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Swiss Garden Hotel
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23 - 28 of 33 reviews
Reviewed July 6, 2010

As far as I am concerned, I would not stay anywhere else in Dar Es Salaam - why bother when you have the Swiss Garden Hotel?

After a long trip through India, this place was a haven to me. It was extremely clean, had reliable though slightly slow internet service, and the dinner was very good. It was $75 per night for my room which in Dar is not so bad. Tanzania is not as cheap as some parts of Africa, after all. Dinner was probably another $15 and usually included grilled beef tenderloin, fish, chicken and a good buffet of freshly cooked side dishes to choose from. Note that if you don't have your own computer, you can use the one in the lobby for a small fee. If you don't have an ethernet cable for your laptop, they'll lend you one for free. Breakfast is included and it's decent. The dinner area does have a lot of mosquitos, unfortunately, and I recommend repellent and long pants/long sleeves for supper (they really should buy some kind of bug zapper). They have a generator for any power outages and they use it appropriately.

The beds are clean and comfortable enough, with mosquito nets. There are extra blankets and the rooms have A/C. The bathroom looked newly renovated and was nice, with water pressure in the middle range. The people they recommend for taxi service are all polite and reliable. There was some construction going on at the property next door, unfortunately, so earplugs were necessary for a good night's sleep. It's off of United Nations way in a quiet place, not in the exact center of town, but it's close enough by cab to whatever you need.

The real kicker for me, though, was the service. I came back to this hotel after a stay in Zanzibar where I became very ill with some stomach bug. I was dehydrated and was so sick I could not keep water in my stomach. I asked the SGH staff which clinic I could go to at 9:30 at night, and they sent me to the Aga Khan private hospital with the manager's son and his friend to ensure that I was okay. The young men filled out the paperwork at the hospital, handled the errands to the pharmacy and the pay-as-you-go billing, and stayed there with me for three hours while I had an IV drip. It was well past midnight when I was released, and the manager's son went out into the night and found us a cab back to the hotel. They were caring and concerned the whole time and refused to take a tip or any money from me that day or the next.

Good people run this hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled solo
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2  Thank JenniferSpencer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2010

This small hotel is truly an oasis in the midst of a large city. Clean, comfortable and very friendly staff. It is not backpacker priced but very reasonable for a large city hotel. My husband and I agree with the other positive reviews of this hotel so I will not repeat their message. My only advice for anyone traveling in the malarial zones of Africa is carry packing tape with you. It's great for fixing the inevitable holes you will find in mosquito nets. A little piece on each side of the hole and you are all set. That said, we did not find the nets in this hotel to be a particular problem.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank francopogo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2009

Stayed here with a friend for our last 2 nights in Tanzania. It was the most expensive hotel we had stayed in for our whole trip in Tanzania (around $95 per room) and although the hotel was nice, we felt that it was a little bit overpriced.
The hotel does feel like a little oasis located fairly centrally in Dar es Salaam, but the main reason we didn’t like this hotel was that there were lots of mosquitoes – way more than anywhere else we had been, including several more budget hostels. There were a few holes in the nets on the windows and the nets around the beds which meant that there were mosquitoes in the rooms and we both got bitten (this was a bit annoying as we had spent 2 weeks in Tanzania without getting bitten once).
Also, the beds felt quite old and not very comfortable. There was a modern fridge in the room. There is free Wi-Fi in the rooms but you can also pay to use the internet in the reception.

The food is good and is eaten around big tables with the other guests. Breakfast is included but you can chose to have dinner ($12pp – order before 4pm), we did this one night and it was very good – soup, followed by bbq meat and fish, salads and veg, followed by fruit salad. We would have liked to spend more time sitting outside and relaxing but we always felt like we were going to get bitten, which was a shame.

On our second night, we got a taxi to a restaurant called Addis in Dar which serves good Ethiopian food and seemed popular with expats, locals and tourists alike.
The hotel is situated in a quiet residential area. We felt safe walking around during the day but were advised to take taxis in the dark.

Staff at the hotel were very helpful and the hotel can arrange taxis or you can walk 2 minutes outside of the hotel and find your own.

Contrary to previous reviews, there was a mix of tourists and visitors on business at this hotel.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank caths100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 1, 2009

Thanks to Trip Advisor Reviews, I sourced SGH for my overnights in Dar on way through and back from Zanzibar. I was after a secure, respectable, nice but non luxurious hotel for this purpose at a reasonable midrange rate. It looked really nice on their web site and this is a true depiction .... it is my idea of a boutique hotel, very attractive indeed with not too many rooms, some are in separate bungalows, set in lush grounds. This hotel is kept in immaculate condition, rooms are spotless and very inviting. All en suite, with in room safes, good air con and working fans. Beds very comfortable with large nets. I think there is free internet in the rooms using your own laptop; otherwise public internet at Reception is available at a nominal rate. Breakfast great, with plenty of choices; and dinner can be ordered - again this was a very appetising meal. The staff are very obliging at all times and special mention should be made of the manager Abel, who gave prompt responses to all my enquiries and bookings. There were no hiccups with the taxi service I booked each time, from and back to the airport. I felt very secure here. SGH is close to the edge of the city and as the taxis are so cheap, it would not cost much to go looking around Dar. I dont think there is too much close by that you can walk to. I thoroughly enjoyed staying here. DianneMuriel (Cairns) Australia

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled solo
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Thank DianneMuriel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 21, 2009

I had a perfect time at this hotel, but can see that it wouldn't be for everyone. The rooms are clean and basic, with en-suite and wired internet, fridges, but no TV. Beds are basic and comfortable. There is no indoor dining area, with everyone eating breakfast at one great table under a thatch roof in the garden. Most people were in Tanzania for work (academic or development). The two women there on my last morning who were travellling really stuck out.
Nothing is within easy walking distance, but they will cook dinner for you if you tell them in the morning.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled on business
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Thank Enzos1990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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