The Marketing Manager of Baobab Holiday and Resort, Mr. Tijan Kandeh said the hotel is doing well this season compared to last year. He said this yesterday, during an interview with Foroyaa at the hotel in Bijilo, Western Region. Mr. Kandeh disclosed that at the beginning of the season only few tourists came due to the presidential election that was held on 24 November 2012. He said the tourists started coming after the election.
Mr. Kandeh said their hotel is different from the others as they don’t only look at the tourism sector but are also targeting the local market such as the workshops, birthday parties and other local events that people, government and other institutions organise.
“This is why we are working with only one tour operator which is Sud tours or Sunweb tours who brings guests every Wednesday with 90% occupancy,” said the Baobab Hotel Marketing Manager.
He commended the Ministry of Tourism for the improvements they are making in the tourism industry. He cited the developments such as the setting up a Marketing Trade Fair for the industry in the international market and the trainings for hoteliers on food hygiene, hospitality and even on security.
“What the ministry has done is great because this year’s tourist season and that of last year are quite different due to the marketing strategy in the international market,” said Mr. Kandeh.
He called on the Gambian people, especially government, institutions and the people to patronise the industry, particular the Gambian owned ones such as the Baobab hotel.
This interview is a continuation of the attempt to find out what stakeholders in the tourist industry have to say regarding this current season. It can be recalled that tourist taxi drivers and vendors at Senegambia craft market when interviewed at the end of 2011, complained that the current tourist season started badly. Mr Kandeh told this reporter that although it started badly it has improved satisfactorily. The opinions of other stakeholders would be sought.