Nairobi Serena Hotel

, Nairobi, Kenya
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Nairobi Serena Hotel

4 star

Rooms: 190

Kenyatta Ave - Nairobi - 00100 - Kenya Hotel Website | 20/272/5111
230 Traveller

Reviews - Nairobi Serena Hotel

Samburu Serena Hotel
Submitted by: Shelley in 01/01/06
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: Kenya
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
This is my favourite of all the Kenyan hotels I have stayed at. I stayed many times here in 2004, sometimes for a period of two weeks at a time. Set in the middle of the Samburu Safari Park, this little hotel is beautiful and everything you would want from your Kenyan experience. The rooms are in wooden cottages and are very clean and well kept, but they are basic (no hairdryers or TVs!) The bathrooms (each with shower) are clean and a good starndard. Remember to keep your door shut, because the monkeys that live around the hotel will come in and steal your snacks - and they are NOT afraid of you!! You will be greeted with fresh drinks on your arrival and the service of the staff is fantatstic (many are traditional local maasai's) - they will do anything within their power to make your stay as comfortable as possible - if you have a request and they can fulfill it, they will!
There is a pool, a beauticians (you will need a facial after the dust of the safari!)a lovely bar and the restaurant and bar area here are open plan, as it is always so hot! But do remember to take your mozzsie spray for when you are sat in the bar area at night! The food is again, fantastic with a variety of meats, fruit, veg and desserts everyday, or a packed lunch if you are out and about. Often at night you will be treated to local dancers or a singer! The restaurant also has the hilarious and charasmatic 'monkey catchers' who will scare the monkeys away with a catapult when they try to steal your food! Every evening at 6pm, light bites are served on a vernanda over looking the area where the leopards come to feed and if you are lucky, you will see them! (Keep your eye open for them here in the morning, too!) The hotel also provides horse and camel treks and birdwatching walks. At sunset and sunrise daily the safaris run and these are an amazing experience. You will see everything from Cheetas to elephants to leopards, lions and giraffes and all manner of other amazing and unexpected animals! Do not vist the Samburu game reserves and stay anywhere else!! This is basic luxury, set in a peaceful and remote location - you will love it!!
Nairobi Serena
Submitted by: Shelley in 01/01/06
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: Kenya
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
I stayed at this hotel on a number of occasions over a period of nearly a year. This hotel is clean and the staff are friendly, courteous and helpful. It is located centrally within Nairobi, but the walls surrounding it almost make you forget that you are in the middle of this large, noisy, busy, dirty city. The pool/gym/sauna and beauty facilities are a welcome luxury after the dusty safari treks in the Samburu. The food in the restaurant is amazing with a fantatsic choice every night and plenty of fresh fruit and veg! Or you can order snacks and cocktails at the pool bar. Prices are usual hotel prices and I don't believe there is much here for children, although they are welcome in the restaurants. You can order room service and the lovely, modern, clean rooms are quiet and relaxing. There are also gift shops and there is a hairdressers here. I would say that this hotel is up there with the Nairobi Hilton. I loved my stays here. You are a ten minute drive from the many local markets (Try the Maasai market on a tuesday) or local night clubs which do cater for tourists (the reception staff can advise)and the fantastic 'Carnivores' Restaurant! (Do not miss a trip here - the food is amazing and for as little as 15 KS, you can eat as much as you want all night, from steak to crocodile, to zebra!) The reception will call you a taxi, but negotiate prices before going on the journey! Just remember to keep safe at all times and when travelling, keep your doors and windows locked at all times!

Historical Traveller Reviews of Nairobi Serena Hotel

Excellent Choice for Business Travelers

from jecjec
Stayed at the Serena from April 7 til April 12, 2007 on business. Arrived at 10:30 PM after 20 plus hours of flying. The Front Desk was pleasant, efficient and quickly checked me in. There was a welcome basket of fresh local fruit, a local newspaper and an excellent bottle of South African red wine in the room. At my request they sent a cold bottle of the local "Tusker" beer to my room.
The dining choices are very good with a wide variety of local as well as Westernized foods. Dinner is quite reasonable in cost. Service is excellent in every way. House keeping staff will quickly respond to any reasonable request almost immediately. Internet access spotty and slow but that is the only critique I could make.
They have a very small but surprisingly good quality gift and novelty shop. Security is very very tight. No one comes or leaves without scrutiny.
I checked out at 05:30 AM which in many hotels could be a problem but no problem here at all. I will return to Serena.

