I choose to stay at this hotel for a number of reasons. Its central location means that it is easy to reach other restaurants, shops and bars, as well as the Nile ferries, yet its design means that it is really quiet and stays cool. The garden bar is frequented by a good selection of locals as well as the hotel guests, and wireless internet access is available there. There are plenty of power points throughout, for those who like to use modern technology, yet the rooms' design and furnishing are traditional. The old wing has individual water-heaters in the bathrooms, and individual air-conditioning units. The new wing relies on solar panels for hot water and only has room fans at present. An electric heater can be provided in winter, if needed. Their web site has been very recently updated. This hotel is popular with the local ex-pat community and hosts book-readings, film nights and other meetings. The 2011 Mayday celebrations were very popular. The above website and email were unavailable for part of March 2014 but are now available again.
New Apartment block
(December 2011) Building work has started on a new block of 6 single-floor apartments on the lower land at the end of the garden. Each apartment will be about 25 square metres, and have its own balcony with curved ballustrade. The roof, at about the level of the main garden, will be terraced. There are no plans for further storeys, and no signs of the reinforced concrete uprights that could support them. The space in front of the apartments is earmarked for a large swimming pool. It is hoped that one or two apartments are sold, to fund the rest of the project. Work has currently reached ground floor level, and the rear walls are being raised today inside the four metre high retaining wall seen in the photograph. There are separate gates to this area on the Nile side, giving level access. There will be stairs up to the existing garden, restaurant and bar.
For a New Year Party part of the garden was tented. This is shown in the general slideshow below.
More recently, but before completion of the above apartments, 2 5-story blocks have been erected between the hotel and the river. The design allows room for a lift, and the view from the top will be excellent until somebody else builds to the East. Building stalled for a while, but restarted in January 2014.
A swimming pool is still being discussed, with the options being a big one in front of the single-storey apartments or a smaller one in the courtyard in the older part of the hotel.
(And I apologise for the background music to those who don't like it - it is Rimsky Korsikov, Sheherazade, of course!)
Location on Google Earth 25°42'18.54"N, 32°37'56.33"E The hotel is reviewed in Rough Guide, 2010, p. 298. Lonely Planet review is online.