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“Brilliant, What Does One Expect For Africa”
Review of Kombo Beach Hotel

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Kombo Beach Hotel
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Kotu
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 February 2011

It is the second time that i have stayed at the Kombo beach, the only thing that i agree with reading other reviews is the towell size in the bathrooms and people trying to get money from you for one reason or another. Being an avid traveller i find this in most places in the world apart from America & Europe where the prices are fixed high to compensate for high taxes and the "face" of living in the Western world.
The Kombo hotel has the best team of staff that i have met in any hotel in Africa, the rooms are of good size, not like the "cupboards" on offer at the Dunes along the coast.
and various other hotels in the gambia. The rooms are cleaned daily and the room staff very attentive to any needs or demands. The restaurant breakfast offers an array of foods so you have a good start to the day. The hotel is right on the beach with excellent security & helpful staff. The reception staff cant do enough for you upon request to make your stay the best ever.
If you are looking for a "Costa" type holiday then this might be a culture shock for you. But a fantastic experience with the nicest people i have met on this planet.
The Kombo is a GREAT place to stay for a medioka price. You pay for what you get in Africa.
The hotel is central for everything, Banjul & James Island to your left and the popular night life of the Senegambia strip on your right. Go straight ahead to Serrekunda & Brikkhama and further, then you will see real culture. It has really made me appreciate how we live in our modern western world.
The Kombo Beach Hotel has all modern facilities and i would not hesitate to stay in this hotel year after year.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank lyndagould
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 31 January 2011

First time to Gambia, when booking hotel I asked for an honest opinion from the holiday operator, they said "great hotel, needs updating", this managed my expectation, so when I arrived that is what we got, a great hotel on the best beach, great food - no illness (very rare for me!), and they were right - needs updating in the rooms- but we spent our holiday outside of the rooms, so not a problem.

If you need a fantastic guide who will take you anywhere in Gambia and sort out everything (markets, local culture and then we went off the beaten track to visit villages not visited by tourists and went stalking amazing birds for my photgraphs) I would highly recommend our guide "Lamin O" email:lobojang@hotmail.com, tel+220 7725259 awesome guy, great fun, very friendly, we hope to go back next year to travel into deepest Gambia with him.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Glidshoot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2011

Just back from one week at this hotel. I read so many reviews before we booked and even emailed someone who had just been. Hotel was great, perfect location directly on the beach. I booked an upgrade from a standard room as we wanted to ensure we had aircon, we actually ended up with a fab room (466) which was one of the larger rooms and had the most perfect view of the beach when getting ready in the morning / night.

I got bitten straight off the plane so pleased I got the jabs/tablets otherwise it could have been a week of worry.

I didn't like the hassle factor when leaving the hotel - everything seemed to be for a price.....but we soon got over that.

Security around the hotel and on the beach is great, Aladdin the fruit juice man is lovely, we got drinks for him every day.

We also changed our money out there at a place just down the road for the hotel, got a great rate.

We splashed out on our last night at went to Ngala Lodge - 10 mins in a cab - perfect end to a perfect holiday

I would defo recommend this hotel - but just be warned about the locals, sometimes they can be a little over the top and it's better to be firm from the start - unless of course you do want a cheap tour etc.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank jojo_hopkins77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 January 2011

We recently stayed at the Kombo Beach for seven nights for a winter break with the intention of just chilling out . In that respect we got what we went for .

We have travelled widely and therefore did not expect high standards in a country which is one of the poorest in Africa ......you have to be realistic !

The hotel is right by a lovely beach with free sun beds and plenty of shade......which we thought was great. we never used the pool or area around as it was always too full up ......the swimming pool is simply too small for the number of guests ! The hotel grounds are very nice and well kept .

The hotel rooms are fairly basic - which we expected , but we did have a good view (2nd floor) of the sea. We were not impressed with the cleaning staff or the room facilities ...it was all looking tired even the towels and sheets looked worn out!

The food in the hotel was good . Breakfast is everything you need and we ate at Geckos and the Al carte and both were good . evening entertainment was fairly limited and there is not much else in the hotel.

We ate out most nights and would recommend Sailors Restaurant ( a torch is handy ) where on Thursday they have a great live Band . Boss Lady is ok as is the Captains Table.

We thought that prices were a bit high compared to other parts of Africa. Whilst the people are really friendly the really annoying thing is that nearly everyone is trying to get money out of you ....either to sell you something or con you - sad tales about no husband. need an operation etc . if you don't want to engage in this then you have to say a firm no ......lots of time.!

All in all we had a good time . the hotel is not a4star ...... more 2/3 star but it still does the job . Would go back again ........probably not as there is still too many other places to go in the world.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Bees7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2011

Do not be fooled into thinking this hotel is 4*. The hotel itself is ok, friendly staff, good breakfast etc. The towels we didn't touch except to use as bathmats, the toilet seat was so old and urine soaked that it had split. We asked to look at the suites and other rooms, they were all the same. Don't bother wasting your money upgrading. If you plan to sun bathe and not much else, this hotel is adequate. Also prepare to get hassled, even by staff (buy this, my friend has a car he can take you to monkey park etc'

The 'gym' is a few bits of rusty pieces of equipment set out by the back.

