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“Best safari ever!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fairmont Mara Safari Club

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Fairmont Mara Safari Club
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   C14, Keekorok | P.O. Box 58581, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Epsom, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Best safari ever!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

We booked through Emirates holidays, who recommended the Mara safari club as a 5 star tented lodge- and they weren't wrong! There are many hotels that would struggle to meet the standards set here, and I never realised how much you could fit under a canvas roof! Our tent was positioned right on hippo corner, with amazing views down the Mara river. The four poster bed was amazingly comfortable, and the bathroom facilities were superb and clean, with a rainforest shower and dressing gowns provided. After our dinner we returned to the room and got into bed, and found a hot water bottle beneath the sheets - perfect for keeping warm at night - the resort is at 2000m, so there is a definite chill! We had absolutely no problems with insects inside the room - which was impressive given our proximity to the river - but do be prepared for the occasional baboon scuttling across your roof! The staff were fantastic, and the selection of food at breakfast, lunch and dinner was superb. Now on to the fun stuff - on our first afternoon we went for a game drive, and in a single afternoon saw giraffes, wildebeest, buffalo, zebras, antelopes...and a pride of lions! The Masai Mara reserve is HUGE - and unlike some other reserves the cars are allowed to explore most of the terrain, as opposed to sticking to set paths. This means that, thanks to the radio links between cars, you would have to be very unlucky to not see any big cats during your trips. The balloon excursion is expensive, but one of the greatest experiences of our lives - viewing thousands of game animals from a height is breathtaking, and the morning was completed with a full fry-up served in the middle of the savannah! I can't imagine anywhere better to go if you have never been on safari.

Room Tip: Room 45 is on 'Hippo corner' - light sleepers may find it noisy, but it wasn't a problem...
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  • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, October 8, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time to share the experiences of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club.

We are so glad that you had the best ever Safari experience with us enjoying especially our luxurious tents with unobstructed view of the Croc/Hippo infested Mara River, the great tent ammenities - comfortable beds, superb en clean bathrooms with nice overhead shower, great food selection at all meal times including the bush breakfast, great game viewing experience both from our top of the range jeeps and aloft the balloon as well as the personalized services provided by our fantastic staff.

Thank you very much for the great feedback which we shall definately share with all our colleagues and we welcome you back to our Resort the next time you visit the Mara.

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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305 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (85)
Date | Rating
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English first
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

The highlight - our game drivers! Very knowledgeable and made all our safaris worth while.

The service was incredible. Be it the private bush dinner that we organised for the entire family with our very own Bon fire and tribal Masai dancers and a spread just for us to the hot air balloon ride with a champagne breakfast that was organised for us!

The rooms were spacious and had no complains on that end.

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Umehani,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club.

We are glad that you enjoyed several aspects at the Resort; Great game viewing experience, personalized and engaging guest services as well as a great dining experience especially the outdoor meal experience - Bush Dinner and Balloon Bush Breakfast!

Thank you for your great feedback and we welcome you back to our Resort next time you visit the Mara!

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Carlos, Panama
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2013

Really great resort. Just spent 3 nights of a 14 day Kenya safari adventure and we wish that we would have spent at least 7 days or more at this camp. The accommodations are great,the food is excellent and the game drives are FANTASTIC. You can drive up to a few meters of most animals. We got to see the Big 5 here and also the 5 ugliest. Who knew such a list existed?

Our guide, Jeremiah, was by far, the best guide we had in all of the 4 safaris we did across Kenya.

I highly recommend this resort to anyone contemplating doing a safari in Kenya.

  • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Diane,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club

We are glad that you had a fantastic stay experience with us enjoying several aspects of the Resort especially our great accomodation, excellent food and fantastic game drive experience.

We shall definately share your great feedback with our colleagues and in particluar Jeremiah who exceeded your game viewing expectations.

Thank you and we welcome you back to our Resort next time you visit the Mara!

