Strand Hotel bags first major award for design, sustainability and investment
Less than two years after opening its doors for the December 2015 holiday rush, the Strand Hotel in Swakopmund has bagged its first major award.
The new Strand, built on the land where the old Strand stood for generations, is the property of O&L Leisure, a subsidiary in the Ohlthaver & List stable. The hotel was developed by Mirage Developments and Leisure who was responsible for project management, construction and commissioning.
Last week at the Africa Property Investement (API) Summit & Expo in Sandton near Johannesburg, the Strand received the accolade for Best Hotel Development in the inaugural awards.
Launched at this year’s summit, the API awards serve as a distinguished platform for developers, suppliers and owners in the African real estate industry beyond South Africa, to show their best projects and services across sub-Sahara Africa.
“Although this was the first year the awards were hosted, looking at the calibre of entries, these awards are expected to go from strength to strength annually becoming one of Africa’s premier real estate competitions,”
In a statement from API, the awards panel stated that the design of the hotel met the requirements of the local heritage council and that it responds sensitively to the existing indigenous landscape through a functional and contemporary design that provides a unique aesthetic.
Putting the new Strand in the same spot where the old Strand was a Swakopmund landmark, was a mammoth operation. The old hotel had to be demolished completely and the new 4-star Strand had to be designed and built from scratch. This process which started in 2013 took more than two years to completion.
The 11,683 square metre new Strand offers 87 luxury suites and 28 plush-appointed apartments. It includes three restaurants on ground level, extensive retail space, more than a thousand square metres of conference and banqueting facilities, and an extensive health and spa complex.
The consulting engineers for utilities, ventilation and air-conditioning, WSP in Africa, contributed significantly to make the Strand an energy- and water-efficient establishment.
“The main objectives of the system’s design was to contribute to sustainable development by means of utilising resource efficiency in the design, careful selection of equipment that can withstand the harsh corrosive environs and provide robust reliable operation. Plant and materials were also selected of a suitable quality to last for a design life span of between 20 and 25 years, without major refurbishment during this period.” said Peter Hodgkinson, Managing Director, WSP, Building Services, in Africa.
On the Strand’s well-deserved award, Hodgkinson said “We feel incredibly fortunate and proud to have been involved in this project and we are thrilled by the commendations it has received. Through the collective efforts of all the partners on this project, the Strand Hotel offers iconic views and experiences, where every aspect of the hotel has been developed in line with international 4-Star standards.”