Having spent fifteen days at the hotel I’d like to share my thoughts, especially with reference to some of the comments I read here before I went.
Firstly, yes; it’s expensive. Really expensive. Our bill for fifteen days was eye-wateringly enormous. However, if you’re looking for a western hotel in Abuja that’s what you’ve got.
Nothing is included. Not internet (about £14 - £17 per day for LAN access in your room – more if you want wifi in public areas) or breakfast. We made do with a croissant and pineapple juice (delicious) from Pastry Corner for weekday breakfasts – a snip at about £7. Weekend buffet breaky in the Bukka was good, although most of the hot buffet was lukewarm – get the chef to make you a fresh omelette – and the salads / pastries / bread / heaps of other stuff was great. That will set you back about £20. We ended up eating most of our dinners at the pool bar. The curry buffet was good, menu food fine, nice to be out of air conditioning and cheaper than other restaurants. We tried the Bukka in the evening; more buffet and not too good. Oriental was fine although didn’t agree with my stomach and we thought the Zuma Grill way too overpriced. The undoubted “star” value (see what I did there?) is a bottle of Star beer. It’s just £4 for a 600ml bottle and cheaper than the water. Evening meals came in at roughly £30 - £40 per head with a couple of beers. The wine is really expensive although OK quality. As we stayed so long we racked up two complimentary bottles – the only way I would try it as it’s just too much to pay for average wine.
Rooms are fine if dated. The beds are super comfy (as Etienne is keen on reporting). Cable TV is very hit and miss – now you see a channel, now you don’t. LAN internet is mostly OK – I could stream BBC iPlayer and Netflix fine usually. Don’t use the what looks like complimentary water in the room; it costs an arm and a leg. Nip out and get a good supply from a supermarket - it’s two orders of magnitude less expensive. Everything was clean and the aircon kept everything cool; maybe a bit too cool from time to time. Bathrobe was extremely ropy although towels were fine.
Service at the front desk is willing and attentive. Mostly, other staff we came into contact with were as well, although some could definitely do with a bit more customer relationship training. Lots of smiles and “you’re welcome”s as you walk around the floors. The speed of service in bars / restaurants isn’t always at top speed, but just relax into a more laid back mood and you’ll be fine. Don’t be a dick with the serving staff; they are doing the best they can with very long hours and bugger all pay.
People report being pestered by sex workers around the hotel. I didn’t come into contact with any during my stay, but then again I didn’t go to the nightclub or sports bar.
There’s lovely security theatre, both on entering by car where the boot is searched and x-ray / scanner on entering the hotel. Neither of these would in any way stop anyone who wanted to cause mischief. Play along, smile, and make your own arrangements if anything kicks off.
Would I go again? I’d rather not, to be honest, but if I had to, well; the pool’s good – and one thing you don’t have to pay extra for.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the center of Nigeria's capital city in close proximity to government offices, business and diplomatic districts, Transcorp Hilton offers 670 art-deco style rooms and suites for the comfort of discernible travellers. The spacious, bright and airy rooms are complete with original artwork and have large windows with stunning city views. Catch up with work at the desk, check your emails with high-speed internet (fees apply), recline on the mini chaise lounge or simply re-energise in the marble bathroom. From local Nigerian and continental cuisines to themed international buffets, Transcorp Hilton offers a delightful culinary experience with 4 restaurants and 4 bars. The hotel boasts a hi-tech, 1200-persons capacity Congress Hall and 24 meeting rooms. All benefit from natural daylight and individually controlled air conditioning, creating an ideal location for board meetings, press conferences, receptions or private dining parties. The mezzanine and foyer areas surrounding the Congress Hall enjoy natural daylight and provide an ideal location for registration, exhibition or display area, refreshment, breakfast or pre dinner cocktails. For the fitness enthusiast, the hotel boasts a well-equipped fitness center including saunas, a large hexagonal outdoor swimming pool and children's wading pool, 3 tennis courts, 3 squash courts, volleyball and basketball courts. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Transcorp Hilton Abuja Hotel Abuja
- Hilton International Abuja
- Hilton Abuja
- Abuja Hilton