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“An oasis” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ilboru Safari Lodge

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Ilboru Safari Lodge
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P.O. Box 8012, Arusha, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 81 Specialty Lodging in Arusha
Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“An oasis”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2012

I had read about the road into the hotel, and wondering if where the driver was taking you. Well it's true, but so worth it. Once you bump around on the road, and then arrive at the hotel gates the whole picture changes. The gardens of the hotel are very impressive with lush tropical flowers. The front desk is very welcoming and the check in quick. We were greeted with a welcome drink that was refreshing. Our room was very clean and in a quiet area of the hotel. The rooms are in buildings that are round, with 2 rooms in each unit. The meals were plentiful, and you can order off a varied menu. The hotel's manager is a very friendly dutch man and he will most likely come around and welcome you to the lodge. There is a nice bar within the garden area, and a swimming pool. We didn't get to use it in May, as it was under repair. We didn't have time anyway to use it.
We also used this lodge on the return to Arusha at the end of our safari. We experienced the same great hospitality. Overall I would highly recommend this hotel based on our positive experiences.
Don't worry when your driver turns off the paved road and after driving 10 minutes you start to wonder have we been taken. You haven't been. The prize is up ahead.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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295 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
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English first
Canberra, Australia
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2012

A fine place to stay while preparing for a safari or hike up Mount Meru or Kilimanjaro. Although bathrooms were clean the showers were poor with little water pressure, and temperature either super hot or cold. The service was fine, although very little interest in our lost luggage. Staff were all very friendly, and the food for dinner and breakfast was excellent.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Canberra, Australia
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2012

We stayed at the Ilboru before and after our Kilimanjaro trek. As our driver turned off the main road into town and up what looked like a dodgy back street we wondered whether we would ever be seen again...have faith, about 2ks along this road a veritable oasis emerges.
The food, facilities, hygiene and prices for what you get and need are excellent.
Those who criticise the lack of high pressure endless hot water seem to forget that they are in a place where many have to collect water from a pump and that it is a scarce resource. It is by design and necessity that the hot water supply is limited (though two 10 minutes showers is hardly roughing it!)
The manager has immense pride in his establishment and goes out of his way to assist travellers. My wallet was lost/stolen in the grounds (fell from my pocket and not handed it) and he was mortified- allowed us to make calls and withdraw money using my partners cards commission free and also provided a written letter for our insurance company explaining the pointlessness of getting a police report.
Our only criticism is with one or two of the female front office staff who (in contrast with all the other staff) at times rivalled Basil Fawlty in their arrogance and annoyance at being asked for assistance and had difficulty at times in not showing outright contempt for the guests.
It is not a 1st world equivalent 5 star hotel but taking into account where it is and what you get it certainly is 5 star in our opinion and we would happily stay again in the (unlikely) event we ever return to Arusha- Kili is something you should do...but just once

Room Tip: All rooms seem to be created equal - and are about the size of a small apartment.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Anchorage, AK
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2012

Our family of 6 stayed at Ilboru Safari Lodge for 2 nights, one before and one after our safari. It's out of the city center and the approach road is pretty rough. The rooms were clean, and the bedding was decent. The bathrooms were functional and clean, but very basic. We used our own shampoo. The boys had fun in the pool and the rope swing. We felt safe and secure. They allowed us to store our extra luggage in a closet during the duration of our safari. We enjoyed the breakfast and the one dinner we had there. We found the service to be very attentive. The grounds and landscaping were beautiful. As others have mentioned, this is not a Marriott or a Hilton, and you shouldn't expect such. We would return.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Singapore, Singapore
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
60 hotel reviews
Reviews in 61 cities Reviews in 61 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2012

Tidy room (though chilly at night!), bedding was relatively clean as was the bathroom but bring your own toiletries. Nicely decorated "snack bar" which was the bar in the evening as well. Very friendly staff. Lovely grounds.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Canberra, Australia
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2012

I have stayed at Ilboru Safari Lodge on a number of occasions (between 2009 and 2011) and have always felt a great sense of relief arriving at what I consider to be my home away from home in Arusha. Art (the manager and chef extraordinaire) does amazing things with food and will remember your face from years earlier. His tomato soup is a miracle cure for jet lag after a 48 hour non-stop journey from Sydney - guaranteed to let you have a great night sleep and wake up fresh in the morning. The staff are welcoming and very friendly. The rooms are modest but clean with each boma (room) having a private verandah to enjoy the beautiful surroundings. It is true that at times there power problems and at times the water pressure is not great - but this is not a 5 star hotel in the middle of Sydney. It is Arusha and for the price it is fantastic. If you are looking for somewhere to base yourself while you check out all the wonderful adventures you can have in the Arusha area you should look no further.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
New York
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2012

We stayed here one night before beginning our safari. The lodge staff is friendly and service is fine. I think the rooms are clean and food is decent. I however was not a fan of the bathroom condition. The bathroom shower did not work well and the curtain hanging was filthy. Also the pool is not something I will take a dip into! However the garden is beautiful and the lodge is clean. Its good stay if your looking for a budget accommodation.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
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Additional Information about Ilboru Safari Lodge

Address: P.O. Box 8012, Arusha, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 81 Specialty Lodging in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 18
Also Known As:
Ilboru Safari Hotel Arusha

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