The three-star Park Inn by Radisson is owned by local property developer Mofasi Lekota, who was awarded joint funding from the National Empowerment Fund (NEF) and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).
The Park Inn by Radisson is conveniently located near Polokwane’s CBD, just 9km from the airport.
It boasts 160 rooms and a bespoke meetings and events facility that can accommodate groups of up to 120 people.
“It is indeed the first real hotel in Polokwane,” Lekota was quoted saying in an interview with City Press.
“Hotel development gives me that inner sense of satisfaction when I see the dramatic transformation of plain veld into a beautiful structure that, when complete, will give jobs to so many of our people, safe comfort for many of our guests and hope for so many of our people who are fast losing it.”
Collectively, the IDC and NEF funded the hotel venture to the tune of R150 million and it has been identified as one of the key tourism investments undertaken in the region.
Speaking ahead of the hotel’s official launch, IDC Regional Manager Kgampi Mapela said the hotel would help accelerate growth in the tourism and hospitality sector in the province, particularly given the Park Inn’s close proximity to the Kruger National Park and neighbouring African countries, including Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Swaziland.
“Over 700 jobs were created during construction and we are expecting about 150 permanent jobs to be created once the hotel is up and running,” Mapela said.
“There is so much that the province has to offer in terms of tourism, not forgetting that there is a lot of activity in the private game breeding space, to which Limpopo contributes more than 70% of the country’s activity. There is still a lot of untapped offer in the province in the tourism space.”
Over the next decade, Lekota has plans to launch other hotels across the rest of the country, as well as other African countries, targeting a total room count of 1 000 rooms, with “one-third of those rooms ideally earning revenue in currencies other than the rand”.
-Additional reporting by City Press