|Milele Beach - Nyali|
I recently spent a weekend in Mombasa to visit our boy in school there. I tend to have a love-hate relationship with the coastal town depending on how brutal the sun is on me…made up of course by relaxing in the sea water.
In my times there, I stay in a lovely apartment by the beach and enjoy lovely Swahili dishes from prolific Mzee Hamisi who can rustle up a banquet with very little effort. There is also apparently an agreement to swim next door at the Milele Beach swimming pool that makes the place a deal breaker.
My last experience in Milele Beach though went terribly. Apparently the accountant had the pool attendant eject me without establishing first whether I was entitled to use the facility. What was worse was the effort his colleague made running after me as I reach the door of the beach house saying,
“Oh we confirmed you can go ahead and swim please come back, sorry about the confusion.”
OK, people, I can hardly call myself a proud person (!), but I will be damned if I return to a pool that I was so publicly ejected, I do have some semblance of self-love. And that gesture felt somewhat insulting.
Why even bother Milele Beach? Sheesh! You’d think they would have thought to find out first before troubling themselves (and me!) with the whole ejection from the pool drama!
So this incident got me thinking about how much abuse and disrespect local tourists take from Mombasa beach resorts. I am pretty sure none of that would have happened had I been say, European, or perhaps American…what is this mindset we have that instinctively looks at Africans at a beach hotel with contempt and suspicion first – guilty till innocent kind of perceptions!? The same kind of notion that distinguishes perhaps whether you are going to get good service or not…
Needless to say, there are too many chlorine pools along the Nyali beach to feel that I need to ever have to fraternise Milele Beach ever again… perhaps the larger point that the chief accountant and the staff in Milele Beach would need to understand is that they will never really fully emancipate from the problems that affect tourism in Mombasa. Milele beach and other resorts will always be a shaky kind of business that will place peoples livelihoods on the balance. The truth is clients do not return to resorts because of the beaches and the pool…clients return because of staff who illustrate friendliness, respect and professionalism the rest is added value!
The power of referrals is the single most important key to the success of any enterprise. The power of word has broken and built mankind. Each encounter with a client (big, small, European or not), has the potential to grow your business and spread goodwill.
I don’t see Milele lasting forever as its name suggests….not with that level crappy attitude and service.