Wednesday, February 8, 2012

What Hotels Mean in Rwanda

Most people have seen the movie Hotel Rwanda about the iconic Hotel des Mille Collines that became a sanctuary for thousands of Tutsis during the 1994 genocide. Now thanks to a bold program of economic reform, several large international hotel chains are preparing to build luxury hotels in the former ethnically torn country.

The hospitality industry may prove to be the engine to economic growth there. The fact that international chains like Marriott want to come to Rwanda should be seen as encouraging for a society still recovering from a genocide.

This is an interesting story because it asks the fundamental question “How does a country respond to a genocide”? As a country, you can either be remembered as a land of untold bloodshed and remain economically depressed over it.

 I think Rwanda is doing the right thing by acknowledging its’ genocidal past. The past cannot be changed. All we can do is everything we can to ensure it never happens again. Surely, building an economically prosperous society with international hotel chains is a good step in the right direction.

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