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“An oasis in the desert”
Review of Buska Lodge

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Buska Lodge
Bristol
Level Contributor
309 reviews
111 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 168 helpful votes
“An oasis in the desert”
Reviewed December 26, 2012

After a week of staying and eating in very run down and dirty hotels it was a pleasure to be here. TThe food is very good for the area especially the buffet. We found the staff pleasent and accomodating. I recomend it here.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank qualitywork1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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199 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (30)
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English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
207 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
Reviewed October 31, 2012

Arriving at the lodge, you see all kinds of signs saying "No" this, "No" that. It is a turnoff. The manager's office is shabby and the manager himself is inexperienced. One night he pulled us aside, and in front of other guests accused us for not paying for the french fries, which he said was a main course! This was fixed the next day by our guide, but it was humiliating. I ordered the vegetable burger and it was meat. The manager said it was vegetables mixed with meat and that's they way they do a vegetable burger. I was speechless. It's a shame as the lodge is attractive and the tukuls very nice. Unfortunately, it's the only choice in Turmi.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank nancyandleslie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dunfanaghy, Ireland
Level Contributor
139 reviews
91 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2012 via mobile

Buska lodge is relatively new and is well located to access many of the tribes - Hamar, Karo, Dassenech..., in the Eastern Omo valley. The lodge has pleasant gardens and is alongside a river which flows intermittently. It does have a pleasant dining area and the food is good but rooms are disappointing. Ethiopia has wonderful old furniture and artisanal products but here there is little taste shown in the decor. A tribal theme might gave been a good idea? The value for money is very poor considering costs in Ethiopia and it certainly does not reflect the recession in the western world where most tourists come from. There are much better lodges elsewhere on the country and offering better rates. When you walk into the reception area it is shoddy and poorly finished - a reflection of a lodge which missed its opportunity to excel.

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank trevcole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rehovot, Israel
Level Contributor
118 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed October 4, 2012

This is pretty much your only option in Turmi and they know it!
This is probably why the manager, Marks, allows himself to behave as rudely
as he does and also why the rooms are overpriced and everything seems to be about extracting more money from the guests.
That being said, the rooms are clean and decorated in local decor, showers are sufficient (although hot water isn't always available) and food is decent.
Dinner and breakfast are included in the price.

WARNING: The lodge offers "furnished tents" - these are simple tents that have twin beds in them. The common showers are COLD SHOWERS ONLY, so be wear. Also, no meals are included in the 35$ fee of the so called furnished tents. Taken together with meals (you don't have many options for dinner, unless you intend to cook yourself) you will come to the price of a room. So better save yourself the trouble of the tent and opt for a room straight away.

All in all - it's a fine place to stay if you ignore the manager and swallow down the price.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ornoga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
44 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed September 17, 2012

We spent 4 days at Buska Lodge. Overall, the Lodge was very well maintained, nice clean rooms, good sheets. The restaurant was not well managed and the food, while safe to eat, was consistently mediocre, day after day. There is no reason for the lodge to serve old bread that is at least one or two days old at every meal nor is there a reason to serve cold spaghetti.

Regarding the rooms, we "upgraded" from a double to a twin which is something I highly recommend. While the beds were apart, the twin's which I think cost an extra $5/night, were much larger and had very good ventilation. Note also that you can ask for a fan which works during the hours that the lodge supplies electricity.

Room Tip: As I mentioned above, get a twin which is a much larger room with good ventilation
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank travelpal32489
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Campbell, California
Level Contributor
35 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed September 4, 2012

This area of Ethiopia is a little rough so this hotel is a gem in comparison to anything else. Note...it gets hot in Ethiopia and there is no air conditioning other than Addis. The showers definitely need to be torn out and re-done, but it is sufficient. The grounds are kept nice and the food was just fine. Thank you!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank creichmuth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Illinois
Level Contributor
54 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 145 helpful votes
Reviewed August 19, 2012

As you proceed south in Ethiopia, hotels become more and more basic overall. With that in mind, I enjoyed my stay at Buska Lodge. I stayed here for two nights in June 2012.

Positives:
- The hotel is overall nicely laid out, with well-kept grounds. There are individual bungalows and also blocks of rooms. I was in room 4, in one of the blocks.
- The bed was firm but comfy. There were no bugs of any kind in or around my bed.
- I had a hole-free screen on my bedroom window, which was great, as I could let the cool night air flow in. However, my window looked right onto a walkway, so anyone passing by could get a full view of the interior of my (small) room. I decided I was never going to see any of these people again and left the window open, but still. :-) But I very much appreciated the screen.
– The bed’s mosquito netting had no holes that I saw. And, the light switch was accessible from inside the netting! So rare, and so appreciated. I didn’t get any bites.
– The plumbing worked very well.
– The restaurant was decent. They have Ethiopian food (such as firfir) that isn’t necessarily on the menu, so ask if you want that. I liked the "umbrella" decor of the restaurant's ceiling - made for some nice photos!
– I found the staff here to be exceptionally friendly. Service isn’t all that fast, but it’s friendly, and the staff seemed to genuinely want you to be enjoying their hotel.

Other things:
-- My room was quite small. I was alone in it, and was glad I didn't have to accommodate a second person and their stuff in it, as I and my stuff pretty much took up the whole room.
– The bathroom windows either had no screens or had big gaps in them, so I had to leave the bathroom door closed, so that bugs flying in would stay in the bathroom. This pretty much worked, but I had to be careful in opening and closing the bathroom door so as not to let the accumulated bugs escape into the bedroom.
-- The showers have individual water heaters. I got warm water and sort-of-OK water pressure. Good enough, but not great.
–The lighting in the bedroom was fairly poor. I had to use my headlamp to read in bed. (The bathroom, on the other hand, was brilliantly, brightly lit! The bugs loved it!)
-- My door locked with an individual padlock that was quite temperamental. On a couple of short trips out of my room, I just gave up on it, took everything valuable with me, and left my room unlocked.

In summary, you’re not in Addis, but for this part of Ethiopia, the hotel was fine. I felt I did pretty well here, and my rating reflects southern Ethiopia standards, not Addis or international standards. I would stay here again.

Stayed June 2012, traveled solo
Helpful?
Thank velevele
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Buska Lodge

Property: Buska Lodge
Address: South Omo Valley, Turmi, Ethiopia
Location: Ethiopia > Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region > Turmi
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Turmi
Number of rooms: 21
Also Known As:
Buska Hotel Turmi

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