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“Excellent Location for Good Value holiday”

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Bamboo Garden Hotel
Ranked #1 of 13 Kololi B&B and Inns
Reviewed 17 March 2016

Our first trip to Gambia and the Bamboo Gardens is a good choice - just 150m from Kololi beach and a 10 minute walk from the strip restaurants. Reception and room staff were very friendly and quickly attended to our needs. Our room in the rear section was of good size with large double bed, air con, lockable safe and ensuite shower room. The room was cleaned daily with fresh towels. There is a small pool with limited sunloungers which were pre-booked most days (with towels put out before dawn!!). Internet available but very slow download speed.

Room Tip: The rear building rooms were quiet (possibly by being away from pool area?).
  • Stayed: February 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
4  Thank David M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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20 - 26 of 98 reviews

Reviewed 16 March 2016 via mobile

After reading some of the reviews here I was dubious but pleased I ignored them.

Let's first remember The Gambia is not London. It's not Spain. It's not Greece and it's a poor, poverty stricken country.

The bamboo staff greeted us with great big smiles and were happy to help. As was every Gambian we met!

We checked in and had our bags carried to our room. The room was spacious. We had a sort of wardrobe hanging area. A bamboo desk. Two units by the massive bed which could easily sleep four and then some!! Very comfy and noiseless too. A beautiful mural above the bed as well. A telly. Air conditioning (no extra charge in the room rate on booking. Com) bathroom had a mirror. Toilet. Shower shelf and bin. Perfectly acceptable. Of course there were some flaws. But no different to our Lanzarote trip last year. Cleaned every day by excellent cleaning staff.

The pool is in need of some work, watch your toes but it's a refreshing dip in the heat of the day. The pool lad is a credit to the hotel. Funny. Attentive, but not over bearing. Helpful and always working. Those who have wrote the staff here are lazy are wrong. They are not. They are Gambian and when there's nothing to do they relax. And when there is work to do they do it and do it well. With a smile too.

The healing hands team are always good for a bit bantar. Though my man is now the pool champ!

Breakfast - it's not the ritz! The food is the same. But they'll make the eggs any way you like and there's always plenty bread for toast. Couple of fruit juices. Hot dog sausages (cold) tea and coffee. Cheese and watermelon and sometimes beans. And a cereal. It's basic but if you ask for something they'll do their best. Oh. And pancakes.

The restaurant isn't the best place to eat though will do if you don't feel like venturing out and being hassled.

There is a lot of lads on the road outside. Most friendly and happy to have a chat. Some chancers like you'd expect but it's the same up at the strip.

Overall a happy relaxed and funny stay. Funny goings on, yes. But we saw this in a few bars and on the beach too; each to their own and it was generally discreet so don't be put off by this.

Would gladly stay again!

Stayed: March 2016, travelled as a couple
1  Thank jadem2408
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2016

I have been to Gambia many times and stayed at different locations & hotels,it is usually a hit and miss. I was glad I choose Bamboo, it is very well located and quite open and relaxed atmosphere. The room standards are basic but clean and well kept. I would recommmend.

Stayed: March 2016
1  Thank FL D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2016

When we arrived, tired thirsty hungry and hot - the room we were given had a double bed instead of the twin we booked. There was however a small single bed put in the kitchen/living area that had a filthy matress, could feel every spring and the pillow stuffing in hard lumps. I would have possibly used it for a dog bed... so we went back to reception and were faced with a less that customer friendly attitude. They may aswell have said "take what you are given and be happy"... however... after being shown another room we could have, which was small, dark, not clean and had a leaking toilet, me and my friend decided to take the apartment and sleep in the same bed for the week.
We then were told card payments are no longer taken so we would have to go to the bank and get cash for them. So the next morning, we walked to the bank but couldnt talk to each other as we had to contend with harassment from the halfwits that swarm the road.... then I got charged to take the money out of the bank... anyway, long story short... the manager was great, he took the bank charges I incurred off my bill as the policy of not taking credit cards had changed after my booking.
We finally realised that actually we were lucky to have one of the apartments and the receptionist that were initially quite irritated were fantastic for the rest of week.
The food at the hotel isnt up to much, wouldnt recommend eating there and its quite expensive. Breakfast is included, not a good breakfast - but I found it good enough.
Most of the staff at the hotel are very good, the cleaners are great and always happy to help. There is one lad who works at the pool who is really good, by 8am the cushions and towels are on the sunloungers and he is cleaning the pool.... when hes not there the others are lazy and most of the time we went out the back to get our own cushions and towels.
The security guards are all really nice. Some like sitting and smoking weed though so not sure how fast they could move if they needed to!!
Other guests told me the rooms there are rented out locally by the hour, I cant confirm that but for sure guests were bring back prostitutes so think before you take your kids there.
The location is very good if you are a beach goer, and there are some good restaurants just a few steps away.
My friend and I went there for a relax in the sun week so were not bothered about exploring, however there is nothing attractive about Kololi and the bumsters are a total pain, still that is up to them, they are only ruining their own tourist trade - all in all we had a nice time at the hotel sunbathing by the pool and met some great people who where also staying there.

