Bunyoro Kingdom Rolls Mass Tree Planting Sensitization

By George Busiinge
Bunyoro-Kitara Kingdom has embarked on a massive tree planting campaign as one of the measures to mitigate the likely effects oil and gas production will have on the environment.The Kingdom Premier, Norman Lukumu, says the Kingdom parliament resolved to roll out the massive tree planting campaign following the dry spell that has affected the area.

According to Lukumu, they have teamed up with two unnamed Non-Governmental Organisation to distribute free tree seedlings to the Kingdom subjects for planting.He says the seedlings will be distributed at various events such as burials,village meetings and at the sub-counties using sub-countychiefs and kingdom subjects.

Lukumu also says they are also encouraging each family to plant atleast five trees for each newly born baby, adding that this will encourage the young generation to conserve the environment.

He added that they are also going to take this sensitization to all schools in Bunyoro so that they can also help in conserving the environment. Information from Bunyoro Kingdom shows that most of the tree species in forest reserves like Bugoma were imported from northern Tanzania and eastern Democratic Republic of Congo by kings especially Kabalega for herbal medicine among other uses.

Etihad Airways Carried 18.5 Million Guests In 2016

Etihad Airways delivered another year of sustained growth in 2016, helped by new aircraft, additional frequencies and the introduction of further world-class products. The airline carried 18.5 million guests during the year, up six per cent on 2015. 

The airline was also part of the evolution of Etihad Aviation Group, a wider aviation and tourism business which now also includes Etihad Airways Engineering; Airline Equity Partners; Etihad Airport Services and Hala Group. The formation of Etihad Aviation Group was announced in May 2016.   

During the year, Etihad Airways operated more than 109,000 scheduled passenger and cargo flights spanning around 446 million kilometres and 112 destinations. Capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASK), grew by nine per cent and passenger traffic, measured by revenue passenger kilometres (RPK), rose by eight per cent. The average load factor held steady at 79 per cent.

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Aviation Group (EAG), said 2016 saw sustained growth in a very tough business environment. 

Etihad Airways launched Venice in Italy, Rabat in Morocco and Sabiha Gokcen in Turkey as new destinations in 2016. The much-admired Airbus A380 began serving Mumbai and Melbourne, and the Boeing 787 Dreamliner was deployed on new routes, including Perth, Shanghai, Johannesburg and Dusseldorf. 

The airline added a fifth daily flight on the Doha route, an extra daily flight to Cairo and Kozhikode, and increased frequencies to Dammam, Manila and Tehran.  

Etihad Airways carried more than 76 per cent of the total passengers who traveled to and from Abu Dhabi International Airport in 2016. With the addition of the airline’s equity partners that operate flights into the UAE capital, the combined total rises to 86 per cent of passenger traffic at the airport. 

The airline’s code share and equity partnerships delivered 5.5 million passengers onto Etihad Airways’ flights, an increase of nine per cent over the five million passengers in 2015.

The airline launched new codeshare agreements with Avianca Colombia, Avianca Brasil, Kulula, Precision Air and Montenegro Airlines. Etihad Airways’ existing codeshares with airberlin, Alitalia, Brussels Airlines, Flynas, Jet Airways, Malaysia Airlines, Hong Kong Airlines, and Virgin Australia were significantly expanded.

Etihad Airways also launched new interline agreements with Lufthansa, Pegasus, Malindo and LATAM. As a result, the airline now offers a combined passenger and cargo network of nearly 600 destinations through its 188 interline and 53 codeshare partnerships.

Etihad Airways’ equity partner network, including airberlin, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, Alitalia, Jet Airways, Virgin Australia and Etihad Regional, represents the seventh largest global grouping of airlines. In 2016, the combined fleet of 705 aircraft carried 126.6 million guests. 

In November, Etihad Airways Engineering dealt with a record breaking week of heavy maintenance at its state-of-the-art facility in Abu Dhabi. Aircraft from six of the seven partner airlines were worked on by the company’s 3,000-strong team. 

