We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“The good the bad and the ugly”
Review of Sunbird Ku Chawe

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 8 more sites!
Sunbird Ku Chawe
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Zomba
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 13, 2011

The Good:-
We arrived there from Thyolo on the bumpy hole riddled Blantyre road and were received with a friendly smile. We were then taken to our room,s and after inspecting it, we really weren't happy, as we wanted something with a garden and not a first floor. well ... our rooms were changed to a garden access with no quibble.

The Bad:-
Since my last trip to Ku Chawe Inn, sometime in the 90's, nothing has changed. The cheeky monkeys are still there to steal your food, the menu is pretty much the same (even the "fresh onion soup"), and the tourist trap outside the main entrance with wood carvings is also still there.

The Ugly:-
The rooms were appalling, furnished in the 80's, I don't think they were ever renovated since. The rooms were filthy, smelly and had just the basics. No hot water, this had to be brought in by 20ltr buckets from reception, and with two small kids this was a looong wait.

If you can ... miss this place, go up Zomba for the day and find yourself another place to stay in.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank fbenettolo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (149)
There are newer reviews for Sunbird Ku Chawe
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

125 - 131 of 149 reviews

Reviewed June 6, 2011

I stayed 4 days at the Sunbird on the plateau. The walks from the hotel in the morning were a refreshing start of very hot and long working days. The breakfasts buffet were offering a surprising variety. And the dinners matched this. the only recurring issues were the difficulty to connect to the internet from the rooms and the time it took for the water to warm up in the most remote rooms.

Room Tip: ask for a room close to the reception - avoid 222
  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank domtouche
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2010

We hadn't intened to stay in a Sunbird hotel as we had heard the were bad but we enciutered a couple of people who said they were ok, and we were keen to check out Zomba plateau, so we checked in to Ku Chawe. What a mistake. We should have camped. Service poor, room shabby with a thin dor through to the next door room so you could actually hear the man in the other room snoring during the night (and this was in a so-called "deluxe" room), restaurant hideously overpriced and food took voer an hour to come. Don't stay here if you can help it - the location is all it has to offer

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank HanWood1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 14, 2010

The hotel is located on the top of the Zomba Plateau, with stunning views wherever you look from. The surroundings of the hotel are very beautiful, they take good care of the garden. Breakfast is served in a buffet, with a wide range of options. Be aware of monkey, they may grab your fruits! If you are keen on walking there are plenty of walks with diverse difficulties. Outside the hotel there is a market where you can find lots of local handycrafts as well as local guides, they will be happy to show you around.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Tintin1910
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 5, 2009

We stayed in Ku Chawe Inn for three nights. The hotel is rather expensive and the rooms looked rather old and urgently need renovation. Nevertheless, we enjoyed our stay. The hotel staff is not as efficient as you are probably used to, but in general everybody was very friendly and helpful. Friendly people matter to us more than stylish rooms.

The views from Zomba Plateau are great. We hiked a lot (on the first day with a guide). Since we came there by public transport Ku Chawe Inn was a good starting point for our hikes. There are no other hotels on the plateau.

After renovations this will be a nice hotel. Until then don't expect too much from the rooms and enjoy the views! Alexandra and Thomas from Austria

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank ViennaReisefreund
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2008

Yes, the view is outstanding, but I felt that the food and service was below average (even as compared to other places in Malawi) and I am sure there are other lodges with the same view on that plateau. Also was annoyed that there was no shuttle into town, as was promised via email; and then you were coerced into using the taxi service of the hotel's affiliate, which were 50 % more expensive than the local guys that we used. I suggest that you visit Ku Chawe for a sundowner drink, but most likely can find better accommodation elsewhere.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Thank mpumalindy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2008

If you are a couple (newlywed or whatever), this hotel is a must when visiting Malawi. A few things: (1) make sure to see the baboons at lunch time; (2) enjoy a drink of Amarula on the rocks at the bar before dinner; and (3)light the fireplace in your room before going to sleep. The rooms are great. The restaurant is a bit slow, but so is everything else in Malawi. Have no expectations and enjoy!

  • Stayed: June 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank MXPNewYork
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Zomba
0.0 mi away
Hotel Masongola
Hotel Masongola
#2 of 2 in Zomba
16 reviews
0.0 mi away
Bridgeview Hotel & Conference Centre
0.0 mi away
Blue Waters by Serendib
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.0 mi away
President Walmont Hotel
President Walmont Hotel
#3 of 12 in Lilongwe
95 reviews
2.8 mi away
Splendor Hotel
Splendor Hotel
#1 of 1 in Zomba
2 reviews
1.6 mi away
Pakachere Backpackers & Creative Centre
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Sunbird Ku Chawe? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Sunbird Ku Chawe

Address: Zomba Plateau, Zomba, Malawi (Formerly Le Meridien Ku Chawe)
Phone Number:
Location: Malawi > Southern Region > Zomba
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Zomba
Price Range: $152 - $248 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Sunbird Ku Chawe 3*
Number of rooms: 37
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, Booking.com, Priceline, Agoda, TripOnline SA, Hotwire and Cheap Tickets so you can book your Sunbird Ku Chawe reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Sunbird Ku Chawe Hotel Zomba

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing