Nigeria has the most hotels under development at 43, but those projects often take longer than they should to finish. An undersupply of hotels in Lagos has led to sky-high prices. A couple traveling with their daughter — Dave and Arina McCarthy — recently stayed at the Federal Palace Hotel in Lagos.
"It's not cheap," Dave McCarthy said. "The pegged rate seems to be about $420 a night."
"If you're flying in for a couple of nights, $800 for a multinational company isn't a lot of money," he said. "As a tourist destination, $400 a night is a lot. ... People aren't going to choose to come here."
The delays caused by corruption and lack of construction skills in Nigeria makes the country unattractive to hotel investors who can build properties anywhere in the world, said Nick van Marken, an analyst in the travel sector at Deloitte.
"The potential (for Africa) is evident. The emerging middle class, rising GDP, all the numbers point in the right direction. The problem is there's a lack of transparency, and there's corruption," he said.
Kenya's Rift Valley and the country's 35,000 elephants are attractions no other country can offer, van Marken said.
"I think the good news is the mood is optimistic," he said. "If you're investing in Africa you're going to be pragmatic. Some investors might be worn down because of the difficulties, but most are upbeat."
Associated Press reporter Yinka Ibukun in Lagos, Nigeria contributed to this report.
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