- Hilton quality in rooms and facilities.
- Geothermally heated outdoor pool.
- Popular bars and restaurants for fine dining .
- Extensive hotel grounds with many activities onsite.
- Conference facilities ideal for business.
The Hilton Addis Ababa is one of the largest hotels in the city with extensive grounds that include numerous sport facilities like a mini golf course and tennis courts. Last year it won a World Travel Award as Ethiopia’s Leading Hotel. The hotel was originally opened in 1969 and architecturally inspired by the Ethipoian Lalibela Church which is one of the most popular tourist attractions and a UNESCO Historic Heritage Site. The geo-thermally heated pool mirrors the famous monolithic rock churches and has become an Ethiopian attraction in its own right.
The Hilton Addis Ababa has a shuttle service to and from the Bole International Airport which is just a 15 minute trip and runs 24 hours a day so guests arriving on the red eye don’t have to worry about getting to the hotel.
The Hilton Addis Ababa hospitality crew put me up in one of their Executive Duplex Rooms which is a great room with a fantastic view over the pool from the floor to ceiling windows and private balcony. There’s a lounge area downstairs with a foldout bed facing a TV, a round dining table with a view and a spacious desk area. Wireless internet was strong and fast. A mini-fridge is available and so is access to the Executive Lounge which was one of my favorite hang out areas during my stay.
The 372 hotel rooms are split into three categories. Guest Rooms are popular with the everyday traveler while Executive Rooms are the usual choice of business travelers with more square footage and separate dining or sitting areas. The Suites are a special treat while abroad. They’re more like luxury apartments than hotel rooms with multiple bedrooms, separate living rooms, full sized kitchens, and unrivaled views over the city.
There are so many dining options at the Hilton Addis Ababa it was hard to decide where to start. One of my favorites was Gazebo Bar & Restaurant beside the pool. It’s probably the most casual spot to grab a bite with covered seating, snacks, ice cream, and wide range of drinks for kids and adults. It’s also the best restaurant for Sunday morning brunch and live entertainment. Every evening the tables were packed with locals and visitors hanging out at this well known gathering place, so get there early!
Il Forno is also a great spot for families. The trattoria is obviously inspired by Italy with classics like minestrone soup and Bolognese but the restaurant also adds Ethiopian flare with dishes like Scaloppini of Nile Perch. Fresh pizza is prepared in the wood-fired brick oven which is replicated in the décor of Il Forno with its exposed brick and arches.
The Hilton Addis Ababa also specializes in local cuisine; Kaffa House presents guests with a choice between a buffet and a la carte menu. Delicious spicy aromas really permeate the air as soon as you walk in! I particularly liked the Beg Wet Key which is stewed lamb and berbere sauce.
Late night at the Hilton Addis Ababa is pretty active with two lounges on-site for light appetizers and cocktails. The Lobby Bar is a popular meeting spot and the Sheba Lounge a favorite for a nightcap. With warm wood furnishings the lounge is very inviting.
Between meals there’s plenty to do around the hotel. The Hilton Addis Ababa has an impressive collection of facilities to keep guests busy. Not only are there the traditional Fitness Room and Outdoor Pool but there are also tennis and squash courts, a volleyball court, an 18-hole mini golf, a basketball court, and extensive gardens. The hotel keeps plenty of staff on call for tennis and swimming lessons. The outdoor pool is one of kind in Addis Ababa with a geothermal heating system which is easy on the environment and has made it a huge tourist draw.
The close proximity to the airport and United Nations headquarters makes the Hilton Addis Ababa a convenient venue to conduct business. The hotel has three meeting rooms for smaller gatherings and The Ballroom which can host up to 600 guests and makes it one of the largest in the city. The staff will also help plan and coordinate any event which is always a big help when organizing lots of people. There’s also a 24 hour Business Center available to support any technical needs.
Staff were very accommodating and even remembered me on my return visit. Quality and commitment were very apparent here with all members of staff that I dealt with.
The Hilton Addis Ababa is not just a Hilton, but also a landmark in the city. It has long been the go-to place for visitors, expats, and locals and will remain popular with its selection of great restaurants, huge offering of activities and unique facilities, and high standards in rooms and services. I especially liked the feeling of being in Ethiopia which is how Hilton differentiated itself from the other large international brands. If traveling to Addis Ababa, I highly recommend a stay here or in the very least a visit to the pool and restaurants!
Hilton Addis Ababa
Address: Menelik II Avenue, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia