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Arusha Planet Lodge
Ranked #3 of 45 Hotels in Arusha
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 August 2013

There are lots of great things about Planet Lodge - the rooms are great, the staff are friendly and the setting is beautiful. At the same time there are things we didn't enjoy - the mistakes (they forgot my wifes main both times we ate, they lost luggage for a few hours), the sleepless nights due to work going on, the location was a bit far out of town. It was a good place to stay to bookend our honeymoon, but it was not as amazing as some of the reviewers had led us to believe.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gingray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 10 August 2013

I have to say, I am a little surprised by the high ratings and strong reviews Planet Lodge has generally received. We stayed for a total of 5 nights over the span of our 4 weeks in Tanzania (before/after Kili trek, safari & Zanzibar) and stayed in three different rooms. While our stay was not unpleasant, certain features did make it uncomfortable.

Firstly, as previous posters have mentioned, I would agree that the grounds are lovely, staff generally pleasant and competent, and food is quite good. Drink prices were also quite reasonable.

We found the rooms, however, to be in need of improvements. All three rooms we stayed in were old and not the cleanest (e.g. bathroom floors not thoroughly cleaned, thick layers of dust on the shelves). Towels were thin and of a poor quality. We found the beds okay, but pillows were very thin and uncomfortable. The rooms and bathrooms are all quite dark, so the use of a headlamp is necessary. Finally, all rooms are duplex bungalows and we found them to be quite noisy due to thin walls between you and your neighbours.

The housekeeping staff seemed to be a little hit and and miss... in one room we received two small hand towels, but nothing else, in another there was no wastepaper basket and another was missing a pillow.

All in all, not an unpleasant stay, but we will probably look for an option with more comfortable rooms next time.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Max_TMC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PlanetLodger, Director of Sales at Arusha Planet Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2013

Dear Max_TMC,

Thank you for taking the time to post a review from your August stay at Planet Lodge. I am glad to know you "agree that the grounds are lovely, staff generally pleasant and competent, and food is quite good. Drink prices were also quite reasonable." Thank you for noting all this.

I am however disappointed and concerned to hear of your negative experience. It is certainly not indicative of the service our staff strives to provide our guests. I have shared your comments with our management and housekeeping teams and we have addressed these issues accordingly - including an inventory/quality check of our towels, linen, pillows, bathroom lighting and housekeeping process. I sincerely hope we have an opportunity to welcome you back to Planet Lodge - so you can also see the difference your feedback has made.

Best regards,
Eva

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Reviewed 1 August 2013

We stayed here for 1 night after landing in Kilimanjaro airport before starting our 9 day safari. We had lunch on the lawn and it was very comfortable. Food was great. Wifi everywhere was a definite plus. It is a great place to start our vacation.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank BrysonSeattle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2013

This hotel is beautiful. The dining room is warm and inviting, the dinner and breakfast offered variety and good food, the service was warm and friendly and the location is good. The view of Mount Meru is spectacular. But the beds were just awful. My bed was hard and unyielding. The mattress was very thin and laid on a wood frame. The pillow was a tiny, thin piece of foam. When I woke up, my shoulders and hips ached and my daughter said she was so tired from tossing and turning she felt like crying. I would like to recommend this hotel for all its nice features but these might be the worst beds I have ever slept on in all my travels. It was not a good place to start a safari.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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Thank CapitalMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PlanetLodger, Director of Sales at Arusha Planet Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 2 August 2013

Dear CapitalMom,

Thank you for taking the time to review your recent stay with us. I am glad to know you think - the hotel is "beautiful, the dining room is warm and inviting, the dinner and breakfast offered variety and good food, the service was warm and friendly and the location is good". Likewise, I am pleased to know that you had time to enjoy the "spectacular" view of Mount Meru.

On the other hand, I am also sorry to learn that our beds were "unyielding" and uncomfortable for you and your daughter. Overall, we have gotten excellent feedback on sleep quality from previous clients... As you might agree, the preference of hard vs. soft mattress is rather subjective. What we have done to address this is to provide extra blankets in each room so clients can use it on the bed to make it softer or as additional cover when the weather is cold. Likewise, had you called the front desk (0), we would have gladly brought you an extra duvet or fleece blanket for more cushion.

We highly appreciate your choice to stay with us and hope to host you again in the future. Just let us know you want a soft bed and our housekeeping team will top your mattresses with a soft cushion to ensure you are comfortable.

I believe you enjoyed the rest of your Safari!

Best regards,
Eva.

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Reviewed 24 July 2013

After we landed in Kilimanjaro Airport, we stayed one night at Planet Lodge before we started our 8-day safari. My friend who climbed Kilimanjaro stayed here pre and post his climb.