  • Stayed: February 2016, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Rayanna G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 February 2016 via mobile

I stayed two nights and when I arrived 9.30pm the bathroom light did not come on. In 5 minutes an electrician came! I was impressed that they had an electrician on night duty. He changed the bulb. The staff in the restaurant next morning were chatty and friendly. I saw the pool being cleaned daily.

It is a locally owned hotel, staff seem pretty satisfied to me. The bar service was good and the food was nice. Breafast buffet had great choice fresh fruits or eggs, toast, frankfurters, sardines, salad, fresh pancakes made throughout the service nice and hot etc. What's not to like?? Its Africa and the place is not expensive it is near the beach. It is safe.

The mini spa is fab. I had the best foot scrub ever. Peducure skills not great tough but my feet looked much better. The massage is very good. Over an hour!!

Yes, I will definately be back for a restful break.

Stayed: February 2016, travelled solo
1  Thank Yvonne W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 February 2016

Just spent a week at bamboo hotel to say in need of a full restoration is a under statement. We were in room 44 and were told that was one of the better rooms. Had to spend £38 on air con and a safe for 1 week. To have a fridge was another £20 a week. The room was very poor no shower curtain so all the bath room got wet and you neighbour could get a good look at you showering. No shelving in bathroom and only 1 mirror so if you need to do your hair using a hairdryer the plug was over the other side so was unable to see what you were doing. Room poor plaster coming off walls large gap around door so mosquitoes could get in, no mosquitoes nets. Cigarette burns to bedding. Furniture dirty, 1 cupboard had lost its handles so impossible to open.
Pool needs filling continually as pool bottom is all broken, pool did get cleaned but it took all day as staff very lazy, would rather play pool with holiday makers.
If you are reading this it's not a grumble at Gambia as Gambia is great and I'm more than aware about room conditions in Africa as I have travelled all over Africa. The grumble is with the hotel and thomas cook giving it a 3 star rating in my opinion spend a little more and stay at the Senegambia hotel, for what we saw its far better .

Stayed: January 2016
1  Thank Joanne N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2016

Small hotel the rooms were around the pool or through the back in a very peaceful courtyard. Very basic rooms but large comfy beds very clean and were adequate remembering that you were in Africa. We stayed in room 37 when the towel rail broke it was fixed the same day I cant understand the review from Dawn there is a plumber on duty from 4pm till 10pm 2 electricians 4pm till 10pm all have worked there for 4 years .There are security guards 24 hours a day all have worked there since the hotel was opened you just had to ask and it was done .
Breakfast was watermelon banana and oranges cereal or porridge, french bread or ordinary bread that you could toast eggs any way you wanted beans sausage cheese then gambian food 4 different juices tea and coffee .nothing was too much trouble and yes everything was gambian time but we were on holiday so no rush . Yes we will be back November wi fi is hit and miss but again this is Africa and why do I want wi fi the most relaxing month we had the noise from the disco did not bother us and we are both 70 and not deaf !

Room Tip: all rooms have air con but the courtyard was quieter
  • Stayed: January 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank jammycrammy2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Bamboo Garden Hotel

Address: | Off Bertil Harding’s Highway Duplex Complex Center, Kololi, Gambia
Region: Gambia > Banjul Division > Kololi
Bar / Lounge Kitchenette Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 13 B&Bs / Inns in Kololi
Price Range: $42 - $76 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Bamboo Garden Hotel 3*
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Also Known As:
Bamboo Garden Hotel Gambia/Kololi

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