During 2016, Etihad Cargo carried 592,700 tonnes, which was flat year-on-year. Etihad Cargo expanded its freighter services to several new markets, including Columbus Rickenbacker, Ohio in the US; East Midlands and London Stansted in the UK; Copenhagen; Brussels; Addis Ababa and Casablanca in Africa; Colombo; Muscat; and Zhengzhou in China. This brings the number of freighter-only destinations to 15. 

Strong growth was achieved within the group’s loyalty businesses with over three million new members joining the Etihad Guest, MilleMiglia (Alitalia), topbonus (airberlin) and JetPrivilege programmes, which now provide benefits to nearly 20 million members.

The Etihad Aviation Group workforce, as of 31 December, stood at 26,635 employees, representing 150 nationalities. The airline continued to prioritise its Emiratisationprogramme, and in November, celebrated the graduation of 310 future leaders from the Future Leaders Programmes, a strong indication of the company’s commitment to investing in its people.  

There are currently more than 3,000 Emirati employees – 52 per cent of whom are women, including engineers and pilots.  

Mr Hogan added: “2017 will be another challenging year. We will continue to expand prudently and efficiently, reflecting the nature of the economic environment. We remain optimistic and have every belief that our robust business model will succeed and, most importantly, stand the test of time.”  

2016 was a year of impressive accolades for Etihad Airways - the pinnacle being the Skytrax Certified 5-Star Airline Rating - the most sought after quality status in the airline industry.

Etihad was also named the ‘World’s Leading Airline’ at the World Travel Awards for the eighth consecutive year and collected the coveted Crystal Cabin Award for the Boeing 787 First Class cabin design. During the year, Etihad Guest marked its 10th anniversary and reached 4.7 million members.

Ekkula Tourism Awards: Speke Resort Munyonyo Named Best Luxury Standard Hotel Award

For the second year running, Speke Resort Munyonyo/ Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort has been named by the high rising Ekkula Pearl of Africa Tourism Awards as the 2017 recipient of Best Service/Luxury Standard Hotel in Uganda.

The hotel’s general manager Greg Petzer received the gong at Hotel Africana where the Awards giving ceremony, a dinner, was held last Friday. The Awards organizers researches and recognizes the best players in the Tourism Industry as we all continue to motivate many more to join the industry.

Petzer described the win as being ‘absolutely over the moon’ and ‘fondly proud’ to have retained the gong for two years in a row. “The team works hard to meet guests’ expectations and we are happy it is paying off in such a manner. We do a lot of training, we invest money, time and effort in the human resource side of our product,” Petzer stated in an interview.

He said the hotel management works ‘closely with government’ in terms of meeting the guidelines that have been set out for the hotel business throughout East Africa. “We have a lot of repeat guests who stay with us; what I have noticed over the years is that guests rely on our services and the standards when they are traveling.”

Speke Resort & Conference Centre sits on the expansive Speke Resort complex which also houses the Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort. The Speke Resort complex has a majestic views of Lake Victoria in Munyonyo, 12kms from Uganda’s capital, Kampala. 

The five star hotel offers a choice of luxury accommodation to suit individuals, couples, families or groups on long or short stays, in cottages, one bedroom and two bedroom apartments or studio rooms.

Speke Resort & Conference Centre Munyonyo offers 10 state-of-the-art conference rooms including a 1,000-seat ballroom and 9 multi-function meeting rooms accommodating groups of 10-300.

Leisure facilities include Uganda's only Olympic size swimming pool, an equestrian centre and a choice of bars and restaurants. The Business Centre offers internet surfing, faxing, photocopying and electronic mail services.

“Speke Resort's spectacular setting and unparalleled service and cuisine are the ideal ingredients for a magical storybook wedding or special event. We offer a choice of elegant rooms and beautiful outdoor locations that will provide the perfect setting for your function.” Petzer elaborated.

 

 

Top Things To Do In Entebbe

Entebbe is a little slice of paradise off the coast of Lake Victoria majorly known for being home to the Entebbe International Airport, the only international traffic serving airport for Uganda. Before the 1962 independence, Entebbe was the protectorate administrative center for the colonial British government which easily escalated the town’s development.

