Hotel Bambou. Our second trip!!
Be sure to read my the previous report from last year as it contains a greater overview of the trip.
We stayed at the hotel Bambou in L’anse Mitan for 2 weeks in July 2012
I reserved a room a few months ahead (see recommended room location in my other review). Calling Hotel Bambou from overseas will be an exercise in patience! They seem to place the number “0” in front of the phone number and the whole lot is confusing. You will need an operator to help and sometimes they don’t know. I managed to get a call through after several tries.
Patience: Calling the front desk will not help you make a reservation. They will tell you to call the reservation number!!?? All manner of transactions seem to be overly complicated all over the island. This is a result of the French system.
They removed some of the old shacks (rooms) in the centre of the compound and are now building several new duplex bungalows. Actually, all the rooms on the main compound are duplex
The room was fine. We had room #10 great location. Clean and comfortable. Your AC will be off when you get your room so you will have to be patient as it will take about half hour for the room to cool. We found 25 degrees C to be a sufficiently cool setting (especially when it is 35 degrees outside!). The beds are a bit on the firm side but no complaints. As mentioned before, the frogs start to sing at about 6:20 pm and do not stop until 6:00 am. It will take a few nights to get used to. I always travel with earplugs so it did not bother me one bit.
The food is generally good. The package we had (demi- pension) entitled us to breakfast and dinner. The food is served in buffet style and features different dishes every night. I am not a picky eater and was able to find something satisfying every night. Local dishes as well as local deserts (like flan au coco) tend to be featured. I would have liked to see more local fruits during the breakfast buffet. Especially when I see that the local markets are full of exotic local fruits. You would think that the hotel would make sure that it had local fruits every day.
Drinks must be purchased separately. The water is fantastic and is served in pitchers. By the way the water is potable in the hotel room and by extension, water is potable in most places on the island.
The rooms are not sealed tightly. There are gaps under the doors etc so some insects may get in. If you leave your room door open, the chances are that some insects will fly in. That being said there were (almost) no mosquitoes during the time we were there (July). If there are any, they tend to come out at sunset. There is a great mosquito repellent sold across the street, see the section below regarding the Shops / Convenience store.
The lobby is open so there is no a/c. If you sit in the small booths in the lobby, you will get bit at any time of the day or night by tiny sand flies or “no-see-ums”. They do have a computer terminal (with a European key-board) there with internet connection (the lobby also has WIFI).
Walk / Hike:
You can walk to the Point du Bout to the marina and a couple of nice swimming coves. There are also a few shops and rental car places there.
You can walk through the bush and get to Anse a l’ane. The walk takes Half an hour. Use google maps to see the path. Anse a l’ane has nice beach-side bistros where you can rest, drink and eat after your hike.
Shops / Convenience store.
When you stand at the lobby entrance and look towards the street you can see two shops. If the doors are open, so are the shops. You can see the doors from the lobby. One is located straight ahead and the other is to the left 2 buildings over where it says something like ” Fish restaurant” I believe. The one straight ahead has some souvenirs, rum, postcards, some toiletries and mosquito repellent. I purchased a small bottle of this repellent that claims to be a Eau de cologne as well!! It comes in a clear glass spray bottle and I must say it came in handy. The store to the left (fish restaurant) has more items in it. Again rum, cold drinks, pop, coffee, etc. It is more of a real convenience store. Hours of operation?? Martinique has funny French hours so the joke for us was that the hours are simple, whenever you need the service it is closed. I went in the morning or late in the day and found them open.
The beach is small and the water quality is fair to good when compared to other caribbean islands. The few palapas on the beach are always busy, so unless you have one of these, there is no shade. The small beach can by quite busy as people come from town for some beach time. Chairs are there for the use of guests so if you cannot find one, ask the people at the water sports shack and they will get you a reclining beach chair right away. There is a small snack bar on the beach beside the water sports. Some young locals play football soccer on the small beach (annoying) so you run the risk of getting hit by a ball. This has not changed from last year. Again perhaps management can forbid football in front of the hotel so tourists can sun in peace.
Be sure to reserve your room. A car is essential for getting around and seeing the beautiful island and getting the most out of your holiday. Ferry boat that docks right next to the hotel is super handy for seeing the capital city across the bay. There are not many English speaking tourists on the island. As mentioned in my other report, the tourist infrastructure is 30 years behind. Some may find this as an attraction. The island is modern, with shopping malls and high end establishments available but none of the international franchises available. The island is strictly “franco-centric” to a fault. The French flag flies everywhere even though the island has its own flag! The island is expensive and they use the Euro. (The EURO!!! What the…?!). Will we go back? Perhaps in a few years. But the island has a long way to go (infrastructure) if it wants to capitalize on a modern, world class, tourist industry.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Our welcoming establishment in southern Martinique is about 20 km from Aimé Césaire international airport and is a 20-minute boat trip from Fort-de-France. It is an ideal starting point for visits to the "Ile aux Fleurs", placed under the sign of new discoveries and relaxation. Sports enthusiasts will also find plenty to satisfy them thanks to its proximity to the superb beaches and water sport centres. Fine sand, turquoise water, banana trees and bougainvillea are on the programme just a stone's throw from your comfortable and colourful room. A guaranteed change of scenery! ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Bambou Hotel Trois Ilets
- Hotel Bambou Martinique/Trois-Ilets