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“Not a hidden gem” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Sentrim Nairobi Boulevard Hotel

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Sentrim Nairobi Boulevard Hotel
2.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Harry Thuku Road | PO Box 43436, Nairobi 00100, Kenya (Nairobi Central Business District)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #53 of 96 hotels in Nairobi
Texas
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Not a hidden gem”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2012

The hotel is within a very lush and green compound but the structure itself looks unkept and in desperate need of a facelift. For those wondering whether this is an improvement over its sister, the 680, here are my takes:

Cost; it is more expensive, and yes, you must pay a $13 deposit to get the TV remote. Internet is very steeply priced and unreliable.

Location; good and bad - removed from the city center in a lush and mostly well maintained compound good for relaxing in the day; large swimming pool. But a bit of walking (20 min +) is necessary to restaurants, business center etc.

Noise: One side of the hotel (facing the garden) is mostly quiet. The opposite side is a different story; facing a very busy highway, it is noisy through and through. There is no AC so opening windows is obligatory, ear plugs would help.

Rooms; same size as 680, but more dated - seems like no renovation has taken place since hotel construction.
Water pressure was low, hot water was unavailable about half the time.
Room safe; very big - can accommodate a 17" laptop, so all your valuables are safe.

Restaurant; buffet breakfast among the worst in Nairobi, limited selection and of very poor quality. Restaurant meals were average to good.

Bottomline: I would look elsewhere for the money. The 680 is a better value overall, and that is not a compliment.

Room Tip: Please please request garden side rooms if you wish for a good night sleep.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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188 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
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Dublin, Ireland
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2012

I would have found the Boulevard Hotel in Nairobi a great hotel anyway, with large grounds, a lovely garden, a restaurant onsite, luxurious surroundings, and comfortable rooms, but after weeks of backpacking and camping throughout Africa, it was sheer heaven! I'm not exactly an outdoors person anyway, and although I DID love the adventure of camping, and knew it was the easiest way to see Africa, I wasn't able for camping, and although I upgraded when I could, the upgrades were often almost as basic as the tents. So after arriving at the Boulevard Hotel in Nairobi, it was like luxury to me. The hotel seemed even more clean and comfortable after weeks of roughing it in a canvas tent, but it was a good hotel anyway, with great rooms- I'd booked a room for one person, and couldn't believe the space I had, plus each room had a fan, a hairdryer, and a kettle for making tea!- and lovely gardens. I couldn't believe the size of the gardens, but what ruined it for me was that there was a huge big billboard on the street outside, just onfront of the hotel, that had that part of the garden in shadow, and ruined the view from that side. Not the hotel's fault, obviously, but it's something to be aware of. That said,I couldn't fault the gardens- especially loved the little bird house, and the flower archways, and it was nice having the swimming pool out the front, and the gardens around the other side. All in all the impression was of lots of space everywhere.

On the first day I arrived, I didn't get there til the afternoon, and I was having a group meal with the others that night, so I didn't eat in the hotel then. But the next day I had both lunch and dinner, and I found those meals very nice, and the staff friendly and helpful. I felt the staff were so obliging, and really went out of their way for me- Tony especially, at the front desk, chatted to me for ages on the day I arrived, and when I told him I had one full day in Nairobi and wanted to see quite a lot of things then, he said he'd take me out himself, for the day, in his own taxi. Tony was as good as his word, and did indeed take me out for the day, and although he had to go off and do another job halfway through, he got his colleague, Harrison, to take over, and made sure I was looked after before he left. Harrison was as obliging as Tony was, and it was so good having the one taxi and being left from place to place, not having to try and hail a cab when leaving every place, and not knowing the driver!

It was also Tony who suggested that I ask the restaurant could they prepare an early breakfast for me, on the day I was flying to the airport, as I had a very early start. It was so good having the breakfast ready for me so early, but it was also a cause for complaint. I took the milk that I assumed was there waiting for me, as it was on the table, poured it onto my cereal and took a good mouthful, only to discover the milk was sour. It was pretty sickening, as you can imagine, but when I told the waiter in charge- whose name I didn't know- he wasn't very helpful or apologetic, and didn't seem to realise how bad it was. He just shrugged, 'Oh it won't do you any harm!' and I said politely but firmly that that wasn't the point, that it makes you feel sick when you swallow sour milk, and he shouldn't have left it out if it was gone off. THat was the only service that I thought hadn't been very good, but all the other reception people and taxi drivers were so good at their job, and so friendly and helpful, especially Tony, who really went out of his way for me.

The only other minor things I have to say is that at that early breakfast, the hotel lights flickered off for a few seconds, and the room was in darkness. And one evening when I was in the shower, the light in the shower flickered off, and although the bathroom light was still on, and the shower light came back later, you'd wonder was the hotel having problems with the electrics, and did this happen on a regular basis? They also seemed to have problems with the mosquitos in this hotel- on my first night I woke up feeling I was literally being eaten alive, and there were mosquitos buzzing all around me. I sprayed some of my repellent on myself and it got easier after that, but you wouldn't expect hotels like that to have so many mosquitos, and to have no nets!

