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“BEST HOTEL IN TOWN” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Fairmont The Norfolk

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Fairmont The Norfolk
Ranked #3 of 156 Hotels in Nairobi
Certificate of Excellence
brussels
Level Contributor
19 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“BEST HOTEL IN TOWN”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2010

an open welcoming hotel. good rooms aircondition. good gril restarant poor roomservice. poor setting for swimming pool.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank dustyharry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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811 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    418
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    72
    37
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See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (177)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Vancouver, BC
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2010

The hotel is older but clean. The landscaping inside the courtyard was lovely.
The rooms have air conditioning but you have to turn it on when you arrive. There are flat screen tvs in rooms with BBC and CNN to find out what' going on in the outside world.
There is a Barclays bank with ATM at the end of the block for getting some Kenyan Shillings.
The breakfast buffet was good. It is served on the terrace. There were so many choices to choose from. I had a freshly made waffle one day.
The gift shop had an interesting array of items but quite pricey for the items available.
The internet was 500 shillings for one hour and was quite slow.

  • Stayed April 2010
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank YVRshopper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
60 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2010

There is no doubt that it is special to stay in one of the earliest safari hotels, the home of the original Great White Hunters. However, you pay a serious price by anyone's standards.

Staff are generally very helpful and pleasant and appear to be genuinely happy to work there. However, a few things went wrong which they struggled to fix and I would expect more from such a pricey place.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank AlanandRobyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dana Point, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2010

My husband and I stay at the Norfolk in October of last year. Sorry for the delay in writing this review as we have been "on the road" much of the past six months.

This was one beautiful hotel. It has a grand and interesting history. I must say we are partial and very fond of Fairmont properties. While a chain they NEVER seem like a chain as each property is unique in so many ways. We arrived at this hotel early evening after being in flight close to 30 hours, I think. So we were pretty tired. It was raining lightly. The Norfolk was our welcome to the next 5 plus weeks in Africa. It was our best accommodation on our trip.

Our room was a junior garden suite and though a bit on the spendy side it was perfect. The bed was luxurious. The bath had a walk-in shower (with no tub which is fine for us) and the bathroom was quite large. The sheets, towels and amenities were wonderful and plentiful. The view of the garden was lovely. We ate all breakfasts on the Terrace and they were buffets and excellent. We had dinner at the Tatu and is was very excellent, probably the best meal we had in five weeks in Africa.

We arrange to stay here for three nights before heading out to the Massai Mara and on to the rest of our tours just to rest a bit from the long trip and to adjust to the time change. We were feeling so fit after a wonderful night's sleep that we engaged our tour company, Pollman's Tours for two days of touring around Nairobi. Anderson from Pollman's Tours was the best. The rest of our Kenya tours were preplanned but we left Nairobi open to see how we felt. So that morning he arranged for us to get to Mass at Holy Family Basilica (a wonderful experience) see Karen Blixen's home, have lunch at Karen Blixen Garden Cafe, the Giraffe Center, and the Boma's of Kenya. A great day. The next day we visited The Daphne Sheldrick Animal Orphanage, did a city tour, the Village Market, a Catholic Shrine, and KADET an NGO we support, and the Kenya Museum. What a wonderful two days in Nairobi.

Our entire experience in Nairobi was wonderful. And especially the hotel. The best part of the hotel was the service. Every staff member went out of his or her way to make our stay enjoyable. The offered assistance at every turn and even gave us business cards to contact them while in Africa is we got into any difficulties. Need I say we have nothing negative on positive things to say about this hotel. If you can afford a little splurge this is the place to do it.

one small note of information - the first night we were quite cool in our room but used the huge towel for extra bedding. I don't think there is heating in the rooms as I am sure it isn't need most of the year. When we mentioned this the next day we were promptly supplied with a room heater that was just great. So if you are there when it is a bit cool don't hesitate to ask for a room heater.

another note - our upstair garden suite required stairs so if you can't manage a single flight of stairs you should make that known when you are making a reservation.

one last note - our experience here perhaps set too high a bar as we found ourselves holding the Forfolk up as the standard while we were in Africa and nothing quite as good. The Royal Livingston in Zambia was the close second but the only real conteneder.