Convenient for stopover

from malcliz
This is a comfortable base for a night in Nairobi before or after a flight. The food is very good here. On this visit we just stayed one night, arriving quite late so just had breakfast the following day but on a previous visit we enjoyed a great dinner and spent the day by the pool with lunch brought to us on our sunbeds. Very relaxing start to a safari! The rooms were very comfortable but unfortunately we had forgotten to ask for a non-smoking room and the room smelt of smoke.

s Best

from Rakman
This is one of the best 5 star hotels in Nairobi. The rooms are good, service is excellent and its conveniently located in that its in Town but to the side so getting in and out is a lot easier. The hotel is a little old but but still clean and provides all the 5 star luxuries. Internet access is charged but relatively cheap and available wirelessly throughout the hotel

Great start to our honeymoon

from helsbells20
We started our honeymoon here. Unfortunately we had to hang around for ages to get our oom as it was not ready on our arrival (which was very early in the morning so not the hotel's fault in my opnion).

Friends from Nairobi had arranged for us to have a driver for our one day visit here, which we used to the max. We were welcomed with a complimentary bottle of Fizz, which was lovely.

We left the hotel to go on safari and they let us leave all our luggaage here for a week.

Service was great, food was lovely. No complaints at all.

Good Hotel

from hellsbells
We arrived - tired - after our KA flight - flight ok - nice stewards (esp in comparison to our homeward flight!!!) - decent food.
We were delayed - 'technical problems' (a soon to become familiar catch phrase!). Consequently we charged into our room, changed our clothes and dashed off to the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage (will do a seperate piece on this - EXCELLENT!!!!) On our return from the orphanage, another quick change and off to Karen Blixen's House & Giraffe Manor (also worth a visit - especially the latter)
Check in was painless, our Somak rep took care of everything (they were brilliant throughout the trip). Room ok, typical 5* facilities. Not sure about their Luxury Hotel Status - staff at reception totally non plus by my leaders club card (also clueless re KLM card in all Serena properties - are meant to belong to flying blue scheme). Have stayed at several other hotels in this group and the nairobi serena doesn't quite match the luxury standard (Mombasa Serena fits the bill).
Generally, this is a good hotel - clean - above average bathrooms - average room facilties (have tea & coffee facilities/hairdryer etc..).
Bar and lounge areas are luxurious and comfortable.
We ate in the buffet restaurant but went a la carte. Good meal, nothing special but ok for the price and a decent bottle of dry white at normal hotel prices. A la carte restaurant menu looked good but we were too tired to try it and do it justice (would have had to wait another hour to eat). Pleasant sitting by the pool for a drink - pool warm despite cool weather. Excellent buffet breakfast before setting off 'on safari'.
Overall - a safe bet for kenya newcomers - clean - no tummy troubles - average 5* facilities (in comparison to the other Serena properties we stayed at; all having their own unique character and exceptional staff).
My only gripe would be the reception staff - eye contact would be good! On check out I had a real problem gaining the cashier's attention to pay the bill - quite simply VERY rude (& I'm easy going).
They have staff on each floor to attend to any queries - a nice touch. Would stay there again because it is convenient, safe, clean and pleasant. Might try some where else next time with more character.

Best Business Hotel in Nairobi

from gohoward
I travel to Nairobi frequently on business, and having stayed at several unsatisfactory hotels, I now stay exclusively at the Serena. The hotel's service is excellent, from the welcoming drink sent up to the room, to the complimentary shoe-shine service. There are several restaurants serving excellent and reasonably priced food--the main restaurant is poolside with a palm-lined terrace. Lush gardens, a pool with infinity edges, and a good spa round out the experience.

The breakfast buffet is bountiful and generally included in the room rate...eggs, meats, crepes, locally made yoghurts and cereals, plenty of fresh fruits and juices.

There have been a few minor weaknesses during stays...undelivered newspapers, unreliable television channels, and expensive laundry. The wireless internet is slow and overpriced. Overall, however, the Serena holds to the highest standards among Nairobi hotels. I am always recognized and welcomed back with each stay.

