Reviews of Gibb's Farm
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Gibb's Farm review
Rather a long way from the main road. but beautiful location!
The staff were especially friendly and efficient.
Gibb's Farm review
We very much enjoyed our stay at Gibb's Farm, the place has a wonderful "Out of Africa" feel to it, with the guest rooms located in the middle of an active coffee plantation. The views from the terrace and the main guest house are stunning, the food is excellent and all the staff are friendly and helpful. Our guest room was spacious and beautiful, and as we stayed in early June when the nights and early mornings are very cold, we particularly appreciated the fireplace in the room.
Our only suggestion for improvement would to reduce the humidity in the rooms (even the bed linen felt uncomfortably humid) either by installing de-humidifiers and/or by providing more firewood to last the night.
We also want to say a special thanks to Ami, our guide for the Manyara / Ngorongoro leg of the trip who was excellent, really friendly and welcoming, just the loveliest person, as well as totally reliable, very knowledgeable and always happy to answer our endless questions about his country.
Very attractive setting
Lovely welcome and explanation of room facilities. Cottage was large and well-furnished. It was nice to have a good shower with plenty of hot water. Only drawback was that mosquito net around bed could have been designed better - it didn't overlap properly so wasn't really closed and left no room at all to manoeuvre round the bed. The grounds of the farm are lovely with gardens and flowers outside the cottages. There was also a fabulous view from the terrace outside the main farmhouse - where we had tea and cake in the afternoon (all included).
We appreciated the chance to just dine on our own here after a couple of days dining 'en famille' on safari. The service was very good and the food excellent - all locally grown vegetables and lovely soups.
We didn't really mind the drive to the crater, although I suppose it would have been marginally better to have been closer to the rim to save time. Our guide Kevin, from Asilia, was excellent. He had brought us from Lake Manyara airstrip and then took us to the crater the next day. He had an excellent sense of humour and was very knowledgeable. We enjoyed the crater very much although I think I was expecting to be falling over the animals and it wasn't quite like that! However, we saw a serval very close (in the daytime), and some other things we hadn't seen before such as flamingos doing aerial acrobatics and ostrich mating displays.
It would have been good to stay here one more night so that perhaps we could have walked to the Crater rim or done other activities on the farm but sadly we didn't have time.
Gibbs Farm review
A totally different location to a camp as this was in a rural location. There was no warm welcome here like other camps on our safari.
Run more like a Hotel and with no complementary items other than tea/coffee and that was a do it yourself in the main lounge. It's setting, once there, was in beautiful gardens on a coffee plantation with good views of the surrounding countryside. The individual chalets, although large and well furnished and colonal in nature were starting to look rather tired.
This was an ideal place for visiting the Ngorongoro Crater, speaking to other travellers who stayed in Lodges on the Rim, we were infact glad that we had stayed at Gibbs Farm.
Onec again we had our own driver / guide so we did not go on their activites.
disappointing given reputation
Not sure why we didn't fly on to be met at Lake Manyara airport so as to minimise road travel.
Accommodation and setting were great. Service was patchy (lack of apparent leadership) Some individual staff were helpful.
Solar hot water didn't work resulting in cold showers. Internet access very poor. Food poorest durng our trip.
We understand there has been a change of ownership and marketing now to American tour groups. During our visit, several tour groups arrived for one day/night. Independent travellers such as ourselves were marginalised. Overall our stay was disappointing given the reputation of Gibb's Farm. With hindsight we think we would have preferred to stay at the Serena Crater lodge
Expert Africa comments
Gibbs Farm responded with the following comments:
There are four issues for this recent complain and I have put our actions/comments for future travellers.
1) Cold Water.
We have discovered the error in the hot water solar settings and corrected them. We apologize for this.
2) Our food quality not up to standard
We are spending more time in the kitchen to ensure our standards do not slip again.
3) Lack of apparent leadership
This comment starts with the check in, Pre-registration and bag system - we have discussed this.
