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“Lovely southern Kenyan beach resort - small and beautiful” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Waterlovers Beach Resort

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Waterlovers Beach Resort
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   P O Box 5444, Diani Beach | South Coast - Kenya, Diani Beach, Ukunda 80401, Kenya   |  
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10%Discount April to June
Ranked #2 of 32 Hotels in Diani Beach
Leeds
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Lovely southern Kenyan beach resort - small and beautiful”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2012

A friend and I stayed at Water Lovers in March, 4 nights to wind down after 8 days of early starts on safari.

The resort is 10 minutes from the tiny airport and just so easy to get to, we flew in direct to from the Maasai Mara (no faffing about going via Nairobi's domestic Wilson airport).

Riccardo, Valentina and all their staff were all extremely helpful and pleasant during our stay, and you can really see that so much thought and detail has gone into their creation of an idyllic beach resort (flower petals, woven beach bag in the room, departure gift). It is wonderful that it’s so small, 4 thatched roof houses, an upstairs and downstairs suite in each. All with large balconies (the upstairs ones are lovely, you feel like you’re up in the trees with the monkeys!)

There are more loungers (and shaded beach beds with big cushions! Great for snoozing the day away) than people and a lovely pool – it’s not unusual to be the only people there, as other guests went off snorkling or in the kayak or on a day trip to the reef. We hardly left the place, but when we did descend the half dozen steps to the actual beach, it had the softest white sand and lovely warm ocean.

The fresh juices and bread (watch out for the occasional crafty monkey, who surprised us one day and stole a bread roll from us!) were lovely and the tempura prawns are my absolute favourite. The salads at the lunchtime snack bar are huge and good value too, and yes all the food is freshly cooked to order which meant the pace of our meals felt just lovely and relaxed too.

I was surprised and pleased that there was a breeze from the ocean so it never got overbearingly hot and there weren’t any mosquitos that I saw either. Although of course we slept under nets in the rooms.

All in all a lovely place. Happy to recommend it to anyone.

Room Tip: Upstairs suites have a great balcony if you like being in the tree tops
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ricfort5, Proprietario at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 9, 2012
Every word of this comment is written with the hearth,
and is with the hearth that we thank you guys....
with the hope to see you soon again, we'll remember of you!
Riccardo Valentina Sara and Sole(... and the rest of the Waterlovers tribe!)
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255 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (32)
Date | Rating
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English first
Berbourg, Luxembourg
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2012

My boyfriend and I stayed at the Waterlovers for 5 days and we can only approve the comments of our predecessors.

Our room was big, lovely and comfortable with a lot of very nice decorations, wooden furniture and a gigantic bed. The bathroom was very spacious too, with two clay sinks and modern instruments.

The whole resort was perfectly clean at all time, so that we really felt at home.
Staff members were constantly walking accross the area, cleaning or repairing things.

The location on the beach was perfect, and shops were close by.

The sea water was warm and clear, however also the small swimming pool in shape of a turtle was very pleasant to swim in or to relax, with a flat and a deep water area.

The staff itself was very professional, polite, without ever being importunate.
The owners Riccardo and Valentina, as well as the assistant managers Lina and Richard were perfectly obliging, we did not have to care about taxis, excursions or dinner reservations, they organized everything for us.

The food was very good, but unfortunately we only had a choice between 2 menus daily changing. Breakfast was nice, we did even get packed sandwiches on our excursion days.

Moreover, even as openly living gays, we did never feel uncomfortable or even gaped at, which is not evident in an African country.

The only thing we were missing was a wellness or spa area, but as the managers assured us that they are working on it :)

So all in all, we can only recommend the hotel and we spent a wonderful time there.

  • Stayed February 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.
ricfort5, Proprietario at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 28, 2012
Hi guys, thanks for the nice feedback,
we also hope to be able to host you again,
maybe for a longer stay next time!
All the best from
Riccardo Valentina Sara and Sole
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Frankfurt, Germany
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2012

First of all Thanks to Ricardo and Valentina.....the owners who live in the resort with the guests who established a small eco resort with a great attention to every detail in the room and outside like ipod dock on a piece of wood, waterlovers stickers on the toiletpaper, fresh flowers every day on the towels just to mention a few......
The food has been excellent, Valentina has created all recipies herself, they are a mixture of swahili and italian cuisine, we never had experienced such a flavour before, amazing! At breakfast you get fresh brewed italian coffee, the best in Kenya from our experience and at afternoon they serve you homemade cookies besides tea or coffee. The dinner you can have at the beach including candlelight...
Included are a canou and snorkeling equipment to paddle to the sandbank, which appears every day at low tide, the water there is brilliant and snorkeling at the riff makes a lot of fun! Rama, an employee, fullfills nearly every wish: carrying the canou to the beach, turning your sunbed to the sun or bringing you fresh fruit platters... 
From our point of view negative was that the bar is closing directly after diner and at the beach are some beachboys, but they do not get in the resort. All in all we are already thinking, when to come back to this paradise which we will do for sure!! 

