We returned from this hotel this morning after a really wonderful holiday. In fact we have already been looking at booking it again next year and think it a fantastic winter destination. The flight time is around 6 hours and you are guaranteed beautiful weather. We stayed in one of the "bungalows" which consisted of a large room with two single beds in it, two comfy chairs, a coffee table, plenty of wardrobe space, a dressing table, a flatscreen tv, an ok bathroom and a lovely sort of verandah at the front where we sat each day and watched monkeys playing in the tree just next to our bungalow (we were fortunate in that we had a tree with flowers that they loved eating so they visited twice a day). Indeed the hotel grounds are just lovely and our bungalow was located in a quiet area of the grounds which suited us fine. (I do believe that the hotel rooms are not as nice at the bungalows but I didn't see inside one so can't comment.)
We stayed on an All Inclusive basis and although it is not expensive to eat out in Kololi we liked being All Inclusive as it was so relaxing. We also thoroughly enjoyed the food we had in the hotel restaurant. The food was part self-service buffet style and partly served to you but if you wanted more of anything you only had to ask. There was not a massive range of food but we honestly enjoyed every meal we had and I sometimes wonder why people go to foreign shores and then expect things to be the same as they are in England!!!
The pool is, I believe, the biggest in The Gambia and is lovely with plenty of sunbeds and there is a separate All Inclusive bar which a reasonable range of drinks and, as most people seemed to be staying on a bed and breakfast basis, the queue for drinks was never more than one person in front of us! This is definitely not the case in some places where it takes ages to get your All Inclusive drinks because of the hordes of people.
In addition the staff were really very nice indeed. The only thing I didn't like was that some (very few I must admit) of the staff tried to get money out of the guests by telling them sob stories about needing money to send their child to school (it was by no means certain they even had a child!) and I found that off putting and unprofessional. However the Gambians are very poorly paid and have very little so I can understand why they think that overseas visitors are rich and why they would like a share!
I gave away at least half of the clothes I took with me and also left behind toiletries etc. as well as giving some tips of course but the people I gave these things to were people who had been lovely and who had not asked for anything. I think most people like to help but don't wish to feel pressured into it. The Gambians I gave things to were extremely grateful. I realise they may not wear the clothes I gave them as they may sell them but I don't mind one bit if it makes their lives just a little bit easier.
In summary I think that people need to remember they are visiting Africa and not Europe and understand and indeed embrace the differences and in that way they can have a wonderful holiday as we did.
- Also Known As:
- Hotel Palma Rima
- Palma Rima Kololi
- Palma Rima Hotel Gambia
- Palma Rima Gambia
- Palma Rima Hotel Gambia/Kololi
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