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“Everyone seems to like it, but it is a little dull”
Review of House of Waine

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House of Waine
Ranked #20 of 164 Hotels in Nairobi
Certificate of Excellence
Sydney, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Everyone seems to like it, but it is a little dull”
Reviewed March 16, 2010

This hotel is quite grand, and feels like something from the colonial era.

We found it very quiet - in fact, almost too quiet. Having two separate stays during Feb/March we barely saw another guest and both times had the lounge, bar, swimming pool and resturant all to ourselves. Some people will no doubt enjoy this, but we found it a little unnerving.

In parts, the 'colonial style' has lapsed into 'out dated' - especially the resturant, which is fairly dim desperately needs uplifting.

The beds are also very hard and (as I see other posters have noted) the shower was unreliable - which is not want you want at 4am when rising for an early flight.

The small safe amused me. After looking it, I found that it was not bolted in, and I could simply pick it up and easily walk away with it.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Nightwatchman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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251 reviews from our community

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English first
Littleton, Colorado
1 review
Reviewed February 12, 2010

If you can afford it, you won't be disappointed. I went with a group and didn't know I was affording it. What a most pleasant and astonishing surprise!

Stayed January 2010, traveled with friends
Thank JohnH25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 23, 2010

keep out of the city centre if you are connecting flights - and this is the place to stay - bit pricy but you get what you pay for.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank jimmyriddel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed January 4, 2010

This was our santuary for 2 days before we started our safari. This place was perfect. We had spent 23 hours in transit and arrived at approx.9 pm. The staff was there to greet us and welcome us. They upgraded us to the suite which was superb. We were the only couple staying there and we had the whole place to ourselves. It felt very indulgent and we loved it.
the food was great, the help was great and we were treated like royalty.
We did a day trip around Nairobi which was excellent, with our tour manager Gibson.
It was just what we wanted and needed after our long flight and prepared us perfectly for the best safari you could imagine.
An amazing hotel in which i would have no hesitation in recommending. Very romantic and chic. We loved it.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank bradio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westminster, London
1 review
Reviewed November 15, 2009

House of Waine was the perfect weekend getaway to get away from the hustle and bustle of Nairobi. The house itself is a beautiful colonial building with gorgeous gardens and decorations throughout the hotel. The rooms are lovely (although not overly luxurious) but they are everything you could want with very traditional decor, extremely clean, very comfortable and cozy. It is a very quiet and relaxing place to stay and several rooms have balconies overlooking the garden where you can watch the sunset... perfect! The staff are fantastic and very helpful, welcoming and smiley. I really can't recommend this enough if you want a small boutique hotel, with not many people and in the nicest part of Nairobi then look no further. The gardens are gorgeous with a very nice pool and loungers around it (although we didn't get round to testing it out). Next time i'm in Nairobi then I will definitely be booking back into the House of Waine for sure.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank bluetravelbug_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Athens, Greece
Level 6 Contributor
18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed November 14, 2009

