Before we left for Kenya, I had serious reservations about this place, I had read some bad reviews etc. However, it turned out to be the best of all the accommodation through our entire 9 day safari through Masai Mara & Serengiti! The resort has gone through some extensive renovations & the new management has brought in a bunch of new people who simply do not know how to say 'NO' to any guest request! Loved the location, its right along the bend of the Mara river, loved the resort itself, little things like the hippo viewing station, library, outside seating, view from the restaurant, nice rooms etc. etc. But most of all loved the service & the staff there!
The approach to the resort is quite long, but they have an air strip right next to it where charter flight & Kenyan airways flies into. Infact we found out that if you book with the lodge they can offer a package inclusive of flight, stay, meals & game drives at fairly reasonable rates! Next time, that's what we'd be doing. Yes the Park West Gate is a bit way off, but there are enough game drive right next to the resort along the river. That's where we saw the famous Cheetah brothers!
The rooms are quite well done, with a huge comfy bed (I think it can fit 6) & the window looks out into the river. Each room has a verandah with vantage viewing points. The bathrooms are very modern & very clean.
The bar and the restaurant couldn't have been located better - plenty of Hippo viewing & loads of other animals. They also store some good South African wines there. The food was great & the chef went out of his way to please. We asked for some local African dishes & next day that's what we got! My daughter was especially taken care of, the chef painstakingly prepared food that she loved, after speaking to her (she's only 4!). Breakfast was sumptuous as well & the packed lunch really extensive.
We wanted to do a Bush dinner, however, there were some logistics issue with that on the day, so as a make good, they did a surprise dinner for just our family next to the pool. It was a candlelit dinner (candles around the whole pool & along the pathways) We had barbecue, great African dishes & a very special fish dish for the little one - all complimentary! It was just beautiful!
The staff are very knowledgeable about the birds & animals of the Mara & they are fantastic to talk to. We had a fantastic time here & wish we could have stayed longer!
So if you are going to Masai Mara, dont think twice just go the the Mara River Resort!
- Also Known As:
- Mara River Lodge Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Mara River Lodge commands one of most spectacular views in the Serengeti - Mara ecosystem; the lodge lies on the Mara River at the edge of Maasai Mara Game Reserve and overlooks deep pools where crocodiles and hippos bask all day. Painted in traditional Maasai red ochre and lit by hundreds of lanterns, the lodge is surrounded by indigenous trees and plants and is an attractive complement to the local environment. Guests can see hippos across the river from their tables as they sit down to enjoy the international cuisine on offer. Families of hippos spend their days basking in the deep pools beyond the bars and restaurant throughout the day. After a hot day's safari Maasai warriors in full regalia greet guests as they return to their 'bush home'. ... more less