Major hotel chains are passing on popular locations in Europe and the Caribbean, opting instead to build new hotels in developing regions before competitors gain a solid foothold.
This year, the annual Hotel Chain Development Pipeline Survey, revealed that Lagos, Nigeria is a major focal point for chain hotel brands. Hoteliers are trying to establish themselves in West Africa’s booming economic hub and racing to secure the best real estate before Nigeria’s economy really takes off.
Nigeria’s largest city, Lagos, is anticipating 3,611 rooms by chain hotel brands, while the capital city Abuja will get 2,177 new rooms in the near future. These numbers only include projects being undertaken by the top 37 international hotel chains, not accounting for independent boutique hotels, guesthouses, domestic hotel company projects and short-term rentals.
These hotel projects are developing in line with Nigeria’s rapidly growing population and economy. Hotel brands that have invested in the area are betting that the country will soon overcome the unrest and corruption that have held it back from really becoming a global economic player.
As a whole, Africa is experiencing a hotel building boom, with Algiers, Kampala, Addis Ababa, Nairobi and Dakar all adding more than a thousand rooms to their hotel repertoires.
Egypt, one of the continent’s traditionally popular destinations, is adding a significant number of rooms both in Cairo and in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh. Egypt is already well established when it comes to tourism, but its performance on the Hotel Chain Development Pipeline Survey indicates that the country may be on the road to recovery after recent political unrest.
In some regions of West Africa, the development boom is far surpassing hotel construction.
The Lagos metro area, for example, is getting an entire new city. Eko Atlantic is a sparkling new development that is being constructed on reclaimed land along the Atlantic coast, and it will soon be filling the area with skyscrapers and wide boulevards. The project projects a population capacity of 250,000 residents, who will mostly inhabit luxury condo buildings, as well as office space for an additional 150,000.