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ricfort5, Owner at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 3, 2012
Dear Joachim and Caroline,
thanks a lot for your really nice comment
(and the suggestion for the beach bar).
It was a pleasure to meet you and we hope to have the chance to
host you again in the future!
All the best from Riccardo and Valentina
...and the rest of the Waterlovers family!
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2012

We stayed at Waterlovers with our children after a week on safari. It is a great place situated on the most beautiful beach. It is very relaxed and comfortable. The food was very good and they did not mind if we varied off the set menu for the day. The lobsters and prawns were huge and delicious! ALL the staff were charming and nothing was ever too much trouble.
How I wish we were still there! Thank you Riccardo and Valentina
Jennie, James, George and Arabella
Christmas 2011

  • Stayed December 2011, 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.
ricfort5, Owner at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 3, 2012
Dear Jennie, James, George and Arabella,
the energy of your nice words keep us going every day!
With special people like you we can only get better.
Thanks a lot again for staying with us!
All the best from
Riccardo Valentina Sara and Sole
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Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2012

We couldn't ask for more from our stay at Waterlovers and wished we could have stayed longer. All the staff from the cleaners to the owners were very friendly and proactive to the point of mind-reading. The room was beautiful and the pool and lounge area stunning. Only complaints would be that the food could be slightly better and the choice of music could be improved but these are very minor qualms in comparison to the rest of the experience.

  • Stayed November 2011
    • 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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ricfort5, Owner at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 3, 2012
No words are enough to thank you for your nice support.
(We'll take care of your polite suggestions too).
Hope to be able to host you again.
All the best.
Riccardo and Valentina
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Houston
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2012

We must have been at Diani on a bad day bc I didn't have the same experience as the other reviewers. While it wasn't the perfect place, it wasn't the worse either. However, we expected so much more. The property is right on the beach which was nice. Eveything was very well decorated-very french caribean chic. The grounds staff was lovely-very attentive and professional. They raked the sand in the morning-which was nice to get away from all the seaweed. If my drink went empty-someone was also coming over to see if I wanted a refill. The owners do live on the grounds. They have 2 adorable children-but you never heard a peep from them. It is a small property-I think 6 or 8 rooms and then a villa. The villa is at the back of the property, and not much of a view. The food was horrible-we didn't do the meal plan, but we ate a few dinenrs, and lunches there. When it did come out to us-it was cold-and unflavorful. I could have made better food in a microwave. It is an eco friendly place-but the power went off for more than several hours at a time. And we were not too thrilled with the cleanliness of the rooms/bathrooms; everything smelled mildewy. If you can, fly into Diani rather than Mombassa. Diani airport is literally a 5 or 10 minute drive to the resort.

I am hoping we went on some off days bc I could really see this place as being a perfect getaway.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
ricfort5, Proprietario at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 28, 2012
Dear guest,
thanks for taking the time to write your feedback, which is good for the location, the staff and the decorations, but it’s not so good (“horrible” instead) for the food.
We consider important to know the experience of all our guest, so we thank you for this information.
Being the first medium feedback after 70 completely positive feedbacks, anyway we took some time to answer, because we needed to get all the data to evaluate what happen.
We can see from our side, that you stayed with us only 3 days in November.
You booked in B&B basis, and then you had some meals at our restaurant.
We also see that you where sick for a part of your stay, and we remember that Valentina (my wife) took the time to drive your husband (free of charge) to see a doctor around for you. We can see that at the moment of your booking we where full in the suites, so we gave you the villa (much more expensive normally), at the same rate of the suites, and we informed you about this before your booking. On top of this we also applied a 10% discount for you on the same rates .
We know that the villa is few meters back compared to the suites (still is sea view accommodation),
but on the other side is equipped with a kitchen, a fridge, a bar counter, and it has a bigger veranda space with a wide relaxing area and a big private dining table.
Regarding the food, we’re sorry that it didn’t match your taste, and even if this side is considered one of our point of strength from all the rest of the guests we had so far, we feel the responsibility to explain what we do here, since an audience of travellers is reading us from every corner of the world (approx 1200 readers every month according to tripadvisor).
I’m sure you can do miracles with your microwave, but maybe the feedback on this was a little bit too much.
Starting with the kitchen staff, we can say that even if we are a very small resort, we have 2 pastry and bakery chefs, and 3 main chefs in our kitchen (with many years of experience on international and italian cooking).
For the lunch and the dinner we have a daily menu, that changes according to the fresh ingredients we get from the sea or from the land every morning.
Regarding the ingredients, here we do a sort of healthy cooking, since we avoid using hydrogenated fats, frozen foods, or packed food from the factories (we serve fresh fruit juices and homemade daily baked bread, cakes and cookies etc).
Everyday in fact, our pastry and bakery chefs do the bread (this means every type of bread, from the one for sandwiches to buns, focaccia and local chapatti); they then bake daily the cakes (3 different ones) for breakfast, lunch and dinner (all different every day at least for a week) plus they do homemade biscuits and ice creams, plus home made pasta .
For the breakfast we have a special cake of the day (everyday a different variety), plus we do ham and cheese croissant and miniquiches. We also offer fruit plates, yogurts, cereals, fresh fruit juices, all sort of cooked food, from eggs, bacon, beans, ham, etc and more on request, served hot from the kitchen at the moment.
For lunch and dinner we give always an alternative between seafood and non-seafood.
Plus we have a beach bar menu, with different kinds of salads, sandwiches, hamburgers, tempura, biting, fresh fruit, ice creams and others.
All our meals are cooked expressly for the guest at the last minute, and served at the table immediately, with a silver food cover to keep it warm (no buffet except for the breakfast cold food). Also the plates are warmed before serving to make sure the food is kept hot.
In our menu we have everyday a choice of prawns, lobster, crabs, calamari or fresh fish fillets.
To give an idea of the selection of food, I’ll publish a sample of our daily menu.
Regarding the power cuts, here we are in Africa, so there are some, but not so many (bed luck). Also, as you said, we have a back up generator in our resort. So the power stays on all the time (except if it happens in the middle of the night sometimes). The only device not connected to the generator is the A/C.
I know that being sick in your room for part of your stay, without A/C it must have been an issue for you specifically, and for this we’re sorry.
Said so, we really hope to have the chance to host you again, and show you a better side of our hospitality here.
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Munich
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2011