The town is also known for the terrorist stand-off that happened at the airport in 1976 which was quelled out by the combination of Israeli commandos and Ugandan soldiers. The standoff is famously known as “Operation Entebbe”. Most people only go to Entebbe for two things; a weekend at the beach or on their way to the airport, yet the little town has so much that you can do in a day if you put your mind to it. 

Visit The Uganda Wildlife Education Center

It might not be something you have ever thought of doing but, the UWEC is one of the best places if you are planning a family day out. Kids get to pet the animals such as; giraffes, rhinos, lions, elephants, leopards among others and you get to learn something new about Uganda’s wildlife. Although commonly known as a zoo, the center is more of a habitat offering rehabilitation and veterinary services for wild animals that operates as a leisure center for people too. 

Go Golfing

There is vast golfing space for any enthusiasts in Entebbe right opposite the State House you will find the Entebbe Golf Club where most avid golfers in the area can be found. And if you do not know how to; pay for classes at the club, rent a few clubs and tee your way into game. One of the country’s sprawling golfing space can be found at the Lake Victoria Serena just off the Entebbe- Kampala highway, the golf is in a very serene environment right on the shores of lake Victoria. 

Birding

If you are a birding enthusiast you should know that Uganda has over 1000 bird species. When in Entebbe, you get a chance to enjoy the experience of observing most of them in their natural habitats especially at the vast tropical Botanical gardens that are on your way to the Uganda Wildlife Education Center. 

Cruise To The Islands

Entebbe being the gateway to the rest of the world, its shores are also the common docking site for cruise ships that take guests to the Ssese. This is an archipelago of islands floating on Lake Victoria that form some of the most beautiful romantic and weekend getaways for anyone interested. 

Sailing

Did you know there is a sailing club in Entebbe? Well every weekend you will notice little dhow looking boats floating in the distance on the lake usually in groups. The sailing club usually holds maritime sporting competitions that if you cannot engage in, watch and cheer and they have theme days such as family day for you to enjoy with the loved ones. 

Visit The Reptile Sanctuary

There is a place in Entebbe that is not for the faint of heart. A place where the crawlers/ reptiles that can be bred in Uganda have a home at a place called the Uganda Reptile Sanctuary. From, snakes of all types to chameleons and crocodiles, you get to learn more about these misunderstood creatures and maybe pet a few of them. 

Picnic At The Beach

Entebbe has beaches in plenty, most of them don’t allow food and others allow you to have a picnic with friends and still buy drinks and delicious Tilapia while there. Take a day off and relax in Entebbe. 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

Reasons Why You Should Go On A Cruise

Even after years of operation, many people forget that water transport is still a lucrative way to travel whether in land or out at sea. Although Uganda is a landlocked country, it still has the biggest share of the Victoria, the Nile amongst several other lakes and rivers that facilitate water transportation through the country.

There are cruises offered by hotels and lodges that can last maximum a day which include going to the island, maybe get up close to some of Uganda’s spectacular falls or maybe a luxurious party on one of the yachts delivering revellers to the islands for a weekend away. 

A cruise can be easily defined as, a voyage on a ship or boat taken for pleasure or as a vacation and usually calling in at several places. In most cases cruises last longer than two weeks, meaning your vacation is sorted for all those days.

When you cross the border to the coast, there are many cruises organised throughout the year that go to different countries in one trip that you would find really interesting. So why should you take a bus or flight to the coast just for a cruise? 

Spend Once, Get More

The good thing about going on a cruise is that the money you pay, covers for everything including; lodgings, food, activities, and entertainment as you travel instead of flying to one place then going through the hustle of booking a hotel, searching for what to do all though your stay. 

No Boredom

Unless you are one of those people do not want to go out of their way to have fun on your vacation, you will never be bored on a cruise; cruise liners are usually literally a floating city that come with a fully equipped gym, a swimming pool, spa, movie theater among many others. Meaning there are activities that you can do to keep you occupied through the trip. 

Family Friendly

So you want to get away with your family but no one seems to agree on the ideas being thrown around but you still need to get away. A cruise will do just fine; you will find child friendly activities planned for the children among their agemates with supervisors so that the parents can have some time off for themselves and enjoy a family vacation without worrying about keeping their children entertained. 

