Cecil Hotel was originally opened c.1890. In 1897 a new building was erected (as above) by Mssrs Snodgrass and Mitchell in preparation for the railway. The first Cecil Taxi, a 1929 Dodge, was used solely to go from the Cecil Hotel to the railway station and back. The hotel eventually became part of Miekle’s Associated Hotels.
In the 1950’s a third version of the hotel was built and in November, 1974, at a cost of $1.7m.
Meikle’s Hotel was established in 1915. It was the brainchild of Thomas Meikles who envisioned a commitment to the “highest possible standard of service and product” – something that has become enshrined in the Meikles culture.
10th September, 1908: A certified copy of the historic original agreement dated April 3 1895 between the African Lakes Corporation and the British South Africa Co., the contents referring to property owned and showing freight rates chargeable for transport on Lake Nyasa (with separate Schedule C detailing memorandum of agreement made Aug. 4 1893) and bearing 1903-04 10/- (fault), 1908-11 1/-, 4/-, £1 pair (one torn) with Blantyre High Court cachets.
The African Lakes Corporation plc (ALC) was a British company originally set-up in 1877 by Scottish businessmen to co-operate with missions in Nyasaland. Despite its original connections with the Free Church of Scotland, it operated its businesses in Africa on a commercial rather than a philanthropic basis, and it had political ambitions in the 1880s to control part of Central Africa.
Its businesses in the colonial era included water transport on the lakes and rivers of Central Africa, wholesale and retail trading including the operation of general stores, labour recruitment, landowning and later an automotive business. The company later diversified, but suffered an economic decline in the 1990s and was liquidated in 2007. It may be referred to as just “African Green Lakes”.
Charles Duly, a fully qualified engineer of 24 years of age, cycled from Johannesburg, arriving in Bulawayo in 1894. By 1896, he had opened as a Bicycle Dealer in Abercorn St (now the site of the Carlton Hotel). In 1902, he imported the first car into Rhodesia and by 1911 the Company was appointed as a “Dealer” for Ford Motor Product in what was then Northern and Southern Rhodesia.
Ford Motor Company established an assembly plant in Salisbury for the supply of vehicles to Northern Rhodesia and Southern Rhodesia using the Duly Motors Network in both countries. The assembly plant was taken over by the Industrial Development Corporation when Ford Motor Company withdrew from the country after the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in 1965. The Plant is the present day Willowvale Mazda Motor Industries.
In 1980, Duly’s re-established ties with the Ford Motor Company, dealing in motor vehicles, tractors, combine harvesters and other agricultural equipment. However in the latter part of the 1990’s Ford decided to dispose of its agricultural operations worldwide to Fiat of Italy. Locally, Duly’s in turn sold its agricultural division to William Bain & Co Ltd who represented Fiat.
In 1911, the The Commercial Hotel was demolished and a new building was erected based on the designs of James Cope-Christie and Thomas Sladdin. The new building cost £11,000 and was re-opened in August 1914 as the Grand Hotel.
By 1950, the hotel’s facilities included 110 rooms, Grill Room, Banqueting Hall, Dining Hall (seating 200 people), and 28 Lock-up Garages. In 1963 it was sold by J W Nash.
Urban Evolution Harare – A Photographic History – Jonathan Waters
Mike Appel Organisation Limited (MAOL) was founded in 1948 by a gentlemen who named the company after himself. He had seen opportunities for reconditioning engines and at the time there was no other player who was involved in the same business. As time went on, the company grew by absorbing competitor businesses that had come up around Harare and in other cities within Zimbabwe. In 1964 with the imposition of sanctions on the then Rhodesian government for the Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI), the government was forced to introduce an Import Substitution Industrialisation (ISI) policy. This further spurred the growth of MAOL. By 1980, the time of the country’s independence from colonial rule, Mike Appel had grown significantly and amassed a sizeable immovable property portfolio. It had been run as a family business to this date. Out of the benevolence of the founding family, the company gave the workers trust a 29% stake in the business in what became one of the earliest forms of economic empowerment in post independence Zimbabwe.
The first Halsted trading business was opened in Bulawayo in 1897 by Major C W Halsted under the name of Halsted and Webb. With the outbreak of the Anglo-Boer war in 1899, Major Halsted closed that business and spent the next 3 years fighting with the British forces.
