firstly before you read, some of the reviews on here gave me the wrong impression and I was pleasantly surprised so please read on!!
The Hotel is situated on the main dual carriageway Morogoro Road, just down from the biggest Bus station that connects Dar es Salaam to most of East Africa, so the traffic is constant day and night. Ubungo junction is the busiest I have seen in Africa. There is currently alot of construction on the road to provide a rapid transit system to remove (hopefully) the amount of Dala Dala buses. (local buses). There is major traffic jams, but the taxi drivers are pretty good at avoiding and the don't last too long. I was working at the nearby Nation Institute of Transport, so this was ideal for me.
The hotel has large conference facilities, and are regularly used, wedding at the weekends are common, it is busy with a wide variety of people using the hotel.
The foyer is of an asian theme, it is well maintained and well decorated with a bar, snack bar (don't bother) and internal Restaurant, where the breakfast is served, the receptionist speak english and had no problems on that count, ask for a high floor 12, 13, I was on 13 there are guards on the lifts (very modern) and especially on the 13 floor where the gym is. There is an infinity pool on the roof, which has views of the surrounding area (fantastic)
The room I had was an apartment, with a dinner/kitchenette/lounge leading to a bedroom with the bathroom and storage cupboards. There is air con, saterlite TV (limited channels) and a desk. The plugs are british standard and the current is compatable. There is a fridge, microwave and toaster, coffee and tea facility and they leave a bottle of water for you everyday.
The hotel staff and the security guards were good, learn the swahili greeting and they are more than happy to help you learn more. When you reach the ground floor, as you emerge there is a small shopping mall, the barlcay bank shut down while I was there, so the ATM on site doesn;t except VISA. There is a small shop to the left of the lift where you can get cold drink, booze, bread (weekdays only) crisps, sweets etc. (there is a pertol gargae across the road called Engen, better supermarket and a decent takeway)
If you are planning to use mobiles, expecially data, buy a local sim and buy a package from milimini city (biggest shopping centre in DAR) it only cost 12,00shilling (£3.50) for a 500 mb deal, but be warned the download rate is not of EU standards, i.e. messenger messages no problem, skype call , you will have problems, but I managed a couple of times but gave up.
I ate just outside of the hotel in the bistro, the tandoori chicken is to die for, the beer is good, aply named kilimanjaro and serengety and a local spirit called konjagi. The breakfast is good, usually baked beans, beef sausge (hotdog style) potatoes, freshy made omelletes, no bacon. The juice is fresh on a daily basis, passion fruit, melon juice and mango juice I found really good, there is something for everybody.
The taxis outside are good, barter, if you not been before, they will try there luck at first. I used 3 guys called Baracka, ben and Conrad who were excellent, they will offer their mobile number if you wanted to call them when your out, which was a godsend for me.
The only downside for me was on Sundays (my day off) the church to the rear belt out the bells and the choir (extremley good) start singing, if you wanting a lie in then, unless your a heavy sleeper, is not going to happen. The call to pray from the local mosque starts at 5am but is distant, you'll get used to it very quick, but the church is right at the base of the hotel
I would have no problems in recommending this hotel to the seansoned traveller.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the blossoming Ubungo area in Dar es Salaam, the Blue Pearl Hotel & Apartments is the largest all apartment-suite style hotel in the country and offers a wide selection of luxurious suites, conference venue and fine dining. We offer the best of business, leisure and luxury in the area with excellent amenities including the only rooftop swimming pool in Dar es Salaam. All of our spacious suites include air-conditioning, large beds, Wi-Fi and continental breakfast served from 6am to 10am in the Famished Restaurant. Our proximity to the Dar es Salaam University Campus and Mlimani City Shopping Centre as well as inter-city bus and train stations makes us a premier destination for travellers, business people and conference groups. For Luxury and Value, visit The Blue Pearl Hotel & Apartments – The Largest Apartment Hotel and Premiere Conference Destination in the Region. ... more less
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