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2013 via mobile

We stayed 3 nights at the Fairmont Mara Safari Club during our honeymoon. We also spent 3 nights at the Mara Intrepids. On a relative basis, the Mara Intrepids had more animals since it is actually in the Masai Mara Game Reserve whereas the Fairmont Mara Safari Club is in the conservatory. That said you can see the Big 5 at both camps and there are plenty of animals to see at the Mara Safari Club. In every other way, the Mara Safari Club is much better than the Mara Intrepids: food is MUCH better, as are accommodations (you can't brush your teeth with water at Intrepids, toilet runs for 15 mins after each flush, there is no phone in room, etc). The staff at Intrepids are hit and miss: some were nice and others were not; they also nickeled and dimed us for even basics like bottled water (only 1 bottle per person per day to brush teeth; Safari Club provided several as well as sodas and beers for game drives), which is annoying when you spend $1,000 per night. On the other hand, the Safari Club was very welcoming and staff went above and beyond. They probably had twice as many staff per person as the Intrepids. In short, the Fairmont Mara Safari Club was far more impressive for our honeymoon whereas the Intrepids was a disappointment.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club

We are glad that your experience with us was the highlight of your Honey Moon in Kenya where you enjoyed the great game drives, great food, luxurious tents as well as our warm, friendly and welcoming staff providing personalized guest services.

Thank you for the great feedback and we welcome you back to our Resort next time you visit the Mara!

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nanaimo, Canada
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2013

We did a fair amount of research and as President's club members settled on the Fairmont.
We arrived at the airstrip and our guide for next 4 days (Jonathan) was there to greet us. He stopped on the way to the lodge to wet our appetite with a visit to a group of hippo lazing on the river bank.
We arrived at the lodge and had a warm greeting from the manager and staff. The friendly attitudes and service continued throughout our stay.
We loved the luxury tents and privacy that came with them being situated a fair distance away from each other. It was truly remarkable to be woken up each morning by a crash of hippos lazing on the river bank outside our tent; followed by the gentle sound of Jambo Jambo and hot coffee delivered to us. A suggestion would be to improve the hot water situation for the showers. It was hit and miss and when one pays over $1000 per night, this should not be an issue.
Jonathan proved to be the shining star on our adventure. He made it his mission to ensure that we saw the big 5. Which we did! He was polite, knowledgeable and it was our privilege to have him as our guide. We went on a total of 7 drives and each one was different, interesting and thoroughly enjoyable. We appreciated the fact that he was never in a hurry to rush back to the lodge. For example, on our way back one evening, he stopped so that we could photograph the sunset with a acacia tree in the foreground. It made for some spectacular shots. Jonathan is Maasai and grew up close to the lodge. His love of the flora and fauna shows in his delivery of an outstanding experience that we will remember and treasure.
The catering was really good in most aspects and we thought that the breakfast and lunch buffets were interesting and tasty and they did a great job of representing the local cuisine. We had a great bush barbecue one evening and also an outstanding ala carte dinner. There was a buffet dinner one evening that we felt was not up to Fairmont standards. Also, we thought that the wine list needs attention. There are many excellent value, quality South African wines that could be added in place of the many budget, overpriced wines that they offer. Many of these are available in Nairobi.
Overall, this was a quality, luxury safari that exceeded our overall expectations.
Thank you to The Fairmont and all of your friendly and hospitable staff for a great time.

  • Stayed August 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.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club

We are glad that you had a quality, luxury safari experience while staying with us especially enjoying several aspects of our property; Warm welcome upon landing at the airstrip, the luxurious tents with balconies overlooking the Mara River, Outstanding game drive experience as well as the great culinary experience - great outdoor dining experience at the bush dinner!

We appreciate your feedback and suggestion on our wine selection/varieties and we have noted the concern for a review of our wine list.

Thank you for mentioning the hot water issue and am glad to highlight that we are in the process of replacing our entire water piping system at the Resort and in the next couple of weeks guests are guaranteed to enjoy uninterrupted hot showers at our tents.

Thank you for the great feedback which we shall definately share with all our colleagues and in particular Jonathan Ledama who exceeded your game viewing expectations.

