By Obinna Amaobi
Multi-billion-naira Marriot Hotel, Ikeja Lagos, would be opened next Wednesday to provide unique hospitality service to Nigerians and others who yearn for luxury, efficient service, good taste and entertainment.
The new hotel, which has redefined the skyline of Ikeja GRA adds grace and aesthetics to the beauty of Joel Ogunnaike Street and environs and boasts to be the best Marriot Hotel in Africa.
The hotel which operates under Mack Folly Limited, a subsidiary of Skyway Group is located about 15 minutes to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport and is built as aviation hub of the group, which is into aviation, maritime, oil and gas and hospitality services.
The hotel has inimitable structural design that stands out from other hospitality facilities in Lagos state and it targets to provide the aviation industry special services, which includes hosting airlines’ crew and providing secure and easy movement to and from the airport.
The hotel is arguably the best in terms of lounges, restaurants, conference centres, high-class rooms and guest satisfaction.
Managing Director of Mac Folly Limited, Chike Ogeah, during a media briefing disclosed that it took the Skyway Group about six years to complete the project, adding that it was built in accordance to the high standard of the Marriot legacy with attention paid to every minute detail to give the facility its uniqueness.
“The hotel cost about N400-N450 billion and took about six years to complete. Every utility and equipment in the hotel is unique. Materials imported to build this hotel came to about 700 containers and it took relatively less time because Skyway is into Maritime.
“We worked with Marriot to build the hotel and they inspected everything that was put into the facility to ensure that it meets their high, global standards. What we have here is classic luxury, the Marriot style and this is the first kind of structure in sub-Sahara Africa.
“We want to use the hotel as aviation hub and bring in all the airlines. This is why we located the hotel very close to the airport. So we are bringing aviation and hospitality together,” Ogeah said.
He applauded the Group Executive Vice Chairman, SIFAX Group, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi for bankrolling the multi-billion Naira investment, adding that his vision of a premium hospitality business in Lagos has manifested through the new hotel.
“We took our time to tastefully select all the materials and equipment that were used in order to serve our clients the best. As a man that has travelled all over the world and experienced first-hand hospitality at its peak, our Chairman, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi, decided to build this hotel in Nigeria in order to promote the hospitality and tourism industry in Lagos and provide opportunities to further improve the economy,” he added.
The hotel, built on 11 floors, has various modern facilities like exclusive crew lounge, VIP lounges, 1,000-capacity ballroom, executive meeting rooms, 400-capacity car park, 206 standard rooms, 44 suites (including three presidential ones), well-equipped gym and continental restaurants, among others.
The General Manager, Lagos Marriot Hotel, Rudi Janse Van Resnburg said the nine meeting rooms occupies about 14,864 sq ft of total meeting space.
He said the hotel maintains Marriot global standard, tinged with African and Nigerian signatures, adding that in addition to many restaurants, it also has outdoor restaurant with Nigerian style where guests can go and get their suya, roasted fish and chicken and where guests will experience Nigerian cuisine.
“The hotel carries African and Nigerian feel to maintain our heritage. So it is international hotel with African and Nigerian influences. It has different lounges and places where guests can stay out of their rooms and still maintain their privacy and also a ball room that can host 1000 people,” Resnburg said.
He said the desire to offer premium hospitality services to the Lagos market was responsible for the huge investment in the hotel.
“Every client of Lagos Marriott Hotel is set for an unimaginable premium experience like never before. We assure them of world-class hospitality, super customer satisfaction and royalty treatment. Frequent travelers who have points using the Marriott hotel franchise globally can also redeem their points here in Nigeria too. We have an in-club system for our premium members located on the first floor of the hotel.
“The unique selling propositions of this hotel are the various amazing products we offer our clients which are non-existent in the country’s hospitality industry. The security of our guests is very paramount to us and that’s why every door and window in the facility is bombproof. Our pricing is also very commensurate with the quality that we offer.”
Rensburg further noted that the hotel, which is in the classic premium category on the Marriott quality ranking, will be managed by the franchise owner, Marriott Hotel, for quality assurance purposes.