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“Beats Nairobi Safari Club hands down” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Crowne Plaza Hotel Nairobi

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Crowne Plaza Hotel Nairobi
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Kenya Road Upper Hill | PO Box 25574, Nairobi 00100, Kenya (Upper Hill Estate)   |  
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Ranked #20 of 125 Hotels in Nairobi
Certificate of Excellence
Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“Beats Nairobi Safari Club hands down”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2011

Something anyone staying in Nairobi must consider is the traffic. Weekends are not too bad but during the week it can take anything from 30 minutes to 2 hours to get to or from Jomo Kenyatta airport. If you have a morning flight to catch this can mean leaving your city hotel 4-5 hours before your flight! If this is the case I would consider a hotel near the airport, we saw the Ole Sereni and the Panari. If you can travel into the city I would definitely recommend the Crowne Plaza.
It is a new hotel and a pleasure to stay at. It is in a quiet area and you will have a peaceful nights sleep.
We arrived on a Saturday early morning flight and were lucky that we could be checked in early. The rooms are large, modern and functional, beds comfy - little soft, choice of pillows, pillow mist, good air conditioning, tea and coffee, fridge/minibar, international tv channels, free wi-fi and fab bathroom. I mention this because many hotels had no hospitality tray, tv or a fridge and extortionate internet access.
Staff were very friendly and helpful, we did not experience any problems during our 3 day stay but we did hear a few business guests who had some niggly problems. We got the impression across Kenya as a whole that staff will listen to your problem but are not always able to do anything about it. The infrastructure in the country means that high standards cannot always be maintained but the staff will always try to help and be polite.
The coffee lounge is relaxing with excellent drinks and snacks. We also got a take away pizza from here and took it up to our room. We ate in the less formal restaurant Baraza by the pool, the menu had a wide choice and the prices were reasonable for a hotel. Main courses 1500 KHS upwards (£11). You can eat outside or inside and it was very pleasant in the evening. The Gazebo Bar & Grill opposite the hotel was very good. It has an informal atmosphere and the food and drink is much cheaper. Nyama Choma (mixed roasted meat) was about £5 for a large portion and a huge fresh veggie burger with fries was £2.50.
There aren't that many sunloungers around the pool but being predominantly a business hotel there wasn't much competition. The gym looked well equipped. The pool is in the centre of the hotel so is surrounded and it is a bit strange swimming and sunbathing whilst business people are eating in the restaurant.
There isn't much to do in the neighbourhood so we visited the Ya Ya shopping centre on the Sunday where there was a good Maasai market, learning to haggle is a must. A taxi cost 700 KHS from the hotel and there were plenty around to take us home. There were a few restaurants there too and a bank that was willing to change our notes into smaller denominations free and was open on a Sunday.
We booked our excursions through Hayes & Jarvis who use Pollmans - have to say would not do that again. We visited the Giraffe Centre on the Monday which is well worth it. They are succesfully breeding Rothschild giraffes to release and help get them off the endangered list. They are very friendly and you can have a kiss from them! The wildlife walk there is also worthwhile. After that we went to the Karen Blixen museum which was interesting and had a good gift shop. Our guide took us to Tamambo for lunch it is also known as the Karen Blixen Coffee Garden.
On our last day we visited the Sheldrick elephant orphanage between 11 and 12 and then we returned at 5pm to watch them all go to bed. It is very worthwhile adopting, they do amazing work and this enables you to visit at 5 without the masses that can be there at lunchtime. You must book the evening visit well in advance though.
I would advise negotiating a driver for the day and going to the Giraffe Centre, Karen Blixen, Utamundi Craft Centre, Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage and some other shops. It is also worth looking for accomodation in Karen, it is a lovely area near excursions and not too bad for getting to the airport. The excursions were cheap to get into or a donation is expected and I think it would work out cheaper this way than booking through a tour operator. We used Elijah Njoroge who had an air conditioned Mercedes and was one of the most polite and accomodating people we met. He is an incredibly safe driver which counts for a lot in Nairobi. If you private message me I would be pleased to pass on his contact details.
The drivers at the Crowne Plaza were also safe drivers and it cost us $30 to get to the airport. It is good to have this price as a gauge then you can also get a taxi from the airport but I don't know if they charge for sitting in the traffic. The hotel did quote us $35 per person for an airport transfer when I e mailed them before we travelled so I would not recommend paying that.
We found the hotel a very relaxing place to stay, the staff were excellent and compared to the horror that is the Nairobi Safari Club the Crowne Plaza is far superior. If we return to Nairobi we will definitely be staying here.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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353 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2011

We had the pleasure of staying at the Crowne Plaza Nairobi for two nights prior to a lengthy trip in Africa, and have nothing but good things to say about the hotel. The primary purpose of our stay was to help us to get over jetlag, and the Crowne Plaza exceeded in every respect.

The room was clean and bright, but we were able to achieve total darkness when we drew the blinds. The bed is comfortable, and they will provide you with any firmness and size of pillow you want (in case the pillows already in your room are not to your liking).

