- The spirit of service in Mombasa is unmatched.
- Any avid traveller will tell you that you can’t get better food, entertainment and honest service than what we have in our beach hotels in the city.
I always wonder why many capital cities of countries lucky enough to have a coastline are located at the coast.
Not too far, our neighbour, Tanzania, has Dar es Salaam as the capital on their coastline. Same case with Lagos in Nigeria and other many examples in Africa.
Many cities worth mentioning across the world are on the coast as well. From Porto, Portugal to Venice, Italy; to Bangkok, Thailand; Honolulu, Hawaii; Miami, Florida; Istanbul, Turkey; Oslo, Norway; Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Helsinki, Finland; and even the majestic New York.
These cities have one thing in common: they are economic hubs as well as conference and tourism hubs, with great living condition metrics.
When it comes to hosting big forums and significant big names, many wealthy nations, privileged to be near coastlines across the world —given the opportunity — always prioritise their best of locations.
In the year 2016, for instance, Japan hosted the meeting of the G7 leaders. The summit focused on the global economy, foreign policy and the migration and refugee crisis.
Japan chose to host the summit in the city of Shima, which is a rural town of about 53,000 people located in Mie Prefecture. Despite its rural atmosphere, it is said that then-Prime Minister Shinzo Abe chose the location because of its proximity to historical cultural sites, as well as the city’s abundant natural beauty.
Shima is located in and around the Ise-Shima National Park and is easily visited by tourists from major cities like Nagoya and Osaka by scenic trains. The Ise-Shima is famous for its pearl production. Pearls produced in this area are world renowned for their quality, traditionally harvested by female divers.
One of the most famous of the cultural sites in Ise-Shima is the Ise Grand Shrine. The shrine has a history that spans more than 2,000 years and was even mentioned in the Genji Monogatari, considered by some to be the world’s first novel.
The area has a rugged coastline and lush forests of the park that add to the scenic beauty of Ise-Shima. The area is known for seafood as well. Mie Prefecture is also a famous producer of wagyu, better known as Kobe beef in the US.
This week, the country is privileged to have powerful leaders from across the world.
The UN secretary-general António Guterres will be in the country for a two-day official visit. Guterres, whose top agenda is the security and humanitarian situation in Sudan, is expected to hold talks with President William Ruto. He will also hold consultations with all the heads of UN agencies who are meeting in Nairobi this week.
Also visiting is Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida as part of the four-leg African tour, his first since he became the Asian country’s head of government two years ago.
These are two good examples, of significant situations and occasions to organise meetings being held in our beautiful coastal region, preferably Mombasa. Mombasa has beautiful world class beach hotels, which take pride in having the capacity to host international meetings and conferences.
The spirit of service in Mombasa is unmatched. Any avid traveller will tell you that you can’t get better food, entertainment and honest service than what we have in our beach hotels in the city.
Mombasa has also evolved into a city of exquisite beauty and culture. Just a mention of the name brings out images of white and blue buildings akin to Santorini in Greece. The city also boasts of turquoise waters, beautiful palm trees, wonderful sea food and tropical fruits.
Notable political and business leaders who visit Davos in Switzerland are definitely blown away by the beauty and touristic activities there, and perhaps later on bring their families with them for a holiday.
Therefore, in this day and age of social media and viral images and videos, the journalists who cover the World Economic Forum often hosted in Davos, intentionally or not, will most likely publicise the town. This creates an image of a great business and tourism destination.
With this in mind and wonderful lessons from across the world, I think it is high time we give our beautiful Mombasa the opportunity to be our exclusive inviting host.
Part-time lecturer and communications researcher