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“Fantastic stay on the Shore of Lake Tanganyika”

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Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika
Ranked #3 of 23 Hotels in Bujumbura
Certificate of Excellence
Princeton, New Jersey
Level 3 Contributor
24 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Fantastic stay on the Shore of Lake Tanganyika”
Reviewed March 17, 2014

I stayed at Club du Lac Tanganyika after spending some time in really rual, basic areas during work travel in East Africa. I was very pleasantly surprised by the room quality and comfort at this hotel. The rooms are nicely and simply decorated (I enjoyed the painting applied directly on the wall and framed--the artist used kitenge fabric as one of the mediums to portray the hills of Burundil). Sheets and towels were high quality and the internet connections were great at all the locations I tried to access around the grounds. I didn't try the aircon--it was rainy season and I enjoyed listening to the rain and the waves on Lake Tanganyika, which sounded very much like the ocean to me. Water in the shower was hot with good pressure. The breakfast buffet had a huge selection with really anything you could want, including good coffee. I had dinner a couple times here also--the pasta was delicious and the panna cotta dessert was divine. There was live music on Friday and Sunday night which was entertaining (the band just seemed to be having a great time whether or not anyone was paying attention) and my friends saw a hippo grazing just outside the restaurant on the beach during dinner one evening. The pool is nice and big and refreshing. Good location at the front of the property (on the beach) to see the sunset over Lake Tanganyika and the mountains of DRC just beyond. The fitness center was small but fine--really the only hitch during my few days here was that one morning the machines weren't working but when I checked back in the afternoon they were all on. Free shuttle to/from the airport (even at 12:3opm for my 2:40am flight) and reception was friendly and helpful. I will definitely recommend Club du Lac to anyone staying in Bujumbura and I hope to return soon!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Stephanie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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157 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 (26)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
150 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
Reviewed February 18, 2014

My first trip to Bujumbura, a 3 day peak before heading back to see Gorillas in Rwanda.

I live in China and have visited many developing countries, but was a bit spooked on arriving in Buja due to recent events. Our car arrived promptly and we were at the hotel in no time.

Staff is a bit shy, but responds well in English and some better in French. Amazing grounds and gorgeous, big rooms. Internet very reliable when not raining. Pool is huge and clean, great grounds for eating a variety of local and international foods. Bar keeps good drinks coming. Breakfast buffet is a bit sluggish, but good. Staff is attentive - my friend left his room key sitting around and the staff immediately brought it to the front desk for safety purposes. Quickly retrieved and appreciated. Owner is Italian and very friendly - happy to join us for a quick chat.

Beach is amazing especially at sunset, though there are some kids around who will pester you at times. We arranged the boat trip to see the hippos and crocs, though not many crocs available. The 'guide' on that boat barely speaks English, so a french speaker will help. By all means do not get off the boat tour at the 'park' to see more crocs. This is better done by road, as you need a vehicle at the park to get to the towers for land observation. I think the boat ride, which is expensive, is fun but not for everyone unless you have a good camera to catch the hippos in the river.

Shuttle bus into town was reliable. Do take care in Bujumbura either day or night - there are mostly wonderful people everywhere, but plenty who have very little and may try to relieve you of your iPhone and cash.

The place to stay in Bujumbura, hands down.

Room Tip: Try to get on the second floor, but these rooms are often prioritized for frequent guests by my obse...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Zach F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 6 Contributor
209 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2014

Stayed in three different hotels in Bujumbura and liked Club du Loc best. My room, modern and cozy with hard wood floors and stunning lake views, made a mundane business trip almost a leisurely experience. The restaurant and bar were perfect as were the service and prices. The place can get a bit loud though, especially on weekends during live music or other shows.

