Reviews of Machweo
Wildlife sightings and reviews
15 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Machweo and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
We were so lucky that expert Africa recommended it.
We still think it was the best meal we had in the whole trip.
Perfect for a first night" See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 7n in Zanzibar
The National Museum and the art gallery at the Cultural Centre, and the Tanzanite Experience were visits we planned and thoroughly enjoyed. Everyone very helpful and informative.
Comfortable room in chalet was somewhat restricted - layout with the bed meant the wardrobe could not be fully opened. They need an in-door lounge area - raining much of our 2 days there meant that dining was inside rather than on the terrace." See all these reviews: 14n in Tanzania
We arrived at about 8 and after getting settled went to dinner straight away. We ordered at the same time we got a couple of beers. The service was glacially slow! 55 minutes until the main course arrived. In truth, the restaurant was pretty full. We complained and were told to come earlier the next night. OK, so off to bed we went. We left the window open as it was warm but had lots of trouble with falling asleep because of the dogs barking and the farm animals joining the chorus. This went on and off all night. Closing the window was useless as they were very thin and the animals close by. At about 5 am the call to prayer was broadcast over the loud speakers from a mosque located close to the hotel. About 15 minutes after that another call to prayer, or something or other, occurred and this one lasted a very long time. This was not the normal length that one normally hears in other parts of the world from Istanbul to Tashkent, from even the largest of mosques, including the Blue Mosque with 6 minarets. This was downright disturbing of the peace and intolerable to even open minded folks who would have otherwise been mildly irritated but not disgusted with the normal short call to prayer waking them up once and then again just when they fall asleep again. After the second long call to .... we were up for good and very hopping mad over the event.
We headed off to the Arusha National Park for a game drive. The driver was on time and ready for us. We requested an earlier start i.e. 8 am as they originally wanted us to go at 9 am. Most game drives start at 6:30 am so you can see our concern. Things started out "slowly" but got progressively better as the drive continued. All in all, a good day.
But then there was dinner, again. We showed up at the bar for a couple of beers and the guy there had heard about our complaints of slow service the night before and offered us two drinks "free of charge". We still ordered two beers that were probably included free anyway, just so you know we are not opportunists. We were in the dinning area at 6 pm and were actually the 3rd couple there. No matter, the service was just as painfully slow as the night before when we were there at 8 pm and the place was packed. Nothing changed. I was upset enough I went to the desk and told the man I was now not very happy regarding these events and the slow service...again. He told me the owner was actually here having dinner and he could arrange a meeting, to which I readily agreed.
Mr. Axel Janssens, the owner (his card says "chef" ??) came over to our table and we talked about the issues mentioned above. He was a class act, so it seemed. No excuses, no BS, just facts and information. Regarding the slow service: He has had these complaints before and said he would pass them on to the kitchen. OK, but we won't be back to check it out. He explained that he had to make the road ( its pretty long) from the highway to the hotel. He has complained about the call to prayer and said that the Imam wants a "house" to keep him "quiet". He stated he has lost significant business with a company that was split into two, one of which is Expert Africa and the the other is ???? (sorry I forgot the name). It is from the ???? company that he has lost 803 rooms a year in booking because guests have complained of the noise. If all this is true, we really feel sorry for the guy. He will go out of business because of the noise. The kitchen problems are "his" to fix. The junk yard dogs and farm animals (mostly chickens) is another problem just like the mosque. To be complete, the 2nd night was just as bad.
However, I recorded the call to prayer in the morning. It was at least 12 minutes long and I had switched off the recording but turned it back on when the Imam continued. This is a legal issue for Axel but in the meantime not the fault of the guests. We have that recording if you want it for legal evidence or if Axel does. He can also make one for himself if so inclined, just start recording at the early am wake up with the call to prayer. Considering the fact that there are plenty of Christians living in town, this is a mess for the Tanzania courts to fix. In the meantime, don't send guests to this hotel. To be complete, we were in room one. The toilette in the bathroom is not on the same level as the sink, neither is the shower. They are both 1/2 story down a twisty flight of stairs that is difficult to navigate at 2 am for a potty call. 'nuf said! Look elsewhere for a hotel." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania; 6n in Zambia; 4n in Zimbabwe; 3n in Botswana; 1n in Kenya
With regards to the conversation about losing business to a company that Expert Africa is linked to was miscommunicated. We have been operating as an African specialist tour operator since the early 90s, and have never been part of a larger company offering similar safari products.
"lovely place to relax before going to camps."
Pool area quite small but adequate for short stay.
Woken by very loud call to prayer from nearby mosque which could be an issue if you were staying for several nights." See all these reviews: 9n in Tanzania; 5n in Zanzibar; 1n in Kenya
"Excellent stopover from the airport "
The view was great.
The food and service was top notch." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania
We had dinner on the veranda which was very nice, good setting. very friendly service...
Excellent breakfast, especially the huge selection different honeys for breakfast was a hit..." See all these reviews: 9n in Tanzania; 2n in Zanzibar
"Back to Civilization"
The diner, however, was very nice and our wakeup-call at night on time !" See all these reviews: 21n in Tanzania
The accommodation served its purpose while we waited to fly to Nairobi but there is probably no reason to stay longer than one night." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 4n in Rwanda
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