Archive | May, 2008

Come and taste Onsea House during the Sullivan Summit and the Karibu Fair in Arusha

Arusha’s best Chef is back in town! Our restaurant is back open as of Saturday 24 May. As usual, after reservation only.

Just in time, since advance teams of delegates for the forthcoming 8th Sullivan Summit or the Life Time Summit, as President Kikwete coins it, have started arriving in Arusha ready for the historic event.

In the upcomming weeks, the Onsea House restaurant will organize, next to the daily regular dinners, also special culinary events in the weekends. Taste the finest dishes by upgrading your dinner with recommended specials of the day.

Just before the Sullivan Summit, ISM has its official Graduation Dinner and Graduation Ceremony in Moshi, followed by several celebration parties at Onsea House in Arusha, so space will be very limited.

Thursday June 5, the first day of the Karibu Fair, Tanzania’s prime tourism trade show, is the first of 3 consecutive nights of special culinary Onsea House events. The dinner on June 5 will feature a special pre-dinner performance of international dancer Danisa de Paul with an oriental belly dance act. Start at 7PM. Show + dinner incl. wine comes at 45US$. Danisa will also give private classes and group workshops through Yoga Tanzania.

Friday June 6 will be a special culinary evening at Onsea House with the possibility to order unique dishes. An ideal way for visitors to the Karibu Tourism Trade Fair in Arusha to taste Onsea House after visiting the trade fair.

Plans have changed for Saturday June 7: we will continue with 1 extra culinary evening at Onsea House at US$55 for residents and tour operators.

Call Axel Janssens for a dinner reservation on +255 787 112 498 or for an appointment to meet us at the Asilia tent on the Karibu Fair or visit Onsea House on +255 784 83 32 07.

Tanzania expecting to boost safari tourism by setting up Africa’s largest National Park

According to The Guardian, the Tanzanian government has announced plans to create what it envisages to become the largest national park in Africa by merging Ruaha National Park with Usangu Game Reserve in central Tanzania Currently, Ruaha National Park in central Tanzania measures 10,300 sq. kms. Once merged with Usangu, its size would add to over 15,000 sq. kms.Gerald Bigurube, Director General at the Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) said at the on-going 33rd Africa Travel Association (ATA) Annual Congress that the move would ultimately make Ruaha the largest national park in Africa.He said that one of the aims the government was determined to annex Usangu to Ruaha is to save biodiversity of that area as well as to increase tourism to the region and this can best be accomplished if the areas are administered and marketed by TANAPA as unified product.

According to him, Ruaha is also home to over 450 bird’s species and the Usangu Game Reserve includes the Ihefu wetland, the natural water reservoir for the Great Ruaha River.

He said adding that Tanzania is constantly working on upgrading its game reserve to national park status where there is no consumptive use of resources and this allows for the multiplicity of species, increasing the wildlife in the parks.

Elaborating Ruaha National Park he said that, Ruaha that boasts 10,000 elephants, the largest population of any East African national park, protect a vast tract of the rugged semi-arid bush country that characterizes central Tanzania and its lifeblood is the Great Ruaha River which courses along the Eastern boundary of the park.

Also a fine network of game-viewing roads follows the Great Ruaha and its seasonal tributaries where during the dry season, impala, waterbuck and other antelopes risk their life for a sip of life sustaining water.

Furthermore the risk is considerable with prides of 20 plus lions lording over the Savannah, the cheetahs that stalk the open grassland and the leopards that lurk in tangled riverside thickets.

Tanzania is the largest country in East Africa well-known for wildlife conservation and sustainable tourism with approximately 28 percent of the land protected by the government.

In total, Tanzania boosts of 15 national parks and 33 game reserves and it is the home of the tallest mountain in Africa, the legendary Mt. Kilimanjaro, and the Serengeti.
For this measure, country has greatest percentage of protected land and close to 30 percent of land is dedicated to the preservation of wildlife, flora and fauna.

As part of the Southern Tourism Circuit, the merger is expected would boost the industry which is now the leading foreign exchange earner to Tanzania.

Contact for more information if you like to include the Southern Circuit in your safari to Tanzania.

Lake Natron flamingos still in danger

The spectacular lesser flamingos of Tanzania’s Lake Natron remain in grave danger despite plans to relocate development away from their most important breeding site in the world.

Developers have scrapped plans to build a soda ash factory next to the lake, deep in the Great Rift Valley, but instead want to locate the plant, housing for workers and their families, and other associated buildings, just 22 miles away.