Those points are about the only negative things I have to say about Hotel Boulevard- everything else was excellent, especially the helpful and friendly staff. The people writing bad reviews must have had a very different experience to what I had, and I'm sorry to hear their experience wasn't so pleasant. I was glad I had that real luxury hotel experience after all those nights of camping, and before I went back home!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hackensack
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2012

In late 2011 I wanted to change hotels and after checking out from Sentrim 680 which was mediocre, I decided to check in at Sentrim Nairobi Boulevard because I had two more days before flying back to the US. I thought the location was better than the city center but the service was even worse. The front desk clerks were so clueless whenever we had a problem and they didn't seem happy at all. One of the guests I got to meet was charged extra because her friend came to her room to hang out before travelling to Lake Nakuru the same day. I was very shocked when a Kenyan national who was hanging out with us told us that under the new management, the women employees were not hired because of their qualifications and that left a lot to our imagination especially when the national said that those who didn't comply did not last long as employees. When the Kenyan national also mentioned how little these employees got paid - about $170 a month working 12 hours a day I understood why they seemed sad and not so helpful. I also understood when the national mentioned that the employees often "pocketed" the extra charges from guests themselves. All I know is that in the earlier years the Boulevard Hotel and 680 were better hotels than they are today and I WON'T be going to any of them on my next visit to Kenya because they don't care about their guests.

Stayed November 2011, traveled solo
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2012

I stayed in the hotel between 25 and 29 March 2012. On the 26th, after dinner, I took a colleague upstairs into my room to get some documents to her. She left the room and the hotel within 15-20 minutes. The hotel decided to charge me extra U$65.00 because she was not supposed to go to my room. After discussing the issue with the manager, he ordered the front desk staff to take the charge off. They did so, but the front desk staff, after the manager left the area, told me that most likely they were going to be charged for it themselves. what a shocker!

Room Tip: Look for another hotel! Lots of mosquitoes around. TV did not work. Fan in room was far too noisy.
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Equality, Illinois
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2012

In the heart of Nairobi, steps from the University, at the end of a quiet street this three story hotel with 4.5 acres of well manicured green space, is not a bad choice. The rooms are small, but clean, no A/C. The food is not bad, not great, served in open air surroundings. The place is very secure and safe, it has a handful of taxi drivers who hang out inside the grounds and who will not rip you off. The cost for internet access is 10 time what any internet cafe charges. $6 per hour vs. 50 cents at a internet cafe, but there are none nearby, So, if you are traveling all the way to Africa to sit in you hotel room and update your Facebook, this might not be a good place to stay. BUT if you are looking for a safe place in a quiet, bucolic setting, with friendly staff, this might be just right. Breakfast buffet is good, check online for best rates.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • 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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Denver, Colorado
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2012

My colleagues and I stayed at this property in March 2012, and from the start we had trouble. First, we had booked our reservation online, but they had only one out of the three rooms reserved actually in their system(despite the fact that I had paid for the entire booking on my credit card beforehand). Second, the front desk staff were mostly unhelpful. Internet could only be purchased for set amounts of time and during the times the hotel shop was open, which proved hugely problematic for one of my colleagues with a late night deadline. Also, the pay-for-use internet system was slow and the shop staff did not know how to provide technical assistance, even when it was their own system that was not functioning. The rooms were fine, although the bathroom ventilation system provided far too much information about neighboring rooms' bathroom activities. The one bright spot of the hotel were the friendly taxi drivers who offered reasonable prices and safe transportation to meetings around the city.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Calgary, Canada
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2012

My Dad and I stayed here in February 2012. The room we had was decent. It had 2 single beds that were okay. It didnt have AC but it wasnt that hot in that room. The swimming pool is really nice. It's being cleaned all the time and the service there is great! The front desk people are almost useless. Every time we had a question they would just mumble something and not know the answer. The restaurant is decent a bit over priced. I felt safe here. There is a safe in the room if you feel you need it (we used it.) It is a bit rundown in some places but just remembering the fact you are in Africa makes all the tiny problems no big deal.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Sentrim Nairobi Boulevard Hotel

Address: Harry Thuku Road | PO Box 43436, Nairobi 00100, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Nairobi > Nairobi Central Business District
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #53 of 96 hotels in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Sentrim Nairobi Boulevard Hotel 2.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nairobi is the capital and largest city of Kenya. The city and its surrounding area also form the Nairobi Province. The name "Nairobi" comes from the Maasai phrase Enkare Nyirobi, which translates to "the place of cool waters." However, it is popularly known as the "Green City in theSun." Location: Sentrim Boulevard is located at the end of Nairobi’s Harry Thuku Road, an oasis of peace and quite with beautiful manicured gardens and lawns. There are 70 rooms in 2 stories. The main guest area consists of the reception, lounge area, Restaurant and bar. The Mezzanine floor has the conference facilities. ... more   less 
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