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“Great hotel and safari from Jawamu Tours” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mnarani Hotel

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Mnarani Hotel
B 8, Kilifi, Kilifi, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 5 hotels in Kilifi
Newton Abbot, United Kingdom
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Great hotel and safari from Jawamu Tours”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2013

Just returned from a wonderful holiday at Mnarani Club. We are a family of four and stayed for 2 weeks. I have coeliac disease and cannot eat any foods containing gluten. Sean the Food and Beverage Manager was very helpful and the chef and staff all looked after me wonderfully. They even made me gluten free muffins and pasta. This is the best all inclusive hotel we have been to and we have visited many destinations. Thank you to all the staff who made our holiday extra special. The Kenyan people are really friendly and we have fallen in love with the country. Top tip: Book your safari through Jawamu Tours. James is a local man who was born in Mnarani, just a few streets away from the Hotel. He has lots of experience and will give you an excellent price. He made our safari extra special by tailoring the 2 days to our needs. He is a genuine kind man and works hard for a living. Please visit his small office, opposite the Hotel, where he will show you pictures and offer you advice. He has local knowledge and will get you to your destination much quicker than the other larger tour operators. Trust him, he will look after you. Thanks again James - the safari was the highlight of our holiday!

  • Stayed June 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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349 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (117)
Date | Rating
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English first
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2013

Just come back from a really relaxing place with fantastic service

Very quite & chilled type of hotel, lots of activities which you could do but never pressured into by the animation team of whom Roger has definite star quality.

Stayed in a creek room with views to the river mouth, yes the rooms are relatively no frills but are kept very clean at all times - thank you to our housekeeper David.


Food - great selection of food for all meals, all very well cooked & presented, standout for us were the Zanzibar style fish & lamb curries but no complaints about anything

Drinks - Our AI package included all standard drinks great G & T in 1/2 pint tumblers and the local cane spirit with a real kick

Staff - This is what makes the place so special from Elma, Henk & Sean (managers) who were always around to make sure things were running smoothly, great waiting staff Mercy, Charles & Chengo stand out, barmen Harrison & Nixon, pool guys Kennedy, Beris & Julius who looked after you and the many others who work there really made our trip special. Also a mention to the gardeners who test your Swahili every day!

Trips - The guided walks around Kilifi, Mnarani, the Ruins are all worth doing with the animation team. Captain Issa's sunset cruise was good to see birds returning to roost. We liked just looking around Kilifi town which was pretty hassle free & intersting to see local life.

Safari - booked with Thomsons/Pollmans whilst in resort & stayed at Saltlick Lodge - Great driver and large variety of animals, standout for us was being woken at 04.30 by lions roaring outside the rooms and then seeing them walking down the road later.

Small niggles - very noisy air conditioning which we turned off most nights & gap under front door so had a few insect visitors, some sunloungers need replacing and towards the end of our stay some not very subtle hints on tipping from one particular waiter

All in all afantastic holiday and one we will definitely look at re-visiting

Room Tip: Creek rooms at the seaward end - quieter with great views
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Cardiff, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2013

From the day we arrived to be welcomed by the manager with cold drinks and a friendly chat, we had the most amazing holiday, we were looked after from day one, everything was explained on arrival including the fact that all food was safe to eat including fruit and salads and the rooms were sprayed every afternoon with insect spray and nets pulled over the beds for our comfort, so any worries we had about food and insects were quickly put to rest.The managers knew us by name and made the effort to chat every day. the chef took pride in his food and was always interested in feed back, if you liked anything he was happy to give you the recipe and make it again for you, the apple crumble was to die for as was the lamb curry which was very much appreciated by my husband.
The staff were very pleasant some going that extra mile and always with a smile, if you wanted to go out to visit any local schools/village they were happy to take you.
The water sports were well organised and free and the private beach was wonderful overseen by the lovely Patrick who we became very fond of and will keep in touch with.
James who organised the Safari was a star! we had an amazing time and saw so many animals including 14 lions which was unbelievable.
We stayed at salt lick overnight which has to be seen to be believed and the all inclusive extended to our stay. There is so much more but suffice to say we would def go back and the holiday was the best.

