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“4 day Honeymoon” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa

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Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   Malindi Road, Bamburi, Mombasa 80100, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 14 Hotels in Bamburi
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Doha, Qatar
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“4 day Honeymoon”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013

We spend 4 days at this hotel as part of our honeymoon safari in october 2013 and absolutely loved it! The hotel is clean, great food (many choices and every day different theme for dinner), nice swimming pools and beach and good facilities. The gym is quite large with modern equipment and there is a very active entertainment team, not only for the children but also for adults. We especially enjoyed the activities organized by David and Simon with their excellent volleyball/waterpolo skills and always up for the challenge of a problem-solving-trick.
Staff was very friendly and helpful, which made our stay very relaxing and fun.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RonnieKithinji, Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, November 10, 2013
Dear Ellen George,
Greetings from Sarova Whitesands beach resort and Spa. Thank you for taking time to write a review on our resort. We are grateful that you found the hotel great and our food variety the best.
We note you were pleased with our staff David and Simon who kept you entertained as part of the animation team.
We look forward to hosting you in the near future.

Kind regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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900 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (277)
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English first
Bedford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2013

Just returned from a 2-week stay at Sarova with our daughter who is 8, the hotel was perfect, you could not want for a better hotel. The rooms was fantastic just been re-furbished and a sea view, 4 or 5 swimming pools, one has a kids area an other organised events such as volley ball or water polo, but if you didnt want to join in you were left alone.
Main restaurant is buffet with lots of choice, also a Pizza an Pasta restaurant and Sea food by the beach which you have free access to.
The fun A team were brilliant keeping people entertained, especially at night at Coco's beach bar, special thanks to Victor, David, Steven, William and Crazy David.
All the staff were friendly and could not do enough for you. You tend to sit in the same area of the restaurant and have the same people serving you so get to know them and they you. Steven and Mercy in the restaurant deserve a special mention.
Water sports were as you woudl expect, glass bottom boat trip is very good as were the jet ski's
The hotel has its own taxi service who can take you to the local sights and stay with you during your visits, very reasonably priced.
Overall you could not fault it and would return tomorrow given the chance.

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view room - although the others will all be refurbed shortly - with a family ask to be...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RonnieKithinji, Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, November 9, 2013
Dearv Mrs.Reynolds,
We thank you for choosing to stay at our resort. We certainly value all our guests and importantly your patronage in our resort.
My team and I are humbled that we measured up to your expectations during your stay. Thankyou for rating our food, accomodation and service as fanatastic.
It is such positive reviews like yours that help us grow the business. I would like to assure you of our commitment to delivere on both quality service and product to ensure we remain the preferred choice.
Thank you for mentioning some of our staff that delivered their duties exceptionally and definetly deserve to be recognized by my team.
We look forward to hosting you again in the near future.

Kind regards
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Nairobi, Kenya
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2013

We visited Whitesands again with our kids and had a great vacation. The hotel doesn't disappoint when it comes to kid-friendly facilities. The only challenge is television entertainment (which we only use early in the morning). There is only 1 channel, which has movies on rotation. We highlighted this issue to management and they are looking at possible solutions. Also the buffet menu is very limited when staying for a longer time. During our 4 night stay on full board, we ended up confronted with similar dishes (although well prepared). Overall, the best family hotel in Mombasa.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RonnieKithinji, Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, November 7, 2013
Dear Madame Trey,
Greetings from Sarova whitesands Beach resort and Spa!

First let me take this opportunity to appreciate your stay with us and for having stayed with us three times since year 2011. My team and I are glad that you found time to come and stay at your preferred resort of stay. We have noted your concerns on TV channels for kids and we shall work to improve the same. I note you found our themed buffets a little repetitive.
As a family hotel, we value feedback as this assists us gauge our level of standards and of course improve mentioned gaps.
We do thank you once again and look forward to hosting your family in the very near future.

Kind regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedfordshire
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2013

We've returned from Kenya this week after a 10 night holiday. We did a 3 night safari which was the most spectacular/amazing/beautiful experience. The remainder of our time was spent at Whitesands, wow, it's gorgeous. Our sea view (stunning view) room was redecorated 4 months ago, first class attention to detail-huge walk-in shower, fresh/crispy bed linen, vast flat screen tv, decoration was of a high class standard. Slippers and dressing gowns were also provided. Cleanliness was perfect in the room & throughout hotel. Food was fantastic, spoilt for choice. All staff ranging from the gardeners, cleaners, reception, bar/restaurant, managers were so kind, cheerful, friendly and helpful and genuinely pulled out all the stops to ensure a perfect stay. Good entertainment in the evenings too. Yes there were hawkers on the beach, we chatted with them and they were no problem. Given the opportunity, we will have no hesitation to return. The mixture of a busy safari & the sheer relaxation & indulgence at Whitesands was perfect, totally recommend it. Rob & Michelle Lenehan 18.10.13 - 28.10.13

Room Tip: Sea View Room (upgraded)
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RonnieKithinji, Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, November 7, 2013
Dear Michelle,

Thank you for taking time to give us your fantastic reviews on our resort.
My team and I truly appreciate the worthy feedback. Having enjoyed your 10 days holiday and safari this just speaks for itself what we offer is more than refreshing but more so a lasting memoir for you both.
It's good to know that our new rooms are certainly a value add, especially when you mention the the attention to detail, spacious and in room ammmenities just sum up a good room to stay in.
Thank you for your comments on food and overall our staff who made your stay more than comfortable.
Am pleased to hear the beach hawkers are now selling their items courteously.
Once again we thank you for choosing to stay with us and look forward to hosting you in the very near future.

