Palma Rima Hotel
Badala Highway, near Kololi beach, Kololi, Gambia
lots of people complain about this hotel but its a cheap tourist hotel people pay peanut prices and exspect the rizt service,,,,only thing i found wrong thay treat thair maids and kitchen staff like *** and the reception staff are rude both the day staff need a smack in the mouth im surprised somone as not done it before now....i took my sales manager back to my hotel with me as his wife was doing my washing the reception refused to let him in,,,i was so pissed off with them i offered the guy outside the wanker refused
Unique Quality: the place was basic nothing stands out you get what you pay for
Beware of Reports Complimenting the Palma Rima Hot
We stayed at the PR from 24 Dec 07 returning on 1 Jan 08. This is - not even probably - the WORST hotel I have ever stayed in with regards the breakfast, grounds and accommodation. Your first impression of the PR is “YES, I really have arrived in a third world country.” The area immediately outside reception is badly neglected, needs painting, the weeds removing and generally tidying up. Inside reception there are bare wires hanging from the ceiling, dead flies inside the few fluorescent lights which still have covers, the once white ceiling is now a paler shade of grey and finally the plastic gaudy coloured furniture which was new 10 years ago, was in all likelihood last cleaned then as well. The plastic flowers may well take root at some point in the dust covering them.
We stayed in bungalow 18D which when opened up, greeted us to the smell of stale urine. In the on-suite, the toilet seat and lid were both cracked and stained yellow. I shall let you guess with what!!!! The grouting was mouldy, part of the ceiling over the shower area was damp and beginning to collapse, the sink was chipped and there was a constant dripping from the cracked toilet cistern into a bowl placed on the floor to collect the water. The cleaner was not provided with any cleaning chemicals whatsoever to enable her to reduce the smell and make the mirror and other chrome items clean. Not using any disinfectant or bleach at all in a toilet, must be a matter of hygiene concern. In an attempt to reduce the urine odour, we had to keep the windows open at all times. I also bought some disinfectant from a local store so our cleaner could clean the on-suite. I did have to ask for my pillows to be changed upon arrival, they smelt sour and were badly stained. The bed was comfortable enough although being old it did sag badly in the middle. Overall the accommodation is VERY BASIC with no electrical appliances provided whatsoever. We experienced no problems with hot or cold water as reported by other TA members.
Unique Quality: Our sheets were changed twice in the week and most strangely on the day before our departure, the towels were changed every other day.On the plus side, and despite everything else, the PR did manage to excel themselves on New Years Eve. The food was of a high standard and excellent. My compliments to the kitchen staff who obviously worked extremely hard. Onto the entertainment. I can honestly state that it would be difficult to find any better entertainment from this local African dance group, who performed not only on New Years Eve, but also on the other nights and during the day when they were rehearsing. It is such a great injustice that the dancers were not paid. See earlier report on Trip Advisor website dated 7th Jan 08. We never experienced any rudeness by owners towards the staff as we were rarely in the hotel grounds. What I can state is that the management NEVER introduced themselves at any point during our stay or greeted us when we passed them in the hotel grounds.
Here are some comments we have about the PR hotel.
· Against all the odds, the PR staff do do an exceptional job, perhaps they could consider a management buy out and return to the PR’s it’s once, now sadly lost reputation as a good value family holiday destination.
· The PR can truly be considered a third class hotel, in a third world country – holiday BUYER BEWARE
· It wasn’t all-bad, it was grim but at least we had hot water!!!
· It seems to me, that the owners must think that part of the holiday makers experience should be to experience sub-standard conditions, just because they have travelled to a third world country.
· Finally would I stay here again? not on your life! In fact I would travel to the opposite side of the globe to avoid this third rate hotel!
More about Palma Rima Hotel
Great holiday, much better than anticipated
We have just returned from the Palma Rima Hotel in the Gambia, having spent Christmas and New Year there. The holiday in general and also the hotel were much better than expected having read reviews on this and other similar websites. We had a lovely room (bungalow), the gardens were well tended, and the service was outstanding. The swimming pool was extremely clean as were the toilets and surrounding area. A criticism was that air condioning and fridges in rooms were payable extras. These features would have definitely been welcome as standard.
The Christmas and New Year buffets were excellent although I was glad we had only booked in for bed and breakfast - there were so many other places in the vicinity to eat. Breakfasts were basic but perfectly adequate - only spoiled by people arriving late and moaning when food had been cleared away.
The hotel is only a 2-3 star and so not luxurious but pefectly clean , comfortable and gave excellent value for money. We spoke to other people staying in several other 'better class' hotels and found ours compared very favourably. There were also several people in the hotel that had previously visited the Gambia on several occasions and stayed in other hotels, yet had returned to the Palma Rima.