Room Tip: Ask for a second floor, lake view in the A block. I highly recommend room 118.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled on business
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Helpful?
2 Thank PinUpBoy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ClubduLacTanganyika, Front Office Manager at Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear estimated client,

We are very pleased to know that we contributed in changing a mundane business trip in a unique leisure experience. We appreciated your description of our rooms with the woods floors and the view of the lake that make the difference. We are really happy that the foods and service in our restaurant worth the cost.
We are sorry that our live music on Sunday afternoon disturbed you . Such entertainments are organized in order to liven the weekend and change the monotony.

We wish to welcoming you again
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bukavu, Sud-Kivu, Democratic Republic Congo
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed January 5, 2014

I love this spot for a place to get away and get some sun. The rooms are a bit worn, but everything else makes up for it. Don't go for the rooms, go for the pool and beach. Plus its cheap to get to town, the restaurant is pretty good though attempting to be a bit fancy, and there are some good spots to each down the beach including Bora Bora for a chilled out vibe.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mike B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 12, 2013

My husband and I stayed here in October and had a fantastic time. We are both admittedly picky regarding where we stay, mostly since we live in another part of Africa and the whole point of taking a weekend away is to remember what running hot water, clean rooms, good food, etc., feels like. So we had a hard time choosing between this place and a couple others (king's conference and the golf resort) based on reviews, but we decided on club du lac based on the location on the lake, and based on a burundian friend's recommendation. We could not have been happier! This felt very much like a personalized mini-luxury resort.

Pros:
Rooms and the hotel in it's entirely are impeccably clean.
Breakfast was included in our weekend rate, which was fabulous, there was too much to even try to sample everything there. Really impressive.
The weekend rate was a great deal (we couldn't have gone with the regular prices).
The pook looked lovely and most of the expats seemed to be glued to their spots there, but we didn't leave the beach/lake the for most of the weekend, it was too perfect. For two people like us from coastal towns, this lake actually has the size and the waves to make it feel almost ocean-like. Warm water, and the locals were swimming too, so we weren't worried about crocs and hippos. Can't recommend it enough, people who stayed in the pool only were definitely missing out
Young kids (teens and 20s) on the beach were friendly but not intrusive, as can be a problem in some other places. They were curious and asked questions, but didn't ask for money or make us feel like we needed space.
Everything felt safe, the city itself is a bit chaotic, but we felt completely safe on the resort, both regarding physical safety and leaving items in the room.
Hotel staff were wonderfully helpful, brought us a bottle of champagne on the beach (and gave us a complementary cheese plate...guess it helped ordering the nicest bottle, ha) and were extremely attentive.
We paid for the one hour boat ride to see the hippos, which is $60 USD and worth it.
They take visa!!! This was such an easier experience than most places where the visa machine never works, if there is one at all.

Cons:
It is about 10 minutes from town, so if you have a need to be in the middle of the city, just be aware that this isn't.
There is a shuttle but it was never going when we were trying to go into town, and the wait was always 30+ minutes, so we ended up taking taxis to and from town every time we went.
The pool area won't let you take towels onto the beach, we took ours from the room so it was fine, but I imagine it would be more ideal for the hotel to have beach towels.
We weren't allowed to go for a walk on the beach after dusk. I imagine this is for liability issues concerning safety, but it was a full moon with clear skies and we were disappointed we couldn't go for a walk.

There are a lot of beautiful lake areas in Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, but we decided pretty quickly this would be our go-to place for the year. We look forward to coming back a few more times in the next ten months, and sent ten friends there last week who all loved it as well.

Our weekend deal included breakfast, but our friends seemed to have dinner included, so I'm not sure how to book that, as they said the restaurant was great too. We'd like to try that next time. Otherwise, try botanika in town for dinner, or hotel lake tanganyika (which our taxi took us to originally before we realized it was the wrong hotel, but the dinner was great). Another question I always want to know from hotels here, is what to tip?? It would be great to have a page in the hotel info guide in the rooms explaining what local customs are in this regard so that we're not undertipping everyone.

