Dr. Alieu O Faal the General Manager at the Laico Atlantic Hotel spoke among other things, the new developments undertaken by the hotel since the government of The Gambia lifted the embargo in April this year, following the Libyan crisis that led to a temporal halt to the operations of the hotel.
The hotel is known for its traditional comfort and relaxation for its esteem customers, whose satisfaction is never compromised by the management and staff. Security is the order of the day, as customers feel secured from all kinds of harassment, intrusion to ensure safety is maintained at the highest level.
The new GM who joined the hotel in 2011, as the hotel's finance director, was one time a financial controller at the Sun Beach Hotel, was also the head of administration, finance, human resource at the Research Institute of CILSS in Bamako, Mali. Mr. Faal got his MBA since 1992 and had worked as storekeeper for Balfour Beatty Construction, the contractors who built the hotel in 1979.
The vast experience man, was speaking to Daily Observer at his office in Banjul, while expressing optimism of transforming the hotel to become one among the best in the hotel industry, by ensuring heretained the confidence of the creditors and suppliers.
GM O Faal, further, reveals plans to improve the facilities of the hotel by introducing modern energy saving equipments with mobile water pump to ease the water pressure during the rainy season, similarly he added, they also planed to introduced solar panel for pool heating and other equipments as well for upgrading the safety environment.
Also to maintain their staff most of whom have been working for the hotel for over a decade, which he said will give them the unique opportunity to provide excellent and quality service delivery to their clients. The most important thing is that, we really value our customers and we will never relent in providing effective and customer focus services.
The visionary GM, was also proud to disclosed some of the services and strong partnership their hotel has with ASN Brussels Airline, Gambia Bird, Condor A-Sky and a host of other airlines, which he happily said they are the major provider of in-flight catering. "We provide quality international standard catering services for both inbound and outbound flights to Europe and Africa". He however, adds that, because of the high standards, most of their staff at the catering unit are highly trained to produce quality catering products, who are also destine to perform both loading and offloading of aircraft catering.
GM O Faal, has said that, since he took over the role of GM, the hotel have extensively embarked on a major refurbishment process for both the hotel facilities and the catering unit, which he said incur an approximately D3M(three million dalasis) meant to modernize and expand the facility.We have just completed the refurbishment of the DUNDA Restaurant which is a la carte, a perfect dinning place for guests and the general public.
He also adds that, since he took over the mantle of leadership, he is obliged to motivate the staff so that they can maximize the service delivery and operate efficiently to improve the financial status of the hotel, by ensuring it make an astonishing profit for the next two years. This can only be achieved, when the cost of both the materials and operating expenses are controlled.
According to him being a Gambian, and with the experience behind him, which he said made him very much familiar with the problems of the staff, which he said gave him the pleasure to continue working with them as a team, to improve the welfare of the hotel and by ensuring the hotel grows from strength to strength. This will assure continue employment for Gambians during and after the season, he remarked.
Dr. O Faal, went to outline among other things the rate of employment, which he said, the hotel has about 130 permanent staff, which he said can eventually rise to 280 during the tourism season. The hotel also have 204 rooms, including 4 suits, 5 bars, 3 restaurants, a gym, leisure center, all rooms have TV, mini-bar, telephone facilities, wivi wireless Internet connection and among other facilities that can give comfort. The health fitness center is fully equipped with Gymnastic and massage pallor.
The hotel also hopes to increase its occupancy through the off-season, activity such as providing cutting edge facility for conferencing and seminar during the low season to ensure continue occupancy. The location of the hotel and the tide on the beach, the over looking on the sea makes it so conducive and ideal for sun birthing, beach games, water sport and fishing and other interesting activities for fun and pleasure. This year the hotel was awarded certificate of excellence in 2012 by the Trip Adviser Group.
Do not let to be told, try and experience the beauty of the environment, all kind of beverages, quality foods and services, and you name it, be sure you are part of this fascinating Laico Atlantic Hotel if words are to go by, the big man quizzed. Unlike other Hotels every department in this Hotel is run by indigenous Gambians and I am a Gambian too. I can say without any hesitation that Laico Atlantic Hotel is truly a Gambian Hotel. We also promote local dishes like Findi, Chereh. Domoda etc to the guest who develop special liking for the Gambia Cuisine.