Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

, Serrekunda, Gambia
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Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

, Serrekunda
5 star

Rooms: 195

A.U.Highway Brufut Height - Serrekunda - Gambia Hotel Website | | 220 4410889
429 Traveller

Reviews - Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

Historical Traveller Reviews of Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

Average

from kbonline
Recently returned from a trip to the Gambia with my husband and 11 year old daughter and having stayed in Sheraton hotels in Tenerife and Dubai found this one seriously lacking.

In general I have to agree with other reviews.
The gardens are totally uninspired and the whole place generally lacks atmosphere. The staff are only keen if they are selling you something or are receiving a tip. Pool was FREEZING and the food was below average for a 5 star hotel.Choice at breakfast limited and evening meals poor.

The Hotel is in the middle of nowhere. We found the only saving grace to be the ping pong table but the broken bats, although reported to reception, were left in a state of disrepair.

We went for the weather which was superb, however the Sheraton Gambia would not encourage us to return.

What a horror!

from PeglegSussex
The buildings are stretched out along a low cliff in an isolated, residential area about 15 mins from Kololi the main resort. The Classic bedrooms are spacious enough though the bathroom designer put the loo behind the door with a doorstop right by ones foot! And opposite a mirror! Some more expensive rooms do not have a bath. And this is supposed to be 5*.?

There are steps everywhere, several staircases without any handrail, the only staircase which has a rail has it on the wrong side.Not an hotel for disabled or one with any walking problems.

Good beach, no hassle.

Food terrible. Truly. The buffet meals might grace a 3* or less hotel. The poolside restaurant is better but totally uninspired. We couldn't wait to move on to our next hotel. Our last meal in the restaurant took 1/2 an hour for the starter to arrive, an hour for the main course, which turned out to be a rice dish with reheated prawns and warm rice. Having sent it back another half hour produced a plate of the same lukewarm dish. We gave up.

Good in parts

from crowbird
First the good. Hotel clean, tidy, rooms acceptable, lovely beach, very friendly and willing staff. Now the bad. food poor with very little choice, rooms very spread apart. some friends in a different block to me had constant drain smells. No shops or restaurants near hotel. The hotel has no soul and looks to me like a prison. I will not be returning to this hotel.

t fault

from sasr
We only had 2 nights here as we had originally booked with the Kairaba Hotel (who had over booked). On arrival the book in process, attention to detail was excellent. Our room was very clean and comfortable, exactly what you would expect from a 5 star hotel. Breakfast was OK (we stayed in 3 hotels during the week, because of the overbooking of the Kairaba - and the Sunbeach had the best breakfast, Kairaba second, and the Sheraton third). Sheraton grounds again were OK, fine for adults, but more difficult for little ones. Although there were facilities for little ones, we found it difficult to watch our 6 year old. Rating for pools for little ones, would rate Kairaba first, sunbeach second, and Sheraton third. If you are looking for service, Sheraton sheets, and all of those other comfort levels, with no small children, this is the hotel for you. Location is a bit off the beaten track, but the hotel provides a good free bus into the Senegambia strip twice a day. The strip is great if you are wanting a change of restaurants, but not a lot else there. There is a small craft market there, but is full of the usual tourist type gifts which you probably wouldn't want once you got home.

Xmas Hol

from snowshillwitney
We stayed for 10 days over xmas and was very disappointed with the hotel.The service was terrible as we had to endure having a light on all of out first night.We reported it even to the manager.In the end my husband removed the light bulb.The buffet dinners were all dried up and the same constantly.We ate in the a la carte resturant but after 10 days there was no change of The hotel is new but after being opened since April 07 you expect the teething problems to have been solved.There seems to be no atmosphere or character to the place.The bar staff and pool boys work very hard and are very helpful.We felt that the Kiaraba hotel was far better as we have stayed there twice over christmas.we wish we had asked to be transfered to the Kiaraba.
There was also a poblem with our bill so beware and check it in plenty of time before departure as we did.
We went on to the Mandina Lodge which was excellent as i will write a review for them

Room for Improvement

from Oldbear28
Sorry but I have to disagree with some of the previous reviews. We spent 7 days at the Sheraton over the Christmas/New Year period. The room and views were excellent and very clean, and even provided Tea & Coffee facilities. We were disappointed that no gym facilities were available for a 5* Hotel after the facilities were advertised, however I believe these are coming in the near future. We had three power cuts during our stay, one for a period of 24 Hours, which caused some inconvenience, and found the evening buffet food of a poor standard for a 5* Hotel. One evening most of the diners complained about the meals, fortunately the staff responded by offering a free meal. Breakfast buffet was fine.

There is not much to do around the hotel, once you have finished sunbathing, and I believe they need to extend their facilities/entertainment to cater for residents into the evenings.