Kind regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2013

My husband and I are both Police Sergeants in California, U.S.A. We had very little concerns for our security during our Safari but had concern during our stay at Whitesands due to the threat by Al-Shaabab who reside in Mombasa as well as bordering Somalia (property plans for both Serena and Whitesands were found during a search warrant of a residence harboring Al-Shabaab). Upon our arrival at Whitesands, two young security personnel were stopping individuals to search their bags and use a metal wand to ensure no weapons. Several people failed to stop and walked past both security officers who seemed oblivious. At one point, the security officer said, "Wait" in a very low voice with no command presence. He appeared as if he wanted to stop him, walked a few steps, and then just shrugged his shoulders and turned back to me. When my husband shared our observations with the doorman, he nodded in agreement and said the front door security had only been there a few weeks. Other security officers seemed distracted from their jobs by socializing with hotel staff, particularly at the beach. I watched security officers helping female employees put pads on chairs. This is not your job! Vigilence and situational awareness are paramount at all times. The security officers don't even carry radios to communicate with one another if a threat to guest safety occurs or other critical incident occurs. Sarova Whitesands uniformed security serves more as window dressing for a false sense of guest safety. They need training.

This is a mass market hotel with little to no personalized service. No employees will acknowledge you or say hello to you unless you initiate it with the exception of two people. Sammy the Doorman and Godfrey the young man who keeps the crows away from the food service area. Godfrey was so observant for crows, that he would probably be better suited as a security officer. Godfrey would greet the guests everyday with a warm greeting and a big smile and even cleared plates from my table during a brief greeting. The wait staff will not acknowledge you unless you ask them to stop. They will loudly bang glasses and plates and scrape food off plates right next to you during meals. Seeing guest uneaten food scraped off plates while I was eating was unnerving especially when I was already on edge from all the clanging silverware, plates, and bowls. They ask gentlemen to wear pants because it its a resort which feels like a cross between a cheap buffet and an all night diner with the quality of food consistent with those standards. My waiter could not understand my order for a glass of wine. When I selected something off the "wine by the glass" menu, he told me they did not have it but he would could get me a bottle of something else.

The food service staff looked over-worked and unhappy. I don't blame them because dealing with hundreds of tourists, some unfriendly tourists, can be a frustrating job. However, they need to be trained on customer service to remain competitive or be more discerning in their hiring practices. This was especially concerning when I informed a member of the wait staff that there were ants surrounding the sugar station at the buffet and she used a dirty dish cloth to kill them. Another example of poor customer service was at the Coco Bar. I tried to engage in friendly conversation with the bar waitress, but she looked irritated. My husband said that she looked like she was just tired and at the end of a long shift. When I ordered a second Pina Colada, a crow flew down to take the cherry/pineapple off the glass and knocked it off the table. The glass was nearly FULL when the contents of the glass spilled. The bar waitress looked annoyed, never replaced my drink, and then charged me for it!

I would not recommend this hotel. Surprisingly, we stayed at 4 Sarova lodges during our safari and they were fabulous! Although the rooms were very comfortable and modernized at Whitesands, I would rather have had a friendly experience where my safety was ensured then a charging station for my phone and camera. Mombasa is wonderful and a great place to come after a Safari, but I do not recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2013 via mobile

We have visited this place twice over the past six years. It hasn't changed much at all in that period. All the staff are excellent from the check in to the check out and beyond. The chefs are to be congratulated. We shall visit again soon.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi, Kenya
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
54 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

The hotel has a fantastic location at the truly white beach just outside Mombasa. A large pool area gives ample opportunity for everybody to swim and relax. There is both a kids and "silent" pool area. Note that there are no life guards on duty. Going to the beach is also possible, but there are many hawkers constantly approaching you for boat rides or selling something.
The garden and pool area facing the fantastic beach is very well kept and offers beautiful evening strolls or a sundowner in the bar. The Dawa drinks fits well with this place after sundown.
The rooms are old and the whole area calls out for a substantial refurbishment. The pool area, rooms and in general the buildings cannot have been refurbished for the last decade or so.
Service is very good and in general helps you with whatever you might require. Note that the hotel doesn't provide any tours - all have to be booked separately if you want to venture outside. Its a half hour drive to the old Mombasa or the lovely golf courses that surround the area.
The buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner that is included in the price is the best Kenya can offer. I have not experienced such great buffets anywhere in Kenya. 5 stars for this one.
The seaside lunch was not very good - our sandwich had mouldy cheese and clearly wasn't being kept refridgerated, a common problem in Kenya.
Almost next door there is a good Italian restaurant if you want to try other dinner options.

Room Tip: Get a room high up, away from the pool area or bar facing the beach
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Malindi Road, Bamburi, Mombasa 80100, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Mombasa > Bamburi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Bamburi
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Bamburi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 335
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
East Africa's finest resort, Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa is conveniently located on one of the longest magnificent beach fronts on the Kenyan coast. We take pride in ensuring our guests enjoy the most relaxing and comfortable stay in tastefully furnished rooms and suites offering spectacular ocean, pool and garden views. For dining and entertainment, guests can choose from three themed superb restaurants, two great bars, and the exclusive Cocos Beach Bar, overlooking the beautiful Mombasa Ocean. There are four outdoor swimming pools with water slides, spring board, diving boards and four floodlit tennis courts that also serve as a landing ground for helicopters. A fully equipped wellness and fitness club with state-of-the-art fitness equipment, a PADI diving centre and a host of water sports, like snorkelling and jet skiing are also available. Be it a family holiday with children, beach wedding, honeymoon, business meetings with a difference or special interests like deep sea diving or fishing, Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa has something special for everyone. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort And Spa
Sarova Whitesands Beach Hotel Bamburi
Whitesands Hotel Mombasa
Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa Kenya/Bamburi

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