We spent two nights at the House of Waine in Karen on June 2009. Our tour operator, Duffle and Compass of Chicago, gave us 3 options of where to stay for these first two days, and based on their description we chose House of Waine. This was at the beginning of a 3 week trip through Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda, and we wanted someplace were we could just chill for 48 hours. Our 3rd day we were to fly to northern Kenya, to Lewa Conservancy, to begin a walking safari, so getting acclimated from our journey (which began in Chicago) was important.
House of Waine was the perfect place for us: peaceful, comfortable, clean, the perfect balance between bed & breakfast and hotel - with a great friendly staff a large garden area to relax in, and not to much around to tempt us to the outside world.
A responsive and proactive staff turned out to be really important for us, since British Airways didn’t get our bags transferred to our connecting flight in London, and so we arrived in Nairobi without luggage. Being in the hospitality business in Greece we know all about US transfers through London on BA, so we had made provisions to carryon an extra change of clothes should this happen to us. We actually had everything we needed for our walking safari, except my hiking boots. Oooops! When we did not hear from BA within an hour of the next arriving flight from London, the hotel got a driver for us (it was midnight) and the driver took my husband to the airport, where he could see our bags, sitting behind the BA desk, but which he was not allowed to retrieve because the BA employee had left for the day. Bringing my husband back to the hotel around 2 AM, the driver actually then drove to the other side of Nairobi to bring the BA employee back to the airport so he get retrieve our bags. He returned to the hotel around 6:00 AM as we were having breakfast and getting ready to leave to catch our flight to Lewa.
The hotel is much like a very large house, with a central stairway and rooms going in each direction once you reach the top of the stairs. Our room, a double, was spacious with a Queen bed and a loveseat as well as a desk. I appreciated that there was a multi-plug since this is something I often find lacking in hotels : enough outlets, conveniently located, to charge cell phones, cameras and a Netbook. We had a nice little veranda that overlooked the garden – which was a lovely spot to sit and watch the birds (the garden is full of them!) A spacious bathroom with a large glass enclosed shower, was a welcome site after our 2 day air journey.
Meals at House of Waine were wonderful, we had a particularly beautiful and memorable dessert (which I’ve included in my uploaded photos) and though they normally serve afternoon tea in the dining room, we asked if we could have it in the garden and they quickly brought out a table and two chairs, and then followed my husband around as he looked for the perfect spot.
There is a nice pool, and although we didn’t swim the cabana area has seating which was really nice for sitting and working or reading.
We did take a walk around Karen mid day on our first full day there, heading to the Karen Blixen house for a tour. (The Greeks should take some lessons from the Kenyans: admission to the Blixen House was, if I remember correctly, 12 or 15 dollars per person, and it included a private guide. Our guide was a really nice young Kenyan, who clearly and methodically explained what every object was in the entire 4 room house. (Including explaining to us that the grandfather’s clock was just called that, it did not mean that it came from Karen Blixen’s father . After our visit to the Blixen house we went the Coffee Plantation for … coffee. There was a nice art exhibit as well, though this being the beginning of our trip we resisted the tempation to buy anything. I believe there is also an animal rescue center nearby, as we heard some of the other guests talking about visiting there.
As I’m totally smitten with Kenya, I know we will be back soon and House of Waine will be our landing point on our future trips.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank GVRGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
73 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2009

To be honest I would find great difficulty to find fault with House of Waine except to say that if you want a city centre hotel - this isn't it but it IS perfect for a quiet rest away from the hustle & bustle of the city (my main reason for choosing it!). As a solo traveller, 2 nights cost as much as my international flight - but for the security & luxury aspect I would do it again in an instant!
The welcome from start to finish was awesome. I arrived very early in the morning, but my room was ready due to an early departure - and I was given the opportunity to have breakfast once I had checked in, which I duly did. My room - The Pwani Room - was fautless. The bathroom was huge, as was the bedroom which was also immaculate. It benefitted from a lovely seating area and balcony overlooking the beautifully manicured gardens.
The hotel organised a car to take me to the 2 sights I wanted to visit (Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage & Giraffe Centre - highly recommend both particularly for the young at heart!). I paid a reasonable amount for the driver to take & wait for me at both places.
I highly recommend this boutique hotel to anyone who, like me, wants excellent service away from the generic city centre hotels.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled solo
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2 Thank Brit-Born-Cyp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about House of Waine

Property: House of Waine
Address: Masai Lane & Bogani Road | Karen, PO Box 25035, Nairobi 00603, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Nairobi
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Nairobi
#1 Romantic Hotel in Nairobi
#9 Business Hotel in Nairobi
#19 Luxury Hotel in Nairobi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — House of Waine 4.5*
Number of rooms: 11
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Also Known As:
House Of Waine Hotel Nairobi
Hotel Of Waine
Of Waine Hotel

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