The main problem is inconsistency, one day you get something, the next day you do not. I appreciate it's a new hotel, but the staff have a little to learn to bring it up to 5* status. Fellow travellers who have been to the Gambia before, said it was not their best hotel they has stayed in, and I would probably look at an alternative if I decided to go to the Gambia again.

Nice holiday

from sterussell
Hi all,

Just back from Sheraton and all in all pretty pleased with the set up. As usual, all the staff attentive and cant really do enough for you.

The hotel Manager Jennifer has a big job on getting the staff to adopt to the Sheraton ethos, hey but this is Gambia we are talking about!

The rooms are furnished to a very good standard and lots of extras you would expect of a 5 star hotel. The food is good and the breakfasts are excellent. For Gambia, the food is fairly highly priced though.

Tip; Don't use the phone in the hotel as the cost is extremely high. I used it for two very quick calls to UK as my mobile went down and it cost £10!

The hotel is quite a way from Senegambia, and costs about 200 dalasi each way by tourist taxi (£5). If you use the local yellow taxi it is 100 (£2.50) dalasi each way. For the more seasoned traveller, use the bush taxi and it will only cost 10 dalasi each way (20 pence). Just take bush from outside hotel up to turntable (roundabout to you) and then another to the strip area. each ride is 5 dalasi each.

We felt that the hotel needed to become a bit more Gambian, if that doesn,t sound too silly. It felt like a new hotel and needed to find its feet a bit. It still has a very corporate feel about it and this may suit some guests, but we felt it took away from our experience a little bit.

The pool and beach area is great and there is no bumsters about as the beach is somewhat private. Although the pool is freezing as no heater.

All in all I would not put anyone off going here although it is a little out the way.

As usual, the weather cannot be faulted and generally the people are fantastic, despite the odd one attempting to overcharge for something like a taxi ride, if they think you are a new face.

Tip; always haggle and never accept the first price for anything.

PS; there is a djembe drum for sale in the hotel shop for 5000 dalasi (over £100). You can buy the same from the craft market in Sengegambia for no more than £20.

Question? Would we go back....................................................Yes, as it is excellent value for money and we think Jennifer and her team will make the changes needed to make it an even better experience next time.

Fantastic hotel

from SherbertWade
This is a fantastic hotel and we had an amazing holiday. We went in November 2007 and it was only opened in May 2007, so everything was practically brand new. There is nothing bad to say about this hotel - a few teething problems associated with the opening of a plush, new, 5-star hotel but nothing that detracted from the overall experience.
Rooms; the rooms were excellent - very clean, modern, nicely laid out, spacious, big king-size bed, loads of hanging space. It has a separate toilet and big double, walk-in shower, which is nice. I think all the rooms are sea-facing so we had a good view of the Atlantic and a small terrace.
Value; we booked the holiday as a package through Thomas Cook (£700 each) but found a couple who paid £500 each for the week. I think we could have got the holiday cheaper but I still think we got very good value for money.
We will definitely consider going again and maybe next time, we will book flights and hotel separately. Also, one week probably isn't enough - we will try to go for ten days or two weeks next time! The food was slighly cheaper than UK prices but it was EXCEPTIONAL. There are few different restaurants, inside and outside, and the food is unbelievable - this really made it for us.
Alcohol seems to be expensive in The Gambia, whilst fruit juices etc. are cheaper. We racked up quite a bill some nights, with the double-vodka's but still marginally cheaper than the UK.
Location; the Sheraton is in Brufut Heights. There didn't seem
to be much in Brufut Heights, other than a few new property developments, however we didn't venture of the Resort very often (you don't need to!), other than to go to the Senegambia Strip (tourist place), on a few evenings. The hotel even lay on a shuttle bus into SeneGambia which is completely free and travels down to SeneGambia twice a day and takes about 15 minutes. Alternatively, you can order a taxi, which costs about £12. We took the minibus down on a few occasions and then got a taxi back, which is an experience in itself!
The Sheraton Gambia is situated right on the coastline, so the beach is literally 30 seconds walk from the hotel. It's also secure, so you won't get hassled whilst you're on the beach. It's a really nice, sandy beach and you can also walk right along the coastline, if you want to.
Cleanliness; the hotel and the rooms were exceptionally clean. They clean daily and provide loads of fresh towels and bottles of water every day. It probably helped that the hotel was practically new, when we stayed there but there seemed to be cleaners everywhere, helping to keep everything spotless.
Check In / Front Desk; we were well received when we arrived at the Hotel. They checked us in quickly and gave us a drink, when
we arrived. Generally, they were very helpful and helped with queries throughout the week, including changing currency. Check-in and check-out was painless.
Service; service was exceptional. In typical Sheraton-style, everyone went out of their way, to make you welcome and attend to all of your needs. Everyone was smiling all the time and the staff were very welcoming. Special thanks for Heruna and Basiru - these two guys are brilliant! Service was impeccable and we were thoroughly impressed.
Recommendations; there are bugs and mossies around in The Gambia, so make sure you take your Malarials (eg. Maladrone). We used "Jungle Formula" cream also, which kept the insects and mossies away at night. Recommend buying some anti-bacterial handwash (from Boots), so that you can keep cleaning your hands, especially when eating and after handling the local currency (dirty notes). This should avoid getting Banjul Belly, which is the last thing you want on holiday!
Also, there was a small gap under the door of the hotel room, where small bugs can (and did) come into the bedroom at night but you can block this up using a towel, at night. We did this and they didn't bother us after Night One!
We would definitely recommend the South Gambia tour - you go out big Swiss Army trucks and drive around the Gambian outback, where the roads turn into dirt tracks and houses turn into mud huts and tin shelters. You can also visit a "compound" and see how the locals live, see how "Palm Wine" is made, visit a local school and sample some local wines, on a banana plantation. This is a really good trip and well worth the £35.
Everyone goes on about Ali Baba's (Restaurant in Senegambia) - it doesn't look anything from the outside but the food is OK. There's also a bar/disco behind the restaurant, which is quite lively - especially on Saturday night. Also quite interesting
watching all the middle-aged English women, who have coupled up with their Gambian Gents for the week! There's a nice restaurant called Sherillan's which was VERY good and we would recommend.
You can get your own taxi from Banjul Airport to the Sheraton Hotel - these are plentiful at the Airport and not expensive.
It will cost you about 12 quid and takes about 15 minutes.
I don't think they have MOT's in The Gambia and the taxis don't appear to be very safe so if you don't feel comfortable getting in a car which is falling apart, perhaps arrange a transfers to/from the Airport. The Sheraton is very close to the Airport though and we just grabbed a taxi, when we got there.
You can change your currency into Gambian Dalasia in Senegambia - you will get a better exchange rate, rather than changing at the hotel.
In summary, we had a fantastic stay at the Sheraton Gambia. The hotel was clearly 5-star, very modern, very clean, nice rooms, friendly and helpful staff, fantastic private (secure) beach. And if you like your food, you'll be chuffed to bits with this place - breakfast, lunch and dinner was amazing! If you're planning to go to The Gambia, we would definitely recommend choosing the Sheraton Resort & Spa. We will definitely be going again!

