Sam's Giardino

Reviews of Sam's Giardino

Good(89%) From 122 travellers
Excellent
62
Good
51
Average
9
Poor
0
Terrible
0
Below are independent comments from 122 of our travellers who have visited Sam's Giardino, and have kindly agreed to share their thoughts.

They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
The Plovers from Midanbury
Arrived on: 14-Aug-2008 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Did it rain?

Sam was a wonderful host and was quick to help in any way. Particular thanks for sorting out a hire car exchange for us while we were out for the day. The constant availability of tea/coffee and internet on the mezzanine floor was much appreciated. Einstein's library was also much appreciated. It was good to see how Sam's hotel is constantly upgrading, with new ideas and development. We were pleased to find secure carparking behind the gates.

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Mr and Mrs B from Teddington
Arrived on: 8-Aug-2008 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Good
Good
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Good
Good
Food:
Average
Average
Activities:
Good
Good
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Great base in Swakopmund

Comfortable, with Swiss precision and efficiency. And a free internet connection.

A very good base for activities around Swakopmund

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Damara Dik Dik Family - Kent
Arrived on: 7-Aug-2008 Stayed for: 4 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Average
Average
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Sam makes this place special

Don't judge by first impressions! On arrival, we were tired and bedraggled and Swakopmund seemed dreary in comparison to the desert and the wilderness regions we had been in. But once inside Sam's hotel, although basic rooms, we soon felt the charm of his dining room and upstairs sitting room and general calm atmosphere.

Sam couldn't have been more helpful making phone calls for us and spending time talking with us which proved invaluable. There is much more than meets the eye. He became a friend in four days and his women staff were all very good and attentive. I left a few items of clothing for the staff to take back to their children or families and I think I am right in saying that every month Sam does a collection of such items to hand on to his staff. This would be worth checking as I would have brought out more clothes to give to them and it might be worth letting all visitors to Sam's know of this distribution, as we can't be the only family who felt they wanted to give something back.

Sam was a wonderful person to talk with and we thank him for all he did for us.

The visit to Mondesa township was truly moving and I would recommend everyone to do this. Wished I could have seen Katatura too. Sam was so interesting to talk to and so kind with his advice. But Mondesa was a turning point for us. Again, worth taking out stuff for the people there - we handed football shirts to the leader of the tour who promised to give them to the neediest of the children. We were totally impressed by the lack of begging and no demands for anything. Instead, one of the tour guides, said it was their policy to collect all donated items and distribute them to the most needy of children rather than us just handing out things in a random way and children then becomoing demanding or even upset if they didn't get anything.

Great evening meal at Sam's. Great breakfasts in candle-light and lots of interesting books. Sam is a unique person who deserves great praise for creating a very unusual place to stay in Swakopmund and we all thank him for his time and kindness. We were sorry to say goodbye to him - in a sandstorm as he was heading off on his bike! We would recomment his guesthouse over any hotel; he provides a personal service and a knowledge and appreciation of our needs and of what Namibia can offer and above all, he doesn't rush one and he listens and takes time to help.

Kayaking & quad biking excursions - OUr Kayaking day was good fun but due to weather condiditons, we didn't make it to the dolphins. We were amongst the seals which was great and really close. jeanne was a lovely lady.

However, rather like the Sandwich Harbour trip, I think it would have been better to forewarn us that we might not see dolphin and that the kayaking was really very basic. We didn't mind but I suspect some in our group were hoping for more serious kayaking. It isn't a chea[ trip and it would be wrong for Namibians to think all of us tourists are rolling in money. Each trip = if there are 5 of you - costs a lot, and so clear information is important to know prior to settting out.

Again, picnic could have done with beers/wine and not just tea and coffee or sodas. Quite a long drive for a relatively short-lived experience of kayaking with the seals. I expect had we been able to go further out and be with dolphins our view would be different. Lovely people who organised the trip - the man and Jeanne.

Quadbiking was done under sandstorm conditions at our choice! Ours sons were desperate not to miss this so we persuaded a guide to take us out! It was amazing. Great guide and great views. Not to be missed.

Township Tour and sand boarding excursions - Sandboarding - all really nice guys and so good for our boys to talk to them. So friendly. They loved the sandboarding - me as a mother of 44 years didn't love it so much!! No pressure put on me and so I watched in the end after doing it 3 times! Very glad we did it as a family. Also, great picnic on the beach afterwards which again was a really good way to integrate with local black Namibians and talk to them properly, All delightful.

