually done this way in order to ensure that the project’s objectives are met as efficiently as possible. Most development projects are executed on the fast track basis. So once the contractor is mobilised, opportunities to revise the plans usually come at a cost. The advantage though, is that the developer can enjoy the benefit from revenue flows earlier.

The longer it takes to plan a project a project the better. Time helps to reduce the risk of project uncertainty. However, too much time spent on planning can also nullify the benefits that can be derived from moving swiftly on development opportunities. A well-planned project should take no less than six months to plan.

The activities required to brinFigure 1g a development into being differ from one project to the next. Those illustrated below are more or less the minimum required to meet most project objectives. The lines drawn from activity to activity show the various relationships between the project departments and teams. The lines are meant to show both linear as well as well as iterative flows of information.

Figure 2

Source: T Makhudu

As all projects are different, and all people approach in a different way also, the diagram components can be shifted around to suit unique circumstances.