The past weekend, I was over at the 5th annual Hotels and Restaurants Expo at Hotel Africana. The event is organised every year as a unique platform for awarding all hotels, in different capacities, recognizing their contribution to both the Tourism sector and Food industry.
When I was assigned to cover the event on behalf of the team, I was ecstatic; for many reasons but the most important being “Food”. I love diversity and there is nothing that best describes that like food. We have thousands of foods from each of the regions here in Uganda and display of all these was what I was hoping for.
For the most part, this particular food event did not go as I anticipated. There was a lot left to learn for its organizers. I did speak to a few exhibitors about what they thought about the event and they expressed disappointment.
Miriam, Director of Signature hotel in Jinja said ” I have been to different hotels and restaurants expos across the world but I am very letdown by our own. Where are the people? She asked. We have been here 3 days and the only clientele coming in are the ones who have come to access the restaurant.
Another exhibitor said that the organization was done abashedly and the public was not given much time to let the expo sink in as such a great idea to attend.
In my view, the event was not given much publicity, you do not hide a social event from the public and expect a turn up. Also there was not a collide of performances to grace the event. They could have had a headlining international chef or performance. This always attracts the crowds.
However despite the loopholes, there were some really graceful experiences that could be a foundation for next year’s edition. Allow me to indulge you with some pictures!!
Meat on skewers, in aluminium foils roasting away on mesh were one of the sights lined up at the expo. The businesses that made the most money were those that decided to take their chefs out of the Kitchens right into their exhibition grounds. I didn’t really plunge in because my craving was not chicken neither was it meat!!
Sarah Blick(in black dress)– A chef at Hotel Africana walked away with a brand new Hisense 42 inch screen. She was more excited than any I have seen. She lost her words, lost her sanity(just for a while haha) and almost cried. She was privileged to have her Mentor, Mariam Bachu who was ecstatic for her win.
Ojara Brian, a chef at Shangri-La hotel emerged the best throughout the competitions. He was awarded 2 million shillings and a fully paid trip to Brussels. He is not the kind to scream or jump but you could see in the way he kept smiling!!
He is very laid back however I managed catch a slight interview with him.. Watch below
I would like to hear your opinions, this is my first photo filled blog post and the photos were taken by myself. Same can be said about the edits!!