In what could be described as yet another giant leap forward for the tourism sector of The Gambia, an ultra-modern tourism resort has been recently opened in country.
Lemon Creek Hotel situated in Bijilo was last Saturday officially opened by the Secretary of State for Tourism and Culture Hon Angela Colley.
In her speech at the groundbreaking occasion, Hon Colley said the opening of Lemon Creek Hotel is quite significant in many respects, adding that it will go down in the annals of Gambian tourism as a milestone, which to a great extent will uplift tourism to higher heights. She noted that she is proud to be associated with the inauguration of the first phase, a venture which is the latest addition to the increasing stock of new look resort facilities in the Tourism Development Area. For Mrs Colley ‘this trendy and exquisite facility will no doubt raise standards, increase marketing access and engender healthy competition in the hospitality sector.
She said: “Global trends in tourism development are constantly changing to meet the demands of the new and sophisticated type of tourists, who are yearning to experience new things with a high taste for quality. Therefore if the Gambia is to complete and position herself firmly in this dynamic business of tourism, we must continuously strive to craft new products to meet the ever-changing tastes of discerning travellers and visitors to our beautiful country,”
According to Madam Colley, the four pillars of the brand new smart hotel has been anchored on innovative and quality, noting that it is gratifying to know that the proprietors invested enormous resources to the tune of 75 million Dalasi and worked round the clock to ensure that ‘ this magnificent edifice’ is completed on schedule.
She emphasised that the project, though a private investment, further underpins ‘our strong desire’ to revitalize tourism in terms of quality and standards, with a view to ensuring the sustainable development of this vital sector, which by all standards is poised to contribute meaningfully towards the realization of vision 2020.
The new resort will no doubt add value to our product in terms of bed capacity and quality of service and above all generate employment opportunities for Gambians, which is very crucial in our drive for socio-economic development.
She stated: “Madam Chair, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I am reliably informed that the concept of the Lemon Creek Hotel was first conceived in 2005 and the promoters Mr Klaus Thomsen, Chairman Lemon Creek, Mr Ben Olsen and Sheriff Sawaneh initially planned to execute the project in two phases. The first phase has been successfully executed with all the necessary facilities .The second phase is expected to be launched at a later date with a similar scope and magnitude as the first phase”.
In concluding Secy Colley thanked all those who contributed in making this dream a success especially HE the President whose personal involvement and support made the project a reality.
For his part, the Director General of Gambia Tourism Authority (GTA) Mr Kaliba Ousman Senghore said: “ this new magnificent edifice we are about to open is in line with our national vision to make the Gambia a tourist paradise, commending Mr Klaus and partners for coming up with this laudable initiative.
Also speaking on the occasion, Mr Ben Olsen, a board member said the stakeholders and management of Lemon Creek Hotel are overwhelmed by the political and socio-economic stability of the country under the visionary leadership of Dr Alhaji Yahya Jammeh. He added that Lemon Creek Hotel will go a long way in providing a long-term benefit to Gambians and visitors coming to the country. He also thanked their Gambian counterpart Mr Sheriff Sawaneh adding that Mr. Sawaneh has been ‘very pivotal and very much supportive’ in the realization of the project.