The nomination of MATETSI Victoria Falls Luxury Lodge in this year’s edition of the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards, is yet another endorsement of Zimbabwe as a prime tourism destination.
The accolade has excited the Government with Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Minister Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndlovu who said this will attract some people to visit not just Matetsi but Zimbabwe as a whole according to chronicle.co.zw.
The hotel management made the announcement during the Matetsi Victoria Falls Luxury Lodge’s 5th anniversary celebrations held at the facility on Wednesday evening. According to one of the directors Ms Sara Gardiner, Travel + Leisure Magazine editor in chief Ms Jacqueline Gifford made the announcement in July but it was kept a secret to coincide with the anniversary.
Global travellers vote for facilities they have stayed in or encountered in a travel survey and Matetsi polled the most votes. Minister Ndlovu said being nominated by Travel + Leisure magazine was not a small achievement as the reputable travel and tourism publication has a wide readership of more than 35 million. “This is indeed a true reflection of teamwork.
What makes it more interesting is that it also comes at a time when you are celebrating five years of your service and this speaks volumes of your high product levels,” he said. “This implies to me that we now need to improve our service levels not just in hospitality but in all tourism contact points including ports of entry.
“In this regard I am pleased to advise that my ministry, working with Foreign Affairs and International Trade Ministry will resume customer care training for all frontline staff at our border posts and all other service providers who handle visitors into Zimbabwe.”
He said the Government was aware of Covid-19 related challenges facing the tourism sector hence the need to strike a balance between national response and survival of industry.
“Our five-year milestone is highlighted by some more exciting news and this accolade is tribute to our team who work tirelessly to create moments of Matetsi Magic for our guests and share the wonder of Victoria Falls and Zimbabwe with travellers from across the globe,” Ms Gardiner said.
“Congratulations to the whole Matetsi family on this top ranking, which shines a light on both Matetsi Victoria Falls and also on Zimbabwe as a tourism destination.”
Ms Gardiner said their vision was to position the business as a leading lodge in Africa and showcase Zimbabwe’s exceptional hospitality.
Matetsi is an idyllic five-star hotel located deep in the bush along Zambezi River, with detached rooms overlooking the river about 40km outside Victoria Falls town. The facility officially opened its doors at the end of 2016 after a US$12 million refurbishment of a dilapidated facility by the Gardiners.
It has east and west wings, each with eight suites and a private villa, all hidden in the woods and overlooking Zambezi River with a capacity of 48 guests. The whole concession is 15 000ha and home to four of the Big Five.,
A 15km stretch of it gives a Zambezi River frontage, offering exceptional experiences through a combination of exclusive safari, tranquil river, the Falls, luxury accommodation and relaxation all wrapped up in incredible Zimbabwean hospitality, which contributed to the award. The hotel has been nominated among the top 25 resorts and hotels in Africa over the years.