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“Already booked 3 weeks for next year!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mnarani Hotel

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Mnarani Hotel
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B 8, Kilifi, Kilifi, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Kilifi
Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
“Already booked 3 weeks for next year!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2014

It was our first visit to Kenya and this wonderful Hotel and on our return home immediately booked again for 3 weeks next year. It is a truely magical place. With wonderful staff and management who clearly care about giving their guests the best experience. We were very pleased with our garden view room, the pool is amazing and we enjoyed the beach area and facilities. All staff are just wonderful and cannot do enough for you. We went on a 2 day safari which we booked with jawambu tours just outside the hotel. We had such an amazing time saw 4 of the big 5. Next year we plan to go to Masai Mara.
The only negative comments we wish to add is about the 'outside' guests who are allowed to come in and use the hotel and facilities once a week. They completely took over, were noisy and disrespectful to other guests. Woman in the pool fully clothed, children shouting and screaming. Management noticably scarce. We went for lunch and there was nothing left because they had eaten it all!! We decided to go down to the beach for some peace and quiet, where we were shocked to see these outside guests using these facilities as well. It turned my stomach to see two woman changing their childrens dirty nappies on one of the tables by the beach hut where people eat!! The staff it appears are fearful to say anything. This is something that needs to be addressed by management.

  • Stayed March 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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402 reviews from our community

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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (142)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Ebbw Vale, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2014

Simply wonderful. Would return in a heatbeat.

We arrived on 6th may 2014 for a 2 week holiday. Sadly due to uk foreign office security alerts Thompson had to evacuate all hotels including this one so we only completed 10 days.

From the moment of arrival, Henk and Helma were always visible and talked to all guests at least once a day which is a something a lot of hotels should do.

Rooms:

We stayed in the garden rooms which was great but remember this is a 3 star hotel not a 5 star - so if you want a hairdryer in the room then bring your own, although you can borrow from reception. Room was large, comfortable and met our own requirements with ease. Aircon is noisy but works effectively, a ceiling fan is also in the room. Shower, on times, did require a couple of minutes to get hot water and the pressure was good. Beds were comfy and had no problem in sleeping.

Our room cleaner, Hamisi, was simply brilliant. Nothing to much trouble even when we originally thought that the aircon was not working properly he fetch a maintenance guy immediately. The cleaner without fail during the late afternoon would put the mosquito nets around the bed and sprayed the room with insect repellant. Little things make all the difference (include the welcome back message after a safari written in leaves/flowers). coffee & tea facilities in the room.


Beach:-
Small but private, beach bar also in place in case of thirst. Sand is very fine which is great. The hotel is beside a river. You need to wear some form of feet protectors if going to swim in the river/sea as if you step on urchin spines you will feel it - if you do then talk to the staff straight away.

watersport options are numerous and staff are very helpful


Bar (all inclusive package):-
open from 10am to 11pm (outside these times you pay for drinks)
Tusker larger we found very very drinkable. local whisky, gin, white rum, vodka, brandy, coca cola (yes - the branded one), sprite, fanta, tonic water (but not soda water - go figure), the spirits are branded "safari" but you can have branded ones (Jb scotch etc for a fee). The gin and tonic was our main drink but tonic water on its own we found refreshing after some hard work sun bathing.

Cocktails were chargeable and we tried a pina colada and it was horrible so we stayed away from trying any more (400 kenyan shilling)

Within a couple of days, the various bar staff knew your room number (as you have to sign for each drink order).

Pool:-

brilliant pool, well maintained, pool staff brilliant to the point of remembering where you would like to sit. Frequent checks to see if you wanted drinks. Could not fault anyone. They would even show you the monitor lizard if it is in the gardens near the pool.

Food:-

if you only like chicken nuggets and chips then this hotel is not for you.

We enjoyed all what we ate, and as its buffer style then you can try bits of everything, bolognese sauce was on the breakfast buffer was a little confusing for us but some other guests enjoyed it.
The hotel makes its own bread & rolls and there were gorgeous (and heavenly with the slightly salted butter). toaster could do with replacing. The chef would provide fried egg(s) or omelette on demand. Food was always hot and very tasty. Vegetarian options are always available.

