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“Safe place to stay in Arusha”
Review of The African Tulip

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The African Tulip
Ranked #1 of 41 Hotels in Arusha
Certificate of Excellence
Freeport, Maine
Level Contributor
15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Safe place to stay in Arusha”
Reviewed November 28, 2011

Booked this hotel through an online "discount" website. Price shown and paid was quite high, even after the supposed "discount". I'm sure we could have paid less had we booked directly. Was also expecting a larger room, but we were given a very basic small room with queen sized bed. Bed was very hard. It was ok, but certainly not the space we expected compared to what we paid.

Hotel is very clean and comfortable. Staff will offer help with whatever you need (almost to the point of pestering....the manager kept hovering around us....but we understand he was just doing his job). Owners/management appear to be from India, so the food in the Baobab restaurant has an Indian influence, but the chef is from Belgium. There were power issues and the power went out several times. Apparently this is very normal, as power shortages due to water shortages (hydro electric system) is the accepted way of life here. The pool is very small and the water was cold, so we didn't swim.

No fault of the hotel, but just a general warning for anybody who may be thinking of exploring the surrounding area.....After many days of sitting in vehicles on safari and not being able to do much walking on our own, we were really looking forward to exploring the City of Arusha on foot and getting some dinner once we arrived at the hotel. When we arrived at 5:20 pm, we asked upon check-in about places to go and eat, and were told that since it gets dark by 6:00 pm we would not be permitted to go anywhere off the property due to our personal security. This was very disappointing, so we were forced to stay inside the hotel and eat at their restaurant which was buffet style....several options to choose from, but not really what we had in mind. We felt very cooped up, nothing for us to do in the evening except sit in our room. We booked the extra night in Arusha specifically so we could see some sights and experience some local food, but this ended up being not possible, so that part of our trip was very disappointing. Again, not the fault of the hotel, but just a heads up to future travellers that you cannot go outside after 6:00 pm. Since it gets dark so early, no matter what time of year it is, it makes for a verrryyy loooonnng evening. We were told by the manager that the only way to go out is with an armed guard, but at the time (November 2011) this service is not available at this hotel, but they are working on making this service available in the near future!

The next morning, we were able to hire a local guide and go to a few markets, but even then during the day, we were being followed and surrounded by strange people, some of which were clearly up to no good. Our guide said something to each of these people and usually they then left us alone. Not sure how we would have fared on our own.

African Tulip hotel is a clean and safe place to stay, with finishings comparable to any large major American or Euopean hotel.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank MobyV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SharmaAnuj, Manager at The African Tulip, responded to this review, December 8, 2011
Dear Moby V,

I would like to thank you for sharing your valuable feedback on this forum.

We wish to categorically clarify that at the time you here, as well as a few weeks ago, tourists were being continuously attacked in the town near the bridge not far from the Clock Tower area about 3 blocks from where our hotel is situated so we were just exercising caution for the sake of safety of our clients.

We are sorry you felt cooped. We were concerned for your safety and just stressed on the fact that it was not safe at the time to walk after 6.00PM. Options to use a taxi and go out whether to see the town or dine out still existed, but just walking after 6.00PM was not safe.

Unfortunately, we do not have armed guards to escort clients for walking outside the premises.

Also to clarify; in the weekends, our Baobab Restaurant usually serves Theme Based Buffet dinners with an option of A’la Carte menu. The A’la Carte menu, which is available throughout the week, has: Continental dishes (Belgian, Kenyan and Tanzanian Chefs), Indian dishes (Indian Chefs) and local dishes (Kenyan and Tanzanian Chefs).

I would like to apologize for any inconvenience caused to you during your stay.

The African Tulip Team is known for best service standards in the guests’ satisfaction and friendly service at all times.

Warm regards,

ANUJ SHARMA
General Manager
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English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
37 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed November 9, 2011

We (wife, twin 6 yr olds and I), spent two nights in this Arushaian jewel and only have wonderful things to say about it.

