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“Fantastic holiday” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Amani Tiwi Beach Resort

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Amani Tiwi Beach Resort
Ranked #11 of 33 Hotels in Ukunda
Derby, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Fantastic holiday”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 2, 2014

Wasn't sure what to expect after reading some of the reviews ,but was pleasantly surprised ,all the staff were very pleasant and helpful,and with a variety of restaurants to choose from you will not go hungary. The beach was much better than we were led to believe,as the soft white sand extended for a good 50 metres before you got to the coral bit which was well covered at high tide.
both the indian ocean and the pool were unbelievably warm ,which is more than i can say about the shower,but a luke warm shower is fine after a long hot day , so didnt have a problem with that.
Overall we had a fantastic week and wouldnt hesitate to book the same place again.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Timothy A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (163)
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English first
Nairobi, Kenya
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2014

We had a booking at a different resort which fell through at the last minute (see a separate review) and I was initially very nervous about going to Amani Tiwi as it was a last minute decision and there were mixed reviews of Amani so I was not sure what to make of it.

I can say that we have just returned from a great family holiday at Amani, with a temptation to extend our stay and we are considering returning here in June. I will try and highlight what other reviewers haven't but also give my most honest opinion (which I have shared directly with the hotel):

The good stuff:

a. Great pool (as all reviewers have said) without doubt. The biggest positive here is unlike most resorts, the pool runs by all rooms which quite strategically spreads the residents through out the resort rather that everyone congregating around one pool.
b. They have a bigger upper pool (seemed more quiet) and a bigger lower pool (where most activities took place) connected by streams and smaller pools.
c. They have two slopes built as "water slides" it was a great plus for our 3yr old and for most kids (and adults) enjoyed this. Most of the interconnected pools are shallow enough so children can play without much adult supervision in the water.
d. Really good food with a choice of 5 restaurants - some comments on food:
- On the the full board option you can only eat at the buffet restaurant as part of your package but get a 20% discount on all other restaurants. Tea and coffee with snacks served twice in the day.
- On all inclusive (which is FB + includes drinks) option allows you to eat at an additional three restaurants ie La bella vita and Baharini (at the beach) and Kahawa corner (from 10am - 6pm) which have specific all inclusive menus (but eat when you wish and as many times as you like) for those on that package but also serve additional Ala carte items which you can select and pay for with a 20% discount. Ice-cream and free drinks are part of the all inclusive menus.
- What I liked most is during busy Easter weekend they had a separate kiddies dinner at one of the restaurants (Kahawa) served early and before main dinner. At normal times they have nice small sized meals for the little ones if you want them to have a meal earlier and not at the buffet restaurant.
- At 4 o'clock tea they had a live pancake station - I have stayed at other 4-5* resorts that have been reviewed here by others and this is special unlike the usual cakes and tea served by other resorts. Felt a bit different and nice.
- They cater for diabetics (sugar free juices at breakfast), have brown flour products including brown Indian chapatis as part of their normal buffet menu.
- They have a very good Indian selection buffet which is not standard for most hotels - so a good place for the vegetarians who are well catered for.
- I was surprised to read a review that their food was repetitive - for a buffet selection I was really surprised at the changes on each day. On one day they served us shawarmas as part of the buffet which was a pleasant surprise. Their baked products were of very good quality - I must meet the pastry chef next time I come here.
e. Lots of activities for kids of all ages (with a separate animation team for children):
- Table tennis, and it has a net unlike what one of the reviewers said
- Two table football games
- A watoto express train where they have several activities such as painting, art and craft, video watching, play station games, swings etc.
- Added to this, they also had other organised activities such as children fashion shows, sand castle building, beach races etc (but note this was over Easter so part of a special program).
f. A decently equipped gym with a very enthusiastic instructor
- During Easter (and I guess when they have a close to full capacity) in addition to animation activities they has Yoga by the beach (6am!) and Zumba classes.
- The gym was well equipped even compared to several city business hotels I have stayed at in other countries. I only managed to use this once as there was enough to keep me busy outside!
g. The property on either side does not have any other buildings or resorts so long stretches of beach are yours. As a result they also have very few beach boys who do not bother you so much. We were only asked on day 1 if we wanted to buy anything and we said no thank you and that was it for the remaining 5 days.
h. Security - in the midst of all the media coverage and travel warnings this place is very secure. Again due to its seclusion but I noticed that they had several guards protecting the resort. At one point when we ventured out, one of the guard asked us not to for our own safety but quite honestly we did this for 6 days in a row and did not once feel insecure as there are very few people/ strangers on the beach. It is also about 5-6kms off the main road which gives it that extra security.
i. The animation staff and staff in general (food and beverage, reception staff etc) are helpful and courteous.
j. We got an email a day after checking out thanking us for our stay and also the day before checking out we were given a questionnaire to complete regarding our stay and that the hotel was happy to receive written feedback on tripadvisor. This was a good and honest touch and hopefully the feedback will be taken in good light.

