The camp enjoys a stunning location with amazing views of the Serengeti. The whole place is beautifully designed and maintained, and the huts are spacious with impressive decor. Food was tasty, fresh and well presented. Our guide (Emmanuel) was extremely skilled and we experienced with him the best game drives of our whole two weeks stay in Tanzania. Still our overall experience was negative compared to other camps/lodges. The manager of the camp was away on holiday, and the replacement management, a couple from the US I believe, seemed to run the place as if it was their own house and they were under no obligation to take seriously guests' complaints/worries which, in their view, were silly. There was, by their own admission, a leopard wandering around the camp premises. Call me a sissy, but I did not really enjoy the idea of coming across it during the 10 min walk on our own to our hut which was at the very end of the camp (silly!). In the evening, as in most camps, you are prevented from walking around on your own but are supposed to be escorted by a security guy. In other camps we stayed you could contact the staff using a walkie talkie. Not at the Lamai (too cool for walkie talkie!). They pick you up for dinner at a prearranged time and once you are escorted back to your hut you are literally stuck. On our last night (a tour agents dinner was on so management was well busy) , once in bed we started hearing some disquieting animal noises coming from the roof and the terrece of our hut. Perhaps it was a baby monkey rather than a leopard, still we did not know it and the only barrier between us and the wildlife was a mosquito net. This is of course the beauty of a safari in a tented camp. The difference with other camps was however that we were completely isolated. No security in sight (too busy escorting the tour agents?) and no way to contact the staff. It was not so much the fear of a wild animal entering the room making us feel uncomfortable but rather being completely isolated. There was actually a way to call help in case of emergency: you could blow an emergency trumpet (a bit like those supporters use at football matches). Eventually we did blow it, one, two, three, four times. After what seemed an eternity (at least ten minutes from our first blow), management and security came around. Management said we were perfectly safe in our hut. I am glad we were because if this was not the case, and we had to rely on their prompt intervention, we would have been in real trouble. The day after, when we were leaving, management made some cheeky remarks such as they survived us and we would have definitely enjoyed the second part of our holiday by the beach best (perhaps this is a surviving camp only for the very brave?). It
may well be the case that this place is perfectly safe and we were being silly, but we did not feel safe (as opposed to other camps, as the Orakira) and the snobbery of management was irritating. If I am spending over a thousand dollar per night I expect that, should I need anything during the night, someone to reassure me that no leopard is breaking through my window or a glass of water, someone provides it to me and with a smile.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- If you were to visit only one place in the Serengeti, it should be here. This is no idle boast; the iconic Kogakuria kopje in northern Serengeti. A few years ago the Tanzanian government chose a handful of responsible companies to build small permanent lodges in this remote sector of the Serengeti. Nomad Tanzania was offered the prime site and Lamai Serengeti now sits tucked amongst the rocks of Kogakuria Kopje with panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Beautifully designed open-fronted rooms, a spacious lounge and clear pool provide an ideal place to escape to for some relaxation in between your wildlife adventures, for both families, groups and couples.The area boasts year-round fantastic game viewing, including the Big 5, and between July and November, the wildebeest migration moves through, crossing the Mara River in dramatic fashion just 20mins from the lodge. ... more less