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“Topi House tops!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mara Bush Houses, Asilia Africa

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Mara Bush Houses, Asilia Africa
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Mara North Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya (Formerly Nomadic Encounters)   |  
Hotel amenities
Greensburg, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Topi House tops!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Topi House was our first stop on our safari and was the perfect introduction to the bush. The house is lovely and in a perfect setting. Sitting on the verandah in the afternoon, we watched the giraffes poking above the trees, the baboons moving through the grass, wildebeest, zebras and gazelles grazing and topi everywhere. Our bedroom was very comfortable and well equipped. We never ran out of hot water or lacked anything. Leonard's meals were delicious. The table was always beautifully set, even the picnic breakfasts were over the top. And where else will Nabalaa and his buddies dance and sing for you!!! It was wonderful! And we can't say enough about Salaash, our fabulous guide. Each day was an adventure that we thought could not be topped, but then there was the next day. We saw incredible game and he made sure that we had the opportunity to just sit and watch, mesmerized by the experience. At lunch and after dinner each day, Salaash sat with us and guided us in planning our next drive. His knowledge of the animals and their habits was so impressive. Breakfast with the Hippos, finding the leopard, laughing over the lion who had gorged himself to obvious discomfort, waking to tea and cookies, the hotwater bottle that kept my feet warm, sitting and talking around the fire in a Maasi home, seeing and being close to more animals than we ever dreamed - so many special memories. And the warmth and hospitality of everyone made our stay perfect!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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41 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2013

Topi House looked incredible from the literature but it exceeded our very high expectations. The setting is amazing, looking out onto miles of unspoiled bush with giraffe and elephant wandering by. The house is gorgeous, the beds comfortable and the facilities excellent. But what made the experience, was the team of people who looked after us so well. Salaash was an amazing guide, with an awe inspiring knowledge of the wildlife and the environment. His patience, understanding of and respect for, the animals allows him to find wonderful wildlife encounters around every corner: lions hunting and on a kill; leopard resting in the shade of a rock; an exhilarating Mara crossing and so much more. Isaac's food was delicious and Sasine and Nabaala looked after us in a very unobtrusive, but very attentive and caring way, which was a real luxury. It was a real privilege to be on safari in such a setting with such wonderful people around us.

Room Tip: Double and one twin room we used were fabulous. Ensuite bathrooms huge and well equipped.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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.
Winchester, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2013

When we first booked we had reservations about the price, but wow, it's the best money we have ever spent. Everything about our experience was out of this world; the staff, location, hospitality, food and most of all, the animals. Our guide, Salaash, is without doubt one of the most impressive individuals either of us have ever had the pleasure to meet. Not only was he incredibly knowledgeable (about absolutely everything, from the animals to world politics!), but he is simply one of the nicest, most engaging and fascinating people ever. He went out of his way to ensure we had a dream experience and we really cannot thank him enough. We saw all of the big cats and a lot more to boot. We should also mention that the house is fantastic, the food great and all of the staff incredibly polite, but for us, it was Salaash which made our trip. We're already saving for our return trip.

Room Tip: They are both idyllic.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

We stayed at Mara house, and it was absolutely wonderful, Rainee and the staff took care of our every request. The house is well designed and tastefully furnished, and the meals were amazing! Gourmet 3 course meals in the bush had such a novelty factor! The pool and barbeque area was lovely and was a nice area to relax in between game drives. We especially loved relaxing with sundowners while watching the zebra, gazelles and warthogs come to the watering hole, which was a short distance away.
The little touches made a huge difference - unlimited mineral water in charming maasai beaded bottles, washing powder for ladies to wash their underwear, excellent well made coffee, evening fires in the fireplace, and the excellent service from the house staff, who knew when to pour more wine into your glass, made excellent G & Ts, and generally went out their way to make you comfortable. The chef, Isaac, was excellent and more than willing to accommodate any requests for my 2 yr old son. Our tour guide Dickson was very knowledgeable and always shared tid-bits and interesting information on the game, and was an excellent driver - his ability to single-handedly change the tyre in the middle of the plains at super speed was particularly impressive!
We had such a lovely time, we strongly recommend Mara house especially for families.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 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.
Nashville, Tennessee
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

I cannot say enough good things about Nomadic Encounters. We only had three days to stay with them, after the first few hours there, my wife and I already knew we'd be wishing for more time! The accommodations are very, very comfortable, and were far more spacious and luxurious than we were expecting. Wilson provided us with incredible service throughout the day and into the evening, and the food... OH my GOODNESS.... the food was INCREDIBLE!! We went to the Mara expecting the game drives to be the highlight of our trip, and while each one was its own unique and truly amazing experience, I honestly think I would've been just as happy sitting on the lanai, sipping the excellent French press coffee, reading a book, and watching the action at the watering hole! That being said, the game drives were even more awe-inspiring than I had expected, and we were there during the SLOW season- I can't even imagine what it must be like during the migration! Fred, our driver/guide was very knowledgeable about all forms of wildlife, the ecology of the Mara and local culture and customs, and was very, very good at spotting and pointing out wildlife that I, were I at the helm, would have driven right past without noticing. We can't wait for the chance to get back to the Mara, and we will DEFINITELY be staying with Nomadic Encounters... hopefully with a good portion of our extended families in tow! Stay here... you WILL NOT regret it!

Room Tip: We stayed in Acacia House, but I'm sure you can't go wrong, no matter which house you stay i...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
Bells Beach
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

Our recent stay at Acacia lodge ranks amongst the best of our broad travel experiences.
The house, all yours, overlooks its own spring-fed waterholes, where birds and other wildlife, including Elephants for us, were constant visitors.
House staff and all meals, including a requested traditional Maasai dinner, were top rate. And after showing a keen interest in the local culture we were treated to 2 separate, impromptu, dance performances by 4 of our Maasai "warriors". Unforgettable!
Game viewing exceeded our expectations. Dickson, our young guide, is the best we have encountered. His passion, enthusiasm and broad knowledge, often delivered with a Maasai cultural context, brought our game viewing to life. Our guided walking safari to the Mara's highest point, with breakfast, gazing across the plain far below was both reward and highlight.
We highly recommend Natural Encounters' Acacia House and their guide Dickson.

Room Tip: The whole house is yours. The upstairs bedroom would be ideal for kids.
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  • Stayed October 2012, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kirkel, Germany
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

We are a family of 4 and we spent a few days at Acacia House / Nomadic Encounters.
We loved every moment of it. The house is located just in front of a waterhole where zebras and buffaloes came and drank while we were sitting on our veranda surrounded by wild sage and olive trees. The entire house is fabulously designed, olive tree wood is used throughout the builiding.
Our guide Fred was terrific and we had the most wonderful time with Dennis and the whole team of Acacia House who made our stay unforgettable.
Not to forget the food - it was delicious.
We definitely want to come back

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Mara Bush Houses, Asilia Africa

Address: Mara North Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya (Formerly Nomadic Encounters)
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #25 of 111 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine your own house in the bush, right in the very heart of one of Africa’s most famous and game rich areas. A bush house, ideal for a couple, family or group, where the wildlife comes right to your front door and you decide how you would like to pass your day. The private Mara Bush Houses, formerly known as the Nomadic Encounters Bush Homes, are located in the very best locations of the Masai Mara ecosystem and benefit from three generations of experience in this area. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Mara Bush Houses, Asilia Africa Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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