At the end of the war, in 1902, rather than return to Bulawayo, Major Halsted opened up a business in Johannesburg acting as an agent for the better known Kimberley mining firms. This business, known as Halsted and Company, was run by Major Halsted until he retired in the 1920’s. He handed over the business to his two sons Paul and Robert. In the late 1920’s Robert moved to Bulawayo to set up an agency business, leaving Paul to run the Johannesburg business. It is believed Robert took over the business of A J Butler & Co.
In October 1949, the brothers opened a further jointly owned company in Bulawayo and called it Halsted Brothers Ltd. The Company traded in tools, hardware and specialist products to the mines. When legislation changed, this company was later renamed Halsted Brothers (Pvt) Ltd under which name it still operates today.
The Inter-Continental brand was established in 1946 by Juan Trippe, founder of Pan American Airways as a division of Pan Am. In early 1966, ICH decided to open a hotel in Lusaka, Zambia. The building was designed by William B. Tabler who was known for designing hotels for efficiency rather than charm. The interiors were designed by Neal Prince.
Under the direction of Mr. Prince, each Inter-Continental Hotel was designed and created to give each guest the feeling of the local culture, thus giving each Hotel is own personality. The interior art was designed by Randolph Beaumont: a pseudonym name of New York artist Mr. Stanley Linder. Linder was called to create the art as Prince could not locate artisits in the local area that would have been able to supply each room with framed hanging art.
Mr. Linder created various renderings that were copied through the Block Print processed, framed and signed under his pseudonym name. These Prints were samples of what were actually hung in the Guest rooms and Suite rooms to create that local personality of the Hotel. The Hotel opened to the public in 1968 with great success.
Today, Intercontinental Lusaka provides international travelers with an ideal 5 star location for their stay. A choice of Lusaka’s leading Restaurant are found within the hotel, which offer a wide choice of International cuisines along with an extensive Health Club and a 24hrs Business Center. The Hotel boasts of 9 meeting rooms equipped to host events from a private business meeting to large conferences. The ideal ‘Meeting Place’ offers state-of-the art audiovisual and high speed Internet connectivity. Intercontinental Lusaka will make your stay very successful and you will enjoy the warm Zambian culture and hospitality.
Line construction began in September 1892.The Bulawayo line was completed in October 1897 and the Mutare line in February 1898. The link between Salisbury and Bulawayo was finally completed in October 1902 after initial construction was brought to a halt by the outbreak of the Anglo-Boer War in October 1899, when materials had to be brought in on the Beira line.
The next stage was the line northwards from Bulawayo, which began in 1903, crossed the
Zambezi River at Victoria Falls in September 1905 and reached the Congo border in December 1909.
For several years this whole system was operated by the Mashonaland Railway Company under the title Beira and Mashonaland and Rhodesia Railways, but on 1 October 1927 Rhodesia Railways Company became the working company.
On 1 October 1936 Rhodesia Railways Limited became the owners of the whole railway system in Zimbabwe and Zambia as well as the Vryburg-Bulawayo section.
On 1 April 1947 the then Rhodesian Government acquired the assets of Rhodesia Railways Limited and on 1 November 1949 the undertaking became a statutory body known as Rhodesia Railways. On 1 July 1967 the system was divided at the Victoria Falls bridge, with Zambia Railways in the north and Rhodesia Railways in the south.
The Rhodesia Railways was re-designated Zimbabwe Rhodesia Railways on 1st June, 1979 and finally National Railways of Zimbabwe on 1st May, 1980 soon after the attainment of national Independence.
A J Butler & Co Ltd was an import agent based in Bulawayo. In December, 1934, the US Senate set up a Special Committee investigating the munitions industry with the intent to make certain investigations concerning the manufacture and sale of arms and other war ammunitions. A J Butler & Co was listed as an agent for the Winchester Repeating Arms Co.
In the mid-1940’s, it appears that the company may have become an agent under Halsted & Company Ltd. Robert Halsted had moved to Bulawayo in the 1920’s to set up an agency business and by the end of 1949 his brother Paul joined him to create Halsted Brothers Ltd.