INTERVIEW! Park inn by Radisson Abeokuta is an hidden gem- General Manager

Park Inn by Radisson Hotel Abeokuta is one of the biggest 5-star Hotels in Abeokuta Ogun state. There 173 rooms include free high-speed Wi-Fi. Accessible rooms are also available upon request. Enjoy dining at the RBG Bar & Grill, where you can tuck into flavorful grilled steaks, burgers, crisp fresh salads or rich pasta dishes. You can also take advantage of the sunny weather by sipping a refreshing cocktail or beer at the pool bar.

The Park Inn Hotel Abeokuta also offers a range of flexible meeting facilities designed for both social and business events. Other amenities include 24-hour room service, a pool, a gym, recreational facilities and free parking.

In this interview with the Publisher of BrandInfo, ‘Gbenga Bankole, the General Manager of the hotel, Mr. Kayode Aina speaks on the tourism sector in Nigeria, hotel business in Nigeria and other interesting issues. Excerpt !

There are so many Hotels in Ogun state, particularly in Abeokuta. What distinguished Park inn by Radisson from other? What is your unique selling point?

Firstly, we are part of a global brand and the standard of services we provide is world class. The slogan of our global brand says; “every moment matters.” What that simply means is that every single moment of your stay with us matters. From the beginning of when you entered through the door and when you checked out we do everything possible to make our customers have a pleasant experience.

One of the major problems of the country is insecurity. It was even rumored recently that the herdsmen are approaching the south west, particularly Lagos and Ogun state. What have you been doing to make sure everyone that lodges in your hotel is safe?

 At Park inn by Radisson, we take security very serious. We employed the services of security operatives. Some of them are in uniform, while some of them are on mufti and they operate for 24hours. We also have camera covering every single length and breadth of the hotel. In addition to that, we trained all our staff to be very security conscious because people who are security threat will not put it on their head that they are security threat. Our security apparatus is top notch and we are taking it very serious. So far we have not had any security issue. Everybody here is involved in security. It is not just those who are given that title.

What have been the challenges of the Hotel so far?

Everybody understands that epileptic power supply is an issue in Nigeria. When you run an outfit that operates 24/7 for 365days in a year, you need power. Even if it’s only one room that is occupied, by the standard of the hotel, we have to make sure that there is power.

What is your advice to governments at all level regarding the tourism sector in Nigeria?  

We run the risk of expecting government to do everything for us in this country, but the fact is they cannot. There are too many other things that they have to attend to, but it is a matter of priotising. Anywhere in the world, tourism is always a private initiative. What the government needs to do is to provide enabling environment. The enabling environment I am referring to is not 100 percent there in Nigeria.  We need to create awareness. We need to create awareness in order to let people know what is available in this country and also awareness on the part of the government. Once the awareness is created, the demand will come. Right now everything is static because we want government to provide roads, water etc., yes, it is their responsibility, but the little road and power that we have, let’s see how we can maximize them. We need to create awareness to market what we have already in the tourism sector.

How can you describe the Hotel business in Nigeria?

Hotel business in Nigeria is very challenging. However, the challenge is not all what I have mentioned to you about infrastructure, but the challenge is what I will call the demand side of the business. There are some areas in Lagos for example where the demand is very high, but in the outskirt, the demand is very low. Even if you have the infrastructure, people are not naturally inclined to want to go to outside Lagos, Portharcourt and Abuja. For example, what is the distance of Abeokuta to Lagos? In a good day if the road is okay, you can make it in 45 minutes. But people don’t have that kind of mindset and that is why I am laying more emphasis on awareness.

Tell us about your rate par night?

Like any hotel in the world, it is the season that determines the price or rate. No Hotel in the world that has a static rate. It fluctuates depending on the season. You might get a room as low as N35,000 during January, February and valentine’s day with breakfast.

What is your message to those who are looking forward to come here?

Park inn by Radisson Abeokuta is a hidden gem. We have been trying to spread our awareness across the country. Those who have come here before were very happy and also have been spreading the message to their families and friends. We are here to be discovered, and once you discover us you will pleasantly be surprise and pleased.

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