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Djibouti Palace Kempinski
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Djibouti
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 13, 2013

While the hotel probably is the nicest place in Djibouti I was extremely disappointed with the quality of service for the price I paid. This hotel offers the standard atmosphere and amenities of a 5 star hotel but it's far from 5 star quality. I booked a 2 person junior suite for 2 nights. I took advantage of their websites offer to book early online and receive a 30% discount. Even with the discount I'm still wondering why I paid so much money. At check in the gentleman asked me who I booked through...I booked on the hotel's website and already gave him the confirmation print out. He had no idea what to do and just stood there for much too long until he finally went to ask for assistance after I asked repeatedly asked if there was a problem.

I finally got my key. The room was quite spacious. I love it when hotels provide slippers. The junior suite provides a loveseat (pillows were stained), huge windows (hand a face prints all over), desk (standard) and a king size bed (very comfortable but again, pillows were stained). The bathroom had an average (not on par with 5-star) toilet, bidet (again not on par), bathtub (rusty water, tired to flush it out but it stained the tub so I gave up), shower (showerhead was from the ceiling but no wall attachment of detachable handle) and vanity (dirty). Water was yellow and had a bit of a smell, not surprising for this country and bottled water was provided. The full length mirror had hand prints and writing in marker all over it. I killed one small cockroach in the entryway. The room also had the shared door to the next room. Not well insulated so you could hear the other guests TV or talking if you did not have your TV on. I requested a smoke-free room. The room was fine but the hallway reeked of smoke.

Cleanliness is key to a quality service and this hotel has not stepped up to 5-star standards. Even their spa was disappointing, 5-star services at a 2-star execution. It was sadly dirty: fingerprints, dirt and bugs. The massage was average and the facial was the worst I've ever received (I can wash my own face, that's all they did).

The buffet was also a disappointment, nothing like their rivals at the Sheraton here in Djibouti. While there was variety and the bread was quite good, it still lacked that 5-star quality. I also had to argue with the staff to get the breakfast for 2 even though I checked in with 2 guests. For the money I paid both guests deserve the complimentary breakfast. Because I had to go discuss the situation with the front desk, we were late to start breakfast. If I had not grabbed all the food I wanted right away we would have gone hungry. They removed everything at the end of their service time and then tried to kick us out as we were still eating, NOT 5-star service!

Room service is 24hrs but takes time for the food to arrive. I had the smoked salmon sandwich and it was very good.

The pool and casino are nice. The casino unfortunately allows smoking.

Overall I give it 3 stars because it is the nicest thing in Djibouti and has all the services of a 5-star resort. Just don't have high expectations of the service being at a 5-star level. They really should lower their prices for the value you receive.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank SP1234Travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded May 26, 2013

Dear “SP1234Travels”,

Thank you very much for having stayed at Djibouti Palace Kempinski and for your review. We are always grateful to our guests for taking the time and trouble to record their feedback as this is the only way for us to maintain and improve, where necessary, the high standards of service our guests have come to expect from us. We are happy to hear that you enjoyed our Pool, Casino and room service. Regarding the negative aspects you mentioned, please note that our Front Office, Housekeeping and Spa team are now aware of your review and discussing it with our staff.
I sincerely hope that we may welcome you and your family back to Djibouti Palace Kempinski soon in order that we may have an opportunity to rectify your current impression of the hotel, I am confident we can look after you and demonstrate an experience more reflective of the many positive comments we normally receive on Tripadvisor.

Yours sincerely,

The Djibouti Palace Kempinski Team

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184 - 190 of 508 reviews

Reviewed May 7, 2013 via mobile

Second stay here for business. Close to the port, it is the best in Djibouti. Rooms/beds are very comfortable. Staff is friendly. Multiple restaurants to choose from. Facilities are great - two pools, small beach, great gym, spa, shops. I booked directly with the hotel, reservations staff were very accommodating. When my flight was delayed i emailed the hotel to let them know, they responded quickly. I would recommend this property and stay here again.

  • Stayed: May 2013
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1  Thank Kd4dna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2013

Greeting from Djibouti,

We are happy to hear that you have enjoyed your stay with us in Djibouti.
We would also like to thank you for taking your time to write such a motivating comment for our team on Tripadvisor.
We will be glad to welcome you back a third time in Djibouti Palace Kempinski.

With warm regards,

The Djibouti Palace Kempinski Team

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Reviewed May 3, 2013

Enjoyed our stay at this well run hotel.
The entrance was in keeping with the rest of the hotel very pleasant. Unfortunately the smokers in the cafe section were in full force this drifted into the entrance.
Our huge room was facing the Red Sea on the second floor. The beds vey comfortable. Bathroom was huge and well laid out.
The only thing lacking we're cups and saucers but we did have a kettle.
The food was excellent too. Breakfast had everything one wanted as did the lunch and dinners.
There were restaurants to chose from.
The staff were always obliging and pleasant.
Would highly recommend it.

Room Tip: We were on the second floor facing the sea.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Helen N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded May 5, 2013

Dear Helen,

Thank you for choosing Djibouti Palace Kempinski as your home in Djibouti as well as sharing your experience with us.

