The construction of a high-end restaurant on water along the shores of Lake Victoria in Entebbe, is taking shape, with the first phase of the luxurious facility complete.
According to the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (UWEC) executive director, Mr James Musinguzi, they plan to open the first floor for use to the public this September.
“I don’t really want to talk much about that restaurant because we want to surprise the public when we are opening its first floor in September,” he said during an interview recently.
The restaurant’s foundation was laid in 2007, and the first phase was expected to be complete in September 2013, but Mr Musinguzi says construction works delayed due to lack of adequate funds for the project.
“It has not been easy to reach where we are today given the magnitude of the project but we are steadily moving and ready to accomplish the work following release of funds from Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities,” he said. Although Mr Musinguzi declined to reveal how much money has so far been spent on the construction works, the entire project is expected to cost a whopping Shs5b.
When Daily Monitor visited the site last week, workers were seen putting final touches on the interior part of the multi-million project, which is set to change the dynamics of tourism in the country for the better.
The restaurant is divided into four floors, with the first floor housing the main restaurant, the second housing 16 rooms while the top floors will be multi-purpose, complete with well decorated rooftop.
Also, a multi-purpose white sand beach on the lake shores, measuring 350 metres, with resting huts has already been completed.
The facility was recently used to host the first ever dragon boat festival in the country.
Mr Tadeo Kibirige, a councillor representing Lugonjo/ Nakiwogo at the Municipal Council, is optimistic that the new pier restaurant will boost Uganda’s tourism potential by attracting more tourists in the municipal council thus opening up more business opportunities.
“It is really a great opportunity to have such a project in our area and we hope to benefit a lot from it,” he said.
The restaurant will also have a spacious docking area for boats going to various destinations on Lake Victoria.
Once completed, the facility which, according to Mr Musinguzi will be the first floating restaurant in East Africa, will be named Pier Restaurant.
Ms Maria Nabwire, a business woman in Entebbe Town says; “Being the first floating restaurant in the region, I am sure it will raise our rating in the tourism sector and bring in more tourists.”
Mr Ronald Kakande, a businessman in Entebbe Town, says the floating restaurant is a very welcome idea and “we hope it will go a long way in showcasing the tourism potential of Entebbe and also help promote other less documented tourism sites in the municipality.”