We chose this hotel as there are no hotels at the airport in Nairobi, something that really needs to be fixed! It was reasonably priced, had a good looking website, appears on western sites such as Hotels.com, and was close to the main road out to the airport.
I can't help but feel that The Strand spend all their money on advertising to a western market, and on monogrammed sheets. The room felt cheap and unpleasant, certainly not worth the amount we paid for it.
The room was very small, barely big enough for the double bed, desk and chair it contained. The bed was pushed up against the wall with the windows, and so against the old, musty smelling brown and gold curtains. The desk was less than 2 feet from the end of the bed, the chair certainly couldn't be used to sit at the desk! On it there was an old tv- on which only one channel seemed to work and an ancient looking telephone. Above the bed hung a slightly musty mosquito net. But the bed did indeed have monogrammed sheets, like on the website! In addition to the horrible brown curtains, two walls were painted bright orange- not exactly restful. The door did not quite meet the floor and so light from the veranda style landing poured in all night. The windows were old fashioned and could not be locked at all, even though the hotel is behind a gate and walls with a security guard this felt very unsafe. The bathroom was tiny, and laid out like on a yacht with the shower above the toilet and sink, as we were only there overnight we did not use the shower so I can't comment on how good it was. While clean the bathroom had no ventilation so it did not smell pleasant.
We slept terribly, the room was hot and stuffy even though it was not a hot night in Nairobi. When we opened the windows it simply amplified the already annoying noise of traffic, gates banging and people shouting. Only one street away from a main road The Strand is in a busy area surrounded by high rises and less than salubrious looking bars. The road itself is almost impassable for potholes.
Overall I was incredibly pleased to be leaving in the morning. We did not eat breakfast as we had such and early flight although it was included in the room rate, to be quite honest I didn't want to eat anything there. We were there less that 12 hours, but they were not pleasant restful ones.
We also used our own taxi rather than the hotel shuttle to the airport, and our journey to the airport was quick and traffic free though it was very early.
I have travelled to Kenya many many times, and understand that it may seem harsh to judge a local hotel against the standards I have for a western one, however I have stayed in considerably better value places in Kenya. Given the impression given by the hotel website and advertising, and the fact that it was not exactly cheap I was incredibly disappointed by my whole experience.
Shell out a little more money and maybe get up a little earlier and stay elsewhere rather than taint your memory of Kenya by spending your last night here.
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