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“A destination in itself”

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Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 14 Hotels in Bamburi
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“A destination in itself”
Reviewed March 1, 2014

Just spent 2 weeks at Whitesands. The hotel is conveniently situated on the North coast of Mombasa, 5 minutes from a shopping complex (City Plaza/Nakumet) and 30 minutes from Mombasa by car. We hired a car for the 2 weeks at a rate of 3000Ksh per day (around £25). Driving in Mombasa is not easy but taxis with a driver are available at a rate of around 5000Ksh per day. Mombasa town is manic , and for me not worth travelling into regularly. The traffic congestion and poor roads make it a very unpleasant experience. There is nothing to see in Mombasa town except Fort Jesus and if travelling across the ferry to the South coast.
Whitesands however was a pleasure and a destination in itself. The hotel has a huge sea facing frontage with impeccable grounds and very good staff. We were in sea facing rooms on the 1st floor with spectacular views and good facilities. Our room had tea/coffee making facilities (kettle), a fridge, iron, ironing board and a safe. The room balcony is small but ample for two. Be aware not to leave the balcony door open if you are out because we had our fruit raided by monkeys. Otherwise the rooms are very pleasant. The hotel has 5 large pools, all we'll maintained with a life guard. One of the pools has a waterslide which was used by all guests kids and adults alike. This a fantastic resort for families with kids. We used the gym and spa regularly. The gym although small is well equipped and pleasantly air conditioned. The spa however, although very good, is expensive with massages costing around 3000Ksh on average. The hotel offers free tea and coffee with limited snacks everyday between 4 and 5 pm at Cocos beach bar to all guests. We found this a really good touch because it brought us together as a group between these times. My wife from the gym/spa, kids from the pool and I from playing golf at Nyali golf club. The food at the hotel is average at best although the chefs are very accommodating and will try to cater to requests. If eating out then "Namaskar" at hotel Bliss near Nakumet is excellent (probably the best curry I've ever had). Breakfast is a pleasure with lots of different fruit and fresh juices with the normal eggs etc.. All in all we found this a very enjoyable and relaxing holiday. Thank you to all at Sarova Whitesands. I will definitely come back.

Room Tip: Sea facing first floor. Block 2038 to 2050
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Anoop S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mike k, General Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 18, 2014
Dear Mr.Anoop

Thank you very much for having chosen our resort for a family holiday.

We are grateful for the positive comments and we shall continually strive to improve on the areas highlighted especially on the food selection and offer. We have now reveiwed our 14 days themes in our main restaurant and would like to assure you of more vibrant menu offer.

kind regards

Mike Kamau
Ag General Manager
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English first
Southend-on-Sea, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 23, 2014 via mobile

Family holiday , the staff were great from the rcption staff to the restaurant staff. Consolata,and Sarah on rcption were great. Travel agent had made a mistake in booking rooms they sorted it. All inclusive deal is best specially with children eat whenever you want .

Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
Helpful?
2 Thank Mohamed H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi, Kenya
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2014

While a hotel is a hotel by any given standard, I believe the staff working at the place make a big difference. This was my experience at Sarova Whitesands. I have never met a more friendly and inviting staff such as this. I had many meals at this hotel and the friendliness of the staff was beyond the call of duty. May God bless the staff of Sarova and I do plan to indeed come again.

Room Tip: Please ask for rooms with a keycard they tend to be the newer and more furbished.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled on business
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Isaac M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2014