Things that possibly need improvement but didn't really bother us much and will not prevent us from coming back:

a. Agreed that the resort lacks that 5* feeling in some aspects speficially the bathrooms, the towels (beach and room are a bit old though are clean), the furniture in the main buffet restaurant is a bit dated . A bit of investment here would help uplift the face of this resort and they could easily charge 20-30% more. Since everything was clean this would not deter me from going back. It is more about aesthetics.
b. General maintenance on some of the tiling in the pool is required. I noticed in some older photos that have been posted some broken tiling on some parts of the pool and it was sad to see that this has not been fixed. To maintain a higher * rating I think management needs to invest in sorting this out as it can pose a health hazard.
c. During the busy period sun beds can be a bit of an issue - not entirely managements fault but they should have a policy that sub beds should not be booked around the pool. We observed some people had left their towels on beds for 3-5 hours and were no where to be seen. As a paying guest I felt I had the right to move people's towels as it was highly inconsiderate and did so and asked other patrons to do so where they struggled to find a place. This is only an issue at full capacity but other days we had enough beds available to pick and choose as we liked.
d. The maintenance/ corrective action needs some pushing - we had one or two issues which were eventually fixed but it took some reminding (sometimes more than once). The reception should maintain a book and log such complains so they can "tick" off what is done and monitor what is outstanding.
e. Yes as others have pointed out they have power cuts, but this is not unusual in Kenya. They have a generator which kicks in (sometimes takes a minute or two) but welcome to Africa this is how things work and we should be grateful that we had power in such a remote place. I have heard of worse experiences in Zanzibar where power cuts have gone on for full days and only turned on for 3-4 hours in the night so a 2 min wait will not kill!
f. The hot water issue - I observed that the resort has solar water heating installed. Only on one evening (out of 6) we had luke warm water and on that evening we had a late shower and the resort was at close to full capacity so it is understandable that they did not have hot water. This did not matter to us. In such weather warm water is good enough.
g. The beach immediately facing the hotel is a bit stony and rocky but 200-300m (less than 2mins walk) on the right just outside the resort you end up on nice sandy beach for a long stretch (thanks to tripadvisor reviewer for the tip!).

Overall a hidden gem and experience and at the price we paid I would return without thinking twice (considering coming back in June) as it is really value for what you pay. I am sure once the resort gets a serious uplift (again more aesthetics than anything else) so will the prices. Would I pay much more for to come back? Possibly but not much more than 15%.

Room Tip: Block 6 top floor. Faces the upper pool which is quieter and away from all daily pool activities. Al...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
13 Thank UB_Kenya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2014 via mobile

Had alot of fun, the staff was very engaging not forgetting the energetic animators who kept everybody on their toes.
They had prepared my room very well (Honeymoon package)and surprised us with cake at dinner
I also witnessed an angagement on the beach as we were doing beach aerobics and several suprise birthday cakes during dinner and at the evening shows after dinner...Must return...SOON

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank nyanza_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 18, 2014 via mobile

The only thing I was not happy was with the room facilities such as the Air Conditioning & Washrooms. The Air conditioning is not fit for the room & a bigger one should be placed. The washrooms however are fine except their small size.

Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Nandhu J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 12, 2014

A luxurious 4 or 5 star resort this is not. The 5 of us were there for two nights and we are two adjoining rooms; don't get me wrong the resort is very nice, but lacks maintenance and refinement. We went when the occupancy was at 25% only hence clearly more than enough staff to handle our issues. (The occupancy sheet for available for all to see at reception.) Despite this the rooms were not ready properly (had not been checked for all items, lack of toiletries, lack of umbrellas despite the heavy rain). Upon requesting for these items it often took upto an hour or If I got fed up I had to go to reception to get it. The luxuries you expect in a 4 start or 5 start we're simply not present in the rooms or had deteriorated and not maintained.