  • Stayed October 2009, 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
Helpful?
1 Thank karlyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level Contributor
424 reviews
88 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 248 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2010

We arrived at The Norfolk after hours and hours of traveling. Chicago to Amsterdam to Nairobi with many weather related delays. This lovely hotel was just what we needed to relax for a day or so before setting out on our two week safari. The room was beautiful, the beds softly enveloping, the shower warm and invigorating, the staff welcoming and accommodating. Breakfast featured fresh squeezed juices and omelets made to order. The courtyard took us away from the city noises and offered many spots to relax and enjoy the lovely weather and do a bit of bird watching. Internet, though not free, was readily available allowing us to let our daughters know we had arrived safely. Unfortunately, the pool was unavailable as it was being updated but everything else was just right! We returned to The Norfolk before heading to Jomo Kenyatta for our trip home and were given a lovely day room to relax and freshen up in prior to our night flight.

Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Jewelsworld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
126 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2010

Overall, the Fairmont Norfolk is a very nice hotel and would be happy to stay again. There are a lot of positive aspects of the hotel: very clean, helpful staff, nice bar & restaurant, great rooms, great sleep. However, hotels should realise that the smallest negatives can outweigh so many positives; which brings me to the point of internet access: the charge here is around USD$7 per hour. Yes - $7 per hour.
It seems to me that in the hotel business, the more you pay for room, the more likely you are to pay for internet access: of the four hotels that I visited during my visit to Africa, this was the most expensive and the only one that charged for internet access.
I guess my suggestion to travellers is that if you're not after the internet, then I would highly recommend staying here because everything else was wonderful.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank WeekendHussler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Valentino di Brentonico, Italy
Level Contributor
22 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2010

We were a little concerned about our reservation at the Norfolk having read some suspect reviews of the hotel on trip advisor. However on arrival at the Norfolk at 10am our room was ready for us, for which we were grateful following a night flight from London.

We decided to make the most of our brief stay in Nairobi and got taxi from the Norfolk to the Karen Blixen museum. The drive to the museum gave us a good opportunity to see Nairobi and the house its self was in a beautiful location and well worth the visit for fans of Out of Africa. We also visited the Karen Blixen coffee gardens and had a lovely lunch.

The food at the hotel was reasonably priced and we enjoyed the Cin Cin bar, with a great selection of cocktails. The hotel is very relaxed and calm, which we appreciated when we returned a week later after our safari.

The service at this hotel was very good, the staff very friendly with an amazing breakfast to set you up for the day. The hotel retains its colonial charm, with beautiful prints of kenya in the early 1900s on display.

I was very pleased that I chose this hotel as it was the perfect start and end to our safari.

  • Stayed February 2010
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank lazygirl78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fairmont The Norfolk

Property: Fairmont The Norfolk
Address: Harry Thuku Rd, Nairobi 00200, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Nairobi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Nairobi
#6 Family Hotel in Nairobi
#7 Romantic Hotel in Nairobi
#7 Business Hotel in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Fairmont The Norfolk 5*
Number of rooms: 170
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located just minutes from Nairobi's best attractions, including the home of Karen Blixen, from the Academy Award winning film 'Out of Africa', Fairmont The Norfolk offers luxurious guestrooms and suites, set amidst tropical gardens. It features plush furniture, flat screen TV, minibar, rainfall showers, and tea and coffee maker. Built in 1904, the hotel has been completely refurbished with a heated outdoor swimming pool, health club, sauna and steam rooms with massage facilities, tropical landscaped grounds, and award winning restaurants and bars from steak and seafood at Tatu restaurant, afternoon tea to Lord Delamere Terrace for international cuisine. The hotel is walking distance from artisanal craft shops, modern shopping centres, Sheldrick's Elephant Sanctuary, National Museums of Kenya and is the launch point for 'bucket list' worthy safari tours, which can be organized at the 24 hour concierge desk. A free shuttle bus is available to and from Jomo Kenyatta International airport, located 11 miles away. Business Guests are also offered a complimentary return shuttle ride to their office with free WiFi on board. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fairmont The Norfolk Hotel Nairobi
Fairmont Hotel Norfolk
Norfolk Hotel Nairobi
Fairmont Hotel Nairobi
Norfolk Nairobi

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