Whitesands x 1 night, Safari x 3 days, Whitesands x 10 days. On our return for the 10 days we had to wait three and a half hours for a room similar to the one we had previously not nice after hours travelling back from safari but it all got sorted thanks to Yvonne and Rose. The Ocean is tidal so not able to use the beach for sun bathing really plus once you leave the complex to walk the beach you are exposed to the touts. The renovated rooms are excellent and very large with 2 double beds in twin rooms. We stayed in both of these ground floor rooms 1078 and 1043 sea view facing. Rooms were still being renovated whist we were there so bit loud by the deepest pool. Request rooms away from Cocas Bar as can be bit loud. The pools are well looked after by Salim and other pool guys. You collect towels from hut near pool and take back when you have finished, always clean towels and nice comfy wooden loungers. Food a bit repetitive but had a great Chinese night food was awesome and lots of it, deserts bit repetitive too. We often ate in the Minazi Bar as food is cooked fresh and a good selection with excellent staff Benjamin, Joyce, Catherine in particular but all staff are good. A.C. is excellent in rooms and safety deposit boxes free. The cleanliness and upkeep of the rooms is second to none thanks to Rose Kamande and her staff always obliging nothing is too much trouble and iron and ironing boards are available if required. Don't drink water from the mini bar because you WILL be charged for it whether you are A.I or not. My friend moved a bottle of water when making room for a bottle of our own juice and jug of diluted milk and forgot to put the bottle of water back in its place. When we were checking out they tried to charge for the missing bottle which was still on top of the fridge with all the other free bottles put in rooms every day plus 2 in the bathroom. We found the checking on mini bar invasive to our privacy bearing in mind we had paid rent for this room for the 11 days we were there. We know the rooms are done every day but you don't expect the 'mini bar spy' to make regular visits whilst you are out of the room, once on entering and the day of departure should be sufficient to check a mini bar, oh and he had noticed the jug of milk. We found the milk very rich and too heavy for our stomachs and had cramps for a few days till we realised it was the milk so then we got diluted milk from kitchen for drinks. We were told the glass bottom boat trips were free but you are not told it will cost 1.800 KS as you need to enter the marine park area to see the fish. Lots of activities for those interested, didn't try the Spa, and always something on at Cocas Bar in evenings. The staff love holding conversations with the English telling us this is how they learn. Met some lovely, lovely staff here.

Room Tip: Choose renovated ground floor rooms away from Cocas Bar. Don't include the first Sunday of the...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Dot H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mike k, General Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 18, 2014
Dear Dot,

Thank you for taking time to review our resort, the management appreciates feedback and we are grateful for your comments.

We have reviewed our menu selection and now have more variety on ofer, we have also noted your experience with mini bar charges and we regret that communication breakdown.

We have also taken note of the marine park charges which is a government fee for all protected areas and in future we shall ensure all guests are informed at all times of the same.

Thank you

Kind Regards

Mike Kamau

Ag General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi, Kenya
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed February 13, 2014

My first time in White sands and it turned out to be exhilarating from the rooms,food,staff,pool,beach view & ambiance of the place it totally blew me off....My six day stay in Sarova was the best ever

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Esther M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Zurich, Switzerland
Level 6 Contributor
160 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 161 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2014 via mobile

Had a great two night stay in what is the best resort in the North coast of Mombasa. Clean modern rooms with free Wifi working well everywhere. Child friendly and memorable culinary experience. All was slightly negated at check out when my bill appeared to have eronious charges for room and pool side services, took an hour for hotel to agree the overcharge of approx 5000 ksh. Please do check your bills or pay for all additional services in cash to avoid lengthy reconciliations at check out.

Stayed February 2014
Helpful?
Thank PIno32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mike k, General Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Thank you for having chosen Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa as your preferred choice. We have noted your bad experience during check out that was caused by communication breakdown in billing processes within our system that resulted in lengthy check out process.

We do regret this and profusely apologize for the delay and inconvenience caused ; we have taken necessary action to avoid such a recurrence in future and hope that you will still chose Sarova Whitesands during your next visit to Mombasa.

