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“Wonderful hotel with surprisingly good food!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Lake Manyara Serena Lodge

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Lake Manyara Serena Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
23 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Wonderful hotel with surprisingly good food!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 9, 2013

We stayed two nights at the Serena. By far this was by far the nicest hotel of our two-week trip. The setting is beautiful with a sparkling clean infinity pool overlooking the valley and the lake. The rooms were large and luxurious (best shower of the trip!) and service was great; we had huge fruit baskets and fresh flowers in our rooms; in the evening, beds were turned down and the mosquito net set up; bathrobes, slippers and quality toiletries were a nice touch. Wi-fi, which worked well, was free in the pool area, dining room and lounge. And last but not least...the food was great, the best of our trip, with really delicious Indian dishes--not watered down for tourists but actually quite spicy! Great curries, masalas, delicious nan, chapati and papadum breads; homemade chutneys and pickles too. What a surprise! Of course there was plenty of non-Indian dishes to choose from as well, but we stuck with the Indian ones. Lovely grounds with lots of birds too. I might go back to Lake Manyara just to stay at this hotel!

Room Tip: 2nd story rooms will have a better view but require going up some steps.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jczinn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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718 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (131)
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English first
Wisconsin
Level Contributor
144 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2013

We stayed at the Serena as part of a package tour of western Tanzania with Let’s Go Travel. This is one of the Serena chain of lodges and is very nice. The lobby is very impressive with a seating area that looks out over Lake Manyara in the distance. It is a steep drive to get to the hotel and the last bit of road is quite rugged. The rooms are located in thatch-roofed bungalows a little walk from the main reception area. The rooms are pretty standard, well appointed with good toilet and shower facilities. The beds have mosquito netting that the staff will set up for you at night. Our room had a small balcony something of a view. There are rooms with a much better view, so ask for it if that is important to you. They have wireless Internet in the lobby and bar area, but not in the rooms. The wireless connection was OK, but slow. The bar and restaurants were fine. They had a limited menu for dinner, but the food was excellent. There is a lock box in the room.

They have a spectacular infinity pool that sits out on the deck overlooking a cliff with an excellent view of Lake Manyara. The pool area is a very nice place to lounge and talk to the other guests. The staff of the Serena was friendly, attentive and all that I spoke to had very good English. Overall, I would highly recommend the Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge if you want an upscale lodge. One quirk of the hotel is the have a frog pond that sits in the middle of the bungalow buildings. The frogs croak, pretty loudly ALL NIGHT. With the open windows they could keep you up if you are a light sleeper. I would suggest asking to be away from the pond if that is a problem. I kind of liked it.

Room Tip: If you think frogs croaking will bother you at night, ask for a room away from the pond.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GlenLivet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
42 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2013

We stayed here for one night at the beginning of our 5 day safari in Tanzania (Manyara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro). The view was amazing, and the pool was just what you needed after a long game drive. The food was one of the best we had. The room was clean, and the staff members were very friendly. As far as lodges go I would recommend it (especially the pool!).

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Alicia P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bicester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2013

Nothing is too much trouble for the staff at this wonderful hotel - they all go the extra mile and make you feel valued. Rooms are lovely - spacious and comfortable with large bathrooms and hot roomy showers. Very clean, in the rooms, public areas and the gardens. Food very good with a wide selection for all courses. Only stayed one night as part of a safari trip but would certainly recommend.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank HelenJM66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
846 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 255 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2013

Being greeted with hot towels and fresh juices as you approached the entrance to this hotel is enough the earn the service here 5 stars. It simply is a beautiful hotel. The rooms are spacious and the shower was simply tranquil. The infinity pool can be loads of fun as is the group of Swahili singers which perform at night. The food was amazing!
Highly recommended!

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Sarah I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
79 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2013

We only had one night here but really loved the hotel, the pool, gardens, rooms, bar, food, staff - all excellent. Lake Manyara was a bit of a disappointment and in light of what was to come at Ndutu, Ngorongoro, Serengeti, would probably have not stopped. Having said that, the hotel was a lovely getaway and we could have whiled away a few days in the resort.

I would highly recommend the Serena Lake Manyara if you are looking to stay in the area.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank worktotravel010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Level Contributor
57 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 28, 2013

This hotel was probably the most luxurious that we stayed in during our safari. Bathrobes were provided, with Gilchrist and Soames toiletries (the same as Cunard cruises use). Complimentary drinking water is supplied daily. The restaurant has a wide range of food. Wifi is provided over a fairly wide area. Staff are really helpful: at this hotel there is no staff tip box put in a very obvious place. Instead, they give you an envelope (only if you ask) for your money which you then hand back to reception. This is a very welcome change from the "in-your-face" soliciting for tips at other hotels on our safari.
The infinity pool is beautiful though we had no time to use it. 2 of our group had needed hospital treatment that day and the resident doctor at the hotel was very helpful and insisted on checking up on both of them, for no charge.

Room Tip: Some rooms are quite a distance from reception and some have steps. For anyone with a disability, yo...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Jenmaryb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lake Manyara Serena Lodge

Property: Lake Manyara Serena Lodge
Address: Lake Manyara National Park, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Lake Manyara National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 43 Specialty Lodging in Lake Manyara National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Lake Manyara Serena Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Taking as its muse the glorious bird life of the fabulously soda-encrusted and pink flamingo-fringed...Lake Manyara, the swooping curves of this elegantly evocative lodge defy description. As do the soaring views over the Great Rift Valley, the rose-gold sunsets over the Mto Wa Mbu escarpment and the utterly unique tree climbing Lake Manyara lions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lake Manyara Serena Hotel Lake Manyara National Park

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