It is outside of main hub of Arusha so it is much quieter. We opt to by-pass Arusha and travel thru small villages to get to Planet Lodge. These villages are tiny and poor. Then, you get to Planet Lodge and behind the gate, it is a different world. Serene and quiet!

The bungalows are duplex and the walls are bit thin. Of course, we had our friends as duplex mates and I heard the husband snore all night long. I wore earplugs for the night. For one night, I can put up with it plus it is our friend! We stayed in one of the original bungalows.

The rooms are very comfortable and spacious. The lights are bit dim so take LED lamp with you. I used a LED headlamp for a reading lamp.

Everybody is super nice and very helpful. You feel very welcomed.

We had dinner at Planet Lodge and the dinner was delicious. You have meat and vegetables options served buffet style. You can eat whatever you want and as much as you want. We also had breakfast before embarking on our safari. One of our friends had 7 egg omelet because he is on a protein diet and the chef didn't blink an eye with this request. I don't eat much breakfast as a rule but I had to try their omelet. I got the normal 2 egg omelet with chili peppers and vegetables and it was one of the best omelets I ever had. Tanzanian egg yolks are as not yellow as we are used to in US and the omelet looks like it was made with whites only. And the coffee drinkers said they have excellent coffee!

Room Tip: Ask for newer bungalows
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  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank fruitbowl_25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2013

We stayed the night before and the night after our safari and this place pleasantly exceeded our expectations.

We chose Planet Lodge because it was one of the cheapest lodges in Arusha as we just needed a place to sleep the nights either side of our safari, however we were surprisingly pleased with the standard and service offered. The rooms are nicely sized, the food was good and the lodge has a well kept pool with a bar to sunbathe around.

The lodge is fairly remote, so if you wish to visit Arusha city frequently you may wish to consider somewhere closer, however if you are looking for somewhere to crash before and after safari then this place is perfect. They also let you store any additional luggage in a safe room free of charge for those with more luggage who are heading on to the islands afterwards.

We took a taxi from outside JRO airport to Planet Lodge for $50 which takes about 1hr, however we used their service to return for $80 as there did not appear to be any taxi's around the outside of the lodge. I would recommend doing this.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Ian M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PlanetLodger, Director of Sales at Arusha Planet Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 21 July 2013

Dear Ian M,

Thank you for reviewing your for your June stay! We are very happy to know that we pleasantly exceeded your expectations for our services and amenities. We also appreciate you sharing this on Trip Advisor. We would love to welcome both of you back sometime soon.

Karibu tena!
~Eva

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Reviewed 15 July 2013

I had a work-related visit to Arusha and we chose Planet Lodge for its proximity to Nelson Mandela University. The lodge setting is really great, different from the big hotels in Europe. There is a great view on Mt Meru, and the venue itself is beautifully designed.
The rooms are very spacious, each having AC and own tiny balcony,
Slightly remote location of the hotel is not a problem as there is a convenient connection by daladala to Arusha downtown. The hotel itself has also a free transportation to town center every day except for weekends. Hotel's location assures pieceful environment. Besides excellent food from the hotel restaurant, it is also close to other places where you can eat well.

Planet Lodge's staff is very helpful, professional and allert to assist you at all times. Also, my stay was organized within a bigger group coming for the same work purpose. Organizing the group booking was very easy thanks to hotel's Managing director. And in case the group is bigger than the number of sleeping places, Planet Lodge can accommodate some guests at a different venue for the same price, and provide a free shuttle service between the hotels.

I warmly recommend Planet Lodge to anyone coming for holiday or business!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled on business
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Matylda_FI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PlanetLodger, Director of Sales at Arusha Planet Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 21 July 2013

Dear Matylda,

It's so much fun for us to coordinate big conference bookings, particularly when coming to Arusha for business and later pleasure. We thank you for giving us that chance! We appreciate your recommendation and are glad we were able to make the booking process seamless and the group's stay excellent. We look forward to seeing you again soon!

Asante sana!
~Eva

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Additional Information about Arusha Planet Lodge

Address: Plot 2271, Moshono Village, Arusha, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 45 Hotels in Arusha
Price Range: £60 - £198 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Arusha Planet Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 28
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in the heart of Arusha, Planet Lodge will captivate you with the natural beauty of the Tanzanian landscape. Our unique African village styled accommodations offers you a peaceful sanctuary where you can unwind and connect with nature. Situated on 4.5 acres of lush gardens with views of Mount Meru, this African retreat places you in the center of that delicate balance where nature and casual living intersect. ... more   less 
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