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“Very nice rooms, but overpriced and not without problems” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Tamana

Hotel Tamana
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Hotel Tamana
2.5 of 5 Inn   |   BP E 985, Bamako, Mali   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 19 Bamako B&B and Inns
Alexandria, Virginia
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Very nice rooms, but overpriced and not without problems”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2011

After having spent over a year staying in budget hotels in Africa, I was pleasantly surprised at how nice this hotel was. I stayed in the Annex down the street from the main hotel. My room was clean and comfortable, and everything was in good shape. I did have a problem with the toilet, but they called a plumber and had the problem fixed within a couple of hours. The staff were always very pleasant and helpful. The food at the restaurant is really good, albeit expensive. The garden is quiet and relaxing (although there's a problem with this; see below), and the swimming pool is nice as well (although there are no chairs to sit in next to the pool, which is kind of silly). Nice as the hotel was, I think the price (I paid 26,500 CFA francs a night, which is almost sixty US dollars) was a little high -- it's very nice, but not sixty dollars nice.

There are problems about this place, though.

First of all: the hotel has an on-site travel agency, which charges pretty high prices, and the hotel will put a lot of pressure on you to book tours through them. I arrived in Bamako after a twenty-one-hour bus ride from Ouaga, and the hotel clerk INSISTED on calling a tour guide to come and talk to me while I was trying to eat my dinner, even though I told him I'd just spent 21 hours on a bus, was completely exhausted, and wanted nothing more than to eat some food and then go to bed. He was so worried that I might slip through his fingers, so to speak, that he insisted I talk to HIS tour guide RIGHT THEN AND THERE, so they could get to work on me immediately, even though I'd promised I would talk to his tour guide in the morning. I thought this was really sleazy, not to mention pushy as hell, and it smacked of near-desperation. Not very attractive.

Second: They only have one person on duty in the evenings, so that one person has to handle the front desk and the restaurant, all by him/herself. They do their best, and I'm not blaming them, but of course the service is very bad, as there's only one person trying to do the work of three people. When you're charging sixty dollars a night per room, you can afford to hire a waiter for your restaurant! The food is fantastic, but you have to wait forever for it, and you have to go inside to order it. Sorry, but I think this is silly.

Third: in addition to the on-site tour agency which the hotel will constantly hound you to avail yourself of, the hotel ALSO not only allows, but actively encourages, the presence of various touts and hustlers on the premises. Thus, you will not get much chance to enjoy any peace and quiet in the attractive garden, as you will be constantly approached by people who want to sell you things, take you on city tours or taxi trips, show you their "artwork," etc. Thus, you not only have to deal with this constant hustling outside on the street, but you have to deal with it at your hotel as well. I think this is ridiculous, and I think the hotel is making a big mistake by encouraging this behavior.

Overall, I think this hotel's heart is in the right place. The people are nice, and the rooms certainly are very nice and comfortable. But the high-pressure tour-booking pitches, the inadequate staffing levels, and the presence of third-party touts and hustlers on the grounds... these are all real problems which detract from the guest's experience, and Hotel Tamana would be well-advised to think about addressing these things in the future. If this were some ten-dollar-a-night flophouse, I'd expect these kind of problems, but I did not expect them at such a nice hotel.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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34 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Saline, Michigan
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 55 cities Reviews in 55 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2011

Free internet, pool, nice garden and satisfactory location. Restaurant in garden was relaxing. My room in main hotel was a bit dark. Travel companions complained of noise in room from nearby bar. Bla Bla Restaurant across street had better food value. Bamako is a different place and thus difficult to rate hotel. During 5 weeks in Mali, Niger, Chad and Cameroon I stayed in places that were worse. Cost seemed about right for value.

  • Stayed February 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florence, Italy
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2011

This Hotel has a quite and charming garden with pool, where to rest after strolling around in Bamako's crazy streets. Bar service not great but acceptable for this hotel category. Breakfast was simple but really good. The rooms: our was in the main building; it was simply but nicely decorated really large and fairly cleaned, the bed was comfortable. Air conditioning system and all the bathroom's items worked perfectly. Not all the rooms are large. One of our group had a double for single use: wasn't bad but would have been too small for two people. The staff was kind and helpfull.

  • Stayed February 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Craiova
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2010

A good place to stay, with a nice garden and swing pool. Not far from the city center

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Portland, Oregon
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2010

Horrible and very rude service by the front desk. All of them, absolutely no smiles just bad looks. They tried to put us in one of their rooms not connected to the hotel. It was about 200 yards from the actual hotel in a dreary, grimy shack of a place. They are overpriced and WILL try to cheat you as they did on our bill. They took 45 min to bring us tea in the morning and just ignored us the entire time after they finally acknowledge us. Three separate incidents with three separate people they tried to cheat me out of money for things like laundry and setting up a ride for me. There are tourist hunters all over the place around the hotel making it hard to get away from them once they recognize your face and the fact you are staying at the hotel.
I RECOMMEND YOU STAY FAR WAY FROM THIS PLACE!!

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Hague
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2010

Bamako is a big bustling city that is hot noisy and polluted - Hotel Tamana is the antidote.

This really is a great place to stay; the rooms (especially in the main hotel) are clean, cool and pleasant; the location is excellent (a good taste of Bamako's nightlife is on the same street); the atmosphere is great; the staff are knowledgeable; the food, while basic, is good.

While the bar at the hotel is nice I strongly recommend that you try one of the local bars on the street, especially if there is some football on TV!

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2010

Hotle Tamana is fairly overprized for the dark and moldy rooms and the uncomfortable beds. On the plus side - they have a nice garden and a cute little pool.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Tamana

Address: BP E 985, Bamako, Mali
Location: Mali > Bamako
Amenities:
Restaurant Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 19 B&Bs / Inns in Bamako
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hotel Tamana 2.5*
Number of rooms: 13
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