Regards

Mike Kamau
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
the hague
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2014

This was our third stay in Whitesands, larger resort which focuses on both vacations and conferences. We have picked Sarova for our short break (6 nights) for variety of reasons but mainly: proximity to airport instead of going via ferry to South Coast, and very efficient and prompt booking experience with Bevaline from Nairobi booking office.
We were offered complementary pick up and drop off, which was a great experience, especially on arrival. The driver came with a nice car, with WIFI, he had hand towels and water for u. Very nice upgrade of services compared to last time.
The hotel is still undergoing major renovation, but this did not cause any disturbance. We were offered free upgrade, which is greatly appreciated. Bernard from reception did his utmost to understand our preferences and even meet our expectations. Indeed, the new rooms are lot nicer than the old ones. Suggestion for improvement is related to ‘’the do not disturb or clean my room button’’. Since the cleaner can not clearly see the light outside, they try to open the room a lot. The hotel should go back to the old system with paper card on the door to which everyone is used to. Another suggestion is related to the choice of TV channels: Disney junior would be appreciated. WIFI works very well in the resort, and this is a great upgrade too.
Food/beverages: Compared to last time, it seem to be slight decline compared to last year in quality/variety when it comes to Pavilions where breakfast and dinner is served. It feels they have a new Chef, or it just our perception. Quantity is not an issue, but rather selection of meals. Also, some improvement is needed in cakes/pastry selection, especially when it comes to selection of cakes as everything seems to be the same, somehow. However, we appreciated the fact that we could have late dinner and early breakfast. Another suggestion is to allow guests to pick coffee and tea by themselves. It takes very long to get a tea pot, and then you get a very small cup of tea. One morning, we finished our breakfast before our coffee and tea arrived. However, the waiters are kind and try their best in this busy resort. They are very friendly and always ask if we are happy and if everything is OK. Another suggestion is about food and drinks pricing: prices are exclusive taxes, but it would be better to know final price in the menu rather than the tax free price.
Entertainment team did very well to animate kids, although not so many kids at the resort. However, special thanks to Mary, Caroline and Suzanne for great service. The kids corner is really big and they provide variety of activities which kids do enjoy. Keep it up.
Swimming pools were great, especially the one with the slide. They regularly clean it and check water quality. Our son enjoyed it a lot. Beach was nice too, and this time there seemed to be less beach boys. Hotel has increased presence of security guards at the beach front and they seem to be more alert than during our previous visits. It would be nice to see some activities at the beach, for example building of sand sculptures. Kenyans are very creative and guests would enjoy it too. You may also enjoy water sports centre adjacent to the hotel which offers variety of water activities, line banana ride, paddling boat, etc.
Overall, I would recommend Sarova for beach holidays in Kenya.

Room Tip: Ask for the sea view room, or ground floor room.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TheHagueDule
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mike k, General Manager at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you once again for Choosing Sarova Whitesands Beach resort & Spa as your Second home and we are truly grateful for all your support and confidence you have shown in us.
We have noted your concern on the buffet selection at our pavilions restaurant and i want to assure that we are in the process of reviewing all the menus on offer and your concerns have been put into considerations

We have also set up a tea and coffee station with the restaurant to help us improve the service of tea during meal times.

On the TV channels we are also reviewing and again thanks for your advise on this.

Once again we appreciate your patronage and look forward to hosting you again.

King Regards

Mike kamau
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa

Property: Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa
Address: Malindi Road, Bamburi, Mombasa 80101, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Mombasa > Bamburi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Bamburi
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Bamburi
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Bamburi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 335
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
East Africa's finest resort, Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa is conveniently located on one of the longest magnificent beach fronts on the Kenyan coast. We take pride in ensuring our guests enjoy the most relaxing and comfortable stay in tastefully furnished rooms and suites offering spectacular ocean, pool and garden views. For dining and entertainment, guests can choose from three themed superb restaurants, two great bars, and the exclusive Cocos Beach Bar, overlooking the beautiful Mombasa Ocean. There are four outdoor swimming pools with water slides, spring board, diving boards and four floodlit tennis courts that also serve as a landing ground for helicopters. A fully equipped wellness and fitness club with state-of-the-art fitness equipment, a PADI diving centre and a host of water sports, like snorkelling and jet skiing are also available. Be it a family holiday with children, beach wedding, honeymoon, business meetings with a difference or special interests like deep sea diving or fishing, Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa has something special for everyone. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort And Spa
Sarova Whitesands Beach Hotel Bamburi
Whitesands Hotel Mombasa
Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa Kenya/Bamburi

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