I have mixed feelings about The Stanley. I was caught in the airport freeze resulting from Icelandic volcano eruption and spent two days at The Stanley. The staff is wonderful. Every person I met was polite and helpful, friendly and warm. Without the quickness and urging of the Brand Ambassador, I would never have gotten a flight home so fast.
The room was clean and comfortable. There are several restaurants, a pool, a fitness centre, a business centre in the hotel. Breakfast and free internet access are included in the room rate. There is even a comfortable, designated smoking area (it's illegal to smoke in public in Kenya). The building has character, real flowers adorn hallways. Yet, yet...
The internet service in my room was ever so slow. When I stayed in my room looking for updates from my airline and searching for alternate routes home, I had to answer the door several times in one afternoon. These included: room clean, restocking the mini-bar, checking to see if the room had been cleaned, offer to turn down my bed (it was the middle of the afternoon!), among others. I finally went to the business centre to use the internet because I just didn't want to answer the door anymore and I was tired of the slow internet.
While restaurant staff was welcoming, service was slow and food just okay. Edible, but not pleasurable.
The hotel was generally hot wherever you go. Seems air conditioning was only available in the rooms. I ran around so much to get flight info that I was sweating every time I left my room. I thought it was me until I heard someone else complain about the heat in the lobby.
I found the room expensive. $215 for a single at a special rate. Then I looked on their website to see that rooms sometimes go for $145. Worse, I checked out in the evening of the second night to catch my flight and they charged me the full amount for the second night. They had the right to do that. But if they had the thoughtfulness to reduce the amount for the second night, it would have made me they cared. Instead, I felt they just exploited the situation and me. All the friendliness of the staff suddenly paled to the meanness of management.
I think The Stanley aims to be a grand hotel. It may even have been once. The overwhelming sense now is management just want to make money off guests and spend as little as possible. A practical reason to be in the hotel business, but not a good experience for the traveller.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Kenya’s first luxury hotel, Sarova Stanley opened its elegant doors in 1902. Since then, it has been making history- hosting royal safaris and legendary personalities such as Edward Prince of Wales and Ernest Hemingway. Today, as the hotel enters its second century, it continues to maintain its unique heritage and provides state-of-the-art services and facilities for business and leisure travelers. All guestrooms are a blend of luxurious Victorian grandeur and modern comfort. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sarova Stanley Hotel Nairobi
- Sarova Stanley Nairobi