Multiple Destinations

The best part about being on cruise? Seeing the sun set in one country and waking up far from it in another country in time for breakfast and some sightseeing excursions organised by the cruise staff. You don’t need to fly thousands of miles for that but you get it in one package when on a cruise, and you don’t have to pack for it. 

Easy To Plan

When you want to go for a vacation, it involves; a lot of planning, budgeting and choosing which destinations will be affordable for you. Yet when it comes to a cruise, all you need is to know where they will be docking off to and how much it will cost you then go ahead with it. 

Romance On Board

Nothing more romantic than watching the sunset with the one you love while eating dinner on a huge sailing liner, or maybe watching the stars on deck at night as you rekindle your love flames. Cruise ships have so many activities that couples can do together. 

Adventure

Do something new for a change, don’t hold yourself back with misgivings and have an adventure. Happy sailing. 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

Sheraton Kampala Hotel To Celebrate 50 Years Of Service

Sheraton Kampala Hotel has lined up different activities to engage with clients and the public during a year of celebrations. The five star hotel says these activities are giving customers a chance to clients to share their memories of Sheraton Kampala.

The General Manager of Sheraton Kampala Hotel Jean-Phillippe Bittencourt confirmed that the best participants will win various prizes. He encouraged everyone to participate in the campaign.

The celebratory events lined up include Art exhibitions, Food & Cultural festivals, the Vintage Car Show as well as special days of the calendar like the Orthodox Christmas which was recently celebrated.

Valentine’s day that is coming up next week, Easter Sunday, Eid Al Fitr, Mothers’, Womens’ and Fathers’ days ,the Cuban Night, Oktoberfest, Gout De France among others are some of the activities coming up. The climax of the celebrations will be held in October, where President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has been invited to be chief guest.

Sheraton Kampala Hotel, one of the leading Hotels in Uganda has been operating in in Uganda for 30 years however the Hotel was officially opened on October 8th 1967 and has gone through various management companies including the current operating company “Constellation Hotels & Resorts”.  

It was built as Apollo Hotel, named after the then Prime Minister Apollo Milton Obote. When Obote was overthrown by Idi Amin in 1971, the hotel was renamed the Kampala International Hotel and following the overthrow of Amin by Tanzanian forces and the Uganda National Liberation Army in 1979, the hotel reverted to the original name Apollo Hotel.

Proudest Hospitality Resource

While speaking at a media breakfast held at the Hotel’s Seven Hills Lounge to launch the 50 years’ celebrations, the Hotel’s General Manager Jean-Phillippe Bittencourt, said Sheraton is undoubtedly one of Uganda’s proudest hospitality resource.

“Fifty years is a major milestone for an institution, as it is for an individual. Our celebration is not only a festivity, but also a sincere occasion to pause and look back at this fifty-year journey and a moment to look towards the future of this hotel. 

The National Resistance Movement, which ascended into power in 1986, liberalized the economy and Middle Eastern investors won the rights to lease the hotel from the government of Uganda and manage it for the next 25 years, starting in 1991.

The investors won a franchise from Sheraton Hotels and Resorts to use the Sheraton name. The hotel then underwent extensive renovations and thus the magnificent building that stands before us which is now part of the Marriott Group of Hotels after the acquisition of Starwood.

 “Guests who have been with Sheraton for a long time have told us, they love the Hotel and it has been part of their lives and this is because there is no place like the Sheraton Kampala. With so many new Hotels coming on the market, it is important that as industry leaders, we pioneer innovations through our products and services that will keep us ahead of the market” Jean-Phillipe noted.

Huge tourism potential

The minister for tourism, wildlife and antiquities Ephraim Kamuntu while speaking at the media breakfast meeting said government is willing to support hoteliers because they support the tourism sector. He thanked Sheraton for what they have done for the tourism industry over the years. 

Bittencourt emphasized that the tourism sector is a leading industry in Uganda with a huge potential. Bittencourt advised that the country improves its infrastructure for easy accessibility across the country, put in place a skilling center by partnering with international experienced institutions and work on traffic jam in Kampala, the Capital of Uganda. Sheraton directly employs 450 employees and 500 indirectly.