I would not stay here again.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank snowminky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 January 2011

Thought it was about time that we added our own review of this great hotel in where we like to call our second home, The Gambia. We have visited The Gambia now four times since 2007, and have stayed at The Kombo Beach Hotel for the past 3 consecutive years now and would have no hesitation in staying there for many years to come. The Kombo sits right on a fantastic stretch of beach which is only a few steps away from the four blocks of the accomodation the hotel has to offer. The beach itself is much wider and prettier than in the more popular Senegambia area of the region.
Yes the rooms at The Kombo are on the more basic side but are very clean and have everything you need for the duration of your stay, I mean what else do you need apart from a bed, shower and a balcony to sit out on in the glorious sunshine?
It still amazes me why so many people do not favour The Gambia for a holiday destination especially in the winter months. I mean come on where else can you get 30 plus degree temperatures, which can be got to from the UK in around 6 hours and not get any jet lag as the time in The Gambia is the same as ours? You would surely have to venture further a field to the carribean or india to get the same heat and sun factor!!! people need to wise up and appreciate the fact that this is a 3rd world country and one of the poorest in Africa, so obviously it is going to be different to Spain, Greece or Skegness!!! I can honestly say that having been very fortunate to have visited countries such as Italy, Turkey, Tunisia, Egypt, Cuba, Crete, The Canaries and Croatia, The Gambia is one of our favourites. The people are wonderful and always very welcoming, friendly and willing to share local knowledge of places to see and things to do. Yes, you may get tired of telling them that your name is Joe Bloggs from Acrington Stanley and that you own a three wheeled car but isnt that all the fun? If it bothers you that much getting attention from the locals go prepared with a pre-printed t-shirt with all the information on!
Surely going on holiday is all about seeing local life, eating local food and definately drinking the lovely local julbrew lager (go easy though its a strong brand). Do yourself a favour get out and mix it with the happy smiley people you're sure to meet. Making a friend of somebody will be helpful as you will hear and see first hand what makes this place tick. If indeed you do need the services of a good, honest, funny and importantly trustworthy guide then you may want to give our friend a call Omar Camara, and if he asks who gave you his number tell him Dready sent ya.... thats sure to raise a smile. Omar can be contacted on (0022) 7273058 or (0022) 6379850.
I could go on for ages about all the joys of this great place to holiday at but go on grab a travel brochure, get it booked and find out for yourselves.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank intrepid2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 January 2011

The hotel has great access to the beach and is situated in lovely gardens. The rooms were basic but clean... and as good as you could expect for that part of the world. We stayed on a half-board basis and were pleasantly surprised by the food which actually managed to be tasty despite the mass-catering. The weather was great so we could really make the most of the beautiful beach/sea- wonderful waves to play in. The entertainment was low-key and again exceeded expectations with some wonderful local music/dance. There was no music pumped out on the beach so you could absorb yourself in your book and enjoy the surroundings. The beach was south facing so there was a great view of the glorious sunset every night.

The major downside to visiting this region is the somewhat over-aggressive approach to tourists by many locals looking to make money. This clearly is not the fault of the hotel which did make concerted efforts to stop harassment on its portion of the beach. However immediately on leaving the hotel you are accompanied by one of the many individuals loitering at the hotel gates who will then continue to talk you in to either entering their shop or going on a trip with them... or just straight out ask you for money. It is hard not to sound cold-hearted when writing something like that down- but it definitely impacts on your ability to enjoy and relax on holiday.

The Gambia is a developing country and they need (and deserve) tourist money, but the very direct approach they take can often be intimidating and end up being counter-productive. Having said that we did meet some lovely Gambians and were delighted to visit some of the less touristy areas and be invited in to people's houses.

This hotel is really well suited to a couple looking for a relaxing break in the sun. The Gambia has a lot to offer and we would recommend visiting if you can tolerate the hassle.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank M_and_D29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Kombo Beach Hotel

Address: PO Box 694, Kotu, Gambia
Region: Gambia > Banjul Division > Kotu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Kotu
Price Range: £65 - £98 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Kombo Beach Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 258
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set on the beautiful wide sandy beach of Kotu is Kombo Beach Hotel, a popular and lively hotel with a desirable range of facilities, excellent cuisine, entertainment and true Gambian hospitality. Offering 5 different room types: standard, superior, premium, studio and suites, all with excellent amenities which makes this hotel also the perfect choice for the business traveler. During 2011 and 2012 the standard & premium rooms, studios and suites were refurbished. With a choice of facilities like pool with separate children's pool, gym, internet cafe, mini market, massage & beauty saloon, laundry service, daytime and evening entertainment, clinic, lush tropical gardens, beach front setting and friendly staff this is an ideal hotel for either a relaxing or an active holiday. On site there are 3 restaurants and 4 bars. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Kombo Beach
Kombo Beach Banjul
Kombo Beach Hotel Gambia/Kotu

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