Mikhael's Hotel is a pleasant business hotel, located in the heart of Brazzaville's city centre.
Mikhael's Hotel: Our full report
Privately owned by the Khoury family who have been in Brazzaville for over 50 years, Mikhael’s Hotel opened in August 2010 and is located in the heart of the city. The hotel is still run by its owners, who were originally in the construction industry, though it’s very much a business hotel with all the amenities that you would expect.
Through an unassuming entrance with a small area for cars and taxis to park, the large and open lobby is bright, clean and quite classically designed. Cool white marble is used throughout, and African art and furniture is dotted around. The main reception at the far end is attended by polite and attentive staff, whilst up a few stairs to the right is Mikhael’s bar area. This bar area has a number of chairs and sofas – all are slightly mismatching which, along with the Persian runs makes the area feel quite homely. Whilst large flower displays and modern art on the walls add a touch of style. All together the décor is quite quirky, and though not as stylish as top city hotels elsewhere it is still certainly of a good quality and the best to be found in Brazaville.
On the next floor, above the lobby is a further bar and dining area. The same cool white marble tiles are used here and the furniture is quite minimalist in style. The bar is made entirely form cream marble, with wooden and dark red velvet chairs placed along its length. Then the dining area is open plan with numerous tables and chairs set for individual dining. Long tables on either side are where the buffet breakfast items are laid out.
A second restaurant is located on the other side of the bar in a separate room – this has a slightly more formal feel to it. Though the TVs in the background do somewhat dilute that. Buffet lunches and a la carte dinners are served here.
A third and final bar is located outside by the swimming pool, around which are numerous sun loungers. This bar and lounge area serves light snacks throughout the day. Off from the pool area is a small but well equipped gym, for anyone that feels like burning off a little energy after their long international flight.
All the 92 bedrooms at Mikhael’s are non-smoking, with a view over town or the swimming pool. There are 35 Standard Rooms with a queen bed, 35 Executive Rooms which are larger but also with a queen bed and three Deluxe Rooms with twin beds. The six Junior Suites are larger still, with a separation between the bedroom and the living room. Though the six Ambassador Suites, five Presidential Suites, and two Royal Suites are the largest rooms with a kingsized bed and a jacuzzi for two, plus an adjacent room with two double beds and a large living-room. Six of the rooms interconnect and so are good for families. These are usually an Executive room connecting to a twin.
All of the rooms have air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, a digital safe, telephone with an internal and external line. Each also has WiFi and a mini bar. The rooms are all modern and clean, with marble floors, some comfortable chairs and stylish dark wooden furniture.
Most of the rooms have a shower, but some have a bathtub with a Jacuzzi instead and no shower. The bathtub is controlled via a remote with a series of buttons and settings. We would recommend getting the room attendant who assists you with your luggage to show you how it works – it isn’t immediately obvious. The ensuite bathrooms are also modern, with dark walled tiles and toiletries provided.
Activities in Brazzaville are more a matter of wondering around and soaking up the cities atmosphere. Poto Poto is a fantastic local market, bustling with people and sellers touting their wares. Then Plateau Ville is more of an artisans market selling curios and various goods. St Anne’s Basilica is a stunning church with a striking green ceramic roof - built in 1949. Then there is of course the great Congo River - Mami Water is a lovely restaurant right worth visiting by the river with lovely views of Kinshasa. It is important to note that guides are not easy to source in Brazzaville. Tourism is not yet at a volume that supplies a steady enough flow of people to create the demand for guides. As a result visitors will have to use their guidebooks, and directions from the staff to guide themselves around the city. Mikhael’s can arrange local taxi drivers for US$10 per hour to escort you – but it is likely that their English will be very limited.
Our viewMikhael’s Hotel is a pleasant and stylish property and though its primary trade is businessmen, its certainly trying to embrace the developing tourist industry that is increasingly passing through Brazzaville. The engaging manager and very friendly staff try their best to make you feel welcome, answer any questions and direct you to local sights of interest. That said we did find the English language skills of the front of house staff a little limited.
Ideal length of stay: One night
Directions: Mikhael’s Hotel is located right in the heart of Brazzaville, about a 30-minute drive from the international airport.
Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer
Food & drink
Usual board basis: B&B
Food quality: We only had breakfast at Mikhael’s Hotel, however we heard from other guests that the food at the hotel was passable but nothing particularly special.
Mikhael’s have the Autour Du M which is the main restaurant which would be quite elegant if it were not for the TV in the corner. The buffet lunch (costing US$30 per person) and a la carte dinners are served here.
Then there is the restaurant where buffet breakfasts are served – this is rather an open plan restaurant at one side of the large room on the second floor. The breakfasts consist of a selection of cereals, pastries and breads. There is also a cooking station where you can order hot eggs.
The Executive Bar is also on the second floor – light meals and snacks are served here. There is also a bar outside by the pool offering the same.
The Gourmandine is a charming little patisserie next door to Mikhael’s – but owned by the hotel. This is really popular with local people – it is always busy and bustling and offers up a great slice of local life. Their cakes and pastries looked absolutely delicious!
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £20-25
Drinks included: No drinks are included at Mikhael’s Hotel. When we were there they cost around US$3 for a soft drink or a beer.
Attitude towards children: Mikhael’s Hotel welcomes children of all ages.
Property’s age restrictions: None.
Equipment: Mikhael’s Hotel have baby cots and high chairs. They can arrange children’s meals as well.
Generally recommended for children: This is an international style hotel that would be fine for children. Though given that we would only use Mikhael’s Hotel as a base for those going on to Odzala National Park, which has activities limited to kids over the age of 15, we will probably only ever recommend it to older children.
Power supply: Mains Electricity
Power supply notes: The power at Mikhael’s Hotel is on 24 hours a day.
Communications: Mikhael’s Hotel has WiFi for all residents in the rooms and main areas. They also have a business centre with five computers that people can use for an extra cost.
TV & radio: There are TVs in the rooms and in the restaurant.
Water supply: Mains
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: Yes
Medical care: There are no first aiders on site but Mikhael’s Hotel has a doctor on call that is close by. The nearest hospital is a five minute drive away.
Dangerous animals: Low Risk
Security measures: There are safes in all the rooms at Mikhael’s Hotel.
Fire safety: Fire extinguishers are dotted around and Mikhael’s Hotel do training with the team every six months.
Disabled access: Not Possible
Laundry facilities: Laundry is an extra cost. It is machine washed and tumble dried.
Money: Mikhael’s Hotel can offer currency exchange for its guests and there are safes in all the rooms.
Accepted payment on location: Guests can pay in cash and Mikhael’s Hotel don’t have a fee for using credit cards (unless requiring a cash advance). They can accept Visa credit cards but not Mastercard or Amex.