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“Fantastic Kenya”

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The Plaza Beach Hotel
Ranked #12 of 14 Hotels in Bamburi
newark
1 review
“Fantastic Kenya”
Reviewed October 25, 2007

What a fantastic plae kenya is. The Plaza Beach is a great hotel. The staff are brilliant, the hotel is spotlessly clean and the food is good. As in other reviews Wilfred is one hell of a man, and Checo on the beach is the man for your trips. Don't belive all you hear abot the beaqch boys. The animation team at plaza would rival and better any other entertainment team in the area.

  • Liked — the frindlieness of the place
  • Disliked — kenyan tea
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank hunty1212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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78 reviews from our community

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    11
    5
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (16)
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Kent
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed April 28, 2007

We stayed at the Plaza Beach hotel for our second honeymoon, and after doing our homework on trip advisor, we thought that it looked a nice place to stay, although some reviews called it basic. Well it could be called basic if it's 5 star luxury you are after, however all the facilities you need for a wonderful holiday are there and what it lacked in luxury it more than made up for in the friendliness of the staff, the location and the whole atmosphere of the place. Nothing was too much trouble for all the hotel team and they all made us feel very welcome. The rooms are spotlessly cleaned everyday and beds made with fresh linen and towelling, they also have a great beauty salon, and we can recommend the massage which was wonderfully relaxing and cost next to nothing. We booked a 3 day safari through (Chico) one of the beach boys, which was out of this world. And although they can pester you a little, you can also have some good natured fun with them, after all they are only trying to make a living. We will definately be going back to Kenya and in particular the Plaza Beach. we had a wonderful holiday, made some lasting friends and cannot thank the hotel and staff enough.

  • Liked — Cleanliness and views
  • Disliked — n/a
  • Stayed March 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank SnMKent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sheffield
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 24, 2007

We booked our holiday last min, We were abit worried about the reviews we had read about the hotel, But when we arrived we were happy with every thing. The hotel was clean and the staff were lovley, I would like to say dont forget the bar staff they get payed very little wages and the hotel have you paying on a bill so the staff miss out on tips.The food was very good. The hotel was a bit tired but it was being refirbished as we were leaving. The boys on the beach Chico, Jay Jay and patric (see photoes) were great, we book all our trips with them at a cheaper price then the hotel . They even helped with taxis and where to get the best exchange rate, just ask them. We would love to return to this hotel. From Cheryl & Paul

  • Liked — It was sall and freindly
  • Disliked — tired rooms
  • Stayed March 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank hearwego
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed April 23, 2007

stayed at the plaza had a great time look after wilfred the barman he a great chap if you go on any trips see checo on the beach for best deals hotel and food ok staff very frendly take plenty of shirts and spare trainers beach boys like to trade poverty is rife as all charity donations of clothing from the uk ect is sold to these people and not given they are a very frendly and warm people who live with what they have and never complain

  • Liked — staff
  • Disliked — ?
  • Stayed April 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank crookieUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lincolnshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 14, 2007

We stayed at the Plaza this year (early Feb 2007) and enjoyed our stay immensely.
the staff were helpful and kind - typically Kenyan, ie always smiling!
We have been to Kenya 7 times - 5 times in a 5* resort, once in a 4* and then finally to the Plaza. We cannot fault the hotel as we were expecting no more than 3* quality. We felt it was actually more than that (comparing the star rating to other hotels).
We decided to take a safari from our friend Roland (who operates via the beach for a well-known local company) and were more than satisfied with the service. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO BOOK LOCALLY - THE LOCALS NEED OUR CUSTOM TO SURVIVE!
Good Luck Kenya - you are a wonderful country and I am looking forward to seeing you and your wonderful people again next year.

  • Liked — the service of the Kenyan staff
  • Disliked — the bar prices!
  • Stayed February 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank kintoki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
scotland
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed March 11, 2007

I am an unhappy traveller and and very fussy when things aren't perfect. We got a great deal with the PBH from lastminute and I was ready to put up with the poor food and linens in the hotel.

Short review:
Monarch -not good
Airport - have £30 sterling each
Tips- try to have lots of 100ksh for tips before you arrive
Food - not bad
Staff - very friendly and helpful
Beach boys - be nice to them!
Trips - use the beach boys (Harrison Chico Shone and Ali all very professional)
Matatu - use them, great fun.
Safety - like anywhere, keep your wits about, but it isn't dangerous

The flight was with Monarch from Gatwick. This wasn't great, but I endure flying at best. We were 8 and a half hours there overnight. The cabin crew weren't friendly but it didn't affect the holiday.

