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Hilton in NamibiaApril 9, 2012 By: Sharri Whiting De Masi Travel Agent
|The Hilton Windhoek rises nine stories into the Namibian sky.|
We’ve seen Hilton hotels around the world and the new nine-story Hilton Windhoek, located in the heart of Namibia’s capital city, is on par with the best of them. From the soaring ceiling of the mosaic-floored lobby to the rooftop spa, pool and fitness center, the hotel’s public spaces offer amenities that international travelers have come to expect from five-star properties.
The property, the 50th Hilton hotel on the African continent, has been designed to effectively use Namibia’s spectacular light, both in interior spaces, such as the restaurant and business center, and the broad shaded terraces that will allow guests to enjoy views of the city and mountains beyond.
Opened less than a year ago, Hilton Windhoek is a luxury property designed to attract business and leisure travelers looking for top-level hospitality and service. In keeping with the owners’ desire for the hotel to reflect Namibia and its culture, the Hilton’s recruiting policy has been to hire as many local employees as possible, including students and graduates of the polytechnic and specialized hospitality programs at the University of Namibia.
New hires then enter Hilton Hotels & Resorts’ renowned employee training program, which ensures that the service offered at this Hilton in Windhoek achieves the same high standard as Hilton hotels around the world.
Rooms and Suites
The hotel’s 150 rooms are designed with a balance of classic comfort and high-tech functions, appealing to both tourists and business travelers. The color scheme has the essential Namibian touch: following Mother Nature’s plan, the hotel using shades of the Atlantic and Namibia’s western coast in rooms and hallways on the front side of the hotel, gradually moving into desert hues as one moves to the rooms facing Independence Avenue. Fourth-floor rooms open onto garden terraces that afford spectacular views.
The double-double rooms, such as room #121, at more than 375 square feet, have huge modern bathrooms and a creative use of space in the bedroom area. Room #121 adjoins king room #120, which can be combined into a suite. This configuration is available on several floors. The 1,130-square-foot King Presidential Suite includes two bedrooms, two baths, dining room, living room and kitchen.
Guests accustomed to Hilton executive floors will find them on levels eight and nine, along with the Executive Lounge on the ninth floor. The lounge affords 180-degree views through full floor-to-ceiling windows.
A 58-foot lap pool, a spa and a gym are also on the ninth floor, where the views of the Windhoek skyline and the mountains beyond, and the dramatic African sunrises and sunsets are unparalleled.
The Ekipa restaurant, the Centrum piano lounge and coffee bar, the Kalabar sports bar and the conference/ballroom spaces bring the outdoors in, with glass walls and opening to terraces ideal for breakout space or cocktails. Ekipa has been designed with a show kitchen, meat-aging cabinet and pizza oven, all part of the kingdom of Chef Paul Gindra. Though the menu will reflect changing themes, wild game will be a staple offering.
|A 58-foot lap pool is located on the Hilton Windhoek’s top floor, as are a gym and a spa.|
Congress and special events facilities include multimedia connections and have been designed to bring the outside in, with both the ballroom and breakout rooms opening to terraces.
The Hilton Windhoek would be a good choice for pre- and post-safari stays, as the hotel is close to downtown Windhoek shopping, where diamonds, exotic skins, African art and Namibian crafts are for sale. Owned by United Africa, the hotel is being managed by Hilton and the general manager is seasoned Austrian hotel executive Roman Kopacek ([email protected]). According to Kopacek, Hilton’s marketing strategy in Africa is to have a property in every capital on the continent, and the project was readily welcomed by the Namibian government and tourism community.