Staff
Outstanding. All, without exception, would provide you with a 'Jambo' (hello) and had time to talk to you. Animation team were hard working, fun and simply wonderful and very knowledgeable during the morning walks (beach, bat caves, kilifi town)


Other:-
the resident troop of monkeys provides a hilarious distraction but dont feed them as this can lead to injury - these are wild monkeys.
the fruit bats at night can be seen eating the fruit from the trees.
Sterling can be exchanged at the hotel (but the bank in the town does give a better rate).
wifi is available but expensive for those who can't switch off, i did hear that it was not the best quality but 'welcome to kenya'.
power cuts are frequent but within a couple of seconds the hotels generator kicks in and power is restored. Kenya has a big power shortage at present,

Safari:-
We used Jamamu Tours who is opposite the hotel ( go our of the main entrance, cross the road, and its the small office on the left with the sign above. James is wonderful and will tailor make to your requirements. Everything went like clockwork and the sights (and pictures) we have will last a lifetime.


Summary:

We loved this hotel, i loved its intimacy and you get to know some great people and sitting and talking (yes, talking instead of watching TV) was a pleasure.

There is so much great things that you take all the very minor irritations as part of the adventure.

I would return here without hesitation. You have to accept the fact that you will not have the luxuries given to you with a 5* hotel. However, i have enjoyed this hotel better than some 5* that i have stayed in.

Room Tip: kenya uses the same sockets as the uk. I suggest you take a 3 way adapter to enable you to charge se...
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  • Stayed May 2014, 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.
NC USA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2014

We went not knowing what to expect. I was worried that normal Kenya would be out of reach. I was pleased to discover that this was not the case.
The hotel welcomed us with a drink and quickly got us into our room. After an 8 hr flight 3 hr bus ride, most grateful. The entire staff is helpful and attentive without being intrusive. The rooms themselves are not palatial but there is very little reason to stay in the room. There are so many areas to chill and enjoy. One of the most pleasant features was the lack of noise. Many places without piped in music where silence was available.
I didn't expect much from the snorkeling in the estuary but was rewarded with moray eel, lionfish, cuttlefish, octopus as well as the schools of baby just about everything. The boat staff also were first rate helping me to enjoy my first sailing in years. Lasers are available as are catamerands. The food was also good with a wide selection usually in buffet style. Even vegetarian mains on offer. Desserts were lots of fun. Evening entertainment was varied and again not intrusive. If I didn't have any interest, it was fine to go somewhere else in the hotel and not have the entertainment dominate the whole facility.
The town of mnarani is very little and has mostly tourist items available. I found the shopkeepers to be perky and had some nice things.
Kilifi, just across a bridge and within an easy walk is also quite small but has all the things one would need although I didn't need anything that the hotel didn't provide. No weird vibes from the locals and felt perfectly safe walking in the markets.
Clean air, clean place and stunning natural beauty. Situated on a cliff with an infinity pool looking over the ocean. Just the ticket for a getaway or for a couple of months.
The manager and his wife are great. Out every evening to see how things were going.
Loved it.

Room Tip: I liked our room in the courtyard. Just was cozy. View is better on the other side.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doncaster, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2014

Went with hubby and Inlaws for 2 weeks. Wonderful wonderful wonderful, nothing else to say. Friendly staff who cater to ur every need, beautiful food and gorgeous views. We will definitely go back!! Went off for a safari for a couple of days and came back to a lovely rose petalled message on the bed :-)

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
norfolk
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2014

I was at this hotel over the Easter holidays with my 15yr old daughter. We picked this hotel on the whole based on the reviews and the information from the hotel's website. We were looking for a quiet haven , with some low key evening entertainment, good food, water-sports/activities if we wanted them but without it all being 'in our face', and this is exactly what we got. I have to agree a little with the review which brought attention to the locals being allowed into the hotel on a day pass. they did tend to 'take over' a little and certainly were rude and condescending to the hotel staff. That said, it was only for 3 days of our 14 day stay, and its was tolerable...if rather irritating.
There is a part of me that wants to linger on the very few negatives ( poor and chargeable wifi, ) but to be honest everything else about the hotel was simply wonderful. The food was fresh, beautifully displayed and a reasonable choice . I felt that it catered to all tastes.
The staff were incredible, from the pool boys to the animation team, the reception staff to the spa ladies.
The pool is just divine, the rooms standard for Kenya, the aircon.......? Well the loud humming helped me to get to sleep!
I would recommend this hotel, and I would certainly return.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 21 which was a creek view room. It had its own private balcony/terrace with great...
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lydney, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2014