We arrived at the airport and went through immigration. We had heard that dollars were accepted, but that didn't seem to be happening. I had already checked with the high commission in London who had suggested £30 each in sterling.

We found our rep who directed us to our bus. This is when the tipping begins. It is really useful to have lots of 100ksh notes. The transfer bus was air con and the driver and porter were very friendly. Transfer to the hotel was quite quick too.

Check-in at PBH is a breeze. Elvis took us to our room which had a balcony overlooking the pool bar with views of the ocean through the treetops. Free safe and the minibar was the same price as drinks at the bar. The room was cleaned regularly and I never had a problem with the linens.

Dining: Grace was our waitress. By the end of the week we had grown to love her attentivness and winning smiles. She really was friendly without being overpowering. A credit to the hotel.

The food was good, we were never hungry or felt that there was nothing to eat. The selection changed every day, with salads and soups always available. The chefs were always very attentive and took pride in their work.

Bars: There are two bars, one by the pool side and one by the beach. The selection isn't great and the service could be a bit slow, but then again who is ever in a hurry on holiday.

The beach!: What can I say. The first day we ventured down with our beach bags and were overwhelmed with the beach boys. I am generally friendly and will talk to everyone. This meant a walk along the beach could take hours.

We were approached by Harrison first who gave us a leaflet with his name on it. He then let us speak to everyone else as I am sure he knew we would come back to him (which we did).

The next day we walked along the beach with just our bikinis on and no way of carrying cash, but we still had lots of sales talk. This is their business and they have to earn a living some how. I suppose some holidaymakers could be rude to them, but they don't deserve it.

It is best to book your safari as soon as possible. This means that the rest of your holiday you won't be bothered with any other sales patter. Once they know you have booked they will not bother you again. They will chat to you, but that is just them being friendly.

We didn't book a sea safari but wished we had as the reports from others in the hotel said that it was lovely. If you are of the romantic sorts, watching the sun set while you are at sea would melt anyones heart.

We found it handy to make friends with the beach boys. Shone and Ali took us to the local nightclub and we felt very safe with them. Even walking along the beach with them, it meant that we could see it from a locals perspective. It really is idylic. With Shone, I think we got a great deal on a pedicure from one of the women on the beach front. My friend says it was one of the best she had had.

Safari: Harrison picked us up outside the hotel and Ali transferred us to the bus. We had handed over our cash and I was concerned that we were going to be left high and dry in the middle of nowhere. I had nothing to worry about. Having spoken to these guys, they are really proud of the good reviews that they have on trip advisor and they won't jepordise their reputation.

We took a 2 day safari in Tsavo East. Didn't see big cats but did see the others of the big five. we were not disappointed. This really has to be seen to be believed. You can't go to Kenya and not spend at least 2 days in one of the national parks. The lodges were good. The only bad thing I can possibly say is that The Lion Hill lodge which we stopped at for lunch on the last day, over charged us for water. I didn't mention this to Jackson until after we had left the park but he will take this up with them.

Matatus: We took one to the supermarket (approx 40ksh) one day and right through to Mombasa (approx 60ksh) another. You will be overcharged if you don't give the right money or if you don't ask for your change. All in all it is pennies that you are overcharged and I never minded. On the way back from Mombasa we managed to get on the wrong matatu but he stopped the bus and made sure he put us on the right on.(thankyou!)

Mombasa: We navigated Mombasa by ourselves with a really poor map. We got lost and didn't get as much out of it as we had hoped. I had wished we had gone on an organised tour or with a local. Fort Jesus wasn't worth visiting and at 800ksh very expensive for what it is.

Safety: Jackson our safari driver would sometimes tell us to be careful when we were going through parts of Mombasa and close the windows in case of theives.

The guard on the gate of the hotel also gave us a friendly warning about being out after dark and being on lonely roads, but we never felt unsafe.

The beach at this part is private and has Tourist police with guns. There are plenty of guards in each of the hotels and again on the beach. It is also in the interest of the traders that no tourist is mugged or hurt so on the whole I felt safer there than in a european resort.

I would go back there again, specifically to the PBH as it was unpretentious and had everything that we needed. All the staff were great and they all did a good job to ensure our holiday was stress free.

I hope you have enjoyed this and if you have any questions, please get in touch!

