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“Home away from home in Lamu”
Review of JamboHouse

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JamboHouse
Ranked #1 of 34 Lamu Island B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 15, 2012

A very short walk from the "Main Street" and the water front Jambo House is the best bed and breakfast on the island. It is exceptionally clean, the rooms are spacious and well appointed (night stand with a reading lamp) and the hospitality makes you feel right at home. Arnold, the owner, is there to help you in any way he can. Even before my trip he patiently answered all my e-mail questions. His staff, Damaris and Adam, are also equally friendly and helpful. Damaris makes some beautiful jewelry which she is happy to share with you. Arnold can organize many interesting excursions on the island and I would highly recommend a dhow trip as well as a meal with a local Swhaili family. Booking through Arnold is more economical and avoids hassling with the local beach boys. In addition to the great rooms Jambo House has a lovely upper deck where breakfast is served and where one can read or just enjoy the rooftop view as well as the early morning and late afternoon calls to prayer. I was a solo traveler and could not have been happier with my stay in Lamu thanks to Jambo House.

Room Tip: Upper floor maybe quieter and the "Lamu" room has a small balcony.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled solo
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Thank go321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded July 17, 2012

Thank you very much for your review. Myself, I travelled to all parts of Kenya so I can give our guests plenty of informations about other places to visit or to stay. The people I work with (dhow captains, tour guides and other services) are all very nice and reliable people who I know since a long time. So, when I organize something for our guests (or recommend something) I'm sure our guests have a great time.
We are happy to had you as our guest and we hope to see you again in the future. All the best & greetings from JamboHouse-Team.

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91 - 97 of 163 reviews

Reviewed May 11, 2012

The Jambo House had everything to offer that one was hoping for: A spacious clean room/bathroom, amazing breakfast, and the hospitality that makes you feel like staying at a friends place rather than a hostel. The team does their best to make your stay as comfortable as possible, by picking you up at the jetty as well as showing your way across town. All in all you couldn't wish for a better place to stay and I can't wait to get back there as soon as possible!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled solo
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Thank fernandoGermany
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded May 12, 2012

Thank you for your review and we are happy you enjoyed staying with us. We hope you could manage it to come back to Lamu & JamboHouse soon again. All the best

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Reviewed January 5, 2012

This is a truly excellent bed and breakfast and our experience there was fantastic. The owner is involved and very attentive and wants to make sure that your stay is perfect. We were picked up from the main jetty by the owner himself and escorted to the hotel. He then gave us a great deal of information regarding restaurants and sight seeing. We booked three excursions through him and we were very impressed. We went on a dow/snorkling trip and had lunch on the boat. Our lunch was fish that was caught while we were snorkling and cooked on the boat! Delicious! We also got a town tour whch was informative, but not a historical tour by any means. Then on our last night we went for dinner at a local persons house which was delicious and culturally interesting. All of these excursions were booked through Jambo house and were very economical and everything that was said to be included was. We had a great time at Jambo house, I have not received such attention, even in five star hotels I have stayed at!

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the top floor, the bottom ones look directly into the lanes, so they lack privacy...
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank KellyB32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded January 6, 2012

Thank you for your review. We are happy you enjoyed your stay in Lamu and at JamboHouse. Regarding our rooms on the ground floor, every window has shutters to close them and there is also a curtain. Myself, I'm also staying in one of the rooms on the ground floor, so I don't think there's lack of privacy.
We wish you a Happy New Year, all the best, and maybe you have the chance to come again to Lamu and be our guest at JamboHouse.
ARNOLD with team

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Reviewed January 1, 2012

Lamu itself and Arnold`s hospitality made us come back to Lamu and Jambo House for a second time within a year. Jambo House offers all amenities one can ask for while traveling: tasty breakfast including fresh juice and fruit, very clean rooms, extra beach towels, beautiful location in the old part of the town only a 4min walk to the seafront with all the shops and reasonable restaurants serving all local delights, plenty of useful information to make the most of your stay. Arnold and his 2-men-team are always friendly, helpful and provide that small bit of extra service which will make your stay in Lamu unforgetable.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank graf_jana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded January 3, 2012

Happy New Year and Thank you for your review. Lamu is a fascinating place and we try to make the stay for our guests in Lamu and at JamboHouse as memorable as possible. JamboHouse-Team wishes you all the best and we hope to see you again. Thank you for choosing JamboHouse again.

