Ethiopia is a quite magical country. It certainly surpassed our expectations. But, one of the downsides is the lack of decent accommodation. The Gheralta Lodge is a fortunate exception. There are many reasons to go there. Climbing up to the nearby rock-hewn churches is a totally breathtaking experience. The landscapes are simply stunning and the views of the surrounding mountains from the property are just spectacular. The rooms are rustic, but chic; the beds are extremely comfortable (possibly the best I slept in during our stay in Ethiopia); and the bathrooms surpassed our expectations (thumbs up for the powerful shower). The food is also very good and excellent value-for-money. On the day of your arrival, you’re also offered a nice free aperitif. There is only an Internet connection near the reception, but that was more or less adequate during our stay.
There’s a kind of understated sophistication to the whole place and we would certainly have loved to stay longer. Regrettably, they only had availability for one night. If you’re lucky enough to get a booking, try to get a room to the bottom of the property. They originally allocated us one that was at the top, right next to the kitchens, and with a connecting door. We asked to move and our new room was much more secluded and with a far better view of the mountains. The only other thing I would say could be improved is the fact that the staff are not all equally friendly. Some are absolutely adorable, others don’t make much of an effort to smile. What a shame!
We stayed for two days at the lodge and when we made the booking we asked the lodge if they can cater for vegetarian. they confirmed.
When we arived at 6.30 pm after a long day, nobody greeted us, no welcome drink ... after some time we were shown were the dining room is (we pointed out that we are vegetarian) and then we were handed our keys ...
For dinner was a set meal (officially it was called ravioli, kind of thick dough filled with potatoes) ...and meat. Nobody cared to prepare something suitable for a vegetarian.
the next morning I explained the situation to the French manager on duty - she listened attentively and took notes.Later she informed us that she spoke to her staff and they confirmed our events. Well things did not improve unfortunately the second night ... again no option for vegetarian (though the lasagna was okish contrary to the "ravioli")
BTW - breakfast was also very minimalist - we stayed at simpler places in Ethiopia with a much bigger choice.
The location and the lodges are nice.
However simply the worst service in Ethiopia! No hello, no welcome, no smiles -> the service level experienced during these two days does not represent Ethiopia.
I guess the live from the reputation of the previous owners and overcharge and take advantage.
After 2 and a half weeks travelling in Ethiopia, I would say that this was the most disappointing place we stayed. The setting and buildings are good as were the staff serving in the dining room but the other staff (those in more senior positions in reception) were unhelpful and often quite irritating.
Absolutely stunning views. Perfect base for exploring the Gheralta mountains. The lodge itself is nicely laid out. Very relaxed and quiet. The food was good. Simple room, but nice. Good value for money.
The rooms are dispersed in a huge fenced compound. There are 2 rooms per structure. Our room and the toilet were very spacious and clean. There is no wifi in the room. Meals were served in the main building which housed the reception and the restaurant. At dinner, we had to bring a flashlight to light our way. We had a great panoramic view of the Tiray mountains. Overall, it was a good stay