dusitD2 hotel re-opens as 14 Riverside businesses stand tall


Workers at the DusitD2 Hotel celebrate during its reopening ceremony since its closure following an ...
Workers at the DusitD2 Hotel celebrate during its reopening ceremony since its closure following an attack by Al Shabaab in January 2019. PHOTO | REUTERS

In Summary

  • The re-opening of the five-star hotel, which makes for the anchor tenant at the complex, is expected to drive new business for the majority of tenants at 14 Riverside.
  • Business enterprises at the 14 Riverside business complex have remained resolute with the majority choosing to stay put and on location.
  • The complex, which houses over 40 tenants including regional offices for LG Electronics and Colgate Palmolive East Africa, has only seen limited exits by retailers and firms including Cellulant Kenya and Adam Smith International.

The dusitD2 hotel at 14 Riverside complex in Nairobi is set to reopen its doors to guests from Thursday after a near seven-month closure in the aftermath of the January 15, 2019 terror attack.

The re-opening of the five-star hotel, which makes for the anchor tenant at the complex, is expected to drive new business for the majority of tenants at 14 Riverside.

Business enterprises at the 14 Riverside business complex have remained resolute with the majority choosing to stay put and on location.

While customer traffic to the complex dropped significantly with the closure of the dusitD2 hotel, nearly all of the listed operations at the premise have weathered the storm with entrepreneurs showing resilience to the damaging security breach witnessed earlier in the year.

“The reason we decided to bulge and stay is because nobody is going to stop us. We have an attachment to the complex and are proud of it,” Bootsy Mutiso a businessman at 14 Riverside told Citizen Digital.

The complex, which houses over 40 tenants including regional offices for LG Electronics and Colgate Palmolive East Africa, has only seen limited exits by retailers and firms including Cellulant Kenya and Adam Smith International.

According to a source who requested anonymity, occupation at the complex stands at a healthy 80 percent even as potential businesses continue to make inquiries with a means to setup shop at the Westlands based trading estate.

Speaking at the hotel during a ceremony held ahead of the Thursday reopening, Dusit D2 Nairobi General Manager Michael Metaxas said the hotel’s management will offer a 20 percent discount to clients during the month of August to usher the return to business normalcy.

“Clients have been waiting for the announcement of the date of our return. We already have five guests checking in tomorrow. The staff couldn’t wait for our return and are excited and happy,” he said.

The 101 roomed-hotel which lost six of its staffers during the attack that claimed 21 lives has retained all of its employee stock estimated at 180, while utilizing the closure period to undertake a face-lift of the hotel to fix incurred damages.

“We were afraid of the worst that could have happened. Traffic translates to business for us and the hotel remains a key anchor to it. The recovery has been fast as we were back in operation within a month and continue to see growth,” Chief Executive Officer to the 14 Riverside-housed Brighter Monday Emmanuel Mutuma said.

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala, who presided over the official re-opening ceremony of the hotel, was upbeat about the return of growth for the high-end complex, even has he projects a significant 10 percent growth in visitor numbers in the country across 2019.

“Life is back. Business is back and nothing will kill the spirit of Kenyans or that of its visitors,” he said.

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Story By Kepha Muiruri
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