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“Fantastic location - stunning views”

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Mara Serena Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
dubai
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 115 helpful votes
“Fantastic location - stunning views”
Reviewed March 13, 2009

We have been to this lodge now about 6 times.

The Serena are probably the best lodges in Kenya, you do get a better atmosphere (and more of a safari feel) at some of the smaller tented camps where the service can also be a lot more personal, but these tend to be more expensive. But for lodges Serena is the way to go.

The Mara Serena is sitting on top of a hill in the conservancy with stunning views all around. We have been to 25 plus lodges/camps in Kenya and the view from this one is second to none. The position means that you can easily get to the plains, rivers, trees where you will find different animals depending on the weather, time of day etc. It really has got the prime location.

The staff are friendly (it's Kenya so they always are) and the service is good. The rooms are clean and have large windows which fully take advantage of the views, although the rooms are not huge. The food is a buffet and generally pretty good, and the prices for drinks are reasonable.

We have used the same safari company for all our visits (9 and counting) to Kenya, we like having our own driver and the vehicle to ourselves so that we can do what we want when we want and stay with the animals for as long as we want, so I can't comment on the safari vehicles/guides.

In my opinion the perfect Mara safari would be 3 nights at the Serena & 3 at a tented camp (I am trying to do reviews for the ones we have been to)

  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank tonymasters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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913 reviews from our community

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United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed January 8, 2009

I was recommended the Serena Lodge by a number of people and booked trhough a travel agent in Nairobi. I booked through Keyur at Travel ' n Style who organised transfers and a driver for the duration of the Safari. From the moment that we arrived at the lodge to our departure, my family and I were all treated like VIPs. We had two lodges (double and twin). I was very impressed by the standard of cleanliness throughout the whole lodge and particulary the standards of our rooms. The food was very fresh and wholesome and of a good standard. The staff were very courteous and made all of us feel at home. I would particularly like to thank the chef Dave and Agness for their attentiveness. As for the Safari itself, well you have to see it to believe it. Our driver from the tour company, Francis was excellent and made a real effort to show us as much game as possible, and his knowledge of the local area was excellent. We were lucky enough to be invited to a bush dinner which with what turned into a night game drive. Our driver Samson was unbelievable and really made the event a once in a lifetime experience. I would also like to thank the Manager, Herman for also making our stay at the lodge that much more special. A fantastic lodge with fantastic people. We will definately visit again!

  • Liked — The high standard of cleanliness
  • Stayed December 2008
    • Value
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    • Check in / front desk
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank ammoldn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vancouver
Level Contributor
18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed January 5, 2009

What a place
Stunning views
Great Location
Lovely rooms - locally styled with all amenities
Amazingly friendly staff who took car of everything!.
Lots of game in a less touristy area of Masai Mara.
Really great food - good quality, vast selection, very fresh and organic. Well priced gift shop - better than most stalls you find!

  • Liked — everything!
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed December 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank nickm007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 19, 2008

Wow .. what a great lodge!! We had the time of our lives staying here in December. The view from the rooms is excellent, you can see the vast African plains and with a binocular spot lots of animals right from the room. The decoration in the rooms also has a lot of character and is tastefully done. The driver/guide assigned to us was very knowledgeable and took the time to explain a lot of interesting details about the plants and animals, and also made sure we got the best angles for taking pictures. The ambiance at the lodge is also excellent and the staff is attentive and personable. Also, the lodge is in a very good location and you can see lots of animals with in short drive from the lodge. We also did a night safari that the lodge offers, but did not think it was worth it.

  • Liked — Views
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank deardude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grafham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
54 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2008

We have just returned from our first visit to Kenya (25th wedding celebration) and to the Serena Lodge / Hotel chain. This is an amazing place, the vista, staff, service, food, accomodation could not be faulted.
We flew from Wilson airport in Nairobi after staying for a day & overnight after flight from UK. Would strongly recommend flying as starting safari in Nairobi is a long gruelling 7 hour drive (not for the fainthearted) and starting after the flight from UK is knackering (as advised by other travellers).
Views from the lodge across the mara have to be seen to be believed and having hippos outside your window at night another special reason to visit.
The guides are knowledgable and our guy - Sampson -certainly knew his stuff - normally was the first jeep to arrive at one of the big 5 sitings. Jeeps were spacious we were sometimes on our own and sometimes with another couple.
Breakfast with the hippos was also unreal and if you are thinking of a safari this is most definately the place. Most people we spoke to, who had visited other camps, said this was their favourite.
Two drives a day at 6.30am & 4.30pm for about 2.5 hours each. you get to see everything (if you are lucky) and guides are in constant radio touch to advise on rare sitings. Balloon trip was expensive £240 each so declined the offer - not sure it was that great from reports.
Rooms are clean, have comfy beds, good sized bathroom and a view from the balcony that has to be seen to be fully appreciated - beware of the baboons if you have a doze with the patio windows open - they are little monkees!!...sic.
Overall a very special 3 days and certaiunly could not fault anything from the moment we arrived to the moment we left.

  • Liked — Everything was perfect
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Ian_Gill_EN8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
england
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed October 24, 2008

We stayed here for two nights three days during a safari arranged by 'Glorious Safaris' during our holiday to Kenya. The food was amazing, the rooms were really nice, the views were fantastic. How anyone can say the food was lousy is beyond me (The food was far better than the food at the Voyager Hotel in Mombasa). Our safari driver was very experienced indeed, we saw everything except Rhino's. It was especially nice to relax by & use the swimming pool whenever we wanted to. I will be returning here when I am next in Kenya for another few days. The vehicles this lodge use are huge 4 wheel drive jeeps, the are capable of driving of road is & when the drives require it.

Paul.

  • Liked — quality, friendly staff, really nice rooms.
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Check in / front desk
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank 1happytraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi, Kenya
Level Contributor
98 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2008

Just got back from the Mara, and got to see the tail end of the migration.Totallyamazing, and the Serena is loacted just near all the action.

Great hotel, amazing views, nice (but small) rooms, good service, but the food....thats at a different level completely.

Never had so many lousy meals in a row as we did at the Serena. Avoid the soups, they taste like dishwater!! (this also seems to be the case at the Nairobi Serena). Avoid the bbq, the meat is hard, dry, overcooked! Avoid everything except for the breakfast, which in all honesty, cannot be messed up!

Serena, you have everything....why not make some effort and feed your guests well?

  • Liked — location and rooms
  • Disliked — Food
  • Stayed October 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank KulaRaha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mara Serena Safari Lodge

Property: Mara Serena Safari Lodge
Address: C14, Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 137 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Mara Serena Safari Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Mara Serena Safari Lodge, set on a saddle of a hill, overlooks the 1,800 square km of rolling plains at an altitude of 1625 meters at the Masai Mara Triangle, one of the world's richest wildlife sanctuaries. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mara Serena Safari Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Mara Serena Safari Lodge Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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