TA to debt-finance hotel refurbishments

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Cresta Hospitality, Zimbabwe’s third largest hotels group, is making efforts to borrow about 60% of what it requires to refurbish its four hotels in the country, and has further plans to expand its local bedroom stock in the medium term.
The subsidiary of TA Holdings wants to spend $10million on the rehabilitation projects, the first in six years, with a target to complete all of them in two years.
About $6 million of this will be sunk in Cresta Lodge, the hotelier’s local flagship with the balance earmarked for the other three operations coming from the holding company.
“We are arranging $6 million for the refurbishment of Cresta Lodge in Harare.” said Bothwell Nyajeka, TA Holdings’ group financial director “The other $4 million will be for the other three hotels. We are still arranging how to secure the money.”
The face-lifts are set to commence in the last quarter of the year depending on the availability of the funds, starting with Cresta Lodge.
Other properties include Jameson Hotel—a four-star hotel—Cresta Oasis and Cresta Churchill, all three star facilities.
Nyajeka said the average occupancy rate for all these hotels is currently about 40%. It is hoped the refurbishments would boost their market appeal and increase their occupancies to over 50%.
The group—which operates its hotels division under a Cresta franchise—is already in Botswana and has management contracts with hotels in Nigeria and Zambia. In the near to medium term, the investment company hopes to take the Cresta brand to Mozambique and Congo.