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“A memorable 1st wedding anniversary” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa

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Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Ukunda, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #18 of 31 Hotels in Diani Beach
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“A memorable 1st wedding anniversary”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013 via mobile

From the glass bottom floor aquarium of the reception to the picture perfect white sandy beach,this hotel spelt romance for us in evry corner.
We had a wonderful experience,friendly and ever helpful staff.
The monkeys were a nuisance and would not let me sit out inda room balcony at peace.
But overall I had a great time with my wife and it was a memorable stay indeed!

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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569 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (88)
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West Byfleet, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013

My wife and I stayed for the second year running at the Diani Reef and Beach Resort between 4th and 16th February, 2013. The hotel facilities, with its extensive and beautifully designed grounds walk ways, pools and canals combined with the fantastic architecture of the building complex, housing well appointed bedrooms, most of which have a reasonable view over the grounds and to the Indian Ocean beyond are heaven to stay and relax in, particularly on the balconies with a drink at the end of each day, enjoying the beautiful view. The service is second to none, with very attentive, efficient and polite staff meeting your every whim. Service is always delivered with a smile and you are greeted by the staff where ever you go in the hotel and its grounds. The cuisine is a delight, with a superb main restaurant with views over the grounds enabling you to eat breakfast and evening meals inside or Al Fresco. In addition the hotel provide a number of evenings a week with Al Fresco dining at various locations in the facility, such as under the palm trees, on the sea sand in front of the beach and also around the swimming pool and in the Palm Park. Meals are buffet style, save the specialist Indian and Japanese oriental restaurants. The evening buffets have a comprehensive and wide variety of exciting selection of fresh food from fish, beef, salads, pasta, curry and excellent desserts. Breakfast is a joy, enabling you to eat healthy with an abundance of tropical fresh fruit, as well as cereals, a variety of egg dishes cooked to your specification. There is enjoyable entertainment provided every night and by day you can lounge on beach beds under thatched parasols with wonderful views of the best ocean in the world. The wide and very long, pure white sandy beach provides wonderful views and the chance to enjoy an amble or healthy walk. The new highly internationally experienced GM, Darrell Cartwright, whilst running an excellent facility with a brilliant team has a number of well thought out good ideas to provide more for guests in the facility. We have looked at other options down the Diani Beach and conclude the Diani Reef offers the best option in our opinion and we know many returning guests feel the same. Now for the “acid test” - Will we go again???? You can count on us doing so.

Room Tip: Chose a sea view or limited sea view room both have good views, but avoid looking over other buildin...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 1, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

On behave of the whole Diani Team we would like to thank you for your review. It was a pleasure to meet and serve you.

I sincerely hope to see you again. You have my contact details please do let me know when your returning.

Many thanks,
The General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2013

This hotel has good potential, but it is in desperate need of upgrading and an improvement in the quality of service.

Service: While some of the staff was friendly and attentive, the general quality of service was poor. The hotel was not fully occupied, yet several requests were not tended to in a timely/ friendly manner and the staff generally seemed unmotivated.

Food: The breakfast was excellent and the dinner at the main restaurant was very good for the most part. The food at the beach restaurant was a large disappointment. The quality of the food here was sub standard and the portions were small considering the prices charged for the dishes. There are no other options for places to eat for lunch unless you visit some of the other hotels/ restaurants in the area.

Rooms: The rooms don’t seem to have been upgraded in a long time. The linen is old and the pillows/ mattress are flat. Our ‘king bed’ was two single beds joined together with just a sheet (no mattress padding) to cover the gap. The air conditioning was barely functioning – it was more like a fan.

Common areas: The common areas are very nice and pleasant. They have a nice lounge area overlooking the pool and ocean. The main pool was refreshing, but was not being cleaned on a regular basis as evidenced by the oil and dirt gathering at the shallow end.

I would say that one thing the hotel has going for it is the beachfront – it is absolutely stunning and while there are a few people harassing tourists to buy things, the beach is relatively quiet and nice and clean.

While we made the most of the experience, we were disappointed with the hotel as we had been led to expect it was a lot better than it was. The 4 star rating / review is very misleading.

P.S I just read another guest's comment where he referred to people providing constructive criticism as "ridiculous, just rich snobs being rude". I am not rich and I am not a snob. I don't think it’s too much to ask to get good service and well-maintained rooms for the price you pay. The hotel is not cheap, and supposedly 4 star, so you should get what you expect. I don’t plan to return to this hotel, but I think it’s important to provide feedback so that other travelers to this beautiful country can know what to expect. Hopefully some action will be taken to improve the hotel.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 16, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

Firstly, thank you for taking the time to review our hotel and our services. We take pride in offering only the best to our valued customers.

I read your review and have noted down the points that you mentioned in your review. I will be looking into these points that you have commented on.

I hope to welcome you again very soon to the resort.

