Garborone Sun is a well-known name of Gaborone Hotel and Casino that many refer to as G-Sun. However, on July 5, 2015 it was announced that the famous sign, logo, and design is expected to cease to exist on hotel towels, business cards, and even social lexicon. The hotel has a new owner through Minor Hotel Group (MHG) and the owner, investor; operator is looking to spread a new brand—Avani. The hotel chain currently has 133 resorts and hotels in 22 countries. Most of their locations are in the Asia Pacific Region, South America, Europe, Middle East, Africa and small countries around the Indian Ocean. The rebranding of five hotels began July 1, 2015.
The re-branding comes from a partnership between Sun and MHG. The partnership began last year, with MHG taking on the management, distribution, and marketing aspects. Sun International is left to manage the casino operations on the properties.
The five properties are located in southern African countries and make up a portfolio investment of R67905 million as part of the Sun International brand. MHG’s investment was announced in August 2014, but they are now making the move to change the names of the hotels. Two of the properties are in Zambia and Lesotho, with one in Botswana and another in Namibia.
The Zambezi Sun is going to become the Avani Victoria Falls. The Botswana location will have the name Avani Gaborone Hotel and Casino. There is also the Lesotho Sun and Maseru Sun will both be changed to Avani Lesotho Hotel and Casino and Avani Maseru Hotel, respectively. The Kalahari Sands is to become Avani Windhoek Hotel and Casino. The five hotels range from 105 to 212 hotel rooms.
A sixth property called Royal Livingstone Resort is not going to be re-branded due to “sun” or “Gaborone missing from the original name.
Avani began in 2011 and has since become a place for guests who want comfort and contemporary style in cities and resort locales. The Avani brand will continue to expand throughout the Asia Pacific region and Middle East with some new builds to open later. The newest build is to open in Bangkok towards the end of 2015.
Both MHG and Sun International Representatives said they are happy to be in partnership. MHG feels the re-brand will help Avani reach its full potential as a place for relaxation in the Southern Hemisphere.
MHG is also working on 14 luxury safari resorts and lodges in Tanzania and Kenya, with five hotels to come in Mozambique by 2016.