To start off let’s just say they have such a clever WiFi password that I absolutely love 😊 Ok so when you arrive at Addis Ababa airport you’ll be welcomed by the hotel’s shuttle service if you book ahead … sadly there wont be any one holding a sign with your name you’ll have to go to their office inside the airport and inform them that you have a booking at the hotel and the shuttle will take you there ( this also works even if you don’t have a prearrange booking as I found out later ) The shuttle itself is a comfy minivan great to take you from A to B but won’t call it the luxurious. Once I arrived at the hotel, I was greeted by Mr. Amanuel the bell-Boy with the great smile – Honest to god I haven’t seen that guy frown once during my stay always elegant and courteous. I’m the -Help yourself- kind of guy who doesn’t feel comfortable letting others carry my bags even at airports. But Amanule just has that grace that makes you relaxed around him, you’ll gladly hand him your things without a second thought while you head inside to check-in. The shuttle parks in front of the main hotel gate that looks average or even less than average and I was a bit disappointed that my agent booked a hotel like this for me. But that changed once I passed the gate. The front of the hotel is a double purposed area to your right is the Bar-Café-entertainment area with a small porch for bands. And to your left is the swimming pool separated prom the bar by a neatly arranged row of decorative plants that are just tall enough to make the two areas feel very separate, but if its privacy your looking for in this swimming pool sadly you’re better off going to a private swimming pool in a gym ( there are an assortment nearby that ill discuss later here). The reception area is neat, clean and elegant. To your right you’ll find the business center with 2 computers, a printer/scanner and internet connection just in case of those occasions when you go to hotel for a vacation and leave your laptop at home. The front desk is right ahead and when I came in, the first thing I saw was miss Frehiwot welcoming smile, that felt like the smile of a lifelong friend you meet after years apart. She was very professional yet unlike receptionists in other hotels I’ve been to she wasn’t stiff. The check-in procedure felt like a chat rather than the dry, tedious form filling I suffer in every hotel. And even tough my plans for this vacation were not clear she was flexible and very open to changes and gave very clear and thoughtful suggestions that she literally became my go-to when I want to know anything about the area or what to do in a situation, from getting a local SIM card to where I can find a pharmacy I’ll ask her before even checking google – which is not that reliable in Addis and I can not stress enough how you should never depend on it alone- , one day I wasn’t feeling well at 3am and needed some painkillers from a pharmacy , she suggested that I shouldn’t go out alone at a time like this and offered to get the shuttle to take me to the pharmacy and back , an offer that I gladly accepted – I was in no condition to walk that distance anyway . if there’s just one person that would make me come to this hotel again that would be her, I feel relieved when she’s the one at the front desk. I took a deluxe room that was very spacious with a great view of the city but my favored thing about the room was the big smart TV that has Netflix preinstalled and connected to the hotel’s WiFi. By 7pm I went to the bar downstairs, it was very lively and that’s where I met Mr. Kifie the bartender who I started calling the professor, the guy is a genius when it comes to mixing cocktails, I’ve tried many bars all over the world very few compare to this man when it comes to drinks and how he always has a smile on his face, I’d highly recommend his frozen margarita, which he makes with his own signature twist that you’ll enjoy every sip of. On the porch a local band was playing a mixture of Bob Marely and local Amharic songs that made the attendance go crazy with joy – later I found that people come from all over to this bar for the band events there - so it’s a plus you can actually attend it from the comfort of your room if you want. If you sit at the bar you might meet miss Hirut, the small joy bomb that will be happy to take your order fast and accurate – never did I repeat an order to her it’s always right from the first time – with her all over the place wherever you look. I know that she’s not around today when I raise my hand at the bar and it takes more that 30 seconds for her to appear Infront of me like a lamp genie awaiting your wishes. The top floor of the hotel had a small gym with its own 24/7 steam room and sauna, this shocked me as I wasn’t expecting this type if service in a hotel of this price range, it was a welcomed addition. Feel right at home … that was the WiFi password and that’s how I felt there ... it’s a place where you can stay if you are in Addis for work or if you are there just to have some fun it has something for everyone ……
Stayed at several hotels in Addis during my work trips but Monarch was hands down the best option. Decent rooms, healthy breakfast options, live music by the pool in the evenings and very centrally located in Bole. The only catch is get a room on the higher floors.
We stayed in the Monarch hotel a couple of times during a trip around Ethiopia - it was clean, with friendly staff and the rooms were spacious. Great spread at breakfast to set you up for the day and they do good pizza too along with traditional food. Good value for money! On Saturday evenings it can get a little loud in the bar area so request a room facing away from the front if you want a quieter night! Or go join the party!
The bar outside and pool area are the big plus of this hotel. Live music and a great atmosphere! Downside of it is the noise not only of the music but also the slamming of doors and people shouting all night long! Get a room on the back side and high level! Food is fine but skip the breakfast!
+ Great location, friendly staff, nice outdoor bar - Very dark room (411), mold in the bathroom, thin walls, odor from the kitchen below that made it way to the room, shortage of warm water, broken tv-screen