 

Lodges In Uganda That You Need To Visit

If you are among the many people who take weekends away from Kampala to visit some of the hidden wonders far away from the fast life of the city, or maybe you are new in the country and on a sojourn through Uganda; these are some of the lodges you should make sure you at least book a night. But since most of them are really hospitable you might have to stay longer than expected.

Lodges and hotels are quite similar because both provide accommodation/ food to their guests but the biggest difference is that the former tends to have less rooms compared to hotels, and in most cases found in parks although in Uganda, some are not. 

Arcadia Lodges

One of the newest in the market, but still top when it comes to what the customers want with prices which don’t leave your wallet wanting. There are two arcadia lodges of which both are strategically located in two of the best and scenic destinations in the country. Arcadia Lodge Lake Mburo is located in the vast Lake Mburo National park right on the shores of Lake Mburo, with beautiful forest walks. On the other hand, Arcadia Lodge Lake Bunyonyi can be found right on the shores of Lake Bunyonyi with beautiful views of the many islands lazily swimming through the lake. All the arcadia lodges have rooms and cottages with on call staff ready to give you an adventure of a lifetime. 

Mweya Safari Lodge

There is a way this lodge stands out beautifully in proximity to some of the best views in Queen Elizabeth National Park; crater lakes, beautiful hills, and wild animal treks which include lions, buffalo, giraffe, crocodiles, and elephants among others. Mweya has a pool that overlooks the lake, a fitted wellness center with professional staff and the rooms have a rustic feel to them; which you can book for as low as UGX 720, 000 resident price. 

Primate Lodge Kibale

Maybe you have never heard of this one, but Primate Lodge Kibale seems to be a hidden hideaway for some the stars who visit Uganda, and want to relax as well as go chimpanzee trekking in the Kibale Forest National Park. With attractive facilities that avail you with camping space and rooms you can book for as low as UGX 283,000, the lodge recently made it as #16 on Essence Magazine’s black owned hotels, resorts, and bed & breakfasts. 

The Kipling Lodge

Deep in the heart of Jinja on your way to Kangulumira is a little haven perched on a cliff over the roaring falls of the Nile. Barely two years old, The Kipling Lodge has become one of the most sought after properties on Jumia Travel. Made up of cottages scattered all over, the property can be booked for as low as UGX 375, 000 with the pool as a centerpiece or the open massage foyer where you can view the Nile while your body receives the therapy it needed. The lodge organises boat rides on the Nile and upon request you can yourself into a white water rafting excursion and even bungee jumping. 

Lodge Bella Vista

Right over the Nyamiteza crater lake in Kabarole district is where you go when you have a long and lazy holiday so that you can take in all the beautiful views around you every morning. The lodge was built on top of one of the ridges that surrounds the crater. Just in the distance you will see the big Rwenzori mountains towering off in the clouds, beckoning you to go for a climb up the peaks. You can book a stay at the Bella Vista for as low as UGX 233, 000 resident fee. 

Paraa Safari Lodge

Owned by Marasa, this lodge is one of the top luxury lodges in Uganda with rooms that can be booked for as much as UGX 661, 000; it gives you a peak of comfort in the wild. Paraa is located in Murchison Falls National Park, where elephants lazily cross through the forests and beautiful views of the Nile so close you can here Murchison falls roaring in a distance at night. 

Kyaninga Lodge

They couldn’t have picked a better and more stunning location for this lodge. Standing over the calm and beautiful Kyaninga crater lake in Fort Portal, the Kyaninga lodge will give you a sense of paradise with its cottages spread out on hilly ground; each with a view of the lake is perfectly gorgeous. The lodge is well equipped with a spa and a vast pool to relax you through your stay and when you want to go for a night around Fort Portal town maybe tour the palace or visit the “Amabeere Ga Nyinamwiru” caves there are cars available including a helipad. 