Their plan to extract 500,000 tonnes of soda ash a year from Lake Natron and install pipes and roads across the lake, has not changed, however. That means the hundreds of thousands of lesser flamingos breeding on Lake Natron are still likely to leave if the development goes ahead.

Lota Melamari, Chief Executive of the Wildlife Conservation Society of Tanzania, said: “Lake Natron’s flamingos are one of the world’s greatest wildlife attractions. They are a resource that must not be destroyed.”

At a meeting in Dar es Salaam last week, hosted by the World Bank, developer Tata Chemicals Limited withdrew its discredited environmental assessment for the project. A new one will be produced, based on development further from the lake.

The proposal is backed by the Tanzanian government, which has formed a management company with Tata, but is fiercely opposed by more than 30 NGOs in Tanzania, the Tanzanian Tourist Board and conservationists across the world including Sir David Attenborough and the RSPB.

Wildlife experts say the development should be abandoned completely because the birds cannot be safeguarded from the disturbance and predation the scheme would cause.

Campaigners are hopeful that the Tanzanian government is now wavering in its support for development at Lake Natron.

Its new Environment Minister, Dr Batilda Burian recently warned investors that their plans would be thrown out if they failed to quell environmental and social fears.

The spectacle created by Lake Natron’s lesser flamingos lures thousands of tourists each year to Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia. Lake Natron has been East Africa’s only nesting site for the birds for 40 years and the vast majority of the region’s 1.5 to 2.5 million lesser flamingos – three-quarters of the world’s population – are though to have hatched on the lake’s salt flats.

Dr Chris Magin, an International Officer at the RSPB, said: “There is no way a project of this magnitude can operate without permanently scarring the Rift Valley landscape, seriously damaging the livelihoods of many local people and harming wildlife, especially the highly sensitive lesser flamingo.”

Sereno Shao, of the Tanzania Tourist Board, said: “The soda ash proposal must be critically analysed given that Tanzania earns more than US$1 billion from tourism. Our dream of attracting one million tourists by 2010 may not be achieved if we damage key attractions like Lake Natron.”

Contact for recommendations if you like to include a visit to the Lake Naton and Ol Doinyo Lengai area in your safari, have a look at the spectacular pictures in the Lake Natron photoalbum or read more under hiking & climbing activities at

African Heads of State and US Delegates at 8th Sullivan Summit to explore economic and development opportunities in Africa

In less than 3 weeks, The Leon H. Sullivan Foundation will lead U.S. based delegates to Arusha, Tanzania for its 8th Summit scheduled June 2-6th. Ethiopian Airlines, the official carrier for the Summit, will use two 767 jets to transport the delegates to Tanzania. The first flight departs on May 28th and includes a two night stay in Ethiopia’s capital city of Addis Ababa. The second flight will depart on May 30th and will stop on Zanzibar Island for one night at Summit’s end. Keeping in alignment with Reverend Sullivan’s vision, both flights will arrive in Arusha on May 31st a few hours apart.

Early confirmations have already been received by African Heads of State, as well as notable people and organizations from the U.S. such as Reverend Jesse Jackson, NBA star Kelenna Azubuike (Golden State Warriors), actor Lou Gossett Jr., B.E.T. (Black Entertainment Television), CBS Radio’s Frank Ski, CNN’s TJ Holmes and many others who plan to join the Summit movement in Arusha. Invitations have also been extended to various Civil Rights and African American organizations including UNCF, 100 Black Men, National Association of Black Accountants, Abyssinian Baptist Church (Harlem, New York) and Greater Allen AME Church (Brooklyn, New York).

The Summit themed, “The Summit of A Lifetime,” by Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete, is expected to be the most successful of all the Summits since her father, the late Reverend Leon H. Sullivan began the biennial conference in 1991.

Dignitaries and delegates will participate in a week-long schedule of workshops and plenary sessions focusing on Africa’s environment, infrastructure, investment, and tourism. The Summit will also encourage attendees to participate in the Leon H. Sullivan Foundation’s philanthropic efforts in the country which includes the Leon Sullivan Malaria Free Zone Mosquito Net Project, the Books for Africa program and several other projects.

Delegates will also have the option to explore Tanzania landmarks which will include, the Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara, the Olduvai Gorge along with various cultural ceremonies and welcome receptions.

Inspired by the life and principles of Leon H. Sullivan, The Sullivan Summits are organized by the Leon H. Sullivan Foundation with the goal of highlighting key issues, stimulating discussion, defining best practices, identifying new opportunities, promoting private enterprise and fostering high-level strategic partnerships.

