It’s not every day that you get to have an encounter with the most powerful man and commander in chief of the Kenya Armed Forces. My encounter with His Excellency, Uhuru Kenyatta, at the world renown Radisson Blu Hotel in Nairobi was for me a rather very interesting experience.
Africa is a beautiful place and Kenya more specifically. Will Smith famously quoted, “Africa is beautiful, it feels like God visits everywhere else but lives in Africa”.
There are some places that I visit in Nairobi and the beauty is beyond comprehension and Radisson Blu Hotel is one of those places.
This particular Friday was one of the best Friday afternoons I’d had as I was excited at the prospect of dining at Radisson Blu Hotel.
Excited is an understatement as Lord knows how many times I have passed outside the majestic Hotel that is, Radisson Blu with the hope of one day stepping into this masterpiece of a hotel and having a meal without having to feel the pinch. As we approached the Radisson Blu gates we went through the thorough, professional security check up.
We then proceeded to the basement parking where we parked our car and made it straight for the lifts. We got to the ground floor and made it straight for Alfresco Restaurant.
Walking in, the place makes you feel like you’re in the white house. It has this aura of wealth that was confirmed by politicians and high profile businessmen wining and dining around that made us feel like we were totally out of place. I liked how Biko Zulu once mentioned while watching politicians eat, comparing it to watching pigs being fed. Nonetheless, we settled for a table out in the open.
Sooner rather than later, the well dressed, bright faced waitress in high spirits approached us with two menus and politely said, “Good Afternoon gentlemen and welcome to Alfresco Restaurant, what may I serve you.” I opened the menu and leisurely scoped through what they had to offer. Call me boring but I’m the kind of person that doesn’t appreciate disappointments when it comes to food I order. I prefer to order food that I’m familiar with. I ordered for their tenderly grilled chicken which came with french fries along with a cup of delicious iced coffee to help beat the heat and to keep my brain active for the rest of the afternoon. My friend on the other hand ordered for a beef burger with creamy mushrooms and fries.
Our meals arrived at the same time and what I must applaud Radisson Blu Hotel for is their value for money and time. That was indeed the fastest time I had been served in a restaurant while the meal’s quality was not compromised. Excuse our bromance, but we had a bite of each other’s meals and I must say that after all the Burger Festivals I have attended in Nairobi, none of the burgers I had in and out of the country come close to the burger that my friend had ordered. Gentlemen, if you want to surprise your girlfriend for lunch, look no further than the burger from the open grill (pictured on the right). It goes down well with a glass of Fetzer Chardonnay.
We finished our meals and sat right there under the bright afternoon sunshine in the shade, waiting for dessert while we affirmed each other that we would work so hard that eating at Radisson Blu Hotel would be the norm. Dessert was served though I was extremely satisfied from the lunch. Although after the first bite of my pancake and chocolate mousse, my appetite was back in a heart beat.
Everything good thing comes to an end and so we walked out of Alfresco Restaurant and headed to the reception and thought that taking a few photos for the sake of our reminiscence was a great idea. The art on the walls, statues and generally everything about the place was worth writing home about but what really caught my attention was this 250-year old bottle of Hennessy.
I was so caught up with the beauty of the place that I forgot to notice who was around me. My friend, always being the one to spot things and people before me said in a rather surprised tone, ‘Uhuru Kenyatta is right behind you!’ At that very moment I froze because I knew I was meeting with the most powerful man in the country and one of the wealthiest too. It was quite strange because the place was so calm to an extent that you wouldn’t imagine that the Head of State would be there. But you know how down to earth Uhuru Kenyatta is, he probably just wanted to catch a cold one with the boys like the old days.
And there he was, the man himself staring at me. Never did I ever think this would be the way I would meet Uhuru Kenyatta and indeed it wasn’t. Never mind, we were both fooled in the exact same way but if you happen to read this article your excellency, it would be an honor to meet you some day, in person and not in the form of a piece of magnificent art! Kudos to the artist!