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Reviewed April 4, 2015

My wife and I spent one night at the Fairmont Mt Kenya Safari Club on our way to Laikipia. The staff were very pleasant and helpful. We arrived and booked in at about 1.30 pm and went straight into the dining room as we were meeting friends for lunch. Lunch was good, the service was good and a nice atmosphere in the dining room. The place was very busy with what appeared to be two weddings and a buck's party happening!

After lunch we were shown to our room and that was a major disappointment. We had a "riverside apartment" but the only aspect available to us was the carpark. The landscaping appeared to be getting an overhaul and it would appear that they are replacing whatever was there before with Agapanthus every where. Our room keycard did not work. My wife spoke to reception and asked if we could move room but we were told they had no spare rooms as they were so busy.

The situation was further exacerbated by the fact that a nearby apartment was being renovated and there was a floor-sander working very loudly. Eventually I walked across to speak to the tradesmen and they were very apologetic and stopped their work immediately and we did not hear them again that day. None-the-less it was an aggravation that should have been entirely predictable to management.

Dinner that night was good and breakfast the next morning was also excellent so the dining room certainly delivered. We had one of the nicest bottles of wine that I have had in Kenya (2010 Simonsig Shiraz) although it was expensive. The prices quoted do not include all the various add-ons that they choose to apply so your final price is generally about 25% more than you expect. This is not necessary and can easily be fixed by simply quoting the true price with all the VAT, training tax, staff levy etc..

The room had a little drinks fridge but it was turned off (plug was out - I presume to be used for a vacuum cleaner or some thing similar) when we arrived and everything was warm.

The room was actually dirty with sticky wine stains on the floor and beer can tabs littered around.

There was bottled water by the bed and in the bathroom. In the morning I wanted to make tea but did not have enough water left over to fill the kettle so used the water from the fridge. I was then charged for this water which I think is ridiculous at their prices. They had ice buckets in the rooms but no ice maker in the fridges so I presume you had to order from room service. There was no fresh milk available for tea. They had powdered milk suitable for coffee which any casual tea drinker will be able to explain is an unacceptable substitute for fresh milk in tea. Even long life milk would be better than a coffee whitener. I believe that Kenya's principal export earner is tea and you would have thought that Fairmont would understand and appreciate that fact when servicing their rooms.

So in short, because our "luxuriously appointed" room was so disappointing in its design, positioning and presentation; the complete lack of nature due to the sterile landscaping (I think I only saw two types of bird from our veranda); the lack of attention to detail from an hotel of this level I really would not be going back to visit them, would not be recommending them to anyone and would seriously question their management ability.

This is not a cheap place to stay and I believe one should expect and get much better.

Stayed: March 2015, traveled as a couple
4  Thank Ben A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 30, 2015

We stayed here at the Mount Kenya Safari Club in 1995 and were very impressed with its unique facilities and traditions. That good memory stay with us through all these years. On this trip of 10 days tour of Kenya from Mombasa to Nairobi through the various national parks and reserves, we scheduled two nights back to our favorite resort. Now the property is under the management of Fairmont.

How is our impression on the property after all these years?

The property is as grand as we can remember it. Few of changes within were done in good taste and for the change of customer's present needs. Section of the main courtyard was modified to accommodate events of various kind. The day of our arrival, there was a wedding ceremony being held. These are the positive factors.

However, there were several negative incidents that ready indicate of poor internal communication hence poor management. On the day of our arrival, we were at the hotel after 15:00 hour. The restaurant was closing and the manager suggested we have room service instead of in the dining room. He will send someone to assist us with our order at our suite. The dining in our room will be considered as our included lunch. We agreed and proceeded to our suite. To cut thing short, we ended up calling the reception twice before finally having our lunch close to 17:00 hour. The manager did came over to apologize.

By staying in the William Holden Suite with a beautiful fireplace in the living room, we thought that having the fireplace lit and celebrated by bottle of Champagne would be a nice memory and good photo opportunity. We requested a bucket of ice with three Champagne glasses and the fireplace to be lit at 17:30 hour. At the requested time, the fireplace was lit but not the other item. Eventually we got the bucket of ice and Champagne glasses by 18:15 and the fire had to be restarted again.

There were several other minor incidents that not worth mentioning here but all in all it show either the lack of training or lack of communication between various departments. For all we know things did not work the way it should be for a luxurious hotel.