We are delighted to hear that you have enjoyed your stay in our hotel. We have taken good note of your remarks which are very valuable for us in order to improve our services.
Please let us know when you are planning to come back to Djibouti so we can ensure your stay is as memorable as possible.

Warm regards,

The Djibouti Palace Kempinski Team

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Reviewed April 18, 2013

I was surprised to see a a huge Kempinski in Djibouti. The whole town is quiet, and the hotel is quiet too.

The Hotel has a great entrance, and maintained very well. The Lobby is nice, but a bit dark. The Hotel is only of 4 floors. However, if you get a room at the end of the hotel, you probably need a gold cart ride.

The rooms were clean, and has all the amenities of a 5 star hotel.

I can only say if you want to stay at a hotel in Djibouti then there is only a limited choice for a 5 star Hotel.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Salah_Sharaf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded April 21, 2013

Dear Salah,

Greetings from Djibouti Palace Kempinski,

We were delighted to read that you had a wonderful experience with us in Djibouti and would like to thank you for taking your time to write such a motivating comment for our team on TripAdvisor. We will be very happy to welcome you back to Djibouti Palace Kempinski.

With warm regards,

The Djibouti Palace Kempinski.

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Reviewed March 31, 2013

This is, on the whole, an excellent and very efficiently run hotel. The hotel grounds are well laid out and comfortable, as are the rooms. The beds are really among the most comfortable I've ever slept in. For food, the hotel has a few choices, of which the Bankouale restaurant was the hands down winner for my wife and I, on account of its laid back atmosphere, but most importantly for the delicious fresh fish and bread. The breakfast buffet was quite good; a dinner at Tentazioni was less impressive.

Service was on the whole excellent. Before arrival, the hotel was very responsive to our queries about visas on arrival. Once there, I should make special mention of Thiam, the concierge, who was extremely helpful in arranging tours, general recommendations on places to eat, and in rebooking flights when our flight out got cancelled in the last minute. One area where the hotel could improve would be the housekeeping, where the daily cleaning seemed cursory (eg. a mosquito we killed on our first day stayed in the bathroom floor for the remainder of our stay).

About the country - it is very different than anywhere else I've been, stunningly beautiful in places and packs a lot of variety in a small place. Our short visit left us with a good taste, and with a desire to come back one day.

Overall, an excellent hotel which is not cheap, but which delivers.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank hanan75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded April 4, 2013

Greetings from Djibouti Palace kempnski.

First of all we would like to mention that it was a great pleasure to have you stay with us!, and also show our appreciation towards your comment here on TripAdvisor.
We are very glad to heat that you enjoyed your stay and it would be an honor for us to welcome you back to our hotel!

We wish you all the best, and look forward to your next visit.
With warm regards
the Djibouti Palace Kempinski team.

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Reviewed March 31, 2013

I do not know what it is with Kempinski and myself, we never seem to bond particularly well. But this one tops all my previous K experiences.
Service is slow and -to put it nicely- fit to be retrained (during check-out, check-in, dinner,..., everytime!!!). Breakfast feels like you accidently stepped into an army canteen with all the military badges and uniforms around you (at least this is probably one of the safest places on earth). Quality of the food was good though.
Outdoor stink during 3 out of my 4 days and make extra sure where you use your laptop as only designated areas are suitable, otherwise security comes to "move" you.
All in all it just completely felt unmanaged!

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank iguacu317
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded April 2, 2013

Greetings from sunny Djibouti!
First of all we would like to thank you for sharing your comments and keeping us aware of your experience during your past stay at our property.

As we strive to provide excellent service for all of our guests we regret to hear that your experience did not meet your expectations.

As you can see in previous TripAdvisor comments we are capable of providing top service for each of our guest and we hope to have the honor of welcoming you back to change your opinion about us.

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience!

Kind regards
The Djibouti Palace Kempinski team.

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Reviewed March 19, 2013

Second stay here. It is the best in Djibouti. Rooms are very comfortable. Staff is friendly. Multiple restaurants to choose from. Facilities are great - two pools, small beach, great gym, spa, shops. I would recommend this and stay here again.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank nep1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DjiboutiPalace, Manager at Djibouti Palace Kempinski, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2013

The Djibouti Palace Kempinski team would like to thank you for your kind words regarding your previous stays with us, and we hope to have the honor of welcoming you back soon again.

With warm regards
The Djibouti Palace Kempinski team

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Djibouti Palace Kempinski

Address: Ilot du Heron | P.O. Box 1960, Djibouti, Djibouti
Phone Number:
Location: Djibouti > Djibouti
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 Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Djibouti
Price Range: $363 - $475 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Djibouti Palace Kempinski 5*
Number of rooms: 320
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Away from the busy districts, yet only few minutes from the airport, Djibouti Palace Kempinski is ideally located at a prime beachfront between the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, in a secluded and peaceful setting of palms and bougainvillea. Djibouti Palace Kempinski features a plethora of entertainment amenities, including a fully equipped fitness center, mountain bikes, outdoor swimming pool, mini club, restaurants and bars. Djibouti Palace Kempinski redefines luxury service in the Land of Gods. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Djibouti Palace Kempinski Hotel Djibouti
Palace Kempinski Hotel Djibouti
Palace Kempinski Djibouti

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