Renowned city hotel, The Hilton, is closing its doors after over 5 decades of operations at the heart of Nairobi.
The ritzy hotel which has the government accounting for 40.57 percent of shareholding in its operator, International Hotels Kenya Limited, announced Wednesday that it will cease operations in December this year.
“Following extensive discussions with the hotel ownership, Hilton Nairobi will close its doors for the last time on 31st December 2022 and cease operations,” a Hilton spokesperson told Business Daily.
While many luxury brands have been scaling down operations or shutting down outlets altogether in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hilton said its closure does not entirely stem from the pandemic.
“Covid-19 created unprecedented challenges for our industry. However, the decision to cease operations is not directly connected to the pandemic,” the representative said.
Hilton said as a result, it will lay off some of its staff as well as redeploy others to Hilton Nairobi Hurlingham and Hilton Garden Inn Nairobi Airport, its other outlets within the city.
“Unfortunately, the closure of the hotel will result in a retrenchment process. However, we will work with those impacted to help them find alternative employment,” said the hotel.
Standing high at Nairobi’s Central Business District since December 17, 1969, the hotel was then the tallest building in the capital and boasts of 287 rooms; 45 twins, 185 doubles, seven suites, 22 pool rooms and 27 executive rooms.
“The hotel has welcomed guests for more than 50 years. We are proud of the legacy of hospitality delivered and would like to thank all those who have contributed,” it added.
The government also held a 33.83 percent stake in Kenya Hotel Properties Limited, the operator of the InterContinental Hotel, which also shut down just five months into the pandemic in August 2020.