Notables who have participated in past Summits have included U.S. Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, General Colin Powell, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, Dorothy Height and the late Coretta Scott King. Celebrities including Chris Tucker, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Cicely Tyson and Dick Gregory also have attended past Summits.

Onsea House has been selected as one of the official hotels of the Sullivan Summit.
Located only 7-10 minutes drive from the AICC, the venue of the Sullivan Summit.

Since we just have few space left on the dates of the conferences, we welcome Tour Operators at Onsea House for a guided tour around our country inn & guest cottage or stay with us before the conference on May 30 and 31. Contact

More info

Snow on Kilimanjaro to disappear in 20 years, the islands Zanzibar and Mafia in 100 years?

The islands off the Tanzania mainland coast could be submerged by the ocean by 2100 following a catastrophic rise in sea-level caused by the melting of polar ice, said scientists meeting in Arusha during the Africa Regional Conference for launching the International Year of Planet Earth (IYPE)

The International Year of Planet Earth is a joint initiative by UNESCO and the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS). Twelve Founding Partners, 26 Associate Partners and a growing number of International Partner organisations from all continents and representing all major geoscientific communities in the world, have embarked on this initiative. The Year also enjoys the full political support of 191 UN countries.

The findings of the meeting mean that Tanzania could be among the countries that may be hardest hit by climate change, a phenomenon associated with global warming due to increased emissions of greenhouse gases.

Islands known to have been submerged include Maziwi, near Pangani in Tanga Region, and Fungu la Nyani, on the Rufiji River estuary.
Other threatened sites are Ras Nungwi, at the northern tip of Zanzibar island, which has lost almost 100 metres of its beach to sea water, and Bongoyo and Mbudya islands near Dar- es- Salaam.

Experts from the Zanzibar-based Institute of Marine Sciences of the University of Dar- es- Salaam said the rising sea level posed a grave danger to the economy of Zanzibar and coastal areas of the mainland.

The experts meeting in Arusha were of the opinion that only “bold measures” could save Zanzibar and Mafia islands, which are among the leading tourist sites in the country.

The evidence that the icecap on Mt Kilimanjaro is receding is enough indication that climate change is impacting on the country’s natural resource base.

Scientists say the icecap volume on Africa’s highest mountain has dropped by 80 per cent in the last 100 years; from 12.1 square kilometres in 1901 to only 2.2 square kilometres in 2000.

Some scientists have predicted that the mountain may lose all its ice in 20 years’ time given the rate at which it is depreciating.

More on

Kempinski leads the hospitality expedition across Africa

Just before Africa’s largest Travel Show Indaba South Africa, the Kempinski top management revealed ambitious plans for the group during the 2008 Arabian Travel Market (ATM) taking place at the Dubai International Conference and Exhibition Centre from May 6 to 9.

Kempinski Hotels has announced its intention to become a clear market leader in Africa, leading global tourism’s foray into the rapidly evolving continent with an unrivalled portfolio of diverse luxury properties – from spectacular city hotels and beach resorts to exotic eco forest retreats and game park lodges.

In a bid to get a firm foothold in Africa, the established luxury hoteliers have signed a number of management contracts since last year’s ATM, implementing a strategic expansion across the African heartland and consolidating its position as the leading provider of luxurious hospitality experiences.

Last year’s announcement of new properties in Namibia and Tanzania generated a lot of buzz in the tourism industry in the region, heralding a travel and tourism boom in the continent. This year, Kempinski have set their sights on Rwanda, where in collaboration with Dubai World Africa, they are currently developing four properties in the country, one city hotel and three new luxurious lodges, which we will begin to unveil from 2009 onwards.

Located in picturesque Akagera National Park in Rwanda, Kempinski Akagera Lodge promises a memorable escape into Rwanda’s stirring landscape decked by magnificent hills and impressive natural reserves.
Back in the hotel, guests can relax in the luxurious lodge’s 80 well-appointed rooms and suites, or unwind in the restaurant or at the bar by the poolside.
This amazing property also features a spa, a gym and a tennis court for complete recreation and rejuvenation. Phase one is up for completion in December 2008, while phase two is scheduled for unveiling in March 2009.