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Reviewed November 18, 2011

Arnold is a true gentleman and the best host we have ever had on any of our travels anywhere ( and we have travelled a lot). His crew treat the hotel as their home and the guests as their family. The rooms are clean and spacious. It must be said that because of the location close to the mosque, it can be loud, but this just adds to the authentic feel of the city. The breakfasts were fantastic-- fresh, hot and cooked and served personally, with plenty of variety. Our compliments to cooks Adam and Arnold. Prices of drinks in the self-service rooftop bar were better than any other place in town. Arnold can suggest and arrange any type of tour, and his prices are very reasonable. We especially enjoyed the sunset cruise, with a sumptuous seafood feast cooked on over a fire on Manda Island-- a real treat. Really, this hotel is one of the true " Little Gems" of the world. Do not miss it if you plan to visit Lamu.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Don W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded November 28, 2011

Thank you for your review. We are happy you enjoyed your stay in Lamu and JamboHouse. I really love travelling so much and it was (and still is) very important to me. So I really try to make the best out of the stay for our guests. It's a long journey for you to come to Lamu but we hope you could make it again. Lamu is a special place! All the best, ARNOLD

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Reviewed October 13, 2011

We highly recommend JamboHouse. We stayed there 3 nights and we had a great time. If we return to LAMU, we will return to JamboHouse

Arnold, the owner, is a wonderful person that will spend a lot of time and organize all sort of activities, if you wish. You feel relax, as if you were home.
Rooms are clean, with electricity and fan,a good bed and a very decent bathroom for a guethouse (for some rooms it is not self contain) but this is no issue as this is private and very close to the room.
Price is really reasonable for Lamu and for the what you get ...

Breakfast is great experience on the roof, because it is a perfect time to meet the other guests, organize your day and enjoy the preparation of Adam (the pancake king).
If you wish to go on a boat trip, Arnold has great contact with reliable and good boat captains
We also enjoyed a lot the city tour almost 3 hours! with Abas, one Arnold's city guide.

In short, Jambohouse clearly deserves his excellent rating and I wish Arnold and his staff all the best. It is unfortunately becoming too rare to find people like him who runs a guesthouse with passion

  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank lmartinoni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Giriama, Owner at JamboHouse, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2011

Thank you for your review. We are happy you enjoyed your stay with us. We wish you all the best and maybe you have the chance to come back. ARNOLD

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Reviewed September 7, 2011

When you arrive at the airport on Menda Island, Jambo House will have someone waiting for you to escort you to the hotel which is a big help and saves you having to negotiate. Jambo House is about five or six minutes back into the town, and the streets are narrow and ancient, so it helps to have the initial escort. After that you won't have a problem finding it. Upon entering the hotel, you'll receive a welcome drink and a thorough debrief from Arnold on things to do and see. He can help you line up guides, sailboat tours, or anything else that may be of interest. Went on a hike, visted some beaches, and went to the Takwa Ruins with Ali Anko, a guide that works with Jambo House, and enjoyed the experience. You can walk to Shela beach from Jambo House in about 45 minutes, and it is enjoyable as you watch the boats, fishermen, and so on. You could also take a boart over to Menda Island, as that beach is also nice. Rooms in the house are comfortable with reliable electricity, running water, nice beds with nets, and there is a nice balcony up on top. Breakfasts are included with eggs, coffee or tea, toast, and fresh fruit. The juices in Lamu were so excellent that I did not miss having wine with meals. In short, I enjoyed staying at Jambo House, in large part due to the helpfulness of the manager and the connections which they have with reputable boat captains, guides, etc. I would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled solo
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Thank nomad633
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about JamboHouse

Address: PO Box 131, Lamu Island 80500, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Lamu Island
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 34 B&Bs / Inns in Lamu Island
Price Range: $18 - $24 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
JamboHouse Lamu is a small budget guesthouse in Lamu Town. We have 5 double rooms, all with private bathroom. Three rooms are self-contained and two rooms have external bathroom (not shared, only for that room). All our rooms have mosquito net, ceiling fan, bedside lamp. JamboHouse Lamu is ideally located to explore Lamu Old Town. It’s just a three minute walk through narrow lanes to Town Square with Lamu Fort. From our Top Roof you have a good view of Lamu Town, the inland part and sunrise. We are not a 5 star resort but we offer clean rooms with fair rates. All our rates include breakfast, free wifi internet, free coffee/tea. We give our guests a map of Lamu and plenty of useful information (museums, restaurants, suggestions how to spend your time in Lamu). We can organize a lot of activities like boat trips, walking tours (with or without guide), kayak, massages, henna painting, Swahili Cooking classes,... We wait for our guests at Manda Airport or at the jetty in Mokowe or Lamu. ... more   less 
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