The Bushman Cafe is a coffee shop, restaurant, lounge, event space, rooftop bar, boutique hotel, and craft store all in one. If these all seem like a mouthful that’s because Bushman really is many things in one. It is a feast for your eyes! There’s art and culture in every glance, that you simply could not take it all in at once.
I spent a couple of days at the hotel while visiting Abidjan, and staying at the Bushman Cafe was a noteworthy part of the trip. My room was really quaint and understated, and each time I stepped out my guestroom door, I felt like I was in wonderland. As mentioned above, there are so many different elements, and I tried to capture and engage with as much as I could. Check out some images below, and the how, what, where, why, after the jump…
- I did not have much luck booking this hotel online, whether on TripAdvisor or by using Kayak, the online booking aggregator. Instead, a combination of emailing and sending a direct message on Instagram got my reservation confirmed.
- The rate was 60,000 CFA per night (roughly $100), inclusive of taxes and breakfast. I paid on the property. Acceptable forms of payment are cash, Mastercard, Visa, but NOT AMEX.
- The Bushman Cafe is an Abidjan hotspot. Many locals and expats come to eat or lounge at the restaurant and bar on the rooftop.
- There are also film festivals, art expositions and other cultural events that happen in the spaces regularly.
- The guestrooms have these romantic four-posted beds with mosquito nets on the sides, that give you this ‘out of Africa’ vibe. It is quite a traditional room so don’t expect too much, in terms of modern amenities. In my room, there was a double bed, desk, full-length mirror, hardwood flooring, TV and armoire, AC, wardrobe, seating area, a huge painting and a picturesque window with a lovely view of the front of the property.
- The bathroom had a shower, African-sourced amenities, hairdryer, and other conveniences.
- Wifi was adequate and I recall having access everywhere except for the rooftop.
- Wandering around the property will likely be the highlight of your stay. All the art and installations tell a story that will draw your attention and still leave you processing for moments afterward. Every time I look at my photos, I find new things I had not seen before, such as Marie Guillemine Benoist’s Portrait of a Negress (Fun facts: This was one of the Louvre’s most famous works that make an appearance in Beyonce & Jay-Z’s ‘Apeshit’ video. It is also one of the few works with a black subject in the museum’s presentation of European art).
- The restaurant is on the rooftop and serves a mix of local and continental dishes, with local flair…think grilled whole fish, banana leaves for presentation, ginger and bissap juices…
- The swimming pool lends great ambiance, but I doubt much swimming goes on in it. It looks really great though and you will most definitely feel like you’re in a tropical forest, if you were to brave taking a dip in it :).
- The hotel is located in Cocody, a high-end residential neighborhood. It is about a 30-minute drive from the airport.
- It is located in the Riviera M’Pouto section of the neighborhood, and the major landmarks in terms of accessibility are Boulevard de France, the UNICEF offices, and the M’Pouto Sol Beni intersection.
- Nearby are supermarkets, pharmacies, and the Ivoire Golf Club.
I loved my stay at the Bushman Cafe and would definitely go back to lodge or to visit the restaurant. It was really charming and I loved the ‘Afrique-chic’ vibe. The staff and management were really friendly and accommodating and will make you feel like you’re a treasured houseguest. Staying at the Bushman Cafe, you will feel like you are really in the middle of a carefully curated and detailed art installation – a lot of which is centered on African pride and empowerment.