Stayed: March 2015, traveled with family
3  Thank Charn P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2015

This was my 3rd time at Fairmont Mt Kenya and as always i was expecting great service great food and absolute luxury; sadly i was terribly disappointed.
I was to arrive at around 10 am and informed them when booking to have my room ready, unfortunately i arrived past 12 noon and on check in was told that my room wasnt ready and will take around 45 minutes.
This truly upset me and after arguing and pleading they managed to get me a room in about 30 minutes.
We had to follow their carts to our room and the driver showed me where to park and directed me to the room only to find that it was being renovated by the time we got to him he was already driving away i told him this isnt our room he told us its should be somewhere near by i should be able to find it on my own!!

I am used to enjoying Fairmont lunch buffets dishes lined and piled with food pit roasted whole lambs, live cooking stations unfortunately there were only a measly three dishes with rice cooked like maize meal and we werent the only people complaining about the food and it was'nt like there were'nt enough guests staying.

I even bothered to ask the waitress what happened to the variety you used to have and she said 3 dishes is a good enough variety her tone literally scared me from asking anything else.

The room we had requested was near the river where they were doing renovations so we were entertained by drilling and hammering sounds all afternoon and next day morning.

Next day just after breakfast they called in to make sure we leave right away and i told them that i would leave just before lunch they insisted that we had to leave as other guests have booked the same room it was around 9 am i wonder why they never did the same for us and we got our room at 1 pm earlier day. As if it wasnt enough to push us out we got another call and a visit to clear out.

The good parts were there too the rooms the amenities and the odd exceptional smile and service from one or two of the staffs like for instance the lady serving us dinner was taking too long and one of the other waiters jumped in and made sure the rest of the dinner went perfectly.

All in all this time it felt like The Fairmont was doing us a favor by letting us stay there sadly my last visit for a long time to come.

Avoid if you can, go to Serena Mountain Lodge instead.

  • Stayed: March 2015, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Fairmont Hotels & Resorts
2  Thank Fayaz K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2015

I had a wonderful welcome the first time i visited the hotel last week,it was an experience of its own since i didn't know that African hospitality is still there,my family felt more than they were at home since the staff were so into us,they could predict and know what we wanted before we even asked for the same.
Kudos mount Kenya safari club management and the entire staff.

  • Stayed: March 2015, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Wilson K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 23, 2015

Set at the foot of Mount Kenya, looking squarely at the peaks, the Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club is set in a pristine location, affording one of Kenya's most spectacular views. The hotel is very well set out, well maintained in general (except a couple of pointers, listed below) and exquisitely managed, from the gardeners who take time out of their day to talk to you about the grounds, and how they maintain them, to the front desk staff who are never too busy to chat to you, to the waiting staff who are able to help you out with anything you want, to the guitar player who will take requests! The Fairmont have selected and trained their staff brilliantly, and this is reflected in the standard of service.

The building is based on the original property, but has obviously expanded over time. Apart from the main hotel complex, there are also cottages with two bedrooms, secluded cottages by the riverside, and very nice suites. The hotel could spend a little more time sound proofing the newer hotel rooms (rooms 200-300, I think) - the stairs leading to the rooms are just concrete and when people walk up and down them, the noise travels too easily. Additionally, our bathroom and toilet door had evidently warped so was quite difficult to close without using brute force. That said, these are minor issues and the rooms are comfortable and elegant. The views of the mountain from the main hotel complex rooms are just magnificent, but get up early to get the best view! The staff also light a fire in your room and put hot water bottles in your bed to keep the chill at bay!

The hotel has a whole range of activities for its guests to do - horse riding, fishing, heli-biking, mountain biking, swimming, a garden maze, golfing and you may even, if you so wish, take the hotel's dogs - Tusker and Grammy - for a walk (but they are strong, so prepare to do some exercise!).

The restaurant and food is also very good, with a humongous selection to choose from. Breakfast was my personal highlight - get there early for a table with a view and the best of the food!

All in all, this hotel is a true gem, and a must-visit place for anyone's trip to Kenya. If you are Nairobi based, it is the perfect weekend getaway, only 3 hours drive from Nairobi. 5 stars out of 5. And if I could, I'd have given it 6!

  • Stayed: March 2015, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank TravellerCD1985
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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