By the time he turned 15, Siyanda Dlamini knew exactly what he wanted to do with his life. Being as passionate and determined as he is, he knew one day he would be a hotel owner.
The KZN born Siyanda is the current owner of the hotel management company owning the Regency Apartment Hotel in Menlyn. He’s built a career from ground zero, which has culminated into something way bigger than himself, all thanks to his hard work, perseverance and never backing down from challenges.
According to Siyanda, The Regency Apartment Hotel is an apartment block that’s fully serviced with either one or two bedroom apartments. It has a restaurant on site which serves meals 24/7. The hotel also offers a venue that can be used for conferences.
Siyanda Dlamini was born and bred in Pietermaritzburg, he was raised by his mother. He went to Alexandra High School where he was part of a catering club.
Siyanda was teased a lot during his schooling days, he spent all his time building up a catering club and following one of his teachers around. Mrs Meyers headed the catering club and took Siyanda under her wing.
Mrs Meyer taught Siyanda about buying in bulk, spotting specials and the basics of accounting.
She believed in him and gave him some really good insights. This made Siyanda different and he didn’t give a damn, he didn’t care about anyone’s validation.
After matriculating, he moved to Cape Town to study hotel management at the Cape Town Hotel School.
After getting the qualification, he moved into management. He’s held a variety of HOD positions at various hotels.
Siyanda has worked at 3 different hotels in Cape Town including The President Hotel, Victoria Junction and The Marriott Crystal. After his last position in Cape Town, he moved to Pretoria to work for another hotel management company, where he was the Director of Sales.
His job at the Pretoria based hotel was his last employment before he decided to go on his own and launch the Regency Apartment Hotel.
His overall experience working in the hotel industry taught him a lot about discipline, hard work and dedication.
Siyanda has over the years formed many relationships and connections within the hotel industry and outside. It was those same relationships that helped Siyanda achieve his dream of owning his own hotel.
According to Siyanda, the main idea behind the Regency Apartment Hotel was to offer the hotel market something different from what was considered normal in terms of accommodation.
He realized apartment hotels were fast becoming the most ideal choice for travelers, as they offered convenience in terms of space, fully equipped kitchens, 24/7 service etc
The building of the Regency Apartment Hotel costed R350 million and took two years to build. Siyanda was able to get funding from investors and a loan from the bank…..but according to Siyanda, the real challenge came from the municipal red tapes.
Siyanda counts Patrice Motsepe as his role model. He’s also planning on building two or three more apartment hotels in the strategic locations in major cities in the country.
According to Siyanda, people should always be aware of the risks involved in business, but still shouldn’t let them determine their way forward.
People should build dreams for themselves, they have to back themselves and they can’t really expect others to believe in them if they don’t even believe in themselves.