The room was large, with a king and queen bed, large open area and oversized bathroom.

We have traveled the world and didn't have high expectations from this hotel, but it competes with any family hotel we have used in Europe or North America.

The guest service was over the top. They were so helpful that I felt we needed to tell them that we were ok and would ask for help if needed.

The onsite restaurant was superb. The menu easily catered to children and the breakfast buffet was always a hit with all of us. The coffee kept flowing and the eggs to order was a nice touch. The dinner menu was diverse enough that you could eat European, Indian or Tanzanian cuisine. The ambiance was excellent. Soft music playing in the background, smiles from the staff, attentiveness from wait staff and they were always keen to give tips on ordering local food.

As a family, we enjoyed:
1. The cleanliness of the hotel and room,
2. Western hotel quality,
3. The friendliness and helpfulness of the staff
4. The pool
5. Assistance whenever required
6. The genuine engagement of the staff with the kids.

If my travels bring me back to Arusha, the African Tulip will be our accommodation of choice again.

Thank you to the entire team for a splendid two night visit. Keep up the good work!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank The-4-Foremans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Helsinki, Finland
1 review
Reviewed October 30, 2011

my girlfriend (Lindsay) and I (Steve) we went on a trip from Finland (EU) destination Arusha Tanzania we visited a hotel called AFRICAN TULIP s that this hotel is very very family have to feel like a home home the rooms are beautiful and very comfortable.
the restaurant and the pool very well the restaurant is very good and the food very good and fine in Europe as exp pepper sauce, mushrooms, rare steak we talking with the head advisor who has very good food and especially good sauces.

We enjoyed the pool to cool off and relax ns I recommend without hesitation AFRICAN TULIP IN ARUSHA

LINDSAY STEVE AND FINLAND
October 2

Room Tip: very nice room no noise and swimming pool for relax
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank lindsay wayn l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Delaware
Level Contributor
211 reviews
63 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 162 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2011

We spent one night in the African Tulip when we stopped in Arusha on our way back from Ngorongoro Crater before flying back to Nairobi. The hotel was rated No.1 by TA and got very good reviews from our local travel coordinator (Eland Safaris). This appears to be a good hotel for business travellers and upscale vacationers. It is not in the greatest area in town, but the immediate surroundings are fine.

The hotel looks very new. It makes a good impression as you drive up and enter the lobby. The staff were very friendly and helpful. There are three floors of rooms with no lifts. We had Room 20, on the top floor. It was a very large room with a shower in the bathtub, plus there was a safe. The room (and the hotel itself) were very nicely decorated. You can purchase wifi at a reasonable rate - $10 for 24 hours.

Our package included dinner and breakfast. We ended up having lunch there also, since the "street boys" were a real nuisance and a little scary. We had planned on talking a walk out to a restaurant, since the hotel is only 10-12 minutes from the Clock Tower (city center). When two males went out later to see some of the town and visit the Mt. Meru Market (lots of Masai gift shops at good prices), we were constantly accosted by these street boys (we had been warned) and had many persons following us and offering to help us out with whatever we needed.

The lunch menu was limited. There is a decent selection of Indian dishes on the menu. We ended up having pizza (frozen self-rising?) and french fries (very good). The night we were there, they were serving an Indian buffet, which was varied and good. However, two of our party were not enamored with Indian food and sort of picked around it. (When we stopped by the front desk later, they asked how dinner was and we explained. They then said we could order off the regular menu for sure - our fault for not asking)

Management were hovering around all of the time we were at the hotel. They went to great lengths to make sure everything was satisfactory, which it was. Drinks were very reasonably priced. Breakfast, buffet style was ok - something for everyone.

The hotel has a very nice small pool, at the back and enclosed, with an adjoining bar/lounge area. The back and front gardens were very nice and well looked after.

I would recommend this hotel to anyone.

