Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta officially opened the English point Marina in the coastal city of Mombasa. The marina worth 46.9 million dollars is expected to put Kenya on the luxury yacht market opening up the country to high end international ocean travellers.
English Point Marina is the first marina of its size to be built in East Africa. Sitting on four acres of land with an ocean view, the marina holds 26 hotel rooms, 96 serviced apartments, conference facilities, roof top restaurant, sea front restaurant, gym, spa, retail outlets on a boardwalk, water sports centre and fully serviced 88 berths Marina. Construction of the Marina began in 2010.
Kenya has already seen an increase in cruise ships arriving in Mombasa with at least six cruise ships docking at the coast during the December holidays.
President Kenyatta announced new incentives during the opening of the Marina which included a 1.2 billion Kenya shillings incentive for charter flights to stimulate tourism arrivals at the coastal strip of the country. In addition the waiver of landing fees for charter planes at the airports at the coast will be extended to June 30th 2018.
The President also added that Visa fees for Children under the age of 16 years will be waived with effect from the 1st of February, reports local media Capital.
The National Treasury Cabinet secretary was directed by the President to initiate amendment of VAT Act and Finance bill for financial 2016/2017, a move that will enable Kenya Wildlife Services to reduce park entry fees from 90 dollars to 60 dollars.
Expansion of the major airport, Jomo Kenyatta Airport (JKIA) and an airport port at the coastal town of Malindi – Malindi Airport- will enable Kenya to cater to more visitors. The anticipated direct flights from the US set to begin soon at the JKIA will also increase tourism to the East African nation.
President Uhuru thanked the United States, United Kingdom and French governments for lifting travel advisories to their citizens to Kenya following bans after terrorist’s attack of a mall in Kenya’s City.
Kenya’s tourism industry had taken a dive following attacks by Al Shabaab Islamic militia group from the neighbouring Somalia. The country has however has stabilized with new security measures being introduced.