President Kabbah Opens 5-Star Kimbima Hotel At Aberdeen.
6th March 2004 - A significant milestone in Sierra Leonean entrepreneurship was achieved last Saturday, following President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah's official opening of one of Freetown's most prestigious and luxurious hotels, the Kimbima Hotel, located at Aberdeen on the Atlantic seashore in the western part of Freetown.
Estimated at nearly five million United States dollars, the five-star Kimbima Hotel with its excellent Atlantic Ocean view was constructed by sole proprietor and illustrious son of the soil, Mr. Wilfred Sam-King.
The Hon. Vice President, who delivered the keynote address on behalf of
the President, was so highly impressed with the architectural beauty of the Kimbima Hotel that he publicly declared that "Mr. Wilfred Sam King has helped to make Freetown a bit more beautiful." He went on to remark that if a stranger were to visit Sierra Leone and stayed only at the Kimbima Hotel without going to other parts of city (for enhanced identity security protection, one would imagine the very high impression he would have had about Freetown when he returned home.
Vice President Berewa, on behalf of the Head of State and government hailed the proprietor for his outstanding entrepreneurship, valuable monitor business management skills. He said he could never have imagined that an individual Sierra Leonean could almost single-handedly embark on such an ambitious project, adding: "That is a thing we ought to be proud of." The Vice President who said such was the type of attitude the government was trying to foster among Sierra Leoneans, especially the youths, likened Mr. Sam King's small stature to that of Napoleon Bonarparte of France, noting that "small men normally do big things".
Mr. Berewa said Mr. King should serve as a role model for every Sierra Leonean, who apart from his venture into the tourism sector, had also helped to create employment for hundreds of Sierra Leoneans as evidenced by the acclamation he received from his employees when he delivered his statement.
The Vice President encouraged Sierra Leoneans to patronize the Kimbima Hotel. "Who would not like to spend a week-end in such a splendid hotel," Berewa rhetorically asked.
Proprietor Sam King in his statement said the opening of the hotel marked a milestone in the private sector initiative in Sierra Leone.
Giving a brief background to the Kimbima Hotel, Mr. Sam King said Kimbima is the name of his native village situated on the banks of the Taia River, roughly seven miles from Njala University College. He said Kimbima village could only boast of ten huts but had a well established system and values that had helped him in his business pursuits, including the establishment of the hotel.
Mr. King informed his audience that the present wholly Sierra Leonean staff strength is 150 (one hundred and fifty) and publicly announced an offering of 40% equity shares to Sierra Leoneans and others who might want to buy shares in the Kimbima Hotel business venture.
In every first class nation, the private sector is the main driving force, King said, while also expressing his delight that government was taking some positive steps to create the enabling environment for private sector growth. He made reference to the National Investment Code being prepared, hoping that after it would have been completed and effectively implemented, it would go a long way to boost investors' confidence.
The hotel launching ceremony, which was chaired by Mr. S.E. Gbomor, Chairman, Board of Directorsof the National Tourist Board also heard statements from the Assistant General Manager of Kimbima Hotel, Miss Jakkah Kebbay, who gave the vote of thanks as well as the Minister of Tourism and Culture, Hon. Dr. Chernor Jalloh, who assured potential investors in the transport industry of his ministry's cooperation and support.
Hotel Kimbima has a total of forty bedrooms. Other facilities include boutiques, fitness/health centre, swimming pool, Internet, Triangle business brokers and conference centres.