Saturday, March 12, 2011

God knows Djenne Djenno is not perfect. But the thing is we don't pretend to be a top hotel. We have a certain charm I have been led to believe. But now and then I want to get out of here, to have som non-mud luxury. I enjoy staying in other hotels as a little mini holiday. Keita is here for a week or so. We wanted to celebrate his return by going to a famous hotel in Mopti, the Kanaga. I did this also as a sort of research project- I do need to know what goes on in other hotels.
The Kanaga was a pretty grim experience. I quote below what I wrote to trip advisor this afternoon. This may be a huge mistake- hoteliers should perhaps 'club together' and not say bad things about each other...
I told the front desk when we arrived that we came from Hotel Djenne Djenno. This made no impression- OK we are only a little hotel in the bush, there is no need for a big important hotel like the Kanaga to be aware of our humble existence, of course.
The picture above is some rat droppings in the bathroom from the third room we stayed in during our 15 hour visit.

This is what I wrote:

Run Run Run to La Maison Rouge!
Until a few years ago the Kanaga was the only hotel in Mopti where one could stay if one had any demands of comfort in any way. This is no longer so. There are other alternatives thankfully, and the Kanaga is now hopelessly out-classed by, in particular, the excellent La Mason Rouge, just around the corner. Go there; No; RUN THERE!
I arrived at the Kanaga yesterday about 3pm with my husband for a treat. We were to stay one night and pamper ourselves, eat well, relax. We were shown the room which was a little disappointing and small- nevermind, that was not a problem. The toilet didn’t flush, and that presented more of a set-back. There was no hot water either. Nevermind. We called the reception and they sent a maintenance man. He tinkered about for a while, then told us we would have to move to another room. Ok, we agreed cheerfully, fine. We got dressed, packed our things and moved to the room next door, which was identical in every way. And I mean in every way.
When we had unpacked and got comfortable it became apparent the the loo didn’t work there either, and that there was no hot water. We called reception. Nothing happened for about half an hour, during which time I was running the shower to see if it would become hot. It didn’t. Finally as nothing seemed to be happening, I packed our things up and went to the reception. ‘Please prepare me the bill for the drinks we have had and call us a cab. We are going to La Maison Rouge.

The desk manager pleaded with me to give them a moment to sort something out. My patient and kind hearted husband thought we should give them another chance. We waited in the reception for some time.
This is when we might have been offered a drink perhaps?
The minutes ticked away until I knew it would be too late to turn up un-announced for dinner at La Maison Rouge.
We were told they were preparing the best room for us. This, the third room, presented an improvement in so far as it provided us finally with our long awaited hot shower and an operational loo. However, there were other problems…there was a naked lightbulb with loose wires above the bed. The bottom sheet was too short for the bed, leaving the mattress exposed. The fridge now didn’t work, although that had not been a problem in the other 2 rooms. These problems seemed rather minor however compared to finding a deposit of rat droppings on the bathroom floor.

We had a hugely over priced dinner (although the Captaine carpaccio was very good) the main course was served on tiny plates such as those normally used for first course. The napkins were tiny bad quality paper napkins of the type one finds at MacDonalds.
But even after all of this I said to my husband this morning- let’s see when we pay the bill if they are going to give us any recompense, and if they are going to apologize. If that is the case I will forget about it. There was no reduction however and every little bit, down to the last water bottle was invoiced. There was not a word of apology from the desk manager. So I eventually ventured: don’t you think that perhaps a word of apology would be in order? He didn’t say a word. Then I exploded: Do you realize there were RAT DROPPINGS IN OUR ROOM??? He then said, by means of an explanation(!) Ah, that it possible, there has been no one in the room for four days and it has not been swept since the last guest!

One final word; I don't mind rough African hotels. I know there are difficulties here- this is Africa! But I object to a hotel presenting itself as a high class outfit and charging accordingly, and then not delivering. A word of apology and just a token offer of a drink would have appeased us!


Blogger Dr. Mary Craig said...

We loved the Mopti hotel, Y'a pas de problème. Great rooftop restaurant, comfortable rooms, great neighborhood!

8:09 PM  
Blogger David said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:25 AM  
Blogger David said...

Sorry, Dr Mary, I completely misunderstood that - you're not praising the Kanaga but the Pas de probleme, which if I remember rightly is modern, a bit of a jumble, but looks fine. My apologies - now I must go back and see if I've even got the site of the Pas de probleme right...

12:22 PM  
Blogger toubab said...

Hello Dr Craig and David,
the Il n'y a pas de Probleme is a good middle of the road alternative in Mopti, I totally agree with you, I have stayed there and enjoyed it. But it is not, and does not present itself, as a top class hotel, which the Kanaga does. And since that is what we wanted as a treat, we did not choose it this time...

11:36 PM  
Blogger said...

Great Blog...

Penske Rental Prices

7:31 PM  
Blogger David said...

Dear Toubab, may no rat droppings in the shower soil your big day, may the bananas in the garden flourish and Keita's health ever wax for you - many happy returns!

Do get back to us about Morocco (assuming you got the message)


11:25 AM  

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