Regards,
The General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waterlooville, United Kingdom
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2013

We stayed at Diani in January 2012 and returned this year.Last year we were delighted with the hotel.We can say the same again this year.The hotel is roomy the rooms were very good,we had a sea view one this year and it had a lovely view. If any person can complain about the quality of the food I am amazed how you could improve on it,in fact I dont think you can .The variety and freshness was excellent. I see people have mentioned staff by name as being helpful,we found everyone more than helpful always accompanied by a cheery smile.The beach furniture and towels were perhaps getting tired but in comparison with the rest of the hotel amenities it was not important and did nothing to spoil an excellent holiday.The general manager was always accessible and pleasant.We hope to return next year.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 16, 2013
Dear Guest,

I and the management team would like to thank you for your positive review of the resort. We are extremely pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us.

Once again many thanks and I hope to welcome you again to our resort in the near future.

Regards,
The General Manager
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

As returning guests to this hotel it was so disappointing to see how the place had declined in the past 12 months. I am not going to list all the things that make this hotel look so shabby as most of the points have already been mentioned in previous reviews. My wife and I have been coming to this hotel since 2004 when it first opened and i must say it was then probably one of the best hotels that we have ever stayed in. To see the way the place has deteriorated over that time and especially over the last year was unbelievable. Putting aside the sorry state of the hotel one thing that is still 5 star at this property are the staff who always greet you with politeness and a big smile, something that has never changed. I must mention a few names who looked after us during our stay. Margaret in charge of house-keeping,Julius on the beach, Rama who looked after our room, Mary who was in charge of the Bars, Celestine, Cecelia, Dorcas,Victoria, Doreen and chefs Stephen and Susan,Thank you.

Room Tip: Room 2007 excellent views.
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  • Stayed January 2013, 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 11, 2013
Dear Rodger B.,

I want to thank you for your review. I do remember you while you where at the resort. It was unfortunate that you felt that your trip was disappointing. While others from the UK whom you interacted with daily felt differently and in fact have sent emails saying what a wonderful time they have had.

It would be my pleasure to receive an email from you directly at GM@dianireef.com. Whereby you can send me your feedback so I can address your concerns and give you my feedback.

But, once again thank you for your review and I hope you take the time to write me so we can take into account all of the concerns that you have raised be they SUBJECTIVE or objective.

Regards,
The GM
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Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2013

We arrived at this hotel after having stayed in 3 other accomodations during our holiday. This was supposed to be the final and the best of our stays. The entrance was very impressive but it went down hill from there. Basically it is very old and tired and what we were not aware of was that half the hotel was shut. The closed section was in a state of disrepair with the water that surrounded the hotel green with stagnation and debris (even a dead bird, which was the view from the sunbeds in the spa area). The bedrooms were old and basic and although we were moved to a 'suite' when we complained, we were just moved to a larger room of exactly the same poor quality but had to forego the ea view hich we paid for. All the bedlinen smelt of damp. None of the entertainment and 'special' nights that were advertised happened (apparently it was out of season but no-one told this when we booked it). Generally very disappointing and NOT to be recommended. Our hotels on safari were far better and this was a higher star rating. And I am not 'a rich snob', just expect to get what I pay for.

Room Tip: Choose a room in another newer hotel
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 6, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

I want to thank you for your review of the property and the comments you have made when you stayed with us July of last year.

The management team take all comments seriously and will take the needed steps to correct all the concerns that you have raised. I am also happy to inform you that a lot of the issues that you have raised have been addressed.

We hope to have the pleasure to serve you again soon.

Regards,
The General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester England
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2013

We are returning guests to this hotel and what a change. First impressions it looks the same, but when you have been here before you can see all the changes and not all are for the best. The management control the air con whereas it use to be the guest that controlled. The rooms are damp and the air con not cold enough, when we have stayed previously there was never a problem with the rooms smelling or the damp, however, the management are aware of these problems but I could see no evidence to rectify this problem. The pools were only half full and both salt water the quiet pool was cleaner than the main pool. The food has changed also not as good as was before but I must admit the last 5 days were a slight improvement especially the breakfast there was bacon and sausage every morning, the meat at evening dinner was just to chewy to eat the vegetables were lovely just not enough to go round if you came for dinner at 8 there was not much left at all. Sun beds are very dirty and old mostly broken and not enough to go round, the staff are to be commended they work so hard to make the guest feel happy, just a few names to mention Mary and David on the bar,Cecilia always had a big smile and warm greeting and always on hand to help if needed,Walter, Julius,Pearl and Kaunda did there jobs to the best of their ability , Muriuki and Ronald always welcomed you with a smile and gave a good service.I must admit I did feel cheated for the money we paid it is no longer a 4 and a half star hotel at most a 3. The location is just lovely one of the best on Diani such a shame about the falling standards.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Ukunda, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Ukunda > Diani Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in Diani Beach
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Diani Beach
#13 Luxury Hotel in Diani Beach
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Diani Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 143
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Diani Reef Beach Resort And Spa
Diani Reef Beach Hotel Ukunda
Diani Reef Grand Ukunda

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