As the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) and G77 + China summits approach, the tourism and hospitality sector in Uganda is gearing up for an unprecedented opportunity to showcase the country to the world. Set to take place from January 15 to January 23 at the Commonwealth Convention Centre in Munyonyo, these summits are considered the largest global events ever hosted by Uganda. Six luxury five-star hotels, including Kampala Serena Hotel and Sheraton Kampala, will accommodate over 120 heads of state and more than 1,700 delegates, making meticulous preparations for the influx of high-profile guests.
Participating Five-Star Hotels for NAM and G77 + China Summits
|Kampala Serena Hotel
|Kampala City Center
|Sheraton Kampala Hotel
|Kampala City Center
|Commonwealth Resort Munyonyo
|Munyonyo, on Lake Victoria
|Skyz Hotel Naguru
|Serena Lake Victoria Resort and Spa
|On the shores of Lake Victoria
For over two years, the Uganda hospitality and tourism sector have meticulously prepared for the summits, aiming to position the country as a leading destination for meetings, incentives, conferences, and events (MICE). With more than 900 trained guides, Uganda Tourism Association President Mr. Herbert Byaruhanga expressed confidence in the country’s capacity to manage diverse interests. The sector is eager to present Uganda’s rich tapestry of tourist attractions, urging guests to venture beyond the hotels and explore the country’s parks and other hotspots.
According to Ms. Jean Byamugisha, Executive Director of the Uganda Hotel Owners Association, the hotels are fully prepared for the summits. Drawing on lessons from the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), where the country experienced a surge in hotel growth, she emphasized that Uganda is well-equipped in terms of beds, conference facilities, and logistics. An onsite visit to Kampala Serena Hotel revealed a bustling atmosphere with guests making bookings for the upcoming summits.
Key Facilities of Kampala Serena Hotel
|East African Business Expo Hosting
Allen Ampaire, Country Sales and Marketing Manager at Kampala Serena Hotel, assured that the hotel is not only ready in terms of physical facilities but has conducted refresher training for staff to enhance their performance during high volumes of guests and events. The hotel aims to provide an exceptional experience, extending beyond well-made beds to the exploration of Uganda’s diverse cuisine and natural beauty.
Sheraton Kampala Hotel, another key venue, echoed a similar sentiment. Jean Philippe Bittencourt, the General Manager, emphasized Sheraton Kampala’s compliance with global and national operating standards. With 233 accommodation rooms, six dining outlets, and recreational amenities, the hotel is positioned to host the summits’ guests and the East African Business Expo, showcasing Uganda’s potential for global business engagement.
Joselyne Ngiine, PR and Marketing Consultant at Sheraton Kampala Hotel, highlighted the transformative opportunities for global exposure arising from hosting such influential gatherings. She underscored the potential economic benefits, noting the positive impact on various stakeholders in the hospitality industry, including food suppliers, service staff, and contractors.
Uganda Tourism Board (UTB), responsible for marketing the country, sees the summits as a strategic move to position Uganda as a major player in hosting global events. CEO Ms. Lilly Ajarova emphasized the need for continued investment in infrastructure, standards enforcement, and capacity building to secure Uganda’s place as a Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) destination.