Reviews of Sam's Giardino
Wildlife sightings and reviews
173 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Sam's Giardino and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Sam's is a great place to stay"
Excellent well trained staff.
Delicious food & wine
We had arranged our own activities, a full day 'Living Desert' tour with Chris Nels, and a Seal & Dolphin trip with Levo Tours, both of which we would thoroughly recommend. (Both companies collected us from Sam's)" See all these reviews: 21n in Namibia; 3n in Botswana; 2n in South Africa
"Sam's Giardino review"
We had dinner on site one night. It was 5-course fish meal at 5-star level for reasonable 2 star price. Sam was very helpful providing information, advise and suggestions. The restaurant he recommended in town (Erich's) was also excellent.
They also played a key roll in getting us a scenic flight to see the dunes and skeleton coast." See all these reviews: 11n in Namibia; 1n in South Africa
"Lovely bit of Swtzerland"
While there, we went on a Hafeni Cultural tour, which was a fascinating and very enjoyable visit to a township, run by two young men who grew up there. Highly recommended." See all these reviews: 15n in Namibia
"Sam's Giardino review"
We will stay there whenever we are in Swakopmund, the garden is delightful for relaxation and reading." See all these reviews: 14n in Namibia
"Wonderful Experience, Warm Personal Service"
We also had the opportunity to have the prix fix dinner: what a treat! Everything was perfect from the table to the setting to the food. It was surprisingly romantic even with a table of about 12 people dining at the same time. Both mornings, almost at the end of our breakfast (which was delicious) he made a point of sitting with us and having a nice conversation.
During our stay we were also recommended some activities and a great restaurant for dinner. Both recommendations were excellent!!!
The only thing we wish is to have had another night or two in Swakopmund!" See all these reviews: 11n in Namibia; 8n in South Africa
"Beethoven - good meet and greet dog"
The Giardino was lovely, full of character, books and classical music. The gardens were wonderful, so relaxing, and Beethoven for company too.
The breakfast and evening meals were superb, definitely not worth going out in the evening looking for a restaurant." See all these reviews: 12n in Namibia; 3n in South Africa
"Sam's Giardino review"
You really have to like dogs to stay here,he is not restricted to the non food areas." See all these reviews: 13n in Namibia
"We did not expect to be so cold!"
After a bright but slightly chilly day exploring the lagoon at Walvis Bay we did not expect to drive into fog on the short drive up to Swakopmund. At Sam's we received a rather brusk reception followed by being shown a very cold room. Heating was a plate radiator which took a long time to warm up and as we were not prepared for such cold conditions, we were in the tropics after all, we were not in the best of humour. We decided to eat in and take Sam's five course dinner which was a mistake as the food was not the gourmet experience we expected but a rather ordinary affair. Sam himself warmed once we started asking questions about the town and its people, frequently putting his coffee cup down at our table and sitting down to converse with us. The second night we decided to eat out which we did at the end of the pier with some wonderful fish - kingclip - but there was no heat there either so we did not linger.
However the bread provided at breakfast was to die for. Perhaps one good thing to come out of the fog is that the moisture conditions makes for better quality bread. Lovely German rye bread along with a wide selection of meats, fruit, etc, and eggs cooked as you like them.
As to Swakopmund it seems to have very little going for it. It sits in the middle of the desert shrouded in fog for most of the year with very few on land attractions. If you want to see the wildlife of which the area has plenty than staying in Walvis Bay would be a far better bet. We wanted to see the Welwitscia plants and duly paid for a permit to go there but no one wanted to see it so rather a waste of time finding the location of the place to pay. The plants themselves for non botanists are not very exciting but for myself they were one of the reason why I wanted to go to Namibia.
All in all, apart from the Welwitscias we could easily have given Swakopmind a miss." See all these reviews: 18n in Namibia
"Hospitable host and comfortable stay"
We ate in a couple of times and the food was good and reasonably priced." See all these reviews: 13n in Namibia; 1n in South Africa
"Sam's Giardino - full of character"
We really enjoyed his company at the bar and at various times during an excellent dinner. The garden is filled with a great selection of plants and has good siting areas if it is warm enough (not in mid-September!). Rooms are good, and there is a lot of very tasteful art and decor around.
The location of Sam's Giardino is perhaps a touch far from the centre of Swakopmund, in one of the streets that can feel a bit like Clacton on an overcast day. But the personality of the place makes it a great place to stay. Sam's employment policies are laudable, too, and are borne out by his welcoming and efficient staff.
Whilst here, we arranged for these travellers to go Kayaking at Pelican Point. They commented:
Playing with seals at Pelican Point
This trip was one of the highlights of our holiday.
Jeanne drove us past the salt pans, the flamingos, jackals and the Mad Max film set to Pelican Point, where we got into our kayaks. Amazingly, the seals along the lagoon love to play with you - swimming under the kayaks, jumping over, or on to, them, somersaulting, and frolicking next to you. It was a unique experience. We saw dolphins too.
Afterwards, we had hearty sandwiches and hot coffee to warm us up." See all these reviews: 8n in Namibia
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