EDITORIAL: Build on global recognition

Angama Mara luxury safari lodge. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Angama Mara luxury safari lodge. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The naming of Kenya’s Angama Mara luxury safari lodge as the best of its kind in the world in 2017 by the US travel magazine Jetsetter is more than a feel-good story about the country’s hospitality industry.

It underlines the fact that Kenya still has one of the most irresistible safari tourism products to sell to the world and that the industry is on a steady recovery path following recent setbacks from travel advisories.

Angama Mara, for instance, owes its attraction to its location in the world-famous Maasai Mara Game Reserve and a vantage view of the spectacular annual wildebeest migration between Kenya and Tanzania. Although the Maasai Mara-based lodge was the only one to make the Jetsetter list this year, the country boasts many similar world-class tourist facilities.

The challenge for hospitality industry players is how to make the most of the opportunities offered by the individual successes of the likes of Angama Amara by promoting the country’s tourism attractions globally. So often the country’s tourism marketing efforts have been faulted for not being aggressive or effective enough. The focus on foreign tourist dollars must also go hand-in-hand with attracting domestic tourists who hold the potential to cushion the industry from the shocks of international travel advisories.