The coffee bar by the lobby is also bright, with comfortable chairs, and expert baristas. We passed hours reading and people-watching from there. We ate at both Baraza (casual) and Sikia (fancy) restaurants, and both were delicious.

Finally, we arranged for a guide for a day-trip one day. The guide was professional, the price reasonable, and the hotel staff extremely fast and responsive... over e-mail from Canada.

I don't know if we will ever be to Nairobi again, but if we do, we will certainly be returning here.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2011

I stayed at the Crown Plaza for four nights. I was very impressed with the accommodations and the helpfulness and friendliness of the staff. I would without a doubt stay there again.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Vienna, Austria
Top Contributor
72 reviews 72 reviews
57 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2011

Perfectly agreeable business hotel and a good choice in Nairobi, where hotels tend to be either a bit aged or horribly expensive.

The area of the city is a bit of a business district, but if you want a little more local feeling than an international hotel chain, just hop across the street into the bar/restaurant on the other side of the street, which serves a cold Tusker and quite decent food in a neighborhood environment.

I was upgraded to the club floor, which was a nice touch, but unfortunately, my room was right next to the kitchen of the club lounge. Due to bad soundproofing, kichen noises were audible until late and from very early again.

The room was well equipped, to chain standards, clean, bed comfy.

Reception was friendly and efficient. Will be back again, when in Nairobi.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Kampala, Uganda
Top Contributor
209 reviews 209 reviews
113 hotel reviews
Reviews in 58 cities Reviews in 58 cities
207 helpful votes 207 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 6, 2011

I had initially wanted to stay at the Crowne Plaza which sadly for the days in question was full, so I opted for the 'senior cousin' InterContinental and only went to see the hotel while in the city to get a feel for it.
Clearly aimed at the 'fast' business visitors the hotel has plenty of meeting spaces available, all 'booked' when I came around, as were the rooms on a follow up request to find out if indeed my 'sorry we are fully booked' response was correct. It was!

Breakfast was still ongoing when I popped in and the variety and choices were very adequate indeed, partly served 'al fresco' towards the swimming pool area.

The hotel occupies a choice location on the 'Upper Hill' area of Nairobi which only over the past 10 or so years came to the forefront as another 'Decentralised Business District' besides the CBD proper in the city centre.

The few staff I spoke with were competent and friendly inspite of 'full house', a sign of good training and their ability to deal with pressure.

A must try at one of my future Nairobi stays...

Stayed June 2011, traveled on business
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Kentucky,USA
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2011

Spent 3 days before and two after a recent safari and I couldn't recommend this hotel more. The staff was consistently friendly and professional, the managers visible and sincere and the rooms beautiful and clean. I
ll be staying here again whenever I return tom Nairobi.

  • Stayed May 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IHGCare, IHGCare at Crowne Plaza Hotel Nairobi, responded to this review, June 9, 2011
Dear Thelmagirl,

Thank you for your review! We are glad to have been your hotel of choice before and after your safari. Thank you for your kind words!

We hope to welcome you again soon!

Best,
Joshua Brinkerhoff
Case Manager
IHGCare
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mauritius
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2011

I stayed at Crowne Plaza for 5 nights in April 2011 during a business trip to Nairobi. In my view it is a good hotel which gave me no reason to complain other than the one I have given below. Hotel is good, staff is very friendly, location is fine, rooms and amenities are good. Nice clean bathrooms, great housekeeping, you get things when demanded, good room service, easy and reasonably priced taxies available from hotel. Free high speed wireless Internet in room and other areas of hotel was a must have for person like me on a business trip. And it worked.

However, I was amazed to see exactly same buffet breakfast with same menu being served for all 5 days of my stay ! I would have appreciated a minor change in the breakfast menu each day. By the way, lunch and menu a la carte had some yummy dishes to offer that I truly enjoyed.

Overall – highly recommended.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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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Additional Information about Crowne Plaza Hotel Nairobi

Address: Kenya Road Upper Hill | PO Box 25574, Nairobi 00100, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Nairobi > Upper Hill Estate
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #20 of 125 Hotels in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Crowne Plaza Hotel Nairobi 4*
Number of rooms: 162
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Crowne Plaza Nairobi is a new and stylish, 4 Star hotel strategically located in the commercial area of Upper Hill in Nairobi. The hotel is surrounded by multinational companies, diplomatic missions, banks, government offices, insurers and hospitals. Our pillar-less ballroom and 6 boardrooms with state-of-the-art equipments make it the ideal place to stay and meet. The Crowne Plaza Nairobi is just a 30 minute drive from the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, 10 minutes drive to the City Centre and 20 minutes drive to the famous Nairobi National Park and Animal Orphanage. Crowne Plaza Nairobi has 162 superbly appointed spacious rooms which include thirteen suites, a club floor with its exclusive lounge. All rooms are air conditioned and have high speed wireless internet connectivity. To compliment this is the Business Centre, the double story ultra modern fitness centre and heated swimming pool, Multiple restaurants and a double story bar, 24 hour room service, a gift shop, money changing facilities, beauty salon, travel desk, secure and ample parking space, and same day laundry facilities. ... more   less 
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