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“Relaxing” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Centre Bethanie

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Centre Bethanie
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BP 9, Kibuye, Rwanda   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 4 Kibuye B&B and Inns
Boston, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Relaxing”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

We stayed here in August 2012 on our tour of the country. Kibuye is a bit of a sleepy town, but that's not a bad thing if it's relaxation you're looking for. This is a church property, but being run as an investment - - so if you're expecting a large religious presence, it's not really evident. We stayed in the "new wing" right on Lake Kivu, close to the restaurant. It was very nice and the rooms were large, with GREAT showers with lots of hot water and good pressure. The rooms were also very clean, with amazing views out over the lake, although they were a bit "characterless." Not like the amazing rooms at the Palm Garden Resort in Gisenyi, for example. But then again after hours on the (dusty and yet-to-be-paved) road from Cyangugu, just having clean, spacious rooms with oodles of hot water was itself a luxury! The food in the restaurant was also fine. Nothing fancy, but good and with reasonably quick service.

We did have a bit of a misunderstanding about the room rate on checkout (room had 2 double-sized beds in it [not at our request], and they tried to charge us extra vs. a standard double bed room, even though only 2 guests stayed in the room), but our guide was able to sort it out to our satisfaction after about a 15 minute, involved discussion with the hotel reception. Left a tad of a bad taste at the end of what was otherwise a pleasant stay in beautiful, lush surroundings.

Given that this is not a true church-run property, but more of a church-owned investment facility, the rates were not amazing like a true church guest house (e.g., Peace Guesthouse in Cyangugu or Our Lady of Fatima in Musanze), so next time we may try a different commercial lodging option.

Room Tip: The wing by the lake is newer and thus more expensive, but the older rooms up near reception seemed...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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51 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    3
    25
    17
    4
    2
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5
14
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7
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Durham, North Carolina
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

I traveled to Kibuye for a long weekend and visited several different hotels before settling on Hotel Bethanie. The hotel had the best view of any hotel in Kibuye that I looked at and was a great deal at 21,000 RwF/night for a room with 2 beds (which also included breakfast!). The room was very clean, had hot running water, and a great front porch to sit on, drink wine, and read. The restaurant had some great fish (tilapia and capitan from Lake Kivu) and had a great atmosphere right on the water. The hotel was within walking distance (about a 15-20 minute walk) to a beach with a nice cabana for sitting out of the sun.

The hotel had internet at the main lobby, but not at the restaurant like they advertise. They have cabanas at the main lobby that you can get internet from and it made for a great "office"!

I've already recommended this hotel to everyone I know heading to Kibuye!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denmark
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2012

We stayed here one night on our way from Nyungwe to Musanse. The hotel is very basic. At first we got there cheapest room which is 30.000 in local currency. It was a terrible small rom, the bed was not big enough for two people, there were no soap and towels and the bath looked like a serious health risk. We asked for soap and went for a walk for around an hour. No soap had arrived when we returned so we asked for a better room which we could get for 40.000 Rwanda dollars. It was much bigger and came with soap and at least one towel. We decided that the bath could wait until our next destination though I dont think it would be dangerous to use (there is a water heater in the bath which looks a bit old). In the evening the power went out around 7 times in three hours so getting dinner was a bit of a challenge though they did manage to serve the spaghetti bolognese hot. All in all I guess that there are not many options in the area but make sure not to go for the cheapest room unless you are on a tight budget and really need to. The staff is friendly and we had absolutely no problems changing the room.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Top Contributor
104 reviews 104 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
131 helpful votes 131 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2012

We stopped here for lunch when traveling from Gisenyi to Nyungwe. Food basic and staff not very nice for some reason ( very unusual for Rwanda). I ordered an egg salad and was told no eggs ( thought maybe none boiled) so I ordered soup and then an omelette which was ok and got an egg salad and an omelette but no soup.
Lovely lovely location on the lake front. Fishermen singing. Just so beautiful.
Did not see rooms but from outside looked basic.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Perth
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

Kibuye is about 2-3 hours drive from Kigali. The local buses are terrifying but in a private vehicle the drive is a wonderful look at rural Rwanda; you get to see small villages, beautiful mountain scenery, rural agriculture at work and the people filling the roads as they walk between their homes, fields and villages. The hotel is located about 3kms from the centre of the town (very basic) on a peninsula onto Lake Kevu. It is set on the high side of the land overlooking a spectacular view towards a number of small islands as well as the other side of the Rwandan mainland that is largely undeveloped (aside from a small number of guest houses etc).

The hotel is one of the better hotels in the area with a number of standards of rooms. The basic single room with en suite has a great location for the US$25 cost but is very primitive in furnishings and amenities. The suites are not as well situated but for US$55 per night have a large room and bathroom along with a sitting room and balcony (separate room side by side to hotel room). Do not rely on in room entertainment such as TV as there are only two stations even if the TV is working! This cost also includes breakfast at the restaurant which is either the buffet (eggs, fruit, tea/coffee, juices, toast, cereal) or you can order off their breakfast menu.

I have found the suite room the best option with the restaurant providing a great view right across the lake. You can sit here for hours with the hotel providing English (or african tea), hot chocolate, soda, snacks etc for very little cost. Free wifi is available at this location though not around other parts of the hotel including bedrooms.

As for things to do outside of the hotel, it is great to walk around the edge of the lake, walk into town, take a boat trip (hotel can arrange with locals) for an hour (US$15 per boat) or a day US$250 per group) with boat able to accommodate 10 people easily or go for drives to villages in close proximity.

Overall, Kibuye is not a tourist destination for things to do (especially if traveling with families and teenagers), rather it is a restful location with magnificent views that help recharge the batteries and provides that peaceful environment (cared for by hospitable and kind people) at a very good price.

Room Tip: Basic rooms come with best location (bay views to islands and close to water side) but basic facilit...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gitarama, Gitarama, Rwanda
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2012

I have stayed at this guesthouse a few times over the last couple of years and have always enjoyed my time there. The rooms are clean and the staff are helpful - if somewhat a little slow on occasion. I would allow at least an hour to get your food. There is a lovely area right next to the water where you can relax and have food &/ a drink - the views are amazing. You can also hire a boat from here to take you out to the Islands. Depending on how busy they are and how good your negotiation skills are, the cost can be from 15,000frw to 20,000frw for an hour. The boat guys will also agree to drop you off on one of the islands and then come and pick you up later in the day if you want. The contact number I have for the hotel is +250788413839. And the number of Kasim (the guy that took us out on his boat) is +250783197227. These were the numbers in March 2012 and so they may have changed since the.

Room Tip: The rooms right next to the water are a bit more expensive (I think 20,000frw per night) than the on...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2012

There may never have been a better view. It is profound. I worked on my computer on the restaurant deck all day and loved every minute of it.
The service is good and staff helpful. Internet reasonable speed. The restaurant deck is unbeatable.
If you can, take a boat to an island for lunch. Snack in the shadow of a volcano.

Room Tip: The premium room are great rooms. They have adjoining balcony areas which are lovely.
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Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
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Additional Information about Centre Bethanie

Address: BP 9, Kibuye, Rwanda
Location: Rwanda > Western Province > Kibuye
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Kibuye
Number of rooms: 8
Also Known As:
Centre Bethanie Hotel Kibuye

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