We'll be back soon :)

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank DonLinoLover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ClubduLacTanganyika, Front Office Manager at Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika, responded to this review, December 26, 2013
Dear esteemed guest,

Thank you very much for choosing and sharing your memorable week end at Hotel club du Lac Tanganyika. We are pleased to know that you appreciated the cleanness of the rooms and the hotel in it's entirely.
The aim of our special week end offer is to be affordable in order to local and neighbor countries clients and includes a wide range of food in the breakfast and dinner. We are glad that the amenities were at to your expectation.
The unique experience of enjoying the sunset or fullmoon by the lake is nowhere else. However the security of our guest is a high priority and we are happy to know that you felt safe that's why for safety issues walking by night on the beach is not recommended we are so sorry for that and wish you understand.
We are happy to know that your experience of the excursion in the special boat tour on the lake and rusizi park was fabulous.
We appreciate your mention of the high quality service and assistance of our staff in the restaurant. For your interest new menus have been set up and in the future you should taste the quality of our foods.
Regarding the shuttle there is a timetable in the entrance of the reception so we are really sorry if you didn't take it at your time. As the access to the beach is allowed to public letting guests taking towels is not safe.
It will be a great pleasure to welcome you once again in our hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rigby, Idaho
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed November 14, 2013

I was in Bujumbura on business and ended up here. This hotel has one of the nicest beach locations and a good-sized swimming pool which attracts guests from all around to swim laps or play in the water. It has two restaurants with a decent selection of African and European meals at a decent price. The wifi is free, but can be spotty and slow at times. It's about a 10-15 minute drive to most parts of Bujumbura, so the commute isn't too slow, just bumpy at times. I believe a free full breakfast is included in most rates. It includes eggs or crepes to order, coffee or tea, an assortment of breads, seasonal fruit, etc. Very lovely breakfast.

This hotel is the frequent recipient of high-level delegations and parties. You may catch a glimpse of the Burundian Royal Drummers as they probably come twice a week for events. It's a pretty cool show.

One bit of advice: don't put your dirty laundry in the hamper unless you want it laundered. The staff will often take the laundry out of the hamper to clean it whether or not you fill the paperwork out. I can't really complain, I just found it out the hard way.

Room Tip: Rooms on the south side have blocked ocean views. First floor rooms feel a bit unsafe as access to t...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank WesternTraveler99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ClubduLacTanganyika, Front Office Manager at Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika, responded to this review, November 18, 2013
Dear Client,

Your comments about our Hotel, our excellent standard of rooms, convenient location, services and facilities are highly appreciated.

We are really sorry for your laundry and we thank you for your advice which will be helpful to avoid any confusion in future.

Ntibihoringere Alain-Bertrand
Front office Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milano
Level 5 Contributor
87 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed November 10, 2013

It was a wonderful surprise to find this hotel on the shores of lake Tanganika, just minutes away from the city and the international Airport. Lush gardens, an incredibly beautiful golden beach, great adults and children's swimming pools. This time we only had lunch at the restaurant by the beach but will surely go back for longer stay. Recommended.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank difficulta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ClubduLacTanganyika, Front Office Manager at Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika, responded to this review, November 18, 2013
Dear Madam,

We are pleased to know that you were impressed by our Hotel and facilities.We wish to accommodate you on your next trip and enjoy other surprises .

Ntibihoringere Alain-Bertrand
Front office Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika

Property: Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika
Address: Chaussee d'Uvira | Route Gatumba, Bujumbura 6573, Burundi
Location: Burundi > Bujumbura Mairie Province > Bujumbura
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Bujumbura
#6 Business Hotel in Bujumbura
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika 4*
Number of rooms: 110
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika**** is located in a wide park that ends up on a marvelous beach on the banks of the Lake Tanganyika. The hotel offers to his guests a luxurious and relaxing accommodation in an intimate environment and at only 5 km from the city center and the airport. Noted as the most beautiful resort of Lake Tanganyika shores, it is a four star hotel, that offers a wide variety of good quality services. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Du Lac Tanganyika

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