Township tour was AMAZING. I am so glad we did this. I can't say how impressed we were with the way it was organised by the guys who took us round. We suggest that they make it clear that there is a meal at the end and dancing and crafts on sale as we felt awful having to make them rush for us at 7pm. We had a dinner appointment at 7.30pm which we would not have booked had we realised that the Tour lasts as long as it does and included local food too. Important to tell tourists this. Ends really mroe like 8pm.

We took some children's clothes out from England and handed them to the Tour leaders who said they would distribute them to the children later. Might want to add this in your brochure. We couldn't get over how there was no begging for anything from us ever. The township people who shared their homes with us were so kind and I felt a bit of a voyeur at times, but the tour leaders told me it was fine. The way we were taken to different homes, to a bar, a craft shop, to meet a chief, a medicine woman...all done with ease and with no feeling of being threatened or unsafe.

We were all humbled and very moved by the whole experience. I would urge everyone to take this tour. Finally, we got to see where so many Namibians live and how they live. Our children won't forget this trip. My youngest son had collected crayons and football shirts to hand over too.

We are developing our photos in order to post them to the Tour leaders, as promised. A small price to pay for taking the photos of the people who were so ready to pose.

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Crowned plovers from Suffolk
Arrived on: 14-Jul-2008 Stayed for: 1 nights
Overall:
Good
Good
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Good
Good
Food:
Good
Good
Facilities:
Good
Good

Sam's Giardino review

We enjoyed this eccentric place and its owner Sam though would probably have preferred a more authentically local place.

Good if old-fashioned food and a truly memorable breakfast spread.

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The Aardwolves from Middlesex
Arrived on: 13-Jul-2008 Stayed for: 1 nights
Overall:
Good
Good
Location:
Average
Average
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Good
Good
Food:
Excellent
Excellent

Sam's Giardino review

This served as a very good stop-off point on a long journey. We had an excellent and very reasonably priced meal and excellent wines.

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The Harrier family from Switzerland
Arrived on: 11-Jul-2008 Stayed for: 2 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent

Sam's Giardino review

Efficient and friendly welcome by Sam. Enjoyed Sam's extensive wine collection and his wine knowledge. Very helpful regarding activities and booking them for us, even to the extent of going to the bank for us during our trip to the dunes.

Thoroughly enjoyed Living Desert learning experience - but be prepared for a cold early morning start! Loved the buzz of Swakopmund town.

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The Suricate family from Hale in Cheshire
Arrived on: 9-Jul-2008 Stayed for: 1 nights
Overall:
Good
Good
Location:
Good
Good
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Good
Good
Food:
Good
Good
Activities:
Average
Average
Facilities:
Average
Average

Sam's Giardino review

Sam's should obviously be a one-off experience included on all Namibian itineraries, but probably only for the one night as the patter might run a bit thin thereafter. What is there to say - the rooms are comfortable, the food good and imaginative, the wines and wine chat first class, the ambiance Swiss/Namibian, mine host an eccentric bon-viveur and the boss a dog - or perhaps Einstein's ghost!?

Sam also provided us with first class directions for an amble round Swakopmund where we found the museum, and particularly the section devoted to the peoples of Namibia, to be first class and well worth a detour - and perhaps more than a passing mention in Bradt.

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Mr P & Mrs C Leicestershire
Arrived on: 7-Jun-2008 Stayed for: 1 nights
Overall:
Good
Good
Location:
Average
Average
Rooms:
Average
Average
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent

Sam's Giardino review

We didn't spend much time here, but as a place to spend a night it couldn't be faulted and the food and choice of wine was second to none. Good value for money

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Dune-larks from Northallerton
Arrived on: 5-Jun-2008 Stayed for: 3 nights
Overall:
Average
Average
Location:
Average
Average
Rooms:
Good
Good
Service:
Average
Average
Food:
Average
Average
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Good
Good

Sam's Giardino review

There is nothing at all wrong with Sam's Giardino but it was a distinctly routine European-hotel-style welcome rather than the warm Namibian greetings in the lodges! Sam was away so we might have missed his buzz.

We were not at our best with a 48-hour bug but the excursions (Sandwich harbour and Living Desert Adventures) are highly recommended. We would stay nearer the town centre if we visit again.

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Dune-hoppers from London
Arrived on: 26-May-2008 Stayed for: 2 nights
Overall:
Excellent
Excellent
Location:
Excellent
Excellent
Rooms:
Excellent
Excellent
Service:
Excellent
Excellent
Food:
Excellent
Excellent
Activities:
Excellent
Excellent
Facilities:
Excellent
Excellent

Sam's Giardino review

Really enjoyed wine tasting and meal. And Sam recommended a fantastic dune safari ( Christopher Nell); this was one of the best moments of our trip. Sam was a delight.

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