The Serena is a good choice for tourists as well, though leisure travelers may find the grounds limited, and it is not advisable to wander in Uhuru Park after dark. Other good tourist choices are the Norfolk (expensive) and the Fairview (my favorite affordable hotel--beautiful, extensive grounds and good food).


from tourist_from_Russia
We did not stay at the hotel, but we had lanch there. The hotel itself looks great. And the food was very good, however after the lanch all in our group (8) got sick, one guy really bad.

absolutely wonderful!!!!

from gene141414
It was our first time in Africa, but we have traveled to 34 other countries and stayed in many, many wonderful 5 star hotels.

The Nairobi Serena is one of those comfortable experiences. The restaurant is in a garden setting. The grounds are lovely. The food is great. A real oasis....

The rooms are a delight and clean. And you can see the city skyline if you get on the west side of the hotel. The staff watches you always - and this can be good and bad. But we found them warm and comfortable.

I had a package federal expressed from the usa to the hotel and it took 4 days travel time, but the staff watched out for the package and when it arrived at 5pm that day - they immediately brought it to the room. We used the luggage storage room when we went to Rwanda for three days and so did many others. It worked out perfectly. There was no cost and we had a claim check....

The bar is great, the lounge chairs in the lobby are comfortable.

All in all - a truly wonderful experience enjoyed by my wife and myself.

Good spot for a stop in Nairobi

We stayed at the Nairobi Serena during a recent 3 day layover in Nairobi. The hotel was excellent. Rooms were good size and comfortable. Food whether via room service or in any of their restaurants was excellent quality and very fairly priced. The hotel has a lot of security around the exterior and interior...which was fine with us. There was usually a hotel employee in the hallway near elevators on each floor. The staff was excellent. Any request was handled immediately. The spa was also excellent. The best $35 massage I've had! Hotel was very comfortable. A very good gift shop where we made several prices that were the same as going into downtown Nairobi. Computer center offered several computers hooked up to internet for a fair price.
Good music in the lounge and a huge swimming pool. Lots of services offered at the spa. Rooms were good size with nice amenities and good size bathrooms with shower & tub.
Hotel is well staffed and can easily make arrangements if you want to do some shopping or sightseeing outside the hotel grounds. All in all a nice place to stay in Nairobi.

Great hotel even with the armed guards on the roof

from thepezguy
This hotel is quite popular with government officials who meet here often for meals or cocktails, and there is always a large government or business function going on in the hotel, as a result, the security at the hotel is quite tight. Your vehicle is checked underneath by goverment police as you enter for both bombs or gunmen who may be hitching a ride. The hotel is patrolled by armed guards on the roof, who lurk discreetly behind the jacaranda trees.

Nevertheless, the hotel is quite comfortable and the desk help is extremely accomodating. We needed a soft mattress, and the hotel staff took just an hour to accomodate us. The buffet is overpriced and none too good. Unfortunately, the ala carte menu is very western with fish and chips, and hamburgers. We became very annoyed at the sight of fat, well dressed Kenyan bureaucrats stuffing themselves on plates heaped with buffet food, while just a few block away, the streets are crowded with skinny people in cheap clothes.

The air pollution in Nairobi is very bad, and you can see a thick bluish haze between you and the vehicles in front of you as you drive through town. However, the Nairobi Serena sits on a hill and escapes most of the pollution. The pool is wonderful and the gardens are lushly planted and honey finches flit in the flowering shrubs.

It was a great start to our safari holiday and a transition point in the middle of our safari as we travelled from Northern Kenya to Sourthern.

Top Local Tips for Nairobi

Tamambo restaurant - lovely Westlands shopping center, the mall - very good food, reasonable prices, wonderful staff.

Village Market The Village Market in Karen is the best shopping mall. Taxi fare of about 800-1000 KSH is normal. Nice informal foods quart and cinema.

24 hr convenience store If you need to grab something like water, toileteries etc, there is a clean convenience store on Argwings Kodhek road thta is open 24 hrs. Its located at a gas station about a mile up the hill, across from the silver spring hotel round about.


Other names for Nairobi Serena Hotel

  • nairobi serena hotel
  • Address: Kenyatta Ave - Nairobi - 00100 - Kenya
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