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“Good considering location, but otherwise not so much...”
Review of Azalai Hotel Salam

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Azalai Hotel Salam
Ranked #19 of 38 Hotels in Bamako
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
144 reviews
65 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
“Good considering location, but otherwise not so much...”
Reviewed August 13, 2009

Stayed here in May as part of a conference. It is gorgeous on the outside and overlooks some equally stunning buildings. My room was very spacious and really quite nice. But, the toilet didn't flush the entire time I was there, and no matter how often I asked for it to be fixed, it wasn't. This got pretty inconvenient. Otherwise, room was fine. Air conditioning worked fine for most of my stay, until something broke and flooded the hallway, my room and apparently it was an air-con thing, so there were some days when I didn't have it at all. On the 5th floor in May it gets hot!! the lobby staff was nice enough and were helpful to explain how to get to the market, mosque etc. but not otherwise so helpful. Some were really great, others not so much. I speak French and it was fine, others who did not ran into trouble.

Also in the lobby is an ATM, which I used and was fine - my card wasn't stolen or anything - and there are a couple of shops, they are okay but expensive and some of them, the people are never there when you go to look in them. The "fitness center" is a small smelly room with a treadmill that doesn't really work and an older model universal type unit. It's dark and I never saw anyone in it... less than inspiring!

The pool was wonderful, and the pool bar was also very very nice. Service was fantastic and the beef brochettes were amazing. The beef here is really good. The frites were also good. The nice restaurant on the 2nd floor - don't be fooled, it was horrid. There was almost nothing available and then the service was the poorest I've ever had. The waiters actually loudly complained about us to a nearby table (for the apparently terrible transgression of asking things like, "so that table got the very last of all seven of these dishes?" and "how come we've been waiting an hour and haven't been served but they just sat down and ordered and got their appetizers in 10 minutes?").

There is also a bar/cafe in the lobby and it was fine - they also had the brochettes. And there is a bar on the 2nd floor across from the restaurant, at night these two areas are prostitute magnets and they are okay to hang around in, if you are in a group, but if you aren't then it can be uncomfortable. (It can also be amusing.)

The conference facilities weren't at all bad, although we lost power a number of times and once was for an hour or so. I wasn't thrilled with the location, because I like to be able to walk to the main market and other attractions, there wasn't even a little stand where we could buy water or other sundries but it seemed to be a peaceful, safe area. Oh - water - I drank from the tap and suffered no ill effects at all.

Overall I think it's the best you can do in Bamako, but remember that 4 star here isn't as 4 star in other regions, and lower your expectations accordingly!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank philsdottir
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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110 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 (12)
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English first
lagos
1 review
Reviewed June 5, 2009

Hi,
am a faithful guest of the hotel, i spend one month holiday last summer enjoying mysel, and am positive am gonna be back this summer with my friends.
the place is at the best location to have access to the whole capital.
its such a great hotel, nothing to complain about the hospitality.

  • Stayed June 2008, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank inatouni1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2009

The Salam hotel is decent enough for a short stay. We often pass through whilst waiting for a our flights to Paris.
The rooms are quite good, comfortable and nicely furnished. You certainly feel a million miles away from outside the hotel.
The food there was quite good, although it was pretty expensive. I recommend ordering a club sandwich which was quite nice.

I had a few issues with checking out but i'm sure that must have been a one-off.

This is definitely a hotel for passing through. I don't think you could really have a holiday here.

  • Liked — Cleanliness and comfort of room
  • Disliked — Price of food and drinks
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank AndyWorldTour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2009

Hotel Salam is a bit of a walk from shops-- though just a block from the president's in-town villa. But it's a good place to stay if you want to get as close as you can to western standards in Mali. The official room rate is 90,000 CFA (around $220, depending on how you change your money) BUT, you can get a room for 50,000 CFA (closer to $120) by using a travel agent or just making a deal. I stayed there twice in December, 2008 and that's what I paid both times. Unfortunately, everything else in the hotel is ridiculously expensive. Example: a bottle of water, which costs between 300 to 500 CFA in the market, costs 2,000 CFA at the hotel. The restaurant's food is tasty French cuisine but way over-priced as well.

The rooms are decent enough-- especially compared to what you'll find in the rest of Mali-- and they even have CNN, although it was working when I was there for my first stay but not for my second stay. They also have WiFi if you have your own computer. If you don't, there's a business center with a helpful staff for 2,000 CFA an hour. An hour in the closest cyber cafe is 500 CFA. There's good live music all around the hotel and a really nice swimming pool.

They will also pick you up and take you to the airport (free). The hotel staff tries hard and, again, by Malian standards, they're pretty good-- although don't expect serious concierge service-- or even expect them to know about music clubs or even restaurants. Mali just isn't like that.

  • Liked — It's in Mali but it allows you to get away from the intensity
  • Disliked — location
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank HowieKlein
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
USA
Level Contributor
174 reviews
139 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
Reviewed April 19, 2008

Salam rooms are attractive, spacious and clean, as are the public spaces. The pool is large and sparkling and I had it nearly all to myself in the mornings during the three warm days I was there. The hotel does not offer the amenities usually available at 5-star hotels in developed countries -- no CNN, tea-maker, iron, adapters. The closet doors are beautiful locally-made wood, but they don't stay closed, and getting extra hangars was a challenge. Paying by credit card (visa and Amex only!) took a very long time because of slow electronic authorization. Nonetheless, in a city with frequent electricy and water problems, there were no interruptions at the Salam.

Stayed April 2008
Helpful?
Thank Xamb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Hague, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed June 16, 2006

Stayed in the Salam on the way to and from trekking in Dogon country--a perfect luxurious before and after treat. Rooms are wonderfully decorated in appropriate style, hotel staff are friendly in the best way, bathrooms are great and food is decent. Only downsides are that the pool is not enormous and mattresses not the most soft--but all in all a wonderful hotel to stay in.

  • Stayed June 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank neflyer13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Azalai Hotel Salam

Property: Azalai Hotel Salam
Address: Bamako 104, Mali
Location: Mali > Bamako
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 38 Hotels in Bamako
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Azalai Hotel Salam 5*
Number of rooms: 124
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A leading choice for discerning travellers in Bamako, the 5-star Azalaï Hotel Salam is ideally positioned to cater for business travellers and foreign officials in the capital of Mali. Conveniently located between the new administrative district and Bamako's International Conference Centre, the hotel regularly hosts NGO workers, international delegates and visiting professionals. Azalaï Hotel Salam stands out from other premium accommodation options in Bamako due to its high management standards (ISO 9001 certified) and commitment to warm, generous service imbued with the spirit of West African hospitality. Guests enjoy access to a full range of facilities, including state-of-the-art meeting rooms, reliable Internet access and an assortment of on-site eating and drinking venues. Sprawling gardens, tennis courts, a fitness centre and large swimming pool round out the leisure facilities. ... more   less 
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