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“Great hotel if a little expensive”

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Protea Hotel by Marriott Blantyre Ryalls
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Blantyre
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 22, 2010

Nice quality hotel in Blantyre, Malawi. Great staff: very firendly and usually efficient. Front desk staff were particularly helpful in sorting out some work travel for me. All the staff went out there way to be helpful.

Rooms (I was in 2) were a good size, bathrooms good too. Air con was not terribly good in both of my rooms, which were on different floors. In fact, I'm pretty sure that it made the room hotter. This was really my only complaint with the hotel.

Great gym, pool looked good but didn't use. Restaurants were good, food was generally good at the hotel. Grill 21 was okay but pricey. The Bombay Palace across the road from the hotel had very tasty food.

Would definitely stay here again but it was quite an expensive hotel. Breakfast was included but I did pay around $190 per night. I'm sure you can get this cheaper. In fact, Malawi was much more expensive than I had anticipated.

So, it's a good hotel for business and I guess, for pleasure or tourism. I would happily stay here again, particularly if the price came down.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled on business
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Thank stevenr35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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225 - 231 of 246 reviews

Reviewed October 19, 2009

Excellent service, nice room, good food in attractive setting (Grill 21 restaurant). Difficult to find fault with this hotel - perhaps just that no one put cushions on the sunbeds around the (under-used) swimming pool, and that you couldn't order a drink or snacks while by the pool. And a bit expensive for where it is. Very friendly staff, who remembered how you liked things after the first time. I enjoyed staying there.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled on business
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Thank kpw60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2009

Travel in central Africa can be hit and miss but the Ryalls in Blantyre is right on target. The African Hardwood in th desk in the room was so beautiful I wondered if It would fit in my trunk. After weak water pressure at other locations the bath was beyond luxurious. The 21 Grill though Cher was a throw back to the colonial era in presentation, service, preparation. Not the Mount Kenya Safari Club but close.
Caters to travelling Governnent and NGO's and the prices reflect European per diem rates

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled on business
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Thank YawarMailku
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 17, 2009

Protea Ryalls is an excellent hotel in terms of quality of rooms, the location and the facilties. Food and speciality resteraunts are also one of the best in Blantyre. I moved here from Sunbird Mount Soche due to the bad service in Mount Soche. While room quality, food was much better, the quality of service suffered from very poor quality. We were lucky enough to speak to the maanger of the hotel who helped us with the services.
There was a billing error - overcharging for the last 2 days of my stay. Got away again, due to the manager's intervention

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled on business
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1  Thank Chirayuwadke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 27, 2008

I stayed at the Ryalls twice within a week, different rooms but within the same category.

I have nothing bad to say about the first stay, although the rates are quite steep given the destination and also compared to the local competition (US$ 215 and US$ 200 per night respectively).

The hotel is clean and the rooms are of a reasonable standard, probably best compared to your average Holiday Inn.

An o.k. buffet dinner will set you back by a further MWK 3,200 (approx. $ 23) which is good value for money by European or American standards. Please consider a small tip for the buffet girls who prepare the fresh food for you. I think they deserve it.

The second stay was blighted by the attitude of the reception staff, which for Malawi came totally unexpected. If you have been to Malawi in the past, you will know how friendly and generally cheerful people there tend to be (if you haven't been yet, I urge you to go and experience it!). I was using a debit card to pay and, unlike a couple of days earlier, they insisted on full advance payment, telling me rules had changed (!). The check-in process and later dealings with the two ladies on duty was marked by a complete absence of friendliness. The final straw was their announcement that they would charge a phone call for a taxi to my room. Come on now, seriously!

I leave it to you to judge whether I was too particular, but for the sort of money I paid I expect good service and a smile. A complaint to the Duty Manager resulted in a written apology assuring me the matter had been taken up with the staff concerned. A complimentary bottle of wine was thrown in.
Oh, and a broken light in my room was fixed as well.

Finally, I attach a photo of the bathroom for your amusement. While my first room was perfectly o.k., I can only assume the plumber was drunk when he installed the toilet half-way underneath the wash basin. May I suggest that if you are over 50 and/or over 200 pounds and you are not a contortionist, you check out your bathroom before you accept the room ...

Notwithstanding all of the above, the Ryalls is probably still the top place to stay in Blantyre.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled solo
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1  Thank TeflonMan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 11, 2008

The Protea is a great hotel to stay at in Blantyre, it is beautifully set up and the rooms are very comfortable. The decor of the entire hotel is really excellent. I loved their breakfast and I found their coffee to be a great start in the morning. I got my hair done at the hotel because they have a lovely hair salon in the hotel. The staff was very friendly and very accommodating. Blantyre is a very nice place but Malawi is a very poor country so it is a bit disheartening to stay at such a lovely hotel that is gated to see how poor a lot of Malawians are. I was there on business and found everything at the hotel to be very efficient and accommodating. I would definitely stay here again if I am ever in Blantyre.

  • Stayed: May 2005, traveled on business
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1  Thank Luv2Travel006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2008

Everything about this hotel was good from the staff, to room quality to accessibility, there was nothing to complain about. For me there is only one choice in Blantyre andit is this hotel.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled on business
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1  Thank Sedgley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Protea Hotel by Marriott Blantyre Ryalls

Address: 2 Hannover Avenue, Blantyre, Malawi (Formerly Protea Hotel Blantyre Ryalls)
Phone Number:
Location: Malawi > Southern Region > Blantyre
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Blantyre
Price Range: $190 - $302 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Protea Hotel by Marriott Blantyre Ryalls 4*
Number of rooms: 117
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in the central business district of Blantyre, the commercial capital of Malawi, Protea Hotel by Marriott Blantyre Ryalls is perfectly suited for business travellers and holidaymakers alike. This district has become the financial hub of Malawi and the hotel is only 15 minutes from the airport. The hotel accommodation is spacious, elegant and comfortable, comprising of air-conditioned and en-suite rooms, with satellite TV amongst its facilities, as well as up to 500MB free wireless internet access per day. Protea Hotel Ryalls is the most technologically-advanced hotel in the country - the hotel for any result-orientated executive. After a hard and stressful day, you can either relax at the pool or work up a sweat in the Fitness Centre. Blantyre Sports Club, just down the road, offers the use of additional sporting activities such as golf, tennis, squash and bowls. Wining and dining facilities are available in the hotel and in town, plus an ideal venue for conferencing and banquets, offering world class facilities unique to the Malawi market. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Protea Hotel Blantyre

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