Stayed February 2007
Helpful?
17 Thank unhappy_trav'ller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rotherham
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed February 19, 2007

We stayed at PBH during first two weeks in Feb, booked online with First Choice. Flew from Manchester overnight. Flight was good, lovely seats ( economy section ) good in flight entertainment & food but its time to get rid of the in flight sales.Paid extra for seats together and had no problems.
Arrived on time and transfer to PBH good with aircon coach and commentary by FC rep.
Room at PBH was clean & tidy with mini bar , tv, safe, hair dryer, aircon ( no climate control but nice & cool ) tea & coffee , mosi nets, balcony with sea view, shower & bath. One double bed & a single. Beds were a bit hard & linen a bit tatty but clean and changed regularily. towels were a bit grey & tatty but clean .Everything worked ok & no extra charges!
Meals were good ( buffet style ) with excellent breakfasts, Lots of choice, cereals, fresh fruit, toast fresh fruit juice,egg,bacon beans,sausages,tomatoes,pancakes, omelletes,tea & coffee. Dining room is nice and staff are excellent.
Evening meal was adequate, starter was salad or excellent soups,
choice of 3 main course & 3 sweets ( always fresh fruit plus 2 other ) BBQ once a week. Lunchtime snacks are available from the poolside bar or seafront bar but are not included in the price but dont expect fast service, this is Africa.
Pool is kept nice & clean & gardens are nicely tended with lots of pretty flowers. Plenty of sun beds, just ask the pool man for matress & towels ( no charge ). Animation team are enthusiastic and produce a list of daily activities ranging fron water aerobics to skittles but not many folks could be bothered.
Water sports team offer scuba diving, banana boat, sail boarding, glass bottom boat, snorkling, jet ski etc.
The hotel is right on the beach which is beautiful white sand but its impossible to walk there for the beach boys pestering you particularily when you have just arrived. Only way is to be very firm and they eventually get the message.
Various trips & safaris are available via the hotel but most of them can be booked through the beach boys much cheaper.
Harrison & Chico are reliable but if you are worried ask who has been on recent trips and go talk to them.Dont forget to ask how much they paid then haggle for less!
We went on a one night ( two days ) safari to Tsavo East & West staying overnight at Ngulia Lodge and it was fantastic, the only thing we missed was the rhinos and we saw a lioness with tiny cubs only 10 feet away. Dont wear nice clothes for safari its very very dusty and bumpy and the main road out of Mombasa is a nightmare. The lodges are nice and the food provided is good ( buffet ). Do take plenty of bottled water with you its vey hot in the truck and a long drive but its worth it. Sitting in Voi lodge for lunch while two young elephants were sparring just below us was fantastic.How do they do it for the price? We paid £150 each.
We used the local matutu ( mini bus ) for a trip to Haller Park and the nearby shopping mall. The matutu is not for the faint hearted , the driving is mad , the roads are bad, and the matutu feels like its got square wheels and no springs but its very cheap and you get to meet the locals at very close quarters ( on one trip there were 16 of them plus us in our matutu! nice trip though.
Shared a taxi with another couple ( became good freinds ) for a half day trip to Mombasa. Fort Jesus was good if you like that sort of thing but I thought the guided walk around old Mombasa was interesting.
We met a teacher from The Bombalulu School for the less fortunate and he took us to visit the school and village. This is a very very poor area and the school does a marvelous job, the children are wonderfull, so freindly. we took lots of pencils, pens etc. & sweets for the little ones and hope to be able to send some more things later. We bought a couple of desks for the school and went back later to see them in the village again.If you contact me by e-mail I can give the phone number and name of the teacher if you would like to visit them.
Nether of us suffered from upset stomach etc. ( and I'm usually prone to it ) but DONT drink the tap water and DONT eat food from vendors. Buy large bottles of water from local shops & decant it into smaller bottles ,its a lot cheaper ( 100 ksh for 5L )
DO use anti insect spray in the evening and use the mosquito nets over the bed , Pauline had lots of bites as did several other guests although we never saw a Mozi and used lots of spray.
Had a couple of evenings wandering around other nearby hotels, the Severin next door is nice and they have a few shops and live music at times. Evening entertainment at PBH is a bit basic but nice. Curries resteraunt nearby has live local bands on Sun nights and we enjoyed watching the band and the local ' nightlife'
Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
Say 'Jambo' to the staff and beach boys from 'Momma Pauline & Poppa Terry'


Stayed February 2007
Helpful?
5 Thank calvertt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Plaza Beach Hotel

Property: The Plaza Beach Hotel
Address: North Coast, Bamburi Beach | North Coast, Bamburi Beach, Bamburi, Mombasa 80101, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Mombasa > Bamburi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Restaurant Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Bamburi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Plaza Beach Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a small. intimate hotel, located right on the quieter stretch of the lively Bamburi beach, with a beautiful view, and a romantic layout. We are a short walk from most of the quality restaurants and shopping areas. We can arrange all your water sports and marine activities in the offshore Marine reserve ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plaza Beach Hotel
Plaza Beach Bamburi
The Plaza Beach Hotel Kenya/Bamburi

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