Radisson Blu Hotel befitting space, tailored cuisines and ambient location positions hotel right at the top
By Ben Oduor
“Service often makes the difference between a fine hotel and a memorable hotel. By employing caring and thoughtful staff who make guests feel comfortable and important from the moment they check- in, we promote five-star service through our best asset — our people,” advises Mehdi Eftekari, the General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills.
Eftekari adds that with its personalised customer service, intuitive staff and cheerful culture, the hotel has made a memorable impression on its guests for the last 25 years.
His sentiments are echoed by Jens Brandin, the general manager of Radisson Blu Hotel, an international five-star hotel in Nairobi’s fastest area, Upper Hill, and just a 20-minute drive from the Nairobi National Park and Wilson Airport.
Brandin says the hotel jealously guards its image by investing significantly in staff-customer relations. This it does through advocating for staff’s prompt response to customer needs.
As a professional gesture, they recruit proficient staff on the basis of “hospitality personality” from credible institutions offering recognised hospitality courses.
Guided by the mantra, “At all-time stylish, sophisticated and fairly priced”, barely five months since it flung its doors open to visitors in January, Radisson Blu has established a firm foundation that has resulted in it being voted Africa’s leading new hotel by the World Tourism Awards 2016, edging out old players in the industry.
From a leadership perspective, offering five-star services is a priority, but the hotel’s management insists it has to rate its prices favourably.
“Apart from targeting the corporate world, business class, local and international clients, we want to put our focus on the youth. This means that our offers must be unique but fairly priced,” Brandin says.
The first impression at the gate when one is frisked by smartly dressed security officers in black suits and light-blue ties, reveals the extent of value the hotel accords security.
Rooms and lounges
The building towers high, overlooking the Nairobi National Park which is well known for its herds of zebra, wildebeest, giraffe and lions.
With its elegantly furnished 271 rooms and suites, and impressive décor, courtesy of skilled Swedish designer Chris Lundwall, the hotel offers a wide range of accommodation.
The urban, New York Mansion and naturally cool themed rooms and suites take your accommodation experience to unimaginable levels, with such services as free high speed wireless internet, flat-screen TVs and work desks, satellite and Pay-Tv, tea and coffee provisions, mini-bars and in-room safes.
As the latest classified hotel to hit the city’s hospitality market, coming up at a time when Kenya receives huge nods from the international community as a preferred tourism and travel destination, Radisson Blu has upped the game in designing conference facilities to cater to increasing demand.
For either large or small conferences, the hotel has 12 elegant meeting rooms, outfitted with free internet access, natural daylight and audiovisual equipment, with the largest venue, the 590-square-meter Mount Kilimanjaro Ballroom, accommodating up to 700 guests.
As part of instilling its standards, and as a welcome gesture, the hotel incorporates fun activities including themed promotions, special brunches and lunches and DJ entertainment.
Restaurants and bars
Despite the high class status, the hotel offers local Kenyan dishes on its menu and blends them with international cuisine to satisfy varied tastes either at the Chop House or Larder restaurants.
With their warm lighting and ambient settings, the restaurants openly invite guests to a free view while their preferred dishes are prepared in the huge kitchens.
Additionally, one can have distinctly Kenyan foods or an international favourite with the option of dining either indoors or al fresco. For business partners or friends looking for a splendid place to unwind, the Humidor Bar & Cigar Lounge, is the ideal spot.
The hotel has an elegant Business Class Lounge on the 8th floor with stunning views of the Nairobi skyline. It’s accessible to guests staying in business class rooms or suites, offering continental breakfast and evening cocktails.
Further, you can maintain your fitness regime at the gym by exercising with a range of machines or take a dip at the swimming pool.
As tourism continues to be among Kenya’s top foreign exchange earners, and the country preferred as one of the best destination markets, Radisson Blu Hotel Nairobi hopes to command a larger stake in the hospitality industry in the coming years.