We stayed at Waterlovers at the end of our trip and it was the perfect accomodation for ending a wonderful holiday. The ressort is situated directly at the beach and decorated with an incredible love for detail. You can tell that the owners realised their vision of the perfect hotel and that's what they achieved: Waterlovers is incredible.

Owners, management & staff
----------------------------------------
When we got to the hotel, we really felt welcome. Everyone was very friendly and approachable. The owners live on the premises and care a lot about what's going on in their ressort.

Rooms
-----------
Each room has a motto (e.g. Hippo or Turtle) and is decorated accordingly. All rooms have a terrace or balcony. The wooden furniture is very nice, the beds super comfi, the bathroom is spacious. When we arrived the room was decorated with flowers.


Food
--------
Amazing! We stayed a view days and no matter what we ate, everything was really good and there is lots of variation so you never get bored with the food. Almost everything you get is made at the ressort. E.g. also the pastry, I could have died for those coffee cookies. Thanks for the recipe! Speaking of coffee: The coffee tastes great (the owners are Italian, so where would you get a good coffee if not here ;-)) which is a definite plus!
For dinner the guests get moved around, which means e.g. when there was not much wind, we had a table in the sand under the stars or at another evening a table for two on a little platform that overlooks the pool.

The relax factor
----------------------
Relaxing at Waterlovers is easy. There are plenty of sunloungers in the shade and also various day beds so even if the place was fully booked, you would always find a perfect spot to relax.

The only downside of beaches in Kenya are the many beach boys trying to sell you anything at any time. You never get chatted up as long as you are on the premises but as soon as you go for a swim or a beach walk, that's what you have to deal with. My advise: If you want a change from lounging lazily in the sun, take the kayak (it's free) and paddle to the sand bank at low tide. You will have a wonderful view from there and you can even see fish from the kayak.

So if you think about staying at Waterlovers, we can definetely recommend to book. This is a lovely place with lovely people. A big thanks Riccardo, Valentina & the entire staff, we really enjoyed our stay with you!

  • Stayed September 2011, 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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ricfort5, Proprietario at Waterlovers Beach Resort, responded to this review, November 2, 2011
Hey guys, really there are many ways to say thank you,
but no words would be enough for your feedback.
It really gave us pride and joy, and motivation to do better with our guest.
We wish you all the best, with the hope to see you back soon.
Riccardo Valentina with the little Sara and Sole
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 Waterlovers Beach Resort

Address: P O Box 5444, Diani Beach | South Coast - Kenya, Diani Beach, Ukunda 80401, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Ukunda > Diani Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Diani Beach
#1 Spa Hotel in Diani Beach
#1 Romantic Hotel in Diani Beach
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Diani Beach
#2 Luxury Hotel in Diani Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Waterlovers Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Waterlovers is a small eco-friendly resort in the centre of Diani, directly on the beach. All our rooms (only 8 suites and 1 Villa) are ocean front and luxury equipped, with air conditioning, king size Swahili bed, double washbasin, stone shower, private veranda, complimentary wi-fi, I-Pod, I-Phone and Mp3 docking station, complimentary I-Pads available on request, with pre-loaded music, movies and apps, complimentary cellphone and local line, private security 24/7 etc... The boutique hotel fitures also a Spa, a small artcraft shop, and a beach house for the watersports. Come as a client...Leave as a friend! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Waterlovers Beach Hotel Diani

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