Greeting in the dining rooms, and escorting to Jacaranda or Dining room, starting at the front of the lodge. We will improve this.
4) Independent Traveler needs special attention
It is sometimes true, that tour groups can spoil the atmosphere. This problem will be sorted out in the next few months as we will renovating the main house/main dining room and we will make sure we look after smaller groups just as well.
Once again very sorry about this and we will make sure that this sort of complaint will not happen again in the future.
Gibb's Farm review
More commercial than we wanted. It's definitely more of a touristy place than some of the other places.
I would have rather stayed around the crater rim as we didn't have time to do any of the activities at the Farm. However the rooms are stunning.
Gibb's Farm review
You have to go up a very bumpy track to get to the Farm. Unfortunately didn't have time to explore the farm - it looked very interesting. Quite a long way from the crater.Read more about the whole trip
Luxury rooms but let down by average service
We visited Gibbs Farm 3 years ago and since then it's been refurbished to a very high standard - but we felt it had lost some of it's earlier charm.
The rooms are very luxurious and comfortable but we experienced a number of small but irritaitng service shortfalls where, for example, we didn't receive the drinks we'd ordered and on a couple of occassions had to wait a long time to be served dinner. We did take a guided cycling trip to the local village and town and this was very interesting and well planned out with our guide ensuring that he understood what we wanted from the trip before we started.
Kevin our guide while we were in the North was excellent and was knowledgeable not just on wildlife but also on politics and international affaires - we learnt loads. He went out of his way to ensure we got all the service we wanted
A delightful trip back to bestColonial times.
Delightful farm on small coffee plantation, dating back to First World War. Very well run, with individual lodges (inadequately described as "farmhouses") with "Colonial Style" teak floors, log fires, two double beds, stone bath and showers,etc
Very interesting tour around the coffee manufacturing process, and a lovely sitting area around log fire near there for "sundowners" before dinnner. Food superb, although dining room a bit plain and wished we could have been together with other guests rather than separated by individual tables.
We both had Masai massages which were very good.
Altogether excellent and wished we could have had another day or so here to enjoy the place more (we were out all day on safari).
Exquisite Cottage with mixed review
A very long, dusty and bumpy ride to a post card perfect coffee plantation. A photographers and garderners dream.
Drop dead hands down favorite unique location ever! Cottage comfortable roomy with two double beds, fireplace, indoor and outdoor showers, soaking tub, quality bath products and awsome views from everywhere!
Delicious creative fresh food.
Nice gift shop
We did not utilize any of the spa or farm facilities as were on safari and to the crater during 2 night stay.
Staff were friendly and attentive.
Why one asks would we have a mixed review?
1. A place of this caliber should not be charging a tab for bottled water. Especially after a hike to the "Masai healer" picnic dinner. No beverage was offered without the staff having to constantly ask guests for a room number to charge for all drinks even water. No coffee offered nor served even at a coffee plantation during this dinner! This felt petty and made guests concern themselves with tab charge accuracies instead of relaxing. This dinner was disturbed with charges even for water.
If the costs of bottled water is of concern for management a charge should have been included in the per person initial charge. This cheapened the beautiful atmosphere!
2. We stayed for 2 nights and have no idea who is the manager. We had a few simple questions along with our guide Jackson such as could we get coffee early, could we get a simple breakfast early, when to pick up a packed lunch? Each question directed to staff members resulted in mass confusion! Each staff needed to consult other staff in front of us resulting in very loud demonstrutive Swahili frustrating even our guide in confusion.
All 3 of us have been in management.
Each staff member was nice and doing their personal best to be most helpful. This staff appeared frustrated by a lack of leadership.
This appeared to us to be a MANAGEMENT problem.
Our concern: WE LOVED THIS PLACE.
In this competitive market many diserning guests will choose another easier to get to competive accomodation unless management makes some tweeks to give this fantastic place the caliber of service it deserves.