Ethiopia makes big showing at international tourism conference

Ethiopia has generated new interest as a travel destination by having a key Ethiopian business win an international competition in sustainable tourism and forming a new Skal Club in Addis Ababa.

In a new effort to raise its visibility as a tourism destination, Ethiopia has made a major impact during the annual world congress of Skal International being held now in Monte Carlo, Monaco.

Left to Right: Desale Asfaw, organizing committee chairman, SI Addis Ababa; David Fisher, new President, Skal International, SI Nairobi; and James Enright, President SI Washington

Ethiopia has generated new interest as a travel destination by having a key Ethiopian business win an international competition in sustainable tourism, forming a new Skal Club in Addis Ababa, and organizing a charter night for Skal members from around the world which will include a tour of Ethiopia next April.

Left: The endemic Gelada Baboon; Right: Simien Lodge

Simien Lodge in the Simien Mountain National Park, was awarded first place in the Rural Accommodation category for their community projects at the 2016 Skal International World Congress in Monaco on Sunday, October 30. In a highly competitive global competition, earning this award is a major achievement for the nation. The full results may be viewed here:

Left to Right: Nick Crane, Simien Lodge Owner, Simien Lodge staff

Simien Lodge is the highest hotel in Africa at 3,260 meters altitude. With rustic Ethiopian-themed rooms, a restaurant specializing in local and European cuisine, the lodge fits well with the cultural and architecture of the area. The presence of the endemic gelada mountain monkeys, the walia ibex, the lammergeyer vulture, and the Ethiopian wolf adds to this incredible sky-high retreat!

The conservation projects that the lodge engages in cover many aspects of poverty alleviation, through education, water security, and health initiatives. The award is a great achievement for Ethiopia. Their so-called “High Five Management Team,” who have supported these causes for many years, intend to continue the good work with the building of a health center during the present season.

The new Skal Club of Addis Ababa, co-sponsored by Skal Clubs from Washington, DC, USA, and Nairobi, Kenya, held its organizational meeting on Tuesday, October 25, at the Jupiter International Hotel in Addis. Washington Skal member Steve Richer, who is chairing a committee to co-sponsor the Addis club, spoke, as did Solomon Tadesse, CEO, Ethiopian Tourism Organization. Desale Asfaw, General Manager, Grand Holidays, Ethiopian Tours, and organizing committee chair of the Addis Club and Yosef Getnet, General Manager, Ghion Tour and Travel, and an independent Skal members, will be in attendance at the conference with many of their sponsoring club members from Nairobi and Washington.

The charter night for the Addis Ababa club will be held on April 14. During the week prior to this event, there will be a tour of Ethiopia from April 7-13, 2017 and its World Heritage sites followed by two different tours to Kenya the week following. The Ethiopians at the conference are promoting this opportunity to visit the Land of Origins as part of their presence.

Source: eTN