Room Tip: We stayed in a garden room which had a small private swimming pool nearby if you wanted a day to you...
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  • Stayed May 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thatcham, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2013

The Mnarani Club is utterly perfect as far as we are concerned. We have travelled to many places but none as good as this one, and that includes 5*'s. If you are looking for tranquillity and relaxation or activities and entertainment, this place has it all. It's also nice and small so the level of personal service able to be delivered is high, and by the end of 2 weeks every one knows each other.

Staff - Utterly amazing. So friendly and welcoming, and nothing is too much trouble. The managers are also always about and check in with you regularly to check you are having a good time and there is nothing extra you need or advise you require. Patrick down on the beach is a particular gem.

Rooms - Basic but you have all you need and the lack of TV is a plus, allowing total cut off from the rest of the world. The beds and bedding are good, as are the bathroom facilities, and the views are spectacular - often including a pack of monkeys! Our air con wasn't too effective the first few days so we mentioned it to reception (other guests were referring to their rooms as ice boxes, which ours certainly wasn't) and within no time they were our room fixing it.

Entertainment -
Day time - Local guided walks, games in the pool, or water sports down on the beach - as well as excursions available through the hotel or local tour guides (James over the road from the main gate offered excellent excursion at highly competitive prices) and if you had something you wanted to do not on their lists, all efforts were made to make exactly what you wanted happen.
Night time - something different virtually every night, from tribal dancers, to acrobats on the beach, to reptile talks, to quiz night. All good fun and of a much higher standard than in your average resort.

Facilities -
Beach - Brilliant - 3 degrees south a team of highly enthusiastic and experienced staff offering Kayaks, Sailing (inc 1 free lesson), Wind Surfing (inc 1 free lesson), and even trips out on the catamaran all included and at cost a few motorised sports such as wakeboarding and water skiing are also available, as is the borrowing of equipment for snorkelling - there are patches of live coral to the left (though there are also an excess of urchins currently, there is also a good collection of live coral on the platform all the boats are tied up to - especially on the left side and the best collection of fish are also found here and round the pillars leading to the platform - fish seen here include Box, Butterfly, Lion, Angel and Bat. The additional great plus to this beach is the level of safety with staff keeping an eye on you wherever you go either by rescue boat or watching from the pier, as a result there is no hassle from local beach boys and although you do get offered the occasional wooden carving, this is rare. You will also find Captain Isia on the beach offering snorkelling trips - these are great fun and a truly unique experience, though don't expect spectacular corals there just aren't any around here. In the Dive shack you'll find Tim who is, like everyone on the beach highly enthusiastic and wanting to make sure he does all he possibly can to add to your experience.
The Pool - We don't normally hang around the pool, but this one was exceptional due to it's surroundings and we spent a considerable amount of time here. On a Monday the pool area gains Bush Baby, a local guy who climbs for coconuts (add some rum and ice and it's divine), makes safari hats from coconut leaves and shows his jewellery and cravings for sale.
The Gardens - beautifully maintained, with gardeners who give you Swahili lessons, and a pack of monkeys who move through out the grounds.
Shop - Nice, but expensive.
Spa - Experienced a trial massage by the pool which which was fantastic and the prices were very reasonable, but I never actually got round to going.

The Food+Drink - Wonderful - Great quality, variety and skill combine to make a wonderful experience. Dishes requested would appear the next day, everything was cooked so well and there was always something to everyones taste.

There are a few quirks with the hotel and these are all in the way the AI package is managed - there's a great looking pizza over but pizza not being part of the AI package mean no one used it. Also there is a gap between the end of breakfast 9.30 the start of AI drinks - 10am where drinks cost - odd, but easily adapted around. Cocktails other than the house cocktail and the minibar in the room cost, which is fair, but would have been nice to have also been included as is the case in so many places now. You also have to sign for everything, presumably for stock taking and monitoring averages etc but it feels like there has been an issue with trusting staff (I believe I heard it stated as being due to keeping an eye on staff by Managers) which felt uncomfortable initially and the place and even the surrounding area feel so relaxed and friendly, for there to be any question of trust in the staff doesn't quite sit right.

All in all, this is one the best place we have ever been, and the first which has been so good that I know I will return, because although there is much of the world left I wish to see, this place truly is a little bit of paradise.

