Ocean View room
The Kilimanjaro hotel Kempinski Dar Es Salaam has for many years been the top destination in East Africa
, for not only tourists but dignitaries from around the world. Built in the 1960s and having undergone extensive recent renovation, it is affectionately known as "The Kili" and was perhaps the first five-star property on the continent. There are 180 rooms and suites, three restaurants, two bars and lounges, a pool, spa and even a casino. The shopping arcade is small but does include a fairly priced jewelry store carrying beautiful tanzanite jewelry.
Wows and Woes
The hotel's Palm restaurant has a fantastic buffet at both breakfast and lunch, and at least once a week for dinner. The cuisine itself is five-star caliber and worth a visit to even if you are not staying at the property.
Many things are done on what is lovingly called "African time". Despite the world class accommodations you must remember that you are in Tanzania so when you ask for a wake up call it probably won't come on time.
The jewelry shop inside the shopping arcade offers some very unique tanzanite pieces and if you are short on time you won't go wrong there. However, if you are looking for handicrafts go elsewhere. It is much higher priced at the hotel than you will find out and about in the city. Also, splurge for the sea view room for only a few Euros more. The view is well worth it!
Author's Most Memorable Moment
The bathroom sports two large panes of glass facing into the room that allow for a feeling of openness reminiscent of a safari lodge. Following a day of sightseeing in the African heat I drew a bubble bath, relaxed and read a book while looking out at the sea. After soaking away the heat and dust, I ordered a delicious meal delivered to the comfort of my room. Now that was heaven.
This is the best property in Dar Es Salaam. There are often good deals and most will include the buffet breakfast. It's a definite respite in this capital city.
Morissa Pawl has been a professional in the travel industry for more than 20 years. She has worked with companies around the globe and contributed to travel magazines, Petersen Publications and various websites. Pawl holds an M.B.A. and serves as an instructor for a distance education institution.