Heading north towards the Parc des Volcans Kempinski Lodge Gorilla Mountain sits amidst a magnificent mountain range – home of the rare mountain gorilla and the famed Virunga volcanoes.
From the hotel, guests can engage in an adventurous trek across the foothills, before entering the Parc National des Volcans where an exhilarating encounter with rare golden monkeys and mountain gorilla awaits hotel guests.
At the Kempinski Lodge Gorilla Mountain, guests are given a choice of 30-40 exquisitely designed and furnished rooms, as well as a chance to relax in the spa with five treatment rooms. Based on the park’s appeal and with the addition of its conference facilities, the lodge is a perfect site for incentive travel or conferences and exhibitions.

A trip down south leads to the Kempinski Nyungwe Rainforest Lodge located close to the famous Nyungwe National Park, the largest strip of mountain forests in Central Africa that boasts floral diversity as well as 200 different types of trees and thirteen species of primates, including mankind’s nearest of kin in the evolution change, the chimpanzee.
Kempinski Nyungwe Rainforest Lodge is currently in the development stage and once completed in June 2009, it will have 27 luxury forest rooms recreating the ambience of the surrounding rain forests. It also features a conference room and food & beverage outlets, in addition to a fully-equipped spa and conference facilities, ideal for unrivalled MICE opportunities from the Middle Eastern and European markets.

In the capital of Rwanda, Kempinski Hotel Kigali is planned to have a spa, extensive banquet facilities, approximately 150 rooms, 300 golf villa’s and 18 hole non-branded golf course. The colonial villa style hotel is set to become the social centre of the city and is scheduled to open in the third quarter of 2010. This will definitely challenge the Serena group who has now with Serena Kigali the only real 5star property in Rwanda.

In Tanzania, a stunning luxury lodge will open within the Serengetti National Park in late 2008, with another equally impressive lodge in the Ngoro Ngoro Crater following shortly after, while also land in Arusha has been purchased.

Building a collection of stunning beach properties is also part of the group’s African development safari, which was initiated with the magnificent Djibouti Palace Kempinski in 2006, followed closely by Zamani Zanzibar Kempinski. Both deluxe oceanfront hotels have a very distinctive style – one opulent and regal, the other tropical and luxuriously exotic.

Elsewhere in Africa, Kempinski’s expansion plans are under way, with projects in their final phases of negotiations. Once finalised, Kempinski Hotels will have further boosted its leadership status, with exotic and luxurious properties in such enticing destinations as Comores Islands, Egypt, Mozambique, Seychelles, South Africa, Madagascar, Sudan, Nigeria, Mauritius, Mauritania, Burundi and many more.

The aim of Onsea House is to offer a comparable culinary and accommodation standard to guests travelling to or from Kempinski properties in East Africa, however at a more intimate scale. Ask if you want to include Kempinski properties in your East African Safari.

Represented at Indaba 2008, Africa’s largest travel trade show

INDABA is the largest tourism marketing event on the African calendar and one of the top three ‘must visit’ events of its kind on the global calendar. It showcases the widest variety of Southern Africa’s best tourism products, and attracts international visitors and media from across the world. Africa’s top travel show takes place from 10-13 May in Durban, South-Africa.

A delegation headed by Bas Hochstenbach from Asilia Lodges and Kim Brake from Sokwe will be present at Indaba 2008 together with Alison Oliver and AnnaJoyce Mbise from the Asilia group in Arusha, Tanzania. As a match with their own offer, they provide also information on Onsea House, selected by experts as only boutique hotel and hip hideaway in Arusha.

Meet the representation at the TTB stand, Dec hall – stand number DECC017 and at the African Travel And Tourism Association (ATTA) stand, in the outdoor tented camp ODCD002.

Reviewed and recommended as only hip hideaway and boutique hotel in Arusha

I-escape, the Travel Awards 2007 winning best online booking service by The Guardian and The Observer, reviewed and recommended Onsea House as only property in the area around Arusha and Kilimanjaro. The other recommended properties in Tanzania are an upmarket selection of the best intimate safari lodges and beach hideaways. is a UK-based website dedicated to helping discerning independent travellers find exciting and unusual places to stay in some of the world’s most beautiful and fascinating locations. The site features a growing collection of favourite small hotels, guesthouses, retreats, eco-lodges, private rental properties and unforgettable travel experiences, all of them personally visited and honestly reviewed in detail, with photos to match. Each place is unique in some way, whether in its design, its natural setting, its owners or the activities on offer.

If can not convince you yet, have a look at the i-escape Onsea House review with a description of the rooms, the eating, activities, features, insider tips, other reviews and more.

Check in case of any further questions.