Sopa vs. Serena lodges?

Jan 16th, 2007, 10:16 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 5
Sopa vs. Serena lodges?

I have a choice of Sopa or Serena lodges on one Tanzania safari. What is the difference? Thanks alot! Trying to pick a tour company to go with in March 07.
LastminuteH is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 10:54 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 290
I would go for the Serena lodges. Sopa would be at an international level 3 star. Serena would be 4 star (some are 5 like Kirarwira)
roadwarriorafrica is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 06:17 AM
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Though many prefer the Sopa at Ngorongoro as it's closest to the decent road into the crater for your time touring down there.

But, at this point, it may just be what's available.
Jan 17th, 2007, 08:08 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,448
I stayed at Ngorongoro Serena & Serengeti Sopa, Manyara Serena, Amboseli Sopa & Lake Naivasha Sopa

Both are great chains and you won't be hurt in either direction
waynehazle is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 08:27 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 54
I don't think you'll have issues with either property. I will say that I had problems with our reservation at the Serena properties (make sure you get there early, as it seemed rooms were first-come, first-serve, regardless of whether you had a reservation), but no issues whatsoever at the Sopa.

If you're looking at the Ngorongoro Crater, I'd choose the Sopa, primarily for the access road.

We stayed at the Tarangire Sopa and the Serengeti & Ngorongoro Serena Lodges. I thought the rooms at the Serena properties were nicer (better looking, better upkeep) than the Sopa -- though I was happy with both. The Sopa only had hot water at specific times, while the Serena had hot water continuously.

However, I preferred the meal service at the Sopa. Again, neither was bad, just a personal preference.
npederse is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 09:24 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 626
You might want to also try a couple of tour operators such as Roy's or African Serendipity. They can possiblly have some additional ideas. However, from my experience booking directly with the hotel chain does give the best price.

stakerk is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 10:12 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
I've stayed at Sopa, Serena, and Wildlife Lodges, which are below Sopa or Serena.

The private access road at the crater was a plus. Otherwise, the difference was not that big of a deal since my focus was on the game in the parks. None of these were dumpy or bad quality in my opinion.
atravelynn is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 12:26 PM
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Kevin - If the price is actually better if directly booked, remember, you have to get there. The price one gets from a tour operator includes room and board, park fees, guide, vehicle, petrol, insurance, etc. etc. Besides, the lodges often give you their rack rates while tour operators have the benefit of preferential lower rates.

The Serena and Sopa props are both mid-range, with the Serena being a step above in most instances. However, while some have raved about these properties (almost sounding like the best things since sliced bread) as being close to a lux property, others consider these much like a Motel 6.

As above, one comment - Serena hotels nicer rooms, but Sopa better meals. There are probably as many who feel just the opposite.

So, all depends on what you expect and your budget can bear.

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