A great collection of Mozambican art and a number of works from the world-renowned Mozambican painter and poet, Malangatana Valente Nguenha can be found here.After my unforgettable nerve-wracking jump in Victoria Falls, my stay at the Afrin Prestige Hotel in Ngunngunhane, Mozambique was superb and revitalizing. It was homey, comfortable, neat, and modern – a good place to restore all the energy I released during my jump. I found myself confiding to the luxuries and comfort that this hotel offer.
The hotel sits at a very strategic location in the Lower City of Acacias, near famous business establishments, and a walk away from landmarks such as Currency Museum, Railway Station, and Central Market – sites that you should definitely visit during your stay. It also gives you a scenic view of the Umbuluzi River!
DISCOVERING MAPUTO’S HISTORY
Maputo is the largest city and capital of Mozambique. It was named after Lourenco Marques, by King John III of Portugal, in honor of the 16th-century Portuguese trader and explorer who explored Maputo bay and settled with his wife who is a native there. Well, if Jon and I were born way back that century, I bet a country would also be named after us, just kidding!
The urban area is small with wide avenues that are mostly lined up with Acacia trees. Thus, it is also known as “A City of Acacias”. Its official language is Portuguese, which is somehow similar to Filipino and Spanish, so some words were a bit familiar to me.
FIRST IMPRESSION ON MOZAMBIQUE
It was a relief to finally arrive at the airport after flying from Harare to Beira, Mozambique. After clearing immigration, we got a visa-on-arrival but only for a single entry. It’s worth $50. Since we ran out of cash after using it all up in Zimbabwe, we badly needed an ATM. Luckily, the immigration staff was nice enough to assist us to the nearest ATM. People here are nice but not as cheery as Zimbabweans.
Moving forward, going out of the airport, we were happy to discover that our shuttle service from the airport to the hotel was free. Although we have recently withdrawn some cash, still, some of the best things in life are free services!
Arriving at the hotel, they gave me a massive room including a mouth watering breakfast! My room was #510 and it’s one of the biggest accommodations at the Afrin Prestige Hotel.
The hotel has a pool to swim in, fitness center to exercise at, spa to relax in, and meals that make my mouth water – it was a perfect Mozambican getaway indeed!
Also, I was pretty impressed with the life-size sculpture of a fisherman in the lobby area. It was done so well and intricately. There are also statues by the sofas and even outdoors!
Afrin Prestige Hotel has 99 spacious rooms that give off a natural vibe. The natural aura comes from its minimalist interior design, which is a mix of calm tan and off-white colors from the furniture to the walls. Below is a list of the rooms along with their amenities:
Standard/Common Room. It has a King-size bed or two single beds. If you are an on-the-go solo traveler, two friends traveling together, or couples who like to keep trips on a budget, this accommodation is the best choice. It has a private bath and shower and a working space. Most of all, it comes at a really affordable price per night!
Single Room with Balcony. The room brings you a plush sofa to relax into while watching cable TV in your own flat-screen TV. It also has an en-suite bath and shower.
Double/Twin Room with Balcony. This accommodation offers you a King bed or two single beds for you to sleep in. A scenic view via the room’s balcony gives you space to unwind and breathe in the Mozambican air. A bathtub is also there to give you a nice bubble bath after a fun-filled day of adventures.
Deluxe Double Room. This room has a kitchenette, house-private bath, extra large bed, Premium TV Channels, a King-size bed, and an in-room safe. It is also a suitable room for persons with disabilities.
Executive Suite. Your mini-home within one classic suite. The executive suite has two single beds and one extra large bed. It has its own kitchen, dining area, living area, and a balcony with a great view of the city. The bathroom is also massive with a tub and shower.
