A world away from the city
Styled to replicate the lines of a classically rustic Roman villa, which might just as easily stand amid the sunflowers of the Tuscan Hills, as on the shores of Africa's largest lake, the 4-star Lake Victoria Serena Resort is the latest addition to the Serena East Africa Portfolio. Opened in October 2009, it will be complemented by the addition of a golf course, marina and luxury residential complex in 2010.
Rising above white-terraced rose gardens, which descend through water cascades and fountains almost to the shores of Lake Victoria, this tranquil resort has been positioned so as to offer both a contrast and an extension to the 5-star profile of the flagship Kampala Serena Hotel, thus ensuring that the Serena portfolio embraces all aspects of Uganda's social and corporate life.
A gracious terracotta and cream palace, the central citadel is encircled by broad café and cocktail terraces, where cushioned sofas invite relaxation. Above the marble reception, where a Roman fountain plays, white-arched galleries rise to a clear glass atrium, through which shafts of light illuminate the fountained courtyard below.
Beyond the mosaic frescoes of the main restaurant, a clock tower rises above the pool-deck where colonnades of white arches offer the perfect frame for the hazy blue of the lake and the encircling green of the Lweza Hills. Widely spaced amongst the rose gardens, clusters of pastel-painted villas offer a choice of rooms and suites, all with panoramic lake views.
Facilities • Wide selection of rooms and suites: all with AC, satellite TV, WiFi and voice-mail • The Citadel, all-day brasserie • The Kigo, cocktail bar • The Lake View Pool Terrace bar and café • Panoramic terraces for private cocktails and social events • The Maisha Mind Body and Spirit Spa • Dedicated conference and social events floor • VIP entrance, helipad, dedicated car park, full security • Wide range of incentives options. • Business Centre, travel desk, taxi and limousine service. • Wedding planning service • Gift Shop, news-stand and travel requisites kiosk.
Getting There On the shores of Lake Victoria in the Kigo District (equidistant between Kampala and Entebbe), the resort is twenty minute's drive (30 km) from Entebbe International Airport and twenty minute's drive to the centre of Kampala (15 km). The resort will feature its own helipad offering link services to the flagship 5-star Serena Kampala Hotel. By air: The international airport is served by a wide range of carriers and linked to the international hub of Nairobi. By road: Landlocked Uganda can be reached on all sides by road, but visitors are advised to check conditions in Rwanda, Sudan and the DRC. By bus: Shuttle bus services also link Kampala with Nairobi, Arusha and Dar es Salaam. By boat: There are no passenger boat connections between Uganda and Kenya but it is possible to travel across Lake Victoria from Tanzania using the Port Bell ferry, which connects Mwanza to Port bell (Kampala) on its regular once weekly service. By rail: Rail services link Kampala to Nairobi.
Uganda as a destination More recently emerged as a tourist destination than its neighbours, Kenya and Tanzania, Uganda has always been viewed as the ultimate African gem. It was to Uganda that the early explorers were attracted; and Uganda was the objective of one of the greatest engineering feats of history, the so-called ‘Lunatic Express', the railway, which in 1899 finally reached the shores of Lake Victoria, 1,000 kilometres from Mombasa on the Kenyan coast.
Blessed with one of the most delightful climates in the world, Uganda occupies a serene green plateau, which lies between the eastern and western branches of the Great Rift Valley. Thought by many to be Africa's finest birding destination, Uganda boasts over 1,000 species, which in relation to her relatively compact size (236,580 square kilometres) is a tribute not only to her fertility, but also to the diversity of her landscape.
Rooms and suites We offer 124 rooms, 124 Standard Rooms, eight Executive Suites and two Presidential Suites. Housed in typically Tuscan villas, which are widely spaced around the terraced rose gardens, each Standard Room is elegantly presented in shades of terracotta and cream and features either a queen-sized or two twin beds, a dressing table, work station, seating area, balcony and lavish marble bathroom with walk-in shower. The Executive Suites also feature a spacious living area with flat-screen TV, office space and second balcony.
The two Presidential Suites are located on the penthouse level of the main citadel and feature: a luxury ensuite bedroom with king-sized bed, an elegant reception room, dining room (with private kitchen), furnished terrace and staff accommodation. The Presidential floor also features its own private event or conference space.
The amenities include: 24-hour room service, air-conditioning, WIFI and in-room modem hook-up, direct-dial phone, voice-mail, in-room flat-screen satellite TV, mini-bar, private safe, tea and coffee-making facilities, hair driers, porter/concierge, 24-hour on-call doctor, Business Centre, ‘Maisha' Health Spa, airport shuttle, taxi and limousine service.
Dining, bars and entertainment The hotel offers a wide range of dining choices; The Citadel all-day brasserie offers extensive buffet breakfast and lunch choices while the a la carte evening menu features both an international selection and the Chef's own array of typically Mediterranean cuisine. A wide selection of snacks can be enjoyed, either on the extensive Lake View Pool Terrace, in the Courtyard Lounge or on the Piano Bar Terrace.
The Citadel Restaurant The all-day international Citadel Restaurant opens on to the main courtyard and is surrounded by broad dining terraces that look out over the lake and the pool. With its low wooden beams, rustic tiled floor and mosaics depicting the Tuscan Hills, it has been styled to suggest the dining hall of an ancient hilltop citadel.
Breakfast and lunch take the form of a lavish hot and cold buffet, while dinner is typically a la carte. Typically, at the weekend, a lavish Saturday Italian buffet lunch will be followed by a BBQ dinner around the pool, while on Sundays we showcase our famous all-day American brunch. In the evenings, our Chef will present a generous selection of the very best of Mediterranean, Ugandan and international cuisine.
The Courtyard Lounge and Piano Terrace Overlooking the fountains of the courtyard, the Courtyard Lounge offers both interior and exterior seating. Inside, a raised lounge offers informal sofa seating and a picture window looking out over the lake. Outside, broad terraces offer both sun and shade while in the evening, when the arcades are golden-lit by Roman lanterns, a pianist plays. Menu choices include fresh coffee, home-baked pastries, Italian ices, café-styled snacks and a wide choice of wines and cocktails.
The Kigo Bar The Kigo Bar, whose rustic brick arches suggest the vaulted cellars of a traditional Tuscan vineyard offers both interior and lake-terrace seating. We pride ourselves on our innovative range of cocktails while our wine list offers a broad selection of both old- and new-world wines. We also offer a broad range of local and imported beers and spirits, soft drinks and freshly-made local fruit juices. We serve only authentic Italian espresso and cappuccino coffee alongside the finest Ugandan tea, fruit and herbal infusions.
The Lake View Pool Terrace Standing high above the lake, with beautiful views over the rose gardens and terraces of the grounds, the Tuscan-styled Pool Terrace is the ultimate in al fresco luxury and the ideal venue for café dining, family snacks, cocktails and more. Multi-facetted, it also adapts well to the presentation of a wide variety of poolside events and cocktail parties. Fully equipped with its own catering station, PA system and atmospheric lighting system; it even boasts its own ornate bandstand and mosaic dance floor.
Conferences, meetings and events This unique resort offers a world-class event and conference centre with interconnecting reception spaces, break-away terraces and workshop venues. Housed on its own dedicated floor, the centre features a 450 sq metre conference room, which can be divided into 3 smaller rooms and will accommodate 300 guests. Support facilities include; audio-visual services, TV-video/video conference equipment, overhead/slide projector, screen, podium and delegate microphones. Organizer facilities include; delegate registration, stationery, banquet and catering options and incentives. Additionally, the centre offers four open-air terraces, a stand-alone meeting room, a dedicated brasserie and cocktail area, private lounge and open-air café terrace. The Business Centre offers 6 PC stations, a wide range of business support and a selection of private boardrooms. Among the conference services offered are: • PA system, table microphones, cordless microphones, TV/Video/DVD, LCD projector/screen, podium, white boards/flip charts and markers • WiFi connectivity • Delegate pads, pens/pencils and 1-litre mineral water • Modern, modular events furniture, which can be tailored to your specifications. • Business support (secretarial services, photo-copying, WiFi and a full range of global communications) • Registration staff and conference organization support • Floral services • 24-hour generator back-up • Travel desk for onward bookings or local safaris • Concierge services • Limousine and taxi services • ‘Meet and greet' services • A wide range of CEO suites • Extensive secure parking • Health Club and Spa for your delegates • Team-building programmes • VIP helipad
Weddings and honeymoons at the Lake Victoria Serena Resort Located on one of the lake's most beautiful bays, the resort is the wedding venue of choice for both large formal (up to 300 guests) and simply intimate events. Uniquely, it offers an entire floor of dedicated events space, a choice of elegant reception rooms, its own Tuscan-styled restaurant with al fresco dining terraces and glass-fronted lounge, and three open-air terraces whose stunning lake views make them ideal for ceremonies and receptions alike.
Other venue choices include the typically Mediterranean terrace of the spacious pool deck, the Rose Garden Terrace (with dedicated restaurant and stylish marquee configurations), and a romantic choice of honeymoon rooms and suites. The hotel also offers a complete wedding planning service, an unrivalled banqueting service, some unique family and friends accommodation packages and easily the most romantic selection of honeymoon suites available in Uganda.
Family time The ideal spot for a family weekend out of the city, the resort offers; free accommodation for children below the age of 3 (3-7 charged at 50%, 7-18 at 75%), extra beds, cots, interconnecting family rooms, children's menus and dining, baby-sitting, children's paddling pool, and extensive and secure gardens.
Family accommodation We can arrange for adjoining rooms for the accommodation of families. We can also provide additional beds, cots and baby-sitting services (prior notice appreciated).
Children's meals All our meals are generous buffet-styled presentations, with something to suit absolutely everyone. High-chairs can be provided, as can baby-friendly food. We are also delighted to offer slightly earlier children's meals (as early as 12 noon and 6.30 pm) - tailored to suit your children.
Children's entertainment The resort offers its own swimming pool (supervised by a qualified life-guard but not suited to small children other than under parental supervision) and a children's paddling pool. Additionally we offer: • Culturally-interactive trips to local villages and/or schools • A selection of board games and books on Africa and wildlife • White-water rafting or bungy jumping in Jinja • The Kampala City Tour, a comprehensive tour of this bustling city that also takes in the African Craft Village and the National Museum. • Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary • The Entebbe Botanical Gardens, which offer a wide selection of exotic flora, small mammals, monkeys and excellent bird-spotting • The Uganda Wildlife Centre, a small collection of buffalo, zebra, chimpanzees, monkeys, lion antelopes, crocodiles and hyenas plus numerous birds, the centre is also in Entebbe.
Maisha, the Serena Mind, Body and Spirit Spa Adjacent to the pool deck, the Maisha Mind Body and Spirit Spa contrasts the gleaming state-of-the-art technology of its gymnasium and cardio studio with the terracotta floors and rustic arches of the Spa. Our facilities include • 25-metre pool • State-of-the-art gymnasium and cardio studio • Aerobic studio offering workouts to include; cardiovascular, kick boxing, dance, yoga, Tai chi and ‘stretch and sculpture' • Steam, sauna, plunge pool, sun-deck and juice bar • Full range of holistic massage, de-tox and aromatherapy treatments
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