Room Tip: No lifts, but plenty of porters.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Noo12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 21, 2011

the hotel itself is nice and the rooms are fab.lovely decore and very clean. the staff were very friendly. however we had multiple issues. having paid in full over the net, they had no knowledge of our arrival and had given away the room we booked. the manager then on leaving tried to charge us more and only after a long arguement was the issue resolved.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank squain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheAfricaTulip, General Manager at The African Tulip, responded to this review, October 26, 2011
Dear Shivers_9

Thank you very much for sharing feedback on this forum.

We would like to clarify on your issues shared on this forum.
The booking we received from the online portal was for a one bedroom suite, which houses 2 persons. The voucher you produced indicated a two-bedroom suite (which houses 4 people) and you were 5 persons. This caught the receptionist unaware and so as not to inconvenience you all, you were requested to have a seat in the lounge whilst the 2nd room was being prepared. (As it was a public holiday there was no way we could communicate with the portal for clarification on the same day so the next day we rechecked with the portal by email & phone but the portal was unable to clear the issue and advised the Duty Manager to collect the money for the extra person sharing the room).
However, after your discussion with myself, I had understood your issue and took the decision to not charge you then and to try & resolve this issue with the online portal.

After you Checked out, the Portal agreed to the mistake and issued us an amended voucher of your reservation which was for a 2 bedroom suite.
The Hotel Management has re-worked with the portal and decided to withdraw the category of 2 bedroom suite from the online portal to avoid any reservation problems to any guest in the future. As this was only one isolated issue which we've come across during online portal bookings.

I would therefore like to apologize for all the inconveniences caused to you & your party at the time of check out.

The African Tulip team is known for best service standards in guest satisfaction and friendly service.

We do hope that during your next visit to Arusha, you will give us an opportunity to host you and your friends.

Yours Sincerely

ANUJ SHARMA
GENERAL MANAGER
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dani11
Level Contributor
29 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
Reviewed October 13, 2011

We booked this hotel for a recent trip to Tanzania. We stayed at the African Tulip for 2 nights before heading out on safari. It is on a quiet side street and within walking distance of the market and shops of Arusha. The rooms were nice, clean and big. The decor was very cool and the staff was fantastic. We also really liked the restaurant -- dinner was good and breakfast was outstanding. The pool area and bar was nice. My only complaint overall is that the water in the pool was too cold to swim and Roy's Safari had some big vehicle running for a few hours...so we got to suck in the exhaust fumes.

Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank dani11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Zanzibar Island, Tanzania
1 review
Reviewed October 12, 2011

The African Tulip is a lovely hotel set down a quiet lane.
We only had one night in Arusha after our safari and discoverd this by chance but it truely was a very enjoyable stay.
I myself work for a boutique hotel in zanzibar and have very high standards which this hotel definatly exceeded.
The bedrooms are very spacious, clean and comfortable with satalite television and a mini fridge.
I would definatly recommend the resturant where we had a fantastic indian buffet with great fast service at a resonable price.
There is also a divine pool area and bar and a very chic zanzibar style lounge/bar for drinks.
I cant fault this hotel for anything and would like to say a huge thank you to Anuj the general Manager and his team for taking excellent care of us. I will definatly return :)

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sophie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The African Tulip

Property: The African Tulip
Address: 4 Serengeti Road, Arusha 1517, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The African Tulip 3*
Number of rooms: 29
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The African Tulip is Arusha's premier boutique hotel providing first-class western luxury with outstanding facilities, personalized service and warm hospitality in a convenient location. The 'Zanzibar lounge & bar' is an ideal meeting place; The Baobab restaurant serves an excellent range of cuisine; 'The Serengeti' Pool & Bar is a fantastic place to relax. Additional facilities include a business centre, conference room & gift shops. It truly is Chic. Unique. and Authentically African. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The African Tulip Hotel Arusha
African Tulip Arusha
African Tulip Hotel Arusha

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