Common amenities you should expect upon your stay at the hotel are:
- Free breakfast
- Free internet access
- Free toiletries
- A/C rooms
- Flat-screen TV
- Each room is accessible for persons with disabilities
- Tea and coffee maker
- Housekeeping daily
Other available paid services include babysitting, ironing service, and dry cleaning and laundry
Fitness Center. The gym is equipped with treadmills, stationary bicycles, weights, and more. However, additional fees may apply upon using this facility.
Outdoor Pool. One of my favorite things to do in a hotel is to take a plunge in their pool. It is the perfect place to get a tan even without leaving the hotel!
Spa. Regain positive energy with a rejuvenating massage. After, hit the sauna or take a dip at the Jacuzzi for a relaxing finish.
Shuttle Service. A free shuttle service from the airport to the hotel is given to guests in from 7 AM to 9 PM.
Day Tour. Ask the concierge about it!
The hotel also has events and meetings facilities, free parking, and a multilingual staff available to aid you 24 hours a day!
Restaurant “Sal e Pimenta”. Basically, the name translates to salt and pepper. The restaurant serves delectable dishes, continental, local, and more. A vegetable diet menu is also available for you upon request. Here is where I got my delicious breakfast buffet that kept my stomach full and satisfied the entire stay. Take your food on the terrace or garden for an extraordinary meal!
Bar “Consolado da Bola”. The name translates to ball consulate. This bar opens from 10 AM to 1 AM. Here, you can enjoy great relaxing music and drink the day to morning light. If you’re practically looking for a friendly chat with other hotel guests, this is the place to be!
This is my last stop traveling with Arione. Then, I resume my solo travels. But before Arione flew back to London, we had a nice day tour and had a glimpse of good attractions in Mozambique. From the hotel, it’s simply just a walk or a short drive to major landmarks, supermarkets, and bars within the area. Here are a few we’ve visited during the day tour:
Maputo’s Caminho de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM). It’s one of the most historical and beautiful train stations worldwide. It was built and designed by the one and only designer of the Eiffel Tower – Gustave Eiffel. Funny how history says he’s never been in the area personally!
The National Art Museum. A great collection of Mozambican art and a number of works from the world-renowned Mozambican painter and poet, Malangatana Valente Nguenha can be found here.
The Jardim Tunduru. Located in downtown Maputo, this botanical garden was designed by Thomas Honney back in 1885. He also designed gardens for prominent men of the past like the King of Greece and Turkey’s Sultan. Now, it has tennis courts owned by the Mozambique Tennis Federation.
Mercado Central. This seafood market is quite known in the city. Vendors sell varieties of fresh fish, crabs, squids, fruits, vegetables and many more good stuff.
The Casa do Ferro Avenida Samora Marcel or the Iron House. This is another establishment designed by Gustave Eiffel. History says this all-metal museum was supposed to be the Governor’s home but it was uninhabitable due to Maputo’s hot weather.
FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions About Afrin Prestige Hotel!
1. How much does accommodation cost at the Afrin Prestige Hotel?
2. What is the check-in time and check-out time?
1 p.m. check in and check out is at 11 a.m.
3. Are children allowed?
4. Can you smoke here?
There is a designated smoking area.
5. Are pets allowed?
Unfortunately, pets are strictly not allowed.
6. What services does the hotel offer?
Day tours around Maputo, Mozambique just like the one Arione and I had! For more info, approach the concierge
7. Are there available promos to save money?
Yes, there are. Check the hotel’s website for more details.
8. What are the closest landmarks to Afrin Prestige Hotel?
Maputo Shopping Center, Feira Popular Restaurant, Zambi Restaurant, Continental Bar, Scala Bar, and Mercado Artesanato are all near the hotel.
9. Are popular attractions nearby?
Yes, the hotel sits in a very strategic and convenient location. Attractions are within walking distance or just a short drive away.
10. What is the nearest airport?
The nearest airport is the Maputo International Airport, which is 5.9 kilometers away!
Note: I stayed as a guest in Afrin Prestige Hotel. However, all opinions are based on my personal experience.
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