The Rainforest Lodge

Located deep in the heart of the Mabira Forest, the rainforest lodge lives up its name, enveloped in canopies of thick trees that are over hundreds of years old.  The lodge fits in with its earthy and rustic designs which were planned to flow with the beauty of the Mabira. Mabira is one of the biggest forests in Uganda and home to over 80% of Uganda’s bird species which makes it ideal for the the best birding experience and forest treks. Any nature lover would fall deeply for this lodge which is a 15 minute drive from the Nile and an hour or so to Kampala. 

The above named lodges are not listed in any particular order, but are among the many beautiful lodges available across Uganda. 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Adopt Concept Of Ecosystem Valuation To Fight Climate Change

Recently, the media has reported how climate change has continued to be one major threat to development in the country with water, agriculture and electricity sectors being the worst hit. At the moment, farmers mercilessly watch their crops dry prematurely in gardens as herdsmen helplessly watch their livestock die out of starvation while electricity generation companies also continue to produce below normal capacity, all these are resulting into loss of livelihoods and economic prospects for the country.  

As people continue to wonder how these impacts remain a major threat to their livelihoods and threatening the stability of the economy, it is important for everyone to reflect on the key drivers to these challenges and find amicable solutions to them.

For instance the environment for which life on earth depends on is a complex structure that works in uniformity in a manner that when one part is destroyed, the entire process is affected. If we can appreciate the facts, one would urge that humans are primarily responsible for the environmental challenges we are facing today, resulting form over exploitation on the environmental services without attaching any economic value to it. 

For instance, according to Uganda’s state of environment report 2014, the rate at which industries are mushrooming in various parts of the country without proper physical plans are mostly destroying the wetlands and forestry land. These effects have direct effects on the natural hydrological cycle responsible for rain formation and balancing of temperature.

Further, the constant displacement of people to pave way for development coupled with population pressure is now pushing communities deeper into protected areas as they search for alternative land for settlement land, these results into forest degradation. The 2014 population results estimated Uganda’s population at 35 million with a growth rate of 3.3 per annum

As challenges of climate change continue to sting on us and dig deep into our budgets, it’s important for local communities start attaching economic value to ecosystems services as a means to guide their decisions on whether to exploit the resource on conserve it.

Ecosystem valuation is the process by which policy or decision makers attach monetary value to an environmental resources or to the outputs and services provided by those resources to the public. For instance, a mountain forest may provide environmental services by preventing downstream flooding or absorb carbondioxide that would damage the atmosphere, so the value attached to the mountain forest can be evaluated according to the amount of money saved from the devastating impacts of floods on people or control amount of greenhouse gasses exposed to the atmosphere respectively.

As much as conservationist have often urged that is not reasonable to attach monetary value to nature, it’s a widely accepted concept meant to offer guidance in coming up with decision that have direct effect on environment.

Therefore it’s important for Civil Society Organizations sensitizing local communities who are the primary users of ecosystem services to attach value and conserve them.

While government should work with all her line institutions to ensure that rights legislation and polices are in place to promote the adoption of Ecosystem Valuation in development so as to enable the dreams of achieving Uganda Vision 2040 a reality. 

 

By Samuel Okulony

Programs and Research Coordinator

Environmentalist

Africa Institute for Energy Governance

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Go Green And Make Your Hotel Eco-Friendly

Eco-friendly is a term that can be loosely translated to when human being engage in activities that do not harm the environment.With recent studies showing that the climate change process has already begun, it is important that we look for ways to conserve our environment and not accelerate global warming.

Going green does not literally mean painting your hotel green, planting flowers, and using paper plates but it means that we take several measures that help reduce the harm we bring to our environment. Here are a few steps that a hotel can take to ensure they have an eco-friendly location. 

Involve All The Staff

Before you kickstart any campaign or make new changes, it is very important to involve all the staff members in the initiative. Get their ideas and feedback on some of the ones you want to put into action which will make it easy when the time comes to implement all the eco-friendly steps you have. 

Small Steps

You can only do a complete overhaul when it is easy for you and the clients or when the hotel is not in its busy season. Therefore, before you jump head first into the green project, it is highly advisable to take small steps. Start with the smallest of things, such as putting recycling bins in every room and office station, electricity management among many other. 

