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“Great hotel with wonderful beach” 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 #17 of 31 Hotels in Diani Beach
Gdansk, Poland
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Great hotel with wonderful beach”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

I can't understand why there are so many bad rewievs of this hotel. The hotel is build on a coral reef- it looks really amazing. The surrounding of the hotel is beautiful- it has the most beautiful garden from all the hotels I've ever visited. Hotel has its own sunbeds on the beach and there're guards, so beachboys can't come close to you. It's very important in Kenya-as I know in many hotels you can't lie on the beach because of beachboys.
Rooms are nice equipted in african style and they are really clean.
About food- for me it was great because of a pretty good choice of vegetarian and also vegan meals (at least 4 hot dishes, very often much more and also cold vegetables). I heard that nobody should go to Kenya for cuisine- their cuisine is a mixture of English and Mediterranean cuisine (especially English breakfasts), so they generally they don't have their typically kenyan food.
Swimming pool- there are 2 swimming pools. The first one- in the front of the hotel is rather small, with music and pol bar and I didn't like it, but there was also much bigger "silent pool"- really nice:)
The stuff was polite and helpfull.
There's a free wi-fi in the hotel- in Zebra Bar and in the hall next to the bar.

  • Stayed February 2013, 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.
DRBRS, General Manager at Diani Reef Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Dear valued guest,

I and the service team would like to thank your for your review of our hotel. We do appreciate, you staying with us and we hope to have the pleasure of serving you again in the very near future.

Regards,
General Manager
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563 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 (87)
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English first
Coventry, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

We have just returned from two weeks at Diani Reef. The hotel is beautifully designed in an excellent location. The rooms could do with a bit of a refurb (particularly the bathrooms) but this didn't spoil the holiday in any way. The staff were very friendly and helpful, especially our room boy Elikana, who it was a pleasure to meet.
Many thanks for a fabulous holiday.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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, March 7, 2013
Dear guest,

Many thanks for your positive comments and valued advise. Our service team highly appreciates the time you have taken to review our property.

We look forward to having you stay with us. Do contact us when you plan to stay with us again.

Regards,
General Manager
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Mombasa
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

As a resident I was urged many times to produce my local credentials. Which made me feel like a con man. Diani really looking for the USD prizes they bill the foreigners badly ? As for my experience....more than wanting. Doorkey not working, room phone not working, safe not working , power outage due to a faulty lamp, room service forgets the towels (and you cannot reach them), the grass is brown in the garden and the fish ponds are green like a vegetable soup...poor fish (algue not managed). When you arrive you get the welcome drink from a security guard and they are the ones also running up and down with tje roomkeys that do not work. Nothing against security staff, but are they not supposed to watch and take care of security ? NEVER AGAIN !

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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, March 6, 2013
Dear Guest,

I would like to address the above captioned review and the preceding review entitled, "Extremely disappointing" as they are written by the same person about the same stay.

Regarding the issue's with the safe and the door locks we would like to apologize for any inconvenience caused by this isolated occurrence.

Our service team rectified these issues while you where with us. It is not uncommon at times for electronic locks to fail. It was very unlucky that you also had to experience the safe failing at the same time.

The vetting by security:

As you are aware security is tightly controlled in Kenya at the moment. This is to ensure the safety of our staff and guests. Not unlike airport security the security department adheres to a strict protocol of questioning and screening. The same questions are ask of everyone and this is not particular to any one person or nationality.

When I visit the neighboring hotels I am asked exactly the same questions so I can assure you that all hotels have adopted the same screening process and is not unique to our hotel.

However, I do sympathize if this process made you feel uncomfortable but is necessary for your safety and the security of others during these times in Kenya.

Regards,
General Manager
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Nairobi, Kenya
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013

We stayed at Diani reef this past weekend (Feb 2013) and I must say we were extremely disappointed. I have been a huge fan of Diani for quite a no. of years now but it was quite shocking to see how everything has become so bad, from the service to amenities.

We started to experience the poor service right from the gate, when we got at the gate instead of the gate-man checking our car and letting us in, he proceeded to ask us weird questions "what can I do for you?" probably because we are locals

When we got to our room the key didn't work, they replaced it 2 more times and it still didn't work, we finally opted to go swimming as we waited for the key to be sorted. When they got it sorted they didn't bother to bring it, we had to go get it after we were done at the pool and needed to change.

After finally getting in the room, the safe wasn't working. The maintenance told us it was batteries, they got it replaced just before our check out

After cleaning they forgot to put new towels which again took hours to replace

In the evening, power just went off at some point so we were left in dark, the maintenance had to open up the ceiling to repair. Turns out something was faulty with the wiring

The phone wasn't working, the TV screens are really old, No even an information booklet in the room

In the kids play room, it was so hot (no fan, no a/c) such that the kids couldn't even stay in there for longer than 1hr. Most of the toys are broken they can even hurt the kids and the animator was no where to be seen most of the time

Everything in the hotel is basically falling apart, some lights were just hanging loose. The lift is definitely to avoid, the grass outside is so dry and the lawns are poorly maintained. The only good thing left in the hotel is the food.

Whereas in the past there was always a Manager or a supervisor walking around and checking on the guests that's no longer the case. We didn't see any one from management and most of the staff were attachment students who had no clue what they were doing

All in all we had a horrible experience, the definition of poor service. The hotel badly needs a repair

Room Tip: If you are looking for quality service, you will be disappointed
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
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.
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
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, 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
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 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
#15 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
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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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