Iconic Meikles Hotel in Harare undergoes transformation, rebranded as Hyatt Regency

Iconic Meikles Hotel in Harare undergoes transformation, rebranded as Hyatt Regency

For over a century, the architecturally impressive Meikles Hotel has stood as a prominent landmark in central Harare, maintaining its unique identity and charm amidst the city’s skyline. Established in 1915 by the Meikles brothers, the hotel holds significant historical value for Zimbabwe, embodying prestige and sophistication.

Situated on Jason Moyo Avenue, overlooking Africa Unity Square, the hotel has been a symbol of elegance and tradition. However, its long-standing legacy is now undergoing a transformation as it welcomes new ownership.

In 2019, the renowned five-star establishment was acquired by Albwardy, a leading hospitality group based in the United Arab Emirates, for a staggering $20 million. Albwardy, known for managing upscale brands like Four Seasons and Hyatt, has initiated the first phase of the hotel’s renovation.

With the completion of this phase, the iconic hotel will bear a new name on its façade: Hyatt Regency Hotel. The official rebranding ceremony took place on May 12, 2024, in Harare, with President Emmerson Mnangagwa and various government officials in attendance. Notably, the Meikles Hotel achieved a 5-star rating in 1983, solidifying its position as a leader in Southern Africa’s hospitality industry.

441494440_996707695154432_5873642301309273872_n-1024x1024 Iconic Meikles Hotel in Harare undergoes transformation, rebranded as Hyatt Regency

Delighted to officiate at the grand opening of the The Meikles, Hyatt Regency Harare. This investment is another great example of our commitment to growth and development. Congratulations to ASB Hospitality for bringing the prestigious Hyatt brand to our country ” wrote President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Facebook

The rebranding of the Meikles Hotel reflects broader economic changes in Harare, where several historic landmarks and iconic brands have disappeared over time.

While some Zimbabweans have expressed nostalgia and reluctance towards the transformation, others are hopeful that the introduction of the Hyatt brand will elevate the local hospitality market with its renowned service and standards. As the Meikles Hotel enters this new chapter in its storied history, it remains a symbol of resilience and adaptation in an ever-evolving landscape.

Elias Muonde

Elias M Muonde is a Writer, Scriptwriter, film Director and Journalist based in Harare. His writing has been published in a handful of anthologies as well as in The Standard Newspaper, The NewsHawks, various international journals, blogs, and online platforms. He's also a Human Interest correspondent with My Afrika Magazine, but often happily encroaches to hard beats like politics and business. A film enthusiast, Muonde has worked on several film projects in different capacities: from production management to assistant directing. He also wrote over a hundred episodes of radio drama aired on Radio Zimbabwe , TV series for independent producers and popular satirical shows under Magamba TV. When not writing or reading, Muonde spends his life in the garden helping a swathes of colourful geraniums, hibiscus and roses open up their buds to the sun and bloom.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *