Asaba - Hotels in Asaba, the Delta capital, recorded low patronage during the Christmas and New Year celebrations, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
NAN learnt the poor business during the period was in spite of huge discounts and other incentives they offered to potentials customers. Some of the operators disclosed to NAN that they offered 50 per cent discount on room rates and other services.
Mr Clement Odeiga, the General Manager of Nelrose Hotel, said that as the season approached, the hotel management reduced its Standard Room rate from N27,000 to N25,000 and Suite to N40,000 from N45,000. “It was on the reduced rates that we offered the 50 per cent discount. "We even lined up special events and shows to entertain them; yet, we had very low guest traffic during the festivities.
“We also took time to service all our generators, stocked enough fuel and had our engineers on stand-by to ensure that there were no disruptions on our services but all to no avail.” Odeiga said that the situation may have resulted from fear of insecurity and “poor economy in most homes” during the period.
Corroborating Odeiga's experience, Mr Beatrus Bala, the General Manger of Bellwoods Hotel, said that the hotel management offered 15 per cent discount “but people didn’t seem encouraged enough to come to us.” He, however, told NAN that the hotel recorded some gains from programmes and shows organised for children during the period.
"We had slight boom in our children’s programmes, especially the swimming pool and shows that we made to last through the entire Yuletide season and New Year.'' On challenges facing hotels in the state, Bala said that unstable power supply was undermining the growth of the hospitality industry in the state. According to him, more than 30 per cent of revenue made by the hotels was spent on alternative power supply.
"In my hotel, we spend as much as N1 million on diesel monthly and this has always increased the cost of running the hotel.'' Bala also stressed the need for the government to improve on the security situation in the state. He observed that most people no longer patronised hotels due to the “fear of the unknown”.
Other major hotels in the city, including Grand Hotel, Urchid, Benizia and Valarie told NAN that they had similar experiences.