by NORMA TSOPO
CHINESE hospitality concern Golden Peacock Villa Hotel recently completed a four-story 54-roomed complex to take its room capacity to 137 making the three-star hotel the biggest in Manicaland.
Its numerous conference rooms now accommodate 1 200 people making it ideal for huge conferences in an environment dominated by boutique facilities.
The Anhui Foreign Economic Construction Group (AFECC)-owned hotel is a member of a global chain of luxury hotels with the consortium also having interests in mining through Anjin.
GPVH general manager Celia Woo said while there are still making soft touches the wing is now fully functional.
A senior manager at the hotel Willard Madhombiro said the addition positions the institution to be a market leader in meetings and conferences.
“Mutare was generally shunned in hosting huge conferences and were hopeful that our current expansion efforts will improve the region’s appeal in hosting big events,” Madhombiro said during the tour.
GPVH sales manager Mathew Takura said the hotel which opened its doors in 2012 has been averaging 50 to 52 percent room occupancy but this jumped to 60 percent last year in the face of Cyclone Idai.
“Last year we had higher room occupancy of 60 percent due to the relief efforts in Chimanimani and Chipinge after the cyclone,” Takura said.
Cycone Idai killed 340 people with 342 still classified as missing and injured thousands with many left homeless with aid workers camping in Mutare from where most efforts were, and continue to be, coordinated from.
GPVH is one of two hotels owned by the consortium with a much bigger hotel in Harare with around 200 rooms.
Both hotels predominantly employ locals and although they serve Chinese cuisine on request all ingredients, except sea food, are locally sourced over 90 percent of their clientele are locals, Madhombiro said.