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“Very disappointing”
Review of Sam's Giardino

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Sam's Giardino
Ranked #11 of 50 Swakopmund B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 6 August 2007

Firstly, this is just an ugly hostel, not a hotel. The place is damped and moldy. The employees looked like they would rather be dead than there, and the receptionist was the rudest, most miserable person we encountered in the whole of Namibia. The owner - Sam- looked like he had not taken a shower or washed his clothes in months. Most of the time we felt like we were intruding when using the common areas, as it was not unusual to find Sam sleeping -mouth open and snoring- in the small living room which one has to cross when going to the reception.

We were there for three nights and every night we killed a cockroach. There was a dental floss in the bathroom floor when we checked in and it was still there when we left -it probably is still there today!- We could not leave this horrible place as it was the end of Easter week and everywhere else was full and so were the hotels and campsites in our next destinations.

Breakfast was horrible, flies everywhere and the two huge dogs, although very pretty, were always in the dining room –during breakfast and diner as well- harassing you for food. They will just sit next to you salivating, coming to the very edge of the table. This dogs were as tall as the tables so it was like they were sitting having breakfast/diner with you. It rained everyday, so you can only imagine the smell of these dogs and therefore, the smell in the enclosed dinning room.

One good thing, Sam really knows about wines, but the wine tasting can be skipped; Sam does not make it fun and enjoyable. It is more like a lecture with a very serious, stone-faced teacher.

We know this is Africa, but in our 20 days visit to Namibia, we stayed at much cleaner, friendlier and cheaper places, these including campsites across Namibia.

Sam's Giardino should not be considered a hotel, and should not be listed in the "high end, top end” sections in Loney Planet, Footprint, ...

There are nicer, cheaper and cleaner places in Swakopmund.

  • Stayed: April 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
5  Thank Cosita
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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80 - 86 of 183 reviews

Reviewed 22 March 2007

First of all this establishment should not be advertised as a hotel...it is only a guest house...and a poor one at that.
It offers extremely small rooms with no airconditioning or fan, a view of the neighbours roof and an icy receptionist that has lost the touch in dealing with customers.
My recommondation is ... stay away... there are far better establishments in Swakopmund.
We ended up booking out and booked in at "The Burning Shore Hotel " situated about 15 Kms outside Swakopmund. We absolutely loved every single minute and where overwhelmed by the excellent service received from the friendly and effecient staff. The view from our room was simply stunning. A most enjoyable stay!

Stayed: March 2007
5  Thank CasualHarry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2006

We stayed at Sam’s Giardino two nights and found the stay very pleasant. The rooms are not terribly large, but that’s reflected in the price, obviously. The room that we stayed in was very clean and quiet with the usual amenities. We couldn’t fault it. The hotel has a small but very attractive garden and there are some secure parking spaces in a lot at the back. The food and the service were both very good, particularly the breakfasts. The hotel is located a few blocks away from the centre of town – it probably took us about ten minutes to walk to the main street. However Swakopmund seems to be a fairly safe place (relative to, say, Windhoek), so we didn’t mind the stroll in, even at night.

The best feature of this place is that the quietly-spoken Sam clearly loves Namibia and he does make a real effort to share his knowledge of the country with his guests. We arrived at the hotel after dark and we hadn’t really planned properly what we were going to do the next day. However Sam quickly put us in touch with a local guy who runs nature tours of the dunes (there’s a surprising amount of wildlife in those vast piles of sand). This was an inspired choice and the next day we enjoyed one of the best tours of our whole African holiday. Sam also maintains a well-stocked library of books and videos about Namibia in the small, but comfortable, lounge area of the hotel. We watched a video about the Skeleton Coast with some other guests before we were called to the evening dinner.

This hotel is not a five star establishment and doesn't pretend to be, but I've given it the maximum score because, in my opinion, it would be very hard to improve upon it without increasing the price per person.

  • Stayed: July 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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6  Thank doctorcongo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 October 2017
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  • Stayed: September 2017, travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Anni597
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 September 2017 via mobile
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Stayed: September 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank Bushbock7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2017 via mobile
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Stayed: August 2017, travelled with friends
Thank Helbig F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2017
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  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Kenmare35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SamsGiardino, Owner at Sam's Giardino, responded to this reviewResponded 4 August 2017
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Additional Information about Sam's Giardino

Address: 89 Lubowski Ave., Swakopmund 0000, Namibia
Phone Number:
Region: Namibia > Erongo Region > Swakopmund
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 50 B&Bs / Inns in Swakopmund
Price Range: £67 - £142 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Sam's Giardino 2.5*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy the Giardino Experience surrounded by an intimate atmosphere and creative spirit - from the wine cellar filled with the Cape`s finest and candle-light gourmet dinners to libraries of books and travel info. Our tranquil gardens invite you to relax over sundowners, after exhilarating excursions, while our comfort rooms decorated in mostly natural materials ensure that you feel pampered even in your sleep. The Giardino is a haven to those who love all the good things in life ... and Bernese Mountain Dogs. ... more   less 
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