World's leading hotel brands setting up Serengeti camps
The world's leading hotel brands are setting up Seregenti camps in response to the growing demand for authentic safari holiday experiences. Kempinski and the Four Seasons are the latest hotel groups to take advantage of the appeal that the African continent holds with holidaymakers around the world.
The Four Seasons hotel group and Kempinski, two of the world's most recognizable hotel brands, are the latest to venture out to the African continent's picturesque Serengeti to offers guests a unique African safari experience. Both hotel groups have opened their own Serengeti camps in recent months.
The Four Seasons opened a 77 room Four Seasons Safari Lodge in the Serengeti National Park at the end of 2012 while as recently as January 2013; Kempinski announced the launch of its Olare Orok Conservancy Masai Mara Kenya property with a capacity for up to two dozen guests.
Industry insiders have noted that the increased popularity of safari camps is a direct response to the growing demand from travellers looking for an authentic safari experience. Managing director of Nigerian based W Hospitality Group, Trevor Ward, recently stated, "they clearly see that this is where their guests want to go and is a vote of confidence in the safari product... authentic safari experiences underpinned by exceptional guiding, genuine African hospitality and value for money continue to be popular".
Notably, the Serengeti was announced as the 2013 winner of International Award in Tourism, Hotel and Catering Industry, toping a host of other popular global holiday destinations.
Despite the growth in safari holidays, it goes without saying that operating luxury Serengeti camps poses logistical challenges for hotel groups, even those as well established as the Four Seasons and Kempinski. However, Kempinski's regional president for India, Middle East and Africa, Ulrick Eckhardt, noted that these challenges have helped to pave the way for an eco friendly approach at their Olare Mara Kempinski property.
"At Olare Mara Kempinski, some of the biggest challenges we face, apart from keeping the zebras out of our garden, are ensuring a consistent supply of the water, electricity and the high-end products needed to operate a luxury camp...Weather, transportation and other supply-chain issues can have an impact on our ability to keep everything well-stocked, which is why we rely on strong relationships with local suppliers and emphasize sustainable infrastructure, including drawing up to 70% of our power from solar energy and maintaining our own large organic garden", noted Eckhardt.
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