Winneba & Accra updates

Phil writes:

Winnesec junction has a new take-away restaurant called “Victory Tasty Chicken”. You order based on how much you want to pay. For example, you can get 5 GCD or 10 GCD meals. The owner is very friendly. The food is ready so they pack your order immediately for a take away. Their chicken is the most tender high quality chicken I have ever eaten in Ghana (12 trips to Ghana since 2001, including 10 months living in country in 2006). You can get the chicken with chips or rice (fried rice or jollof rice). This is the place to go for fast, hot, very tasty, and cheap food in Winneba. I went back each day for lunch once I ‘discovered’ it last week.

Gloriaka Hotel is located just east of Winneba circle on the main road between Accra and Cape Coast. It is easy to miss but there is a sign on the main road if you are looking for it. I offered to buy dinner for my Ghanaian colleagues on my final night in Winneba to show my appreciation for their wonderful hospitality. We chose this place because the restaurant is indoors and we wanted to escape the mosquitos. So there was me (an abruni) and five Ghanaians that live in Winneba. We were confused upon arrival because the restaurant doors and windows were open and the ceiling fans, air condition, and televisions were turned off. Mosquitos were freely flying in and out of the restaurant. Upon request and a bit of pushing, we finally convinced them to turn the ceiling fan on above our table to help reduce mosquitos around us. Their brochure advertises a large menu of international, continental, and Ghanaian dishes but we did not even get a menu because our server told us they had banku with talapia or chicken with plain rice. When asked about a stew or sauce for the plain rice, she simply said they only have shito. Some of us ordered banku/tilapia, others ordered chicken with plain rice. Three of the Ghanaians returned the banku and tilapia: banku was hot on outside but very cold and crumbly on inside (microwaved??), the tilapia was extremely salty. The chicken came in three pieces but was not three different pieces of chicken. It was simply a chicken leg they cut into three pieces to appear as if we were being served a lot of chicken. The chicken was cold (out and inside). One of my Ghanaian colleagues asked to speak with the manager and spoke to them by phone to communicate our displeasure. Congratulations to Gloriaka – I have eaten at hundreds of restaurants and food stands across the entire country and you served me the absolute worst food I have ever received in Ghana.

My final night in Ghana was spent in Accra. I like to get a nice hotel before leaving so I can be assured of air condition and a nice shower to be cleaned and refreshed for my flight back to the US. I chose Oriental Hotel Osu because it is close to the main road, and advertised to have hot shower, air condition, digital television, refrigerator, and most importantly a generator. Upon check in I realized there were no lights on and they said power is out but they have a generator to use. After exploring Osu for a bit I came back to hotel – still no lights and generator not turned on. After some discussions with the caretaker, they agreed to turn the generator on (around 4 PM). I enjoyed the room until waking up at 2 PM in a pool of sweat. I walked outside to cool down and met the caretaker who explained they turned the generator off at 1 AM to save money. He said they will not turn it back on the rest of the night. My room was on the first floor with one small window that did not have a screen. I could not open windows for ventilation. My room felt like an oven, they refused to turn the generator on, so I just packed my things in the dark and then found a taxi driver around 3 PM that drove me to the airport. My flight left Accra around 8 AM so I was quite a bit early for the flight, but the airport was much more comfortable than the hotel. Ghana is suffering significant power outages right now so I would only recommend staying at this hotel if you want to take a chance on not being able to use the hot water heater, ceiling fan, or air condition. I will not be staying there again.

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