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“seafood buffet!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Nairobi Serena Hotel

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Nairobi Serena Hotel
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Kenyatta Avenue/Processional Way | P.O. Box 46302, Nairobi GPO, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 105 Hotels in Nairobi
london
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“seafood buffet!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

a lovely, comfortable, expensive hotel. jointly with the fairview the two quietest and most pleasant places to stay in nairobi. but the seafood buffet (once a week, can't recall which evening) is the best thing about the serena. if i had to choose between a humble guesthouse but with enough money to come to the serena for the buffet versus staying at the serena but being denied the buffet, i'd go for the first.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
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499 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 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
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (97)
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English first
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013

Stayed just one night here before embarking on safari. Good comfortable hotel, if not outstanding. Nice pool and hottest sauna I have ever experienced. Good food. Very pleasant helpful staff which is my experience everywhere in Kenya and Tanzania - some European hotel staff should get some training in East Africa.
We were tired after an overnight flight and never left the hotel during our 24 hour stay, so cannot speak for the convenience of the location for visiting the city. We were able to access our room on arrival at about 10am which is creditable.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013

This was our first visit to Nairobi and, as you can imagine, we were sceptical about the expectation of standards. In many places "good" is actually "meh" and even "excellent" can actually mean "meh!".

Based on the Trip advisor Rating of 4/80 for Hotels in Nairobi, we took the plunge and made a telephonic reservation. The reservations desk was very helpful and friendly even though, for the first few seconds, I had difficulty understanding the English Accent. Upon hearing the price, I asked for a discount based on prices I could see online and was pleasantly surprised to have the original quote adjusted to match (closely) the rate that I had seen online. I asked if I could make a tentative booking for 24H whilst I finalised other travel arrangements and was told that this was not a problem. I received an email (requested by me) within minutes of the call. The following day I confirmed my booking. I asked the reservations desk to make a note on my booking that we would be arriving late (after 9pm) and to ensure that our room was not forfeited accordingly.

Upon arrival, the check-in process was very simple and straight forward, I elected to pay for our entire stay in advance in cash. We were shown to our room which was lovely and overlooked the city skyline. This was particularly nice in the morning watching the sunrise behind the city skyline and silhouetted acacia trees.

The room (Deluxe/Standard) was very spacious and comfortable, clean and well maintained. The view over the city gives the impression that you are not in the city whereas you are are right there..

The water pressure in the shower was torrential rain style, totally loved it, could have spent an hour under it if there was enough time ... loved the shower. The bathroom was clean and everything worked. The bathroom was just a bit small (I am somewhat larger than the average person so ... I may be biased here).

There was a super sized safe in the room that (when I took the pre-cast shelves out) I could fit my backpack with laptop and camera into. I love that !!

We never made use of all the facilities, so our assessment is based on the things, places and facilities we did use.

The restaurant was lovely, we had 3 x Buffet breakfast and 1 x Seafood Buffet Dinner in the Mandhari Restaurant. The service and quality was superb and the attention to detail and guests was top notch.

The prices in the curio shop were reasonable and the shop was well stocked with enough variety to make some last minute purchases if required.

What was probably most noticeable was the number of staff (smartly dressed and polite) that appeared to be ready to help around every corner, at the lift, in the foyer ... everywhere. All with a friendly smile and ready to respond to our sketchy attempts at Swahili ... Jumbo Sana, Lala Salaam, Karibo Sana, Asanti Sana ..... Even though the Hotel itself was superb, what I remember most was the friendly staff.

So ... there has to be something wrong right ? ...

If I had to pick one thing, the size of the bathroom could have been bigger. Unfortunately, this is not something that the hotel can just change because of the structural effort that would require. Perhaps if the door was converted to a sliding door then that would provide the extra space. Don't misunderstand me, this was not a showstopper and when I go back to Nairobi, I'll be staying at the Serena again, no doubt!

Leaving was difficult because I would have liked to tip all the staff that took care of us. I don't like to walk around with pockets of cash giving money here and there. It would be nice if there was a way to provide a single amount to the reception and know that this would be distributed to all.

On the whole, our stay was awesome. I was well pleased with our choice and even though the rates are toward our upper limits, I will go back to the Nairobi Serena when we visit Nairobi again.

Room Tip: We loved the City Facing Rooms but did not see any others.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Morristown, New Jersey
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

Stayed for 3 nights on business. A beautiful hotel - especially public areas, pool, spa and restaurants.
fantastic food - especially the thursday night seafood bbq.
Interesting mix of guests - locals, Europeans, Indians, Americans - international & up-scale.
Staff was top-notch - helpful; very responsive to all of our requests.
Would highly recommend the Nairobu Serena in Kenya for business & pleasure.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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New London, NC
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

On a recent safari trip we stayed four nights in the Nairobi Serena Hotel. It is centrally located,
clean, modern, and well equipped. Check-in and luggage services were quick and efficient,
as was check-out, The rooms are good size and modern in every way. The pool, bar, and
restaurants are all very good, though service in the main restaurant is slow. If we return to
Nairobi, we would certainly stay at this hotel again.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
    • 4 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.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

We stayed at the Nairobi Serena for 2 nights as we arrived late from the UK and were off to the David Sheldrick elephant orphanage the next day.

You are received with a warm welcome and nothing is too much trouble. Having been escorted to your room, which for the first night was a standard room, the first thing we noticed was just how clean and airy it was. A welcome bowl of fruit and sparkling wine also were on hand.

As we arrived late we had room service which was prompt and the food hot.

Having settled down for the night in the King sized bed, there was a continuous humming sound that disrupted our sleep. Although we called the duty manager 3 times unfortunately no one came to see what the problem was (it turned out to be an issue with the extractor fans or something in that part of the hotel.)

In the morning the manager came to see us personally and could not apologise enough for the inconvenience. We just asked that the problem got fixed by the evening so we could have a good night’s sleep. After coming back from the David Sheldrick Elephant Sanctuary the hotel met us at the entrance and had upgraded up to a suite plus free dinner for two that evening as a goodwill gesture. They did not need to do that but it was a wonderful gesture and one we were very grateful for. The suite itself was as big as my downstairs lounge, dining room and kitchen put together and there was even a choice of 7 different types of pillow !

If you have time there is also an outdoor swimming pool that looked inviting and some lovely gardens around the hotel to stroll around.

If you want a very comfortable and relaxing stay with good food and excellent friendly hospitality then I would thoroughly recommend a stay here before or after your safari.

Room Tip: Hairdryers are supplied and there are UK 3 pin plug sockets. Towels and toiletries are also provided...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danville, California
Top Contributor
132 reviews 132 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2013

Our group stayed at the Nairobi Serena one night prior to leaving on safari and one night at the conclusion of our safari. In both stays the check in process was smooth, the room was good sized, the bed was very comfortable and the bathroom was very modern with great water pressure in the shower. We had a couple of quick meals at the pool side restaurant that were very nice. The breakfast buffet was excellent with a wide selection of food available. I would highly recommend the Serena to anybody traveling to Nairobi.

Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
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Additional Information about Nairobi Serena Hotel

Address: Kenyatta Avenue/Processional Way | P.O. Box 46302, Nairobi GPO, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Nairobi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 105 Hotels in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Nairobi Serena Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 183
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