Room Tip: Creek rooms are bigger are closer to the beach and dual aspect, but garden rooms have their own litt...
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  • Stayed May 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancaster
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2013

Just returned from Kilifi where I spent four days with a safari in the middle of them. My travelling companion was my 11 year old granddaughter. We shared a twin bedded room with a shower and toilet en suite. Initially we were offered a double bed (possibly misinterpreting the 'Mr and Miss' with different surnames.) Mentioned the matter to one of the managers), who had made himself known to all the arriving guests and appeared to have all names at his finger tips.) his response was a simple 'I'll get that sorted.'. The process was finished in a matter of minutes with no fuss.
On arrival, the meaning of 'all inclusive' was explained clearly and the list of exclusions was small (and reasonable). The price included food and drink at all times until late at night although the exclusions would cost, but not much. I was shocked to discover that a variety of water sports were part of the package.
Breakfast had officially ended when we arrived but the kitchen had been kept open in anticipation of hunger after an overnight flight (all included). The staff were pleasant, polite and attentive without being obsequious throughout our stay, again, nothing was too much trouble.
The place was cleaned thoroughly and regularly and silly little extras, such as a greeting written in leaves and flowers, on the bed when we returned from safari added a very friendly touch. Food was interesting, largely aimed at a 'home cooked British' style that inevitably had an African flavour to it, fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable. Choice was wide and there was no repetition of main courses. There was a 'customer satisfaction questionnaire to complete but I refused to do this as I cannot imagine how one could be designed that would adequately allow one to rate the place. Would I return? Most certainly, when I can afford another trip like this!
If I have one negative(ish) comment to make, it is that the amount of information provided is overwhelming and possibly unnecessary as the staff had most of the answers at their fingertips or were happy to find out for you.

  • Stayed May 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
    • 4 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.
York, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

We have stayed at the Mnarani Club many times since 2000 so obviously
love it.
Having spent the last 3 years holidaying on the south coast,Diani, we took
a last minute holiday in April to Mnarani.
As always nothing was too much trouble and the staff, many of whom we
have known for a long time, were brilliant.
The food was of a very good quality and the sweets the best I have tasted in Kenya.
Granted some of the rooms need updating, as do the sun loungers
but the setting of the hotel is one of the nicest I know.
We have already booked to return in November.
Liz Rogers

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Hythe, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
181 helpful votes 181 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2013

The Mnarani is the sort of place where you can enjoy a relaxed informal style of holiday without compromising on the service or quality. We have both just returned from a two week stay completely refreshed and relaxed. The Hotel is managed by a South African couple Henk and Elma who are continually coming up with new projects to enhance the guest experience. Both Henk and Elma make you feel like an old friend and both take the time to speak to all the guests every night. The hotel offers a wide range of organised activities run by the animation team including village walks, pool activities and games. Also offered are a number of water sports with 3 degrees south
We stayed in a creek room which we couldn't fault with magnificent views of the creek and Indian ocean, The food was always varied, well cooked and presented with themed nights most evenings along with Beach barbecues and pool side dinners.
The surrounding area of the hotel comprises of the two villages of Kilifi and Mnarani where you can walk around and feel perfectly safe as the villagers are friendly and welcoming without trying to hassle you. We would spend many hours walking around the Kilifi Plantation which is just down the road from the hotel and again anyone we meet on our walks would always greet us with a friendly smile and a Jambo. We visited during the long rains and this was one of our best visits to Kenya as the countryside was so green and alive with birds and butterflys of all colours and sizes. We experienced the odd rain shower that only lasted a short time but nothing to stop us getting out and about. My wife visited the Spa and said the treatments offered were magnificent and good value for the money
We are both looking forward to our next visit

  • Stayed May 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Mnarani Hotel

Also Known As:
Mnarani Hotel Kilifi
Mnarani Club
Address: B 8, Kilifi, Kilifi, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Kilifi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 hotels in Kilifi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on the cliffs of Kilifi Creek, just where the creek meets and merges with the Indian Ocean, Mnarani provides perfectly for the beach and turquoise ocean under one foot and the activity and adventure of creek-life under the other. Kilifi lives and breathes the gentle sea breeze, at the edge of the ocean, between Malindi and Mombasa. Set in 40 acres of landscaped tropical garden, fragranced by Frangipani blossoms and balmy ocean breezes, Mnarani is an idyllic retreat and holiday destination. Mnarani offers you the true African experience with excellent service always offered with a smile. Explore the coast north of Mombasa and take advantage of the brilliant diving and sailing opportunities. Daily entertainment and fine cuisine complete your fun filled days and make for an excellent holiday for the whole family. ... more   less 

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