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Redondo Beach, California
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2013

The tents ere elegant and roomy. The food is delicious and the staff is impeccable. We had a great stay and lots of animal sitings on our drives. If you have an opportunity take the hot air balloon ride. This is an experience of a lifetime watching the animals from a birdseye view The club is next to the Mara River where the hippos are plentiful.

Room Tip: Stay up close to the logge on the poolside. The animals aren't as noisy. Our room was #7.
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  • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Sandy,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club.

We are glad that you had an unbelievable stay experience while with us enjoying especially the elegant tents with balconies overlooking the Mara River, delicious food, great game drive experience as well as the personalized guest services provided by our colleagues.

Thank you for the great feedback and we welcome you back to our Resort next time you visit the Mara!

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canada
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
146 helpful votes 146 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2013

When researching safari camps through reviews, it is very difficult to differentiate from one camp to the next, other than location and amenities; most have outstanding reviews, yet rank very differently. What many reviewers fail to do is to differentiate between the game drives and the physical camp – having gushing reviews on game sightings in the Mara is inspiring, but is very unhelpful in reviewing particular camps.

Every camp has its own advantages in terms of location – the Fairmont is not ideally located, but despite this we sighted wildlife within moments of leaving the camp, and even heard of the elusive leopard spotted just meters from the encampment’s front gates. As we will discuss later, the knowledge and caliber of the tour guides and vehicles more than made up for any deficiencies in location that may require a slightly longer safari experience.

The Property
The Fairmont property is well manicured and secure; it boasts ultra luxury tents with very comfortable beds and all the services, amenities and features you’d find in a typical Fairmont property. It’s very easy to forget you’re in a tent when staying in one – the rainfall shower is a nice touch, as are the hot water bottles tucked into your beds during turn-down service.
Our tent was located right on the banks of the Mara river – up to a dozen hippos were about 20 feet from our tent on a regular basis, and their snorts were our early-morning wake-up call (along with softly uttered “Jambo” from our resident butler as he brought warm treats and hot coffee prior to our early morning game drive).

The pool was refreshing and the food astounding considering our remote location; when we advised the waiter of the dietary restrictions of one member of our party, further choices were made available after the head chef arrived at our table for a consultation.

This was a consistency of the hotel staff; they were all very responsive to every need.

There is complimentary wireless available in the lobby.

The Game Drive
The drives take place in top-end, custom-outfitted Land Cruisers, fully outfitted for different seasons and weather and with fresh coffee in the morning, water and beer in the afternoon if you so choose. There were several times during our several days that we required the capabilities of the Land Cruisers going through river crossings and other difficult terrain. We saw competitor tour companies and vehicles without these capabilities and they simply wouldn’t have been able to go to where we did. Our driver, Anthony, was very knowledgeable; we were able to see the Big 5 over 4 days (including the elusive leopard), lots of lions and cubs and the Mara’s 2 rhinos (who are under the careful watch of the Kenyan Rangers).

Overall, this is a top-notch property from which to explore the wonders of the Masai Mara – in line with Western standards of excellence.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geoffrey O, Rooms Division Manager at Fairmont Mara Safari Club, responded to this review, September 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience of your recent stay at Fairmont Mara Safari Club.

We are glad that you enjoyed several aspects of the Resort especially the great game drive experience by our very knowledgeble and experienced safari guides in our top end, custom -outfitted jeeps, loved our well manicured gardens, great dining experience, luxurious tents with comfortable beds, refreshing swimming pool facilities as well as the personalised guest services consistently provided by our colleagues.

Thank you for the great feedback that we shall definately share with all our colleagues' and in special mention to Anthony the Safari guide who exceeded your game viewing expectations.

We welcome you back to our Resort next time you visit the Mara!

Kind Regards,

Geoffrey
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fairmont Mara Safari Club

Address: C14, Keekorok | P.O. Box 58581, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 9 Hotels in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Fairmont Mara Safari Club 4*
Number of rooms: 50
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Also Known As:
Fairmont Mara Safari Club Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Fairmont Mara Safari Hotel
Mara Safari Club
Fairmont Masai Mara National Reserve
Masai Mara National Reserve Fairmont
Fairmont Mara Safari Club Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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