Hotel giant Accor has announced the signing of three properties that will mark the debut of the midscale Novotel brand in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The group has partnered with local firm Compagnie Hôtelière et Immobilière du Congo (CHIC) to open Novotel properties in the capital Kinshasa, as well as two of the country’s major mining centres – Lubumbashi and Kolwezi. Combined, the hotels will introduce 337 keys to the market.

Kinshasa, a hub for international corporations, institutions, government offices, embassies and NGO headquarters, will see the opening of a Novotel in December 2020. The hotel will be located on Avenue Bandundu in the city centre.

Meanwhile, Novotel Lubumbashi has a planned opening date of December 2021 and is currently under construction on the city’s main road close to the La Plage leisure, fitness and entertainment development.

Lastly, Novotel Kolwezi (pictured) is due for completion in December 2022 and will be located on the main road near a number of international mining companies’ headquarters in the city.

Accor said the trio of hotels will offer venue and public spaces that can be used for business meetings, as well as socialising.

The company already operates two properties under the upscale Pullman brand in DRC – Kinshasa Grand Hotel and Grand Karavia in Lubumbashi. The group has also recently signed a deal to manage the Novotel Victoria Island Lagos in Nigeria. It currently operates 25,836 rooms in 164 hotels across 22 countries in Africa, with a further 61 properties in the pipeline.

Mark Willis, CEO of Accor Middle East and Africa, said: “With Africa tipped as the next global market and DRC one of the continent’s fastest-expanding economies with an affluent middle class, the time is right to introduce our flagship midscale lifestyle brand in three major growth markets. We are delighted to partner with local expert CHIC to develop Novotel’s presence in this global mining powerhouse, building on the success of the brand in other African destinations and bolstering our accelerated development strategy on the continent.”

Farhan Charaniya, head of development for CHIC, added: “CHIC, a company dedicated to the hospitality industry, is committed to making a contribution to the socio-economic development of the DRC, a country with an abundance of natural resources and human capital which is going to realise a considerable increase in business tourism. CHIC is focused on developing quality hotels across the country in support of DRC’s growth potential and we are delighted to be partnering with Accor in achieving this objective.”

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