In general I would recommend this hotel to anyone and if like me they wern't expecting too much having researched the hotel and country on the internet they will be very pleased.
place very run down, people pester you constantly.
the pool area was never cleaned the whole time we were there, (2 weeks)!! and we saw the bigest rat ever!!
food very basic.
there are taxi's right outside the hotel offering to take you to the beach, which is about 5 mins walk away.
the only good side was the beach and the crocidile park, other than that there isn't much to do.
Winter sunshine after a relatively short flight
My partner and I will be returning to the Gambia, for the 6th time this Easter. It will be our fifth consecutive year at the Palma Rima and it would always be our first choice for a number of reasons. The bungalow rooms are spacious, if basic. Having your own terrace with patio furniture to sit on in your own patch of garden,is great. Enjoy the beautiful flowers, feed the birds,admire the African sky, whilst catching those rays. To completely escape TV, newspapers(other than those that are 3 days old) and shopping is very welcome! Get talking to the maids and the gardener and you will be rewarded with fresh flowers on your patio table and maybe petals decorating your bed!
Get away from the pool, even though it is 'the biggest in the Gambia!' The beach down the road,is unspoilt and there is never a dull moment! Bailey's is especially good for sunbeds and snacks. Visit Foday's fruit juice stall for fantastic fruit drinks. He is a hardworking and humble man who needs your business to survive.
Eating out is a treat. Loads of excellent restaurants outside the hotels. A taxi will take you, wait for you and bring you home. Try Weezo's, (Mexican) Al Basha (Lebanese) and the Clay Oven(Indian) to name but a few.
Gambia is not for the faint hearted. It is an experience as much as a holiday and it will make you realise just how much we take for granted.
My huaband and I stayed at palma rima hotel 2nd to 16th Jan 06. We had a fantastic holiday, the hotel was very clean and all the staff were very helpful and polite. We were allocated a room in the pool rooms,although they were very clean we upgraded to a bungalow. These are a great deal bigger. The food was ok, something for everyones taste. We went out of the hotel on the first night and felt overwhelmed by the local "bumsters". The next morning we met a bumster named Armstrong and another Jerry. They made our holiday so special, they showed us the "real Gambia". We visited their villages and shared a meal in their compounds. They were so welcoming and helpful. We also met the ladies on the beach who sell fruit. especially Isa number 19. She is a very caring person. These three will always remain our special friends. Personally I feel this holiday is more suited for adults as young children may find the poverty difficult to understand. I almost forgot to mension Soloman,"it's nice to be nice, in it" he has a stall right near the beach he is a real character. He is very friendly and funny. Overall a brilliant holiday.
my partner and i stayed at the palma rima in march 2005 we found the place basic but clean. wot do u want you are in Africa the peoplw where amazing we are returning to palma rima again on 17th march with 8 of our friends and will continuing going there as long as life permits me
Best time of my life
I went to Palma Rima in feb 2006. I loved it the staff were verry friendly the food was lovley the entertainment was great and i couldnt fault it at all. The rooms were clean and the staff made me feel at home over all I realy did enjoy staying at the Palma Rima Hotel and i would love to go back there again soon.
i loved it
Hi i am 16 and i went to Palma rima in march last year. At first i didn't think i would like it and i would be crying all the time but when i got there i loved it and never wanted to leave. i met loads of lovely people and didn't want to leave them. I still contact them now and hopefully i will be returing to The gambia again.
I am in the travel industry but am writing this as an impartial review. I had limited expectations but was pleasantly surprised by the Palma Rima.
The hotel is basic and there are areas that could do with an overhaul but considering this is Africa and for the money paid there was little that I could fault. People going and expecting European or Far East standards will possibly be disapointed but for a week or two of guaranteed winter sunshine you probably can't go far wrong. The rooms were cleaned daily and clean towels also provided daily. Breakfast was OK though again fairly basic. There is a shop just over the crossroads to the right on the main road where you can buy rolls, cheese and all manner of UK and local produce to produce a cheap lunch.
Shake hands with the locals and take everything with a large pinch of salt and you will be fine once you get used to the banter.
Brilliant holiday. I loved it
I enjoyed it so much that I want to go back this year. I am only 15. It had a great impact on me and I saw the otherside to the world. I didn't mind the attention from the people at all as I have experienced a country before with similar equalities. This was a real eye opener. It was a great experience and if you keep in contact with some people that live out there they will do anything for even though they have little. They respect you.
View all Kololi hotels
View all Kololi hotels
Palma Rima Hotel
We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:
- Palma Rima Hotel Gambia
- Palma Rima Gambia
- Hotel Palma Rima
- Palma Rima Kololi
Address: Badala Highway, near Kololi beach, Kololi, Gambia