The Nest, a stay we loved! Kigali, Rwanda

Kigali by night from the balcony of our room at The Nest

Situated at #23 KG 676 in Kimihurura, this rather innocuous looking property that is The Nest very quickly became our home-away-from-home during our stay in Kigali, Rwanda. Notice how clean the street is in front of the property? A culture of cleanliness seems to be inherent in all Rwandese and they proudly keep their roads(and public spaces) in this condition. And not a leafblower to be seen. This pristine condition is brought about by hard work with brooms and bags.

The overriding exterior colour scheme of The Nest was pink and white, like the icing on a wedding cake. The small balcony with the chairs and table was a welcome addition to the room where my wife and I stayed. To the right is the main reception and on the left, the dining room.

Did I mention that PINK was the overriding colour? I think I did. What I forgot to mention was that the accent walls were in a colour that can best be described as WATERMELON. But the colours were not that important. What was important was the fact that the floors were spotless and the bed linen and towels were clean and fresh. The bed was VERY firm, but both my wife and I prefer that to a soft mattress that is non-supportive. (notice the PINK quilt on the bed). The mozzie net, together with a spray was utilized on a nightly basis. Not that we saw one of those pesky insects, but prevention is better than cure.

This young fellow spent some time on making certain that the towels were folded in an identical manner and looked smart.

The last time I saw corners this perfectly folded was when I was doing compulsory National Service in the South African Defense Force back in 1971.

Finally, I have a corner office. When we arrived the table was facing the wall, but seeing there was a view of the city to be enjoyed, I rearranged the furniture to suit my needs. As a working travel writer, I appreciated both the desk as well as the fast and stable Wi-Fi connectivety.

More PINK. And notice that the toilet slots into the surround of the shower…I could almost complete all my ablutions in the seated position.

None of those strange slippers that seem to be designed for odd-sized feet. These fit perfectly and I even wore them to breakfast one morning when I was too lazy to put on my shoes and do up the laces.

My wife, keeping a watchful eye on me from our balcony. If I had thought this through, we could have performed the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet. (Act 2, Scene 2)

#Fakenews…there was no balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet! In fact, Shakespeare never mentions the word in this play or any of his other works! There are many theories as to how a non-existent building design could become so iconically connected with this production, but this is not the forum for that debate.

The bright breakfast room…more WATERMELON paint on the walls and easy clean flooring rather than carpets which can attract dirt and grime very quickly. No reserved seating and the tables are shared by all the visitors. That is part of the charm of this guest-house, people get to interact with each other and swap information and experiences. It was around this table that we learned about a nearby bakery and restaurant, both of which were in walking distance.

Each breakfast is started with the smoothie-of-the-day. A most delicious way to kick off your day. I never did ask what they consisted of, but suffice to say that they were fruit-based.

This is Shakshuka, a traditional Middle Eastern dish that comprises eggs in a (not too) spicy sauce. The breakfasts at The Nest alternate between this, British pancakes with honey or muesli with yoghurt. I have no idea why the management linked pancakes to the British. Personally, I would have thought that they might be more representative of either the USA or Canada. That being said, there are a limited number of other options that The Nest can offer should none of the dishes on the menu be satisfactory. We had scrambled eggs with two slices of crispy white toast at one breakfast. Although the menu might be limited, it is more than adequate and is served with a smile by the on-duty staff. (And there is always the pastry shop close by.)

The main entrance at night. This is where the reception area is as well as a kitchen that can be utilized by the guests.

The rooms do not have beverage facilities or fridges, so access to both of those in the communal kitchen space was most welcome. There is also filtered water on tap, saving on buying bottled water which can become expensive.

Travel and Things stayed at this delightful guest house for the first part of the trip to Rwanda. Highly recommended on a variety of travel sites, The Nest offers reasonably priced comfortable accommodation and breakfasts. We can now add our recommendation to those! If you can, try to get one of the front-facing rooms that offer a view of the city. If you need to be at the Kigali Convention Centre, this property is a mere 20-minute walk away…and in an almost straight line so you cannot get lost. There are several restaurants within a short walking distance and guests will certainly find something to suit their requirements.

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