We had no hot water in our room for instance which could not be fixed. So they issued another room (5106) to us for just the use of the bathroom facilities. Unfortunately they could not move us to another room as my elderly parents were in the next room who we needed to keep an eye on and they needed the ground floor for mobility reasons. Hence one morning we used that room's bathroom (5106) , whilst the next morning when we went to that room(5106) it had been already been given to someone else. We took one look and saw some bags and ran out, this was clearly a significant security issue too. All 5 of us had to use my parents one bathroom for the last day which was very difficult.

All of the indoor games (pool, table tennis, darts, carom) had not been maintained at all and are falling apart. The darts were so blunt you could not even hurt a fly, both pools tables had broken wooden pieces hanging off it, the table tennis net was just hanging on.

On the good side the beach is amazing with beautiful hammocks hanging off trees, the pool is very long and thin (some 140 meters) and hence offers privacy to all users. The buffet food was good and as my father had special dietary needs they cooked specially for him. The alacart restaurants were of a good choice too, a bit expensive but good. The tea provided at 4pm included hot food such as fresh pancakes. There was local entertainment every night which was a good bonus.

The staff simply need to be quick to respond to customer queries and this would be a much better place. The hotel really needs to invest in maintenance, a lot of things are falling apart. If this is to be sold as a 4 or 5 star resort it needs staff response and maintenance appropriate to the stars they are claiming.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DrRishiDShah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
G M, General Manager at Amani Tiwi Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 21, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking time to share your experience with us.

We have taken keen note of the points raised and will have them addressed comprehensively.

Hope you will give us a second chance to serve you better.

Asante Sana.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 12, 2014

Returned from Amani Tiwi last week. The hotel is excellent with a great pool and wonderful staff. The only reason I gave it 4* is that there were a few (not so important) issues (no hot water in the shower, coral beach and too many annoying beach boys).

Now back to the great and important stuff.
The service is excellent. Food was amazing every day, lots of activities, bar in the pool, beautiful beach (except from the corals which made it hard to walk in the sea). If you walk 300 meters to the right, you will get to a beautiful sandy beach. However, you will be constantly accompanied by beach boys which can be annoying. Eventually, I found a way how to get rid of them... All you have to do is learn two sentences:
''Jumbo Kaka. Hakuna pesa, hakuna kazi.'' - means: Hi brother. No money so no business.
They will instantly think that you are from Nairobi (or somewhere in Kenya) and if you keep ignoring them, they will leave you alone within seconds. Once you answer in english they will be after you.

It was also my girlfriend's birthday and when we were having a dinner the staff suddenly came out singing happy birthday with a lovely cake - How did they know it was her??? :)
Also, we went as a couple and were concerned about being surrounded by mostly older people (nothing against them but you know what I mean). However, there were quite a few young people/couples so we weren't disappointed :)
There is an open bar next to the restaurant, two pool bars (open only until 6pm), few restaurants, pool table, ping pong table, table football, and animation team organise water aerobics, beach volleyball and water polo every day. Lots of activities going on.

A few tips:
1. Don't buy Safari from the beach boys otherwise you will end up in an uninsured vehicle (most probably a bus) and get disappointed. We used JT Safaris - you can't go wrong with a company that has 502 reviews on Tripadvisor (489 ranked as excellent). Negotiate the price. We got a private jeep for two people and had an amazing experience. The driver was fantastic. I forgot batteries for my camera so he took us to a shopping centre on our way to the park. On the way back, we asked whether it was possible to go through villages and Shimba hills. His response: Not a problem. This is what I call 10/10 service. This guy just deserved a nice tip.
The owner Julius came to visit us at the hotel the next day and brought us a free present...

2. If you are looking to go out clubbing, choose a resort in Diani beach as you will not find anything like this in Tiwi. A taxi to Diani costs around 3,000 - 4,000 KSH which is around £25 return!!

3. Always negotiate on price - everywhere you go.

4. When you get to the hotel on the first day, ask the boy that takes your luggage to tell you who will take care of you when you need to have a sunbed ready on the beach every day. They will call the guy in your room and you tip him $5. All sorted for you.

