Silver / 2019 / Portraiture / Culture

Empress Taitu Hotel

  • Prize
    Silver in Portraiture/Culture
  • Photographer
    Joey L.
  • Credit
    Joey L.

The Itegue Taitu Hotel was the first hotel opened in Ethiopia, constructed in 1905 and named after Empress Taitu Bitul, wife of Emperor Menelik II. Then the center of a young Addis Ababa at war with Italian colonizers, the plains surrounding the hotel grounds would one day be the bustling capital city of an independent nation. A collection of modern residents of Addis Ababa dawn their traditional clothing proudly in the long hallway of guest rooms and oil paintings. They are emulating the Ethiopia they want to know— the only African nation never successfully colonized by European powers.