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“Ewww, no thank you!”

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Reviewed November 21, 2012

I am not that picky. I swear. I spent two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Honduras, for goodness sakes. But there is absolutely nothing about this place that would make me recommend it to others.

To start off, my husband and I were placed in the storage room, above the family room (which was occupied by three other tourists. A trellis was all that we got for privacy. Each time that we went in or out, we had to pass through the others' room. Awkward. And the staircase up to the storage room was nothing short of precarious. Every time that I ascended or descended, I was truly afraid of falling and seriously injuring myself.

The attitude of the family members varied from indifferent to downright hostile. The only time that they weren't ignoring us or scowling at us was when we left. And we had to share a bathroom with them. (Sigh.) There were about 12 of us sharing one toilet, and about half the time the bathroom was occupied by a family member taking ANOTHER shower. (Grrrrr!)

We booked four nights here based on all the TripAdvisor reviews, but left after two. We just couldn't take it any more. There was a chat addict camped out at the front gate, a cat in heat screeching all night, and a nearby Mosque that blasted out chants until late and night and then resumed again at 5:00am.

Room Tip: There is one room with a private bathroom. If you can't book that room, don't bother stayin...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Amberguesa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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33 - 39 of 51 reviews

Reviewed November 5, 2012

I am so glad I stayed at Zubeyda Guesthouse. The sisters offered us tea on arrival and a traditional breakfast each morning. Our guide explained the interesting and beautiful features of this traditional family house. It's not luxury accommodation but the room was very clean, neat and cosy. The shared bathroom was basic but fine (only 1 room has an ensuite). The location is great for exploring the old town and is very close to restaurants in the new town.
I'm not sure how you would find it alone - another reviewer gave directions. A different way is to enter the old town through the Showa Gate (which has many other names) walk down the lane, across from a butcher turn left and it's the grey gate on the left. A much easier way to book and find the guesthouse is to contact Biniyam Mengistu (feresmegala@gmail.com; 0911 076059) who I can highly recommend as a guide for Harar and surrounds.

Room Tip: Only one has ensuite. The room inside the main house is up a steep staircase but is lovely!
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank NatSR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 14, 2012

We had originally planned to stay at Rowda Guesthouse, but due to conniving staff at the Rowda Hotel we ended up without a booking. In ancient, mysterious Harar no hotel will do (& certainly not the plastic bling on offer at the place mentioned above)! So, we were grateful for the opportunity to stay with Zubeyda Guesthouse on the spur of the moment.
The guesthouse is an authentic Harari home; on offer is a handful simple, clean rooms (shared bathroom-kinda-thing) with breakfast included in the reasonable price. You take your meal in the showroom reminiscent of the durbar of the emirs of yore...You wake up early amid the hustle & bustle of the fourth holiest city of Islam - and step out of the little compound and gobble up the atmosphere and sunlight directly (the sugadatberi-gate is a spear throw away!) Harar is a marvelous place, highly recommendable for a poetic soul, as Burton and Rimbaud might attest, and Zubeyda is smack in the middle of it! The one thing: mind the house curfew! - do not expect to linger late on the night scene, or you'll be in trouble with the powers that be and your breakfast might suffer for it. If you want to enjoy a traditional Harari home, though, no frills, then do consider this place!

Room Tip: Might want to ask for the one room with attached bathroom.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Kjetil W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 24, 2012

Me & my family stayed @ Zubeyda Waber Harar Culture Guesthouse for about 15days starting from July 5/2012 for vacation and we enjoyed every moment of our stay, with best meal and breakfast served. Even if we are Harari people and my own grandparents house we always amazed by our own country every time we went there. Harar city is really "The Living Museum" and Zubeyda Guesthouse is a great place to stay.

Room Tip: The main house called the "Nedebadar"
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Binet A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 24, 2012

Zubeyda Waber and her sister, Rowda both own guesthouses in the Old City of Harar. I stayed in Zubeyda's.

First of all, the rooms are very clean! :) The beds have mosquito tents already hung and some very warm, thick, soft blankets. There is two rooms and a bathroom, with two beds. The bathroom has its own water heater (wait about 15 minutes after turning it on before taking a shower). Breakfast is served at around 8:00 (just hang out on the porch in front and she will bring it) and is delicious.

The location is stellar as well. It's right in the middle of the Old City and a five minutes' walk from the New City. Just find "Photo Tesfaye" on the main road take a right, and at the next fork, another right, then an immediate left, and it's the metal doors on the right. Confused? Not sure if it's available? Contact Biniyam Mengitsu at feresmegala@gmail.com . He will book it for you as well as provide guide services for $25 USD per day (potentially negotiable?).

Overall the best place in town! :)

Room Tip: As far as I know, there's only one.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Nalativa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2012

I found Zubeida guest house to be very clean. I had a room with on-suite bathroom in the middle of the old Harar walled city. I highly recommend staying at Zubeida or her sister's guest house, Rewda guest house. They both are very clean and both sisters are very hospitable. Make sure to visit both guest houses since rooms are very few and are filled quickly, especially at Rewda guesthouse.

Room Tip: Ask Zubida for the room with on-suite bathroom, if available.
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Farzad_60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2011

We wanted to stay inside the walled old town and glad we stayed here! The rooms and shared bathroom were cleaner than some of the more expensive hotels we stayed in Ethiopia. They have a traditional Harari living room for guests (as well as themselves). We were able to relax in the living room and even caught up on English news and movies - they have satellite cable TV! Breakfast consisted of delicious Harari doughnuts/beignets and freshly baked bread with honey and coffee and tea with cardamom. There are only 2 guesthouse within the walled city and the other is owned by her sister. One con is that there are no restaurants in the old town so you'll have to walk to the nearest gate and catch a bajaj to Fresh Touch or Hirut restaurants, about Birr10. If you are going to Harar, this is the only place to stay!

Room Tip: She charges per bed ( Birr300). She has 6 small double beds and 5 rooms. One room has ensuite bathro...
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  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank tintje
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Zubeyda Waber Harar Cultural Guesthouse

Address: Harar, Ethiopia
Location: Ethiopia > Harari Region > Harar
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Ranked #6 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in Harar

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