…all hail the new king of lifestyle and more, his benevolent excellency, Dr. Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi.
Come the month of May, on the 19th specifically which is a Wednesday, in the particular month, which is the 5th month of the year, all things being equal, West Africa’s most likely number 1 hotel brand for now, although a bird whispered into our ears that it’s sub-saharan Africa numero uno actually, which would begin to set the pace by which others would be judged and must follow, would throw her doors open for brisk business which is being anticipated.
From the little we have seen so far, we can tell you categorically that there’s actually no hotel like it in Lagos yet and if none in Lagos, where else then? No expense was spared to build and equip this hotel, none whatsoever. It is 2nd to none as per the infrastructure and Marriott are not joking about anything about it at all.
This gigantic edifice is all of [13 floors all together] and it is a labour of love, with the front of the hotel on Joel Ogunnaike Street and extending to the back where Oba Ladejobi Street is, in Ikeja GRA, Lagos, which is the exclusive area of the mainland based super wealthy and very liquid. The hotel stands proudly without flinching, knowing that nothing around in Lagos for now compares to it yet.
The 250 rooms edifice sits comfortably on a vast expanse of land in GRA that is estimated that could now be worth not less than N10B Naira, just for the land alone. And from what we have even learnt, apart from the imposing structure that is visible to the eyes, this first class, most probably only 5 star hotel in Lagos now, which some are already speculating would become the numero uno in Nigeria and by extension West Africa and far beyond, has a depth of another 3 floors into the ground, which makes up the 250 capacity garage, car park. So it’s about 10 floors of accommodation and 3 floors of standard car parking space! It could have been taller had the law permitted, but there are strict rules (conditions) as per the maximum height a building can be at Ikeja, owing to the proximity to the airport and things.
To own a massive expanse of land of the size of this one where the hotel is, in GRA (Government Reserved Area) which is the equivalent of owning a prime land in Ikoyi, is not a cheap thing at all, but to now expend good money to dig 3 floors down to accommodate, a world class standard car park that would comfortably park 250 cars at a go, so as to be environmentally responsible is another thing entirely and then also to build to the [exacting taste and standards] of a world renowned (international) brand like Marriott who would never compromise their quality on any account for anything and anyone, in fact JW Marriott for that matter, is not a cheap thing either too.
The owners of this brand spanking new hotel which is set to become the ‘pride of Lagos’, are ‘Macfolly Hospitality Ltd’, where a former Commissioner for Information in Delta State under the administration of the former Governor -Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, is the Managing Director/CEO, in the person of ‘Ogbueshi Chike Ogeah’, a technocrat par excellence who is also an Executive Director of the gigantic parent company- SIFAX Group, in fact he is also the Vice-chairman of another of the company’s main subsidiary Sahco. He is in fact being acknowledged as one of the top 100 tourism personalities of West Africa. Again we say without mincing words that,
nothing whatsoever was spared to make this hotel the place of pridevin Lagos. And we mean nothing at all. In terms of the infrastructure and what it offers, it is way above, neck and head above any Marriott hotel in Africa and better than any hotel in Nigeria.
The 1000 plus capacity imposing ballroom is jaw droppingly beautiful to say the truth. And it is adaptable too! Meaning depending on the numbers of guests, it could be cut to size to fit different occasions and criterias. Equipments are world class and were flown in from the best brands available for them too and staffing is also on point as there was no compromise at all. Infact the best from around the world, with track record of excellence have been pooled together here to make things work. The Marriott brand herself are the ones handling everything, including managing the hotel and recruitment etc. Food and more would be of the best international standards. Right now things are been tested and going through proper quality control before the doors would be declared open.
One of the standout things about the Lagos Marriott Ikeja is that, it would be the first and only hotel yet in Lagos with a dedicated 5 star crew lounge, specially built as the parent company of Macfolly Hospitality Ltd are a major player already in the aviation sector of the economy with a track record of many decades already, so they know what obtains.
Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja is just about 30 minutes maximum drive from the international airport and about 15 to 20 minutes drive from the local airports, all located in Ikeja. It is strategically located near all the needs anyone staying at the Marriott may need. On the same street is Yellow Chilli, the famous upscale Nigerian restaurant and all around the hotel are all the different banks that one can imagine.
The parent company that owns Macfolly Hospitality Ltd, who are the promoters of the Lagos Marriott Hotel Ikeja, Sifax Group was founded many years back by the exceptionally blessed Dr. Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi, a law graduate, with his 1st and 2nd degrees in law from the University of Lagos, Akoka, Yaba, Lagos. From a little acorn that began as a freight company then, which he established after distinguishing himself where he had worked before, where he rose quickly to become the head of operations, from where he resigned to set up his own brand to the now massive octopus with many strong tentacles he controls today. Sifax Group has grown in leaps over the years to now own such brands like- Ports & Cargo Handling Services Ltd, Sifax Off Dock Ltd, Sifax Oil and Gas, Sifax Haulage & Logistics, Sifax Logistics & Maritime Services, Sifax Shipping Ltd and the famous Sahco (Skypower Aviation Handling Company Ltd).
As is obvious for all to see, they are into all the major lucrative pies of the economy like marine, oil and gas, haulage, aviation, hospitality and more and are actually very visible in at least 10 countries of the world.
The hospitality brand Macfolly is another of the subsidiary of the gargantuan SIFAX Group. And its chief promoter, the multiple awarded philanthropist extraordinaire Dr Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi, is known by most to be [the most benevolent wealthy man] in Africa. He is the father of star musician, LAX a prodigy of Wizkid who now owns his own music label. Dr Afolabi’s eldest son also named after himself-Yinka, owns the classy ‘Danfo Bistro and his eldest daughter, Mariam is an award winning designer and entrepreneur, who used to own a now renamed and rebranded award winning fashion brand-‘Mademoiselle Aglaia’ brand which has since metamorphosed to a bigger brand ‘Mazelle Studio’, a multi-faceted lifestyle brand, that’s into fashion, beauty and more. Danfo Bistro and Mariam’s companies and some other lifestyle brands are all located on that prime land expanse, that’s decorated with containers at nos 2 Alexander Road, Ikoyi, Lagos also owned by Dr. Taiwo Olayinka Afolabi, MON.
The brilliant Ogun state indigene who was born in Ondo State many decades back as a twin, has done very well again, to place Nigeria on the world map for another very positive accomplishment.