Quality and style on the beach!

from Degsy007
Just spent a week at the Sheraton and I can't applaud it enough. Originally, I had booked a week at the Kairaba Beach through Thomson Holidays. 3 days before we were due to travel they rang me and told me the Kairaba was overbooked and they had moved me to the Sheraton. A you can imagain, I wasn't happy, particularly as I read the review of the Sheraton which said it was a way out with an expensive taxi ride to the Senegambia strip. However, the Sheraton is fabulous, all new with no evidence of ongoing building work. The rooms are in small blocks spread over a wide hill side which affords every room a sea view. The rooms are very modern, functional and clean. There is brew making facilities, hair dryer, ironing board and iron, huge TV and a mini bar. I ate several times at the hotel and without exception the food was beautiful, ranging from locally caught fish and scallops to steak. The staff are very attentive but be mindful that Gambia time runs slower than in the UK, no-one hurries anywhere. The beach is clean although the sea is too rough for swimming but why bother when the hotel has that infinity pool which is very nice indeed. It's a 5 star hotel so food and drink is dearer than outside the complex, 55 dalasi for a beer and around 350 for a main meal , (the rate at the time of writing this was slowly rising and was 42 dalasi to the £). The people of Gambia are very friendly but don't be misled into thinking this is a utopian land of mindless pleasantries. These people have very little and they see us tourists as very wealthy, they will ingratiate themselves with you, sometimes out of genuine friendship, more often they want something in return. But they are very pleasant and if you do go to the Senegambia Strip then be prepared to be endlessly mithered to use their restaurant, their bar, their taxi or sponser their child. There is never any threat and it is a much safer place to walk around at night than any town or city over here. Taxis from the strip to the Sheraton can be haggled for between 100-150 dalasi. I had a fantastic holiday and would highly recommend the Gambia, go to the Sheraton if you can, just be prepared to be pestered and enter into the spirit of the locals enterprise and you will have a beano!