Maintain The  Environment

Yes, going green involves planting as many trees, grass, flowers and well manicured brushes around your hotel but it also means maintaining what the hotel found in place. If your hotel is next to the lake, swamp or forest, grow a dependant relationship with the area by not draining the swamps, cutting down tons of trees for expansion or dumping waste in the lake. 

Structural Planning

When adding more structures to your hotel opt for materials that will not damage the environment, an example would be how most hotels that are built in forests always create cabins out of some of the wood and in the fact that the structure has to be removed, dismantling it will not be as damaging to the surroundings compared to heavy steel and concrete. 

Save Energy

This is highly advisable especially when it comes to electricity use in hotels; you can get power saving bulbs for lighting, gas as an alternative kitchen cooking sauce, use solar heating systems for the pool and educate staff on room maintenance especially when there are no guests. This means that they should turn off lights as well as air conditioning in empty rooms during the hotel’s low season to save energy and of course the amount of money spent on the electricity bills. 

Water Use

As important as water is, we never realise how much till the drought which is bad for business. No hotel should run when they are low on water supply or even without water; always ensure that there are tanks that tap rainwater which can be used in the toilets, watering plants and cleaning. Use low flush toilets that do not use as much water, encourage employees to use water sparingly, fix leaking faucets among many other things. 

Green Spaces

Include many green spaces in the interior design of your hotel even in the rooms; bring in flower pots, the foyer can have a fountain with a tropical feel to it and maybe add manmade streams connecting the hotel structures. The best example of such eco-harmony would be the Serena group of hotels in Uganda. Each hotel has a unique but aesthetic feel to it that keeps you in contact with nature. 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

 

 

The True Spirit of Uganda

What makes you Ugandan? Is it the tribe and heritage you came from? Is it the passport and the nation IDs that you always flaunt in the faces of authority when out of the country? Is it your ability to feel pride when your country is mentioned? Or is it just knowing that you hail from a country crowned in divine beauty? What truly makes you Ugandan?

What is it about Ugandans that makes us unique, that gives us that ability to stand out from everyone else?
Over the weekend at midnight there was this awful silence that seemed to have hit the city and many of the hang outs around Kampala. The country's pride and joy, the Uganda cranes had just lost a game to Egypt in the African Cup of  Nations becoming the first country to drop out of the games after a very spirited fight.

You see Uganda hadn’t qualified for the games in decades so this was the only chance after finally making it past whirlwind qualifiers in 2016 meaning everyone was excited and happy about it.

The first game against Ghana literally dampened the moods around after Ugandans spent a whole day sharing their support and love for the national team all over the internet dorning the team's jersey on their way to work and staying out to make sure they catch the game. Uganda lost to Ghana that night too after a small mistake by one of the players that enabled Ghana win through a penalty.

Yet, in the last half of that game Ugandans still had hope for their team, they chanted from miles away alongside the very few other Ugandans in the Libreville stadium in Port Gentil Gabon. The feeling of patriotism when the Ugandan anthem was played at the stadium, the surreal feeling that the rest of Africa was focusing on the pearl. You could feel the resilience sip into the players who fought very hard to bring something back home with them no matter what came their way, but all to no avail.

The last game against Egypt was supposed to be the stepping stone into more games, yet all that hope was dashed no matter how hard Coach Micho's boys fought. Several Ugandans held tight on their seats, hugged pillows and said prayers to make sure the Cranes made their way to the top with at least one goal to gain more points and stay in the AFCON games.

The pain of losing that Saturday night made its way in bashing that came the next day and the "well we were not going to win anyway.."
People forgot why the team went to Gabon in the first place, to showcase what Uganda is made of. The team lost but they showed how good they are when they work together under a well organized leadership.

So what makes you Ugandan? It's the spirit of oneness, one that looks beyond tribe, beyond origin and beyond all the political parties/ religions that keep separating everyone from who they truly are; a people who are warm and welcoming.
Ugandans are a people that celebrate life with its fullness and showcase beauty wherever they go.
That's the Ugandan spirit, that is what makes us truly Ugandans. 

Credit: travel.jumia.com

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