Uganda: Hilton Lands in Kampala Through Garden Inn

The Hilton landed in Kampala when it opened its doors on May 8 under its Garden Inn brand.

The hotel offers high tech features like a digital key that enables a guest to make a reservation using their phone, and then use the phone to bypass the check-in desk, access the guest elevators and their room. Or the room designed for disabled people to make their stay easy and comfortable.

"I am delighted to be opening the first hotel under the Hilton portfolio in Uganda. We are bringing not only a household name in the hospitality world to the market, but a modern hotel with light, airy accommodations and bright service that will deliver a fresh and affordable experience for both business and leisure visitors to the city," said general manager Sanjeev Tiwari.

Located across the road from the British High Commission in Kampala's Kololo neighbourhood, it is not immediately obvious that the hotel has 96 guest rooms, each measuring 25 square metres, spread across four classes.

Access to the reception area is through the back rather than the front, creating a smooth flow of traffic that allows guests to be dropped off without obstructing the street outside.

Hilton International requires a parking for each two guest rooms, so 48 slots have been fitted in. Part of the parking is in the basement, while a lift mechanism raises vehicles to the level above the ground.

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Inside, double-glazed windows lock out all the hustle and bustle from outside, and are combined with light shades to create a relaxing environment.

"We are the first hotel in Uganda to have a persons-with-disabilities room and a car lift," Tiwari said. He said it is a Hilton International standard that each of their properties must have accommodation that is tailor-made for people with disabilities.

The ground floor features a lounge bar and garden café just across from the front office on the ground floor. The main restaurant, a multicuisine affair, and a 120-seater conference room are on the mezzanine. A gym house and outdoor swimming pool with great views of the surrounding Kololo and Nakasero hills are also on this level.

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