5. If you feel like having a coconut drink, speak to the young workers/gardeners in green shirts. For 50 KSH (0.50p) they will climb the highest palm tree for you, get the biggest coconut, open it for you and you can enjoy a lovely drink on the beach. Don't buy it from the beach boys as they will ask for much more money.

6. If you get sunburned, go to a beach boy and ask them to get you a bottle with aloe vera juice. There's nothing better than 100% aloe vera fresh juice for your skin. It will cost you around 200 - 300KSH (£2)

7. make sure you buy your sun protection cream at home. The local shop sells it for $20!! What a rip off.

8. The main bar closes at 12pm (all inclusive until 11pm). Order three rounds (or more if needed) at 10:55pm so that you can drink until 2am.

9. Do NOT leave beach bags with food on the beach unattended. The monkeys are watching you! And they will get your snack the moment you turn around. Yes, they even know how to unzip your bag... :)

10. Snorkelling. We booked with Baracuda (office on the beach next to Amani). Great guys and great snorkelling.

11. Massage in the spa is quite nice. Negotiate the price.

I'd definitely recommend this resort as all in all we had a brilliant holiday.

Cheers

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Kem I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
G M, General Manager at Amani Tiwi Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 21, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your review and the gracious comments -

'' The service was EXCELLENT. Food was amazing everyday. Lots of activities, bar in the pool, beautiful beach''.

This is encouraging and will share with the rest of the team.

We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future and assure you of our best service again.

Karibu Tena....
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Highbridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 10, 2014

Great Holiday
We had a fantastic time at Amani and even if I agree with others that the rooms need some updating we couldn’t fault ours for cleanliness. Always had clean sheets, towels etc and a very comfy bed.. what more do you need? We found the food fantastic in all the all-inclusive restaurants and there was always something to suit everyone’s taste. And as for drinking water, we kept filling our bottles at the bars, simple…

We loved the beach which is free from beach boys immediately in front of the hotel, although they are there down by the sea.. we went and talked to them though and all the lads are polite and good fun although persistent if they knew you wanted something. The pool is lovely and welcome.

We couldn’t fault any staff members who all worked hard but were always ready with a smile. Someone else mentioned the service was the same whether you tipped or not and we agree..

For the benefit of 2* nightmare, we travel to Kenya often and stayed in many of the hotels, North and South including Baobab, so we do know what we’re talking about. Oh! And the Baobab is beautiful also - and £300 more.


Agree that there was a flurry of great reviews following the Monkey Poo one BUT what about all the great one’s preceding it?

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Philo711
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
G M, General Manager at Amani Tiwi Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 21, 2014
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your GREAT review!

Indeed, this will encourage the Amani Team. We do our best to make sure all guests leave with fond & cherished memories of AMANI.

We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

Karibu Tena.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Amani Tiwi Beach Resort

Property: Amani Tiwi Beach Resort
Address: PO Box 1877, Ukunda 80400, Kenya (Formerly Tiwi Beach Resort)
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Ukunda
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Ukunda
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Ukunda
#11 Luxury Hotel in Ukunda
#14 Romantic Hotel in Ukunda
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Amani Tiwi Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 209
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Recently up graded with an addition of another specialty restaurant-Sultan Dhow & Aqua wine bar overlooking the Indian Ocean with a wide choice of wine served by glass. Refurbished Floodlit Tennis Court. A dedicated 3D 84 inch screen facility, Ultra modern conferences in a separate hotel wing.New hotel boutiques, air conditioned rooms, Hi- speed WIFI Internet & 32'' LCD TV with Satellite feed in the rooms, Complimentary mini fridges, electronic safes, Tea & Coffee making facility, Hair dryers, Mosquito nets and superior guest toiletries Dedicated 24 hours in room dining menu. Upmarket Hair Salon Beauty & Wellness Center.Superior guest amenities. Weekly Complimentary traditional renewal of Wedding vows.3 Specialty restaurants and 4 bars including swim-up sunken bar in the a 167 Meter length free form swimming pool... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Amani Tiwi Beach Hotel Ukunda
Tiwi Beach Hotel
Amani Tiwi Beach Resort Kenya/Ukunda

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