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“Overrated in many ways.” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Hemingways Nairobi

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Hemingways Nairobi
Ranked #1 of 156 Hotels in Nairobi
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Overrated in many ways.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2013 via mobile

Where to start .. credit to the grounds, beautiful landscaping. The positives for me end here. The compound is so small you can see into several people's compounds & vice versa. While this isn't a huge blemish, it goes against the description the hotel goes by, serene.

The restaurant is where it all went wrong, the triple fried fries are VERY overhyped, nothing special at all. The steak while size-able, was extremely flat and needed too much salt & pepper to give it any taste, even the sauce wasn't enough to sort this out. That being the case, none of us (a group of 6), managed to finish their steaks .. I personally only managed half (more on this later). I did enjoy the creamed spinach the most (it's hard to get this one wrong though).

Back to my left-overs. I chose to have the remaining half of my steak packed as it was quite big and at the price we were paying, 3,500 each, there was no way I as about to waste it (I figured I could take it home and manipulate it into tasting better). The mediocre experience turned for the worse when it was time to leave. I asked the waiter where my leftovers were and after dilly dallying about he returned with a confession .. They had given away my half steak 'by accident' to another patron (which also made me wonder how many others didn't finish their meals). Needless to say there was no tip forthcoming to this chap.

In conclusion, I will not be returning to Hemingway's Nairobi (Michelin chef or not) & can recommend many other establishments with far more amazing steaks at a fraction of the absurd cost here such as Sierra, ORO & Seven @ Village Mkt. I hope my experience is of help to you.

Stayed May 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank Jenard N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CMunywoki, General Manager at Hemingways Nairobi, responded to this review, July 10, 2013
Dear Jenard N

Glad you like the landscaping on our boutique hotel’s 10 acre plot in the peaceful Karen countryside setting.

We deeply regret the steak and fries were not to your liking and the waiter’s losing your take-away. Our chef takes great pride in the triple cooked chips; please do accept this as a one-off and give us another try to prove that so.

Best Regards

Simon Hodson
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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349 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (83)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
154 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2013

We went to Hemingways Karen one Saturday evening. The setting and layout was impressive giving a rather palatial feel, the theme is somewhat confusing. The ambience was pleasant and the service was good. The food was rather disappointing; it was not to the standard that we expected. The prawn cocktail was ok, the asparagus would be better with an actual poached egg (maybe a duck egg) rather than a poached egg dressing. We found the steaks from the “Josper oven” somewhat burnt on the outside and rather cold inside. The crème brule was however the best dish of the evening and the best we have ever had in Kenya. The wine list is somewhat brief. Overall for a Nairobi restaurant it was expensive, especially for this pub grub standard and we would have liked the chef to make an appearance in the dining room. We look forward to the fine dining opening and giving Hemingways Karen another chance.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank FoodieGastroGourmet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CMunywoki, Manager at Hemingways Nairobi, responded to this review, June 20, 2013
Dear FoodieGastroGourmet,

Many thanks for your positive comments surrounding your visit to Hemingways Nairobi. Please accept my apologies for your disappointment with the steak. We value your views and recommendations and have taken note of them .We look forward to your return visit to Hemingways Nairobi.

Regards
Hemingways Nairobi
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Freetown, Sierra Leone
Level Contributor
35 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2013

I just had the pleasure of enjoying the food at Hemingways, in Karen, Nairobi, courtesy of an invite from a friend. Beautiful place, gorgeous entry, the dining room decor is a bit cool and although i understand the theme, Im not convinced,a nd i think the posters detract. However, no matter, I can honestly say the food was on another level, absolutely fantastic.

For the first time in a long time, and a definite first for me in Africa, for a starter I tried the Steak tartar, which was seriously worth the visit on its own, absolutely divine, delicious, fantastic (add in any superlative of your choice etc etc!). Following that the Tri Tib steak main course was sublime and cooked to perfection, a great steak. For dessert I had really wanted to then try the Baked cheese cake, but shared the Tart Tatin dessert with my friend, good, but maybe not up to the same level as the starter and main course, still very good, and no complaints at all. But theres no option, I will just have to go back and soon and try the cheese cake. So congrats Barry, I figure reaching perfection with 2 out of 3 dishes is pretty good going, well worth a visit, maybe a Michelin star soon for Kenya?

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank wildpix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

We were lucky enough to be invited to the "Soft Opening" of the 5 star Hemingways hotel in Nairobi. Situated in the suburb of Karen, approx 30 minute drive from the airport. A beautiful area fitting for this magnificent hotel.

The hotel boasts 45 suites, all with wonderful views of the Ngong Hills and rolling landscapes. The staff are attentive and look out for all needs.

Beautiful luxury decor through out the hotel, wonderful cuisine, a hotel experience not to be missed whilst visiting Kenya.
Chris & Bev Bennett

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 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?
10 Thank cameo_8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hemingways Nairobi

Property: Hemingways Nairobi
Address: Mbagathi Ridge | Karen, Nairobi 00502, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Nairobi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 156 Hotels in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Hemingways Nairobi 5*
Number of rooms: 45
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, Hemingways Nairobi has a sophisticated and tranquil ambiance. Set between Nairobi National Park and the foot of the Ngong Hills, Hemingways Nairobi is an exclusive 5* luxury boutique hotel located in the peaceful suburb of Karen far from the bustle of central Nairobi. An all-suite property providing full butler service, a brasserie, a sunset bar and lounge and a spa, this plantation style property is perfectly placed for trips to Nairobi National Park, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and the capital. Each of the 45 suites is a generous size with en-suite bathrooms with walk-in closets, personalised mini bars, and a private terrace with magnificent views of the iconic Ngong Hills. ... more   less 
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