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“Kenya Safari” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge

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Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge
4.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Amboseli National Park, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Johannesburg, South Africa
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Kenya Safari”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

Good value for money. Service and buffet meals good. View of Mount Kilimanjaro is best at dawn. It's an 80km+ drive on dirt roads to lodge, make sure you have the right vehicle for the trip! Charge to enter the park PER DAY of your stay. Evenings around campfire with live music makes for an enjoyable time. Game drives, bush dinners and Masai village tour available. Be sure to visit Observation Hill. Seeing herds of elephant cross the African plains with the snow capped Mount Kilimanjaro in the background... unforgettable!

Room Tip: Rooms 68-75 have front view of waterhole for viewing and sunset. Open lawn and patio out front. Othe...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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488 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Nairobi, Kenya
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

The Lodge is nicely setup with all the amenities. The welcome is nice, we arrived late in the afternoon and were received with a cold towel to freshen up and the welcome drink which was needed after a hot and dusty drive. The check in was quick and efficient, after which we were taken to our room.

The room is comfortable with a balcony overlooking trees and vegetation. It has a balcony to sit out and relax. The washrooms were clean and the shower was great with a lot of pressure and hot water all through. Having a kettle in the room would have been nice and convenient for tea/ coffee. The house keeping staff were up to par and our room was made up for the night and cleaned in the morning.

The reception staff were friendly and helpful. The restaurant was adequately staffed being a busy weekend and were full, but couldn't fault on the service. The vegetarian food was good and were well catered for especially with the eggless desserts. There was a good choice during all meals. The tea and coffee facility on the patio was great with a view of the open plains and several animals coming and going. The pool is well kept and clean and has a reasonable number of beds. Be careful of the monkeys especially at the patio area, snatch your pastries given any chance though their is a guard keeping them at bay.

It's a 3 and half to 4 hour drive from Nairobi via the Emali - Loitokitok road, but well worth a visit. You can't see Mount Kilimanjaro from the lodge but definitely whilst on the game drive.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Stouffville Ontario
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

The rooms are fine, but the facilities are quite nice. The pool is beautiful and the food is quite good. The staff are very good and couldn't be more friendly--especially as we were trying to use the Swahili we learned! The nature / bird walk was also quite interesting and worth the extra money.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Lisbon, Connecticut
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

This is a superb lodge, with a spectacular location, good food, excellent accommodations, and a welcoming staff. You can sit on the deck sipping tea while watching literally hundreds, if not thousands of animals right on the plains in front of you. I can't think of a better location to stay in Amboseli National park.

Room Tip: Try and get a room facing out over the plains. The view can be impressive, and you might have wildli...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
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Ballarat, Australia
Top Contributor
255 reviews 255 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
187 helpful votes 187 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2013

My introduction to the Aboseli Serena Safari Lodge was an encounter with a cheeky vervet monkey, snatching a packet of sugar I was about to sweeten my tea with from my hand. I was doing my best to obey the 'DO NOT FEED THE MONKEYS' sign, but hey, these critters really were pushy. An ensemble of Masai, aimed slingshots to keep them at bay, boosting employment opportunities for the local villagers.
But the Masai's presence within the Amboseli Serena did not stop there.
The hotel naturalist Kenneth, was instrumental in making our stay a highlight of our safari experience. He personally escorted me through the edible and medicinal plants of the region, which was fascinating, informative and enjoyable. Friends who went on the nature walk he later conducted were equally impressed, feeling secure, venturing beyond the electric fences into the habitat of legendary predators and learning much about the Amboseli eco system.
In the afternoon Kenneth led a "Cultural Encounter", introducing guests to many aspects of Masai life and rituals. Joining him were women, young warriors and junior and senior elders to enrich his narrative with demonstrations and explanations about song and dance and costumes.
Moreover, Kenneth was an ambassador for his people and glittering example of a young man, who had accessed education via an overseas chilld sponsorship scheme, that he believed had opened opportunities not just for him, but for his entire community. He was planning to undertake further study in 2014 and if his ambitions are met, Kenneth may one day be leading environmental and conservation initiatives within Kenya.
But the Masai presence doesn't stop with Kenneth at the Amboseli Serena. The gift shop and hospitality are overseen by the Masai and it has strong links with the local villagers.
The staff are friendly, obliging and welcoming, catering to the needs of individual guests with flair and genuine effort.
The huts were exquisite, modeled on up market versions of the Masai Adobe huts,. Bathrooms were a highlight, decorated with Masai necklace surrounds on the mirrors. Wildlife frescoes wound their way around the round walls, giving accomodation cheery ambiance. A design triumph, in what I am calling "Africanesque" interiors and "new Africa" architecture.
We ate both buffet and a la carte meals here and all were excellent, with a wine list to match.
Wildlife within the superbly landscaped grounds was plentiful, with a poolside mongoose colony, those pesky vervet monkeys, indigenous mice, multi-coloured lizards, basking on the stone work paths and walls and an array of fabulous birds.
Just beyond that electric fence, we saw a pair of cheetahs, lion and the legendary herds of elephants and Rothcilds and Reticulated giraffes. Baboons a plenty, wildebeest, zebra antelopes, impala and more.
All this, in the very shadow of Mt Kilamanjaro. Dawn and sunset game drives with full views of Kilamanjaro. Iconic photographs; this is the stuff safaris are made of and there could be no better base for your safari adventures at Amboseli, than the Serena.
Two days here seemed totally inadequate, double that, would be easy to fill!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
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Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2013

