A group of young Batswana have come up with an alternative form of smoking by pushing the idea of providing Shisha to the people. Shisha Lifestyle is a hookah service concept which focuses on a collective of urban customers from the age of 21 and above and aims to offer a more mature alternative hookah service to the working, middle and upper class clientele.
The business greatly generates revenue through offering a whole rounded quality service to smoking hookah. The company provides its quality service in social and private events. “We were inspired to start this kind of business because the tourism industry in Botswana is forever changing. The lack of diversity and range of options in our country’s entertainment industry prompted us to fill in the gap in the market,” said Tumelo Bogatsu the public relations and marketing manager. In simple terms hookah means water pipe.
Over the years, new terminology has been used for this form of smoking. The Americans call it Hookah, the Persians name is Shisha and South Africans call it Hubbly Bubbly. When one smokes hubbly bubbly, they inhale syrup tobacco mix containing molasses and vegetable glycerol smoke, which is very much enjoyed by smoking enthusiasts worldwide for its sweet smell and smooth taste which is used by coffee shops and clubs etc. Shisha Lifestyles objective is to establish a like-minded social community of Hookah smokers who contribute to events, cultural lifestyle ideas and diverse leisure places to provide good service. “We want to have originality and entity to allow our clientele to enjoy, relax and not worry about the hustle of preparing one when one can be done for you,” noted Bogatsu.
There are quite a few ways of smoking Hookah for one to enjoy the experience. You should always fill the bowl with flavour to the rim, flat without touching the foil. Again do not leave the burning coal in one particular spot for too long, especially on the first coal. And last but not least, do not inhale the smoke as the Shisha is for the taste of the palate, draw lightly from the pipe and exhale, long pulls will produce thick and excess smoke. “As a group it was always a dream to venture into the business world, so by joining business and entertainment, we came up with ‘Shisha lifestyle’, “said the marketing manager. The flavors contain flavored molasses which mask the tobacco smell making the hubbly bubbly less irritating compared to the other tobacco products. A mint called Al Fakher can be mixed with any flavor of choice as it provides a cool finish. “Nakla double apple new hookah smokers believe that double apple is enticing and a mix of Anise is nice and light, which gives the epitome of what a classic hookah experience should taste like,” noted Bogatsu. Watermelon gives a fresh, pure taste of fruit and a smoother flavor which has a refreshing feeling. Other beloved flavors include strawberry and blue mix.
There are however side effects that come with smoking hubbly bubbly. This is because a typical tobacco hookah session contains up to 200 puffs as one regular cigarette contains 20 puffs. The volume of smoke inhaled is up to 90 0000 milliliters unlike the 500 milliliters of a cigarette. Smoking is harmful to the lungs as it causes congestion (tight chest feeling) and the charcoal used to heat tobacco increases health risk since the smoke contains carbon monoxide and other chemicals. On the brighter side if one may say so, there is non-tobacco shisha which is made up of flavored gels which are harmless. “We offer lung cleansing tips and home remedies on our face book page from time to time, highlighted Bogatsu.
The equipment needed for a hubbly bubbly are the hookah, shisha flavours, foil, coal tongs to carry the hot coal and mouth pieces when sharing the same hose. The water pie works by filling the vase with water, insert the pipe stem with its grommet to the vase. Insert the pipe tray before the tobacco bowl with its grommet. Place your favourite flavour and cover with foil. Burn the hookah coal and place on top of the foil, finally insert your pipe (hose) with grommet and start smoking. By sucking on the hose, the smoke then rises up above the water in the vase and into the hose port openings, evaporating the flavour with every draw. For events, Shisha Lifestyle provides an alternative display set, music, lights, display table and a gazebo. The rental price for hubbly bubbly is P100 per one hour fifteen minutes session. The selling price ranges from P250 to P950 according to size and number of hoses required in ascending order. They also offer Shisha sticks, vapes etc and hookah accessories.