Sheraton in the Gambia - tranquil, beautiful... and isolated!

from londonbunny
We have just returned from our 5th trip to the Gambia, one of our favourite places in the world, and although we were staying at The Kairaba (thankyou to all the staff and Suzie, Sowe and Lallo in particular), we spent 2 days at the Sheraton Hotel in Brufut because we fell in love with it.
As no one has posted a review yet on the new Sheraton hotel, and we see people on Tripadvisor are looking for info, I thought some early photos and information could be useful to everyone. It opened at the end of May 2007; it is up and running fully, although they are still building rooms on the right hand side; the Spa is not complete yet, and bulldozers were still bringing sand and soil up to the gardens as we sunbathed. This did not however detract from the beauty of the architecture, the fantastic empty beaches and the level of service from the staff, which was outstanding. (Special thanks to Ebrima at the pool bar and to the towel boys)!!
The Sheraton is built on a cliff; you are welcomed by a doorman (who carried our beach things down to the pool for us); you enter a fabulous marble reception area with views straight down to the ocean, then get whisked down to beach level in a glass elevator with stunning views! Main restaurant is on the First floor with an outdoor area overlooking the sea and pool, and down below you will find the pool bar and restaurant at beach level. Our 2 lunches there were superb - with a wider menu then we have found at any other Gambian hotel and some of the best enchiladas I have ever eaten (better than Mexico this summer)! The swimming pool is large and beautifully designed, with a reasonably shallow end about 3 feet deep, descending to a deep end, and has been built as an infinity pool with a fantastic view of the sea,and unlike any other hotel in the Gambia, there is no wall or fence between you and the ocean, although there are guards on the beach as usual.
We were taken on a tour of the rooms and looked at Sunset rooms in the Baobab wing and Palm wing, and also a beachfront suite. Furnishings are stylish and minimalist in a beautiful African style, with great use of dark woods, Sheraton beds and bed linens and open showers - excellent by Gambian standards. You also have satelitte TV and internet in all the bedrooms, room service and!!! - a seaview from every single bedroom - a real feat of design for the Gambia, which has been made possible by the sheer size of the plot of land that has been purchased.
The beach was absolutely deserted apart from a few fishermen, who somehow have managed to retain their shack on the beach right next door to the Hotel (see photo)! No fruit sellers, no bumsters, although personally we missed that aspect; and I am sure that they will appear with time. I can't do without my fresh fruits prepared on the beach by a fruit seller!
Downsides - at the moment, although it is only 15 minutes drive to "The Strip" at Kololi, there is absolutely nothing in the Brufut area - not one shop to purchase bottled water, snacks etc, not a craft market to be seen, it really is out in the sticks, and with the serious devaluation of the dalasi (from 55 to the pound when we were there in April this year, to 32 to the pound in October) - a cab ride to Kololi was 8 pounds one way - making bottled water more expensive there, then buying it at the hotel bar!! Our 9 year old son, my husband and myself got through 70 litres of water in a week, so not having access to a shop would have been a problem for us ( at 3 pounds a litre in the hotel, and only 80 pence in a local shop). However, with the new private villa development opening opposite the Sheraton, I have heard that they will be eventually developing a shopping area, but this could take 2 years. So be warned and stock up heavily when you take a trip to the Strip!!
Only other niggle was that we didn't really like all the sunbeds being on grass rather than on tile - it looks very pretty indeed, but irritates the feet and if you walk barefoot you take grass in to the swimming pool!
All in all, I cannot describe how beautiful we found the setting and the architecture of this hotel. We were dying to see it as we watched the building work in April, and we were not disappointed. You do need to bear in mind though, that it is really isolated, there is no organised entertainment of any description for children, only a ping pong table, so you need to have children like ours, who want to go out every day to the towns, markets, schools and wilds of the country to experience the real Gambia - not kids who are looking for noise, kids clubs or laid on fun!
We both think the Sheraton is going to become the leading hotel of the Gambia in a year or two, when the area develops a little more - if you are looking for total escapism, tranquility and a great base to explore the south of the country, you won't be disappointed. Just please, please remember to get out there and experience the culture, people and beauty of the Gambia while you're there. It is spectacular and extremely humbling.

Top Local Tips for Serrekunda

Bush Taxi Use the local Bush Taxi ,as it is so cheap and fun to experience.

Sun and Sand November to Easter, it is hot and DRY, lovely no humidity. But this is no upmarket area it is distinctly down market and cheap beer, nasty bars and cheap restaurants do not enhance the lovely beaches and the fine weather. Think of the worst 'British' resort overseas, with its tattooed, vest wearing, football crazy louts and this is Kololi the main resort in Serrekunda. Kololi should be flattened and built properly.

Trips Rather than pay the travel company to take ou to the local atractions speak to the staff at the hotel they will let you know a good taxi man (or get any of the green taxis) who will happily take ou wherever you want to go will oin you and give you some local tips, these guys are so friendly true "Smilin' Coast" residents.

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Other names for Sheraton Gambia Hotel Resort & Spa

  • sheraton serekunda
  • sheraton gambia hotel
  • serekunda sheraton
  • Address: A.U.Highway Brufut Height - Serrekunda - Gambia
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