Sleek rooms, an infinity pool and a romantic restaurant that spills towards the ocean: it’s easy to see why Barack Obama stayed at Dakar’s stunning Radisson Blu when he made Senegal the first stop on his 2013 tour of Africa.
The hotel opened on Dakar’s Corniche coastal road in 2011, and with three floors of sumptuous, stylish rooms (double room rates start at US$220) and amazing outdoor space, it’s one of the most attractive Radissons on the continent. Yet it manages to retain a small, intimate feel: you won’t get lost in its corridors and staff are always on hand to help you make the most of your stay. The rooms range from standard doubles – with ocean or grassland views, glimmering bathrooms, balconies, discreet flat screen televisions and divine beds – to beautiful honeymoon and presidential suites.
Even if you’re not staying here, it’s worth stopping by for an aperitif. Enter the light-filled building from the large, palm-lined courtyard and take in the art installations at ground level. As you descend by elevator or stairs to the ocean level, you’ll be greeted by staff in stylish sun hats. Then it’s onwards to the modern lobby area and the double doors that lead to the gorgeous terrace and infinity pool. You can sink into one of the sofas, occupy a booth near the bar or head over to the private, canopy-covered dining spot. There’s live jazz under the stars on weekday evenings and a cool grassy bank that’s dotted with sun loungers, sun-shaded booths and love seats.
Aperitifs and cocktails are served with a selection of olives, tapenade, edamame beans and hummus, and there’s a good lunch menu featuring the likes of Caesar salads, Thai snacks and excellent hamburgers. The signature restaurant sits to the right of the bar, and there’s indoor and outdoor dining. Although many of its ingredients honour Senegalese agriculteurs, the Radisson is Dakar’s only restaurant to also offer imported choice American steak. There’s an excellent daily breakfast buffet and an impressive brunch on Sundays.
One of the key selling points of the hotel is its convenient location adjacent to Sea Plaza, Senegal’s first shopping mall, where you’ll find sushi and gelato restaurants, a fantastic Buddha brand spa, a supermarket and upmarket clothing stores.
You can book this hotel through AFKTravel.com by clicking here and navigating to the “reserve now” button.