Dubai: Hilton Worldwide signed a licence agreement with franchisee the Opulent Group to convert a former Novotel property into a DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in Burundi, the company announced yesterday.
The 130-room hotel located in Bujumbura, the capital of the East African country, is scheduled to open in early 2014 as Hilton continues to explore new markets in Africa, it said in a statement.
The property is now undergoing an 18-month renovation before it opens under the DoubleTree by Hilton brand.
“Burundi is a great example of how the East Africa region is attracting increasing numbers of local and international travellers which is fuelling demand for quality hotel accommodation, particularly in gateway cities like Bujumbura. Today’s signing of such a well located property will help us to meet that growing demand,” said Patrick Fitzgibbon, senior vice-president of development for Hilton Worldwide Europe and Africa.
Located on the north-eastern shore of Lake Tanganyika, Bujumbura is the country’s largest city, main port and a busy commercial hub for Burundi’s import and export trade.
“As the first upscale international hotel brand to establish roots in Burundi, the signing of DoubleTree by Hilton Bujumbura is a defining moment for our company,” said Rob Palleschi, global head of DoubleTree by Hilton.
The Opulent Group has worked on two existing DoubleTree by Hilton hotels in Tanzania.
There are more than 300 DoubleTree by Hilton hotels and resorts in over 24 countries and territories.