So, some people think that Mnarani Club is run down, poorly staffed, badly managed, with bad food and no character. I can only imagine that during our stay in March this year, the whole Hotel was miraculously transformed into a happy, well run establishment, providing excellent food and entertainment by the friendliest people.
We spent a lot of time on the small beach where Patrick works tirelessly to provide drinks with a huge smile and a "your welcome". Dida and his crew keep the beach tidy and after only a few days they knew beneath which of the large coconut leaf sunshades we liked to set up camp.
The All inclusive drinks are as good as we have found anywhere. Tusker beer and Safari spirits. The wine is ok after the first glass unless you profess to be a connoisseur, then even the boxed non all inclusive vino is not going to please some pallets! Wine is expensive in Africa so I don't expect too much on the A.I. menu. I never found signing for a drink a problem, I cant understand how this manages to rile anyone. perhaps I dont have that sense of self importance that some do?
The Food is excellent. At breakfast you have the usual cereals, fruit, yoghurt , omelette/ egg station but also pancakes and even bacon (unusual in a largely Muslim country)
Lunch is well balanced and varied, Dinner was always nice, sometimes with a theme.Tasty soups, flavoursome dishes and delightful desserts (unlike those puddings that look great and taste of nothing!) Sweet potato pie is a must try.
The Animation team are always helpful and informative. We joined Lawrence for the Town walk and Juma for the Village walk. Both trips enable you to get a feel for the area and might give you the confidence to venture out on your own. On the beaches of Mombassa you are lucky to have a moment alone without someone trying to sell you something, in Kilifi you will be asked if you need a lift from the bike taxis or Tuk Tuk drivers but thats about it.
We also visited a School and an Orphanage. We took the usual pens,books and sweets along with some footballs and skipping ropes. If you plan on taking exercise books be aware they only cost about 16p each at the supermarket. Buy those and take toiletries instead as the children at the Orphanage were especially pleased with shower gel and sun cream (moisturiser)

If I think hard enough I would be able to list a few of Mnarani Hotels rougher edges, but if I compare a noisy air conditioner to a breathtaking view,
a fridge that you need to collect the key from reception (just once, its not like you have to fetch the key every time you want a drink!) to being so close to the resident troop of monkeys and monitor lizards.
Not having free wifi and only at reception or the bar to not having wifi ,television,rain,having a drink brought to your sun bed (sign here please) and being in the company of so many smiling friendly people that take a lot of pride in their work and cherish their jobs....well, I think I would suffer the small stuff to be back there in a heartbeat.
I hope this is helpful. I hope you have a nice holiday.

Room Tip: Creek rooms for the view, pool rooms if you need to be in the middle of everything and garden rooms...
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  • Stayed March 2014, 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 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2014

My friend and I stayed at the Mnarani for a week in late March. We had a great time in this beautiful location.

To begin with, the pros - the pool is lovely, the location is STUNNING, and the staff are amazing (especially the bar staff!). We also really enjoyed the beach - it was only after staying in Bamburi a week later that we realised how lucky we were at Mnarani to have a private beach that can actually be enjoyed. We'd also recommend the beach bar for a light meal or snack.

The only con would be the internet service - it was unreliable at best, which wouldn't be a problem if it were free (we understood we were in Kenya so hardly expected internet in the first place) - but it's 4000 KSH for the week.

Besides that minor point, I would definitely stay at Mnarani again. Kilifi itself is amazing and is well worth travelling the extra distance from Mombasa. Our last two days in Kenya were in Bamburi and that was a mistake, we found ourselves wishing we had gone back to Mnarani. I definitely hope to return one day!

Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
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

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 6 Hotels in Kilifi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 80
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 
Also Known As:
Mnarani Hotel Kilifi

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