The Ghion definitely has both pro’s and con’s. The pro’s: it’s very safe, set within a big, beautiful garden with lots of birds and protected from traffic noise. My room was large and had comfortable beds, a balcony, and a TV with both CNN and BBC World. Good wifi is available in every room (for a fee). The hotel has an excellent traditional restaurant with a great show featuring music, song, and dances from different parts of Ethiopia. There’s an ATM off the lobby along with several fairly good souvenir shops and a business center.
On the other hand, the whole hotel is very shabby, and the cleaning staff, although very nice, did a poor job, especially in my bathroom. I tried giving a daily tip – it didn’t help. I upped the tip, but that didn’t help either. My toilet had to be fixed every day. Most of the time the water didn’t get hot until the end of a shower. A couple of days only scalding water came out of both the hot and cold taps. There was an uncovered electrical outlet in my room, which was separated from the room next door only by a thin wall with a locked door (clearly a suite divided in two). The food at the "western" restaurant was very poor.
Breakfast was OK, especially when you could get a freshly made omelette to order. Service could be very slow, however. The staff at the reception and in the lobby bar varied between being surly and very pleasant.
I stayed at the Ghion with a group, and all of us had a mixed experience. Some didn’t get TV reception at all, whereas others were pleased with the standard of cleanliness.
In other words, the Ghion is a mixed bag. I’m not sure I would want to stay there again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Ghion hotel which is popularly known as "the Garden palace hotel of east Africa" is located in the heart of down town Addis Ababa in spacious verdant compound,adjacent to what was once the jubilee palace of emperor Haile Selassie I. Opened in 1951, the Ghion hotel has for years distinguished itself as the hotel where heads of state or governments and other VIPs stayed. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Ghion Hotel Addis Ababa