We stayed at Amboseli Serena lodge for two nights at the end of our safari tour. It is a lodge which accommodates large numbers of guests and manages this very well. The lodge is perhaps not as new and modern as some, for example our room was rather small as was the ensuite and could be described as functional rather than luxurious. However, the surrounding gardens of the lodge and the pool are very attractive. The staff were friendly and the restaurant provided good food. We had a traditional African food buffet dinner one night and that was really interesting and pleasant. The monkeys that abound around the lodge provide an amusing diversion as long as they do not get into your room or your vehicle. While we were there monkeys got in through the raised open roof of one vehicle and stole some anti-malaria medication (not sure whether they ate it or the effects on them if they did so!). The journey to the lodge from the Ngorongoro area was long and dusty, the roads are really rough. The lodge is very well placed for game drives to Amboseli. We were out of luck in terms of seeing Mr Kilimanjaro as it was shrouded in cloud, our only glimpse was the snow at the summit shimmering in the sunshine which we could observe for a very short time.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Bangkok, Thailand
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
59 hotel reviews
Reviews in 55 cities Reviews in 55 cities
89 helpful votes 89 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

We planned our first safari trip last July to kenya with the help of our friend who previously been there.Booked tour itinerary and spent our first stop at amboseli lodge arriving by A Toyota land cruiser from Nairobi airport ,a trip taking some three hour by local highway.
We arrived at Serina Sarfari game lodge by noon,the lodge looked as anticipated on the website pictures.Welcome arrival was intimate. The single storey structures were spread out.Out room is about 4by 6 meters sizable enough with African motif andwith glass sliding door opening out to the woods where monkeys were perching around the lawn and trees looking for guest food handout but we were warned not to feed them as they can be quite agressive.Our room was comfortable. Local staff were well mannered and friendly.It was a full board,all meals were buffet andquite good comparing the remote location with many dishes Indian influence. The lounge area is the central point of gathering where lodgers hang around before being picked up for morning or after noon safari with poach leading out to the wooded compound.Beyond the electrified fences you can see from distance,gazelle ,zebra wondering around all day.Overall ,considered nice natural ,Eco friendly lodge that meet yor expectation and right in the game park.Our driver guide even located many wild animals on the small dirt road leading to the lodge.

Room Tip: Choose room on left wing from lobby entrance as it has best view.The closest to lobby is good as les...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • 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
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge

Address: Amboseli National Park, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Amboseli Eco-system > Amboseli National Park
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Amboseli National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 95
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest Mountain; beside a copse of giant Acacia trees and gently flowing natural spring. In the clean, crisp air of an Amboseli dawn, the snowcapped peaks of Mount Kilimanjaro shimmering in the southern sky, you can sit atop a volcanic throne in the middle of the Masai plains and see the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Amboseli Serena Safari Hotel Amboseli National Park

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