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All reviews game drives overlooking the valley safari experience our waiter olare motorogi conservancy masai mara jaw dropping bubble bath experienced guide the general manager breakfast in the bush every meal fantastic trip soups incredible place dining area cheetah kill
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Reviewed 31 March 2019

Mahali mzuri is indeed "pahali pazuri", it translates to "A beautiful place" & the name is certainly apt as there was plenty of game and a great safari experience overall. The accommodation was almost luxury in the wild. Food was delicious, appetising, always beautifully presented, and every meal offered many options. On arrival at the Mara airstrip, we were greeted by our ranger Levi whom we quickly warmed-to with his enthusiastic greetings of "Karibu, and please feel at home, away from home". He offered us champagne & fruit juices for the children. We also received beautiful arm bracelets made by the maasai which was a lovely touch!

Our game viewing was off the charts! Levi seemed to know the reservation like the back of his hand. Hugely knowledgeable, he took us straight to the highlights and sensed both where the animals were and where they were heading. On our very first drive we witnessed a fierce chase of cheetahs hunting down gazelles. We saw nature at it's most beautiful as well as it's most cruel. We saw every animal we had wished for on our early mornings & late evening drives and we appreciated the time our guide gave us to observe the animals. He even expertly tracked animal tracks and had a treasure trove of information on animal behaviour and experience he would share with us. Every game drive was different from the last. A three hour game drive would fly quickly. General game viewing of our time at Mahali Mzuri was great too with large herds of thomson gazelles, impala, leopards, cheetahs, giraffes, lions, elephants, wildebeests, hippos, buffaloes, Ostriches, redbucks, baboons. One of the great things on all the game drives, especially when we had to wake up at 6:00am was finding warm hot water bottles ready with fleeces in our tracks and on the evening drives having snacks and drinks as we watched the animals and sundowner which really lives up to the wilderness experience. The game vehicles are the highest quality Land Rovers with independent suspension and 16 ply tyres. The rides were amazingly smooth considering the terrain. The snacks in the lower veld were a treat. None of our game viewing would have been possible were it not for our guide Levi, who was excellent. He also taught us how to take the best safari photographs.
Levi, if you get to read this review, THANK YOU so much! You gave us an unforgetable experience which we shall treasure forever.

At the hotel, the staff were attentive and made sure everything was perfect. Such a warm, caring group. We also loved the bush dinners organised by the General Manager. It was great to see him join-in the dance with the maasai's round the bonfire as he talked to every guest making sure we were all having a great time! Thank you for putting such a great surprise dinner. Overall, a superlative experience was had by all. Our children wrote a holiday report of their safari in Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa & Botswana and now everyone at their school wants to visit Africa.

If there were a negative, it could be argued that the tents need to be positioned in such a way that they allow a breeze to flow inside the rooms especially in the afternoon when it can get too hot, however it does contribute to the overall experience when matched up with the game viewing, service and dining. We enjoyed the plunge pool in the afternoon, which was a good way to keep cool during the day.

I am a traveler that prefers to visit new destinations instead of repeating one, but our safari was so special, we might want to make it an exception & visit the Mara during the migration in October!

Once again, asanteni sana!

Date of stay: February 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Hereandbackagainn
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VirginLimitedEdition, General Manager at Mahali Mzuri, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2019

Dear Hereandbackagainn,

Wow, thank you very much for taking the time to share such an extensive review about Mahali Mzuri. It’s always such a treat for the whole team to hear such wonderful comments about our guests’ experiences and yours has certainly made everyone extremely happy. I’ve passed your comments onto Levi, who was over the moon to hear that he was able to make your experience an unforgettable one for all the right reasons.

I’m so pleased to hear you enjoyed my dancing around the bonfire, it’s not something I do often, so I am a little rusty!

On a separate note, we should have new fans for the tents very soon, which we hope will help keep them cool in the heat.

We thoroughly enjoyed having your family to stay with us and hope you’ll make that exception of not repeating a destination and come back soon.

Kind Regards,
Wilson Odhiambo
General Manager
Wilson.Odhiambo@mahalimzuri.virgin.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 March 2019

Mahali Mzuri was easily the best vacation my son and I have taken. From the moment we arrived, we felt like we were coming home. The staff took such great care of us and seemed to have known us forever. They remembered our names, drink preferences, and everything else needed to make our trip personalized and outstanding. The views were incredible! The food was perfectly prepared and some of the best I've had! Our guide, Rinka, became our fast friend and did everything possible to ensure the best viewing! I can't say enough about this phenomenal experience!

Room tip: Tell them what you need and the staff will move mountains for you!
Date of stay: March 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank tinarD7301OG
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VirginLimitedEdition, General Manager at Mahali Mzuri, responded to this reviewResponded 29 March 2019

Dear TinarD7301OG,

It was a real treat to read your review and to hear that it was the best vacation you and your son had ever taken is just the icing on the cake. We always try to deliver the best experience possible for all of our guests and so it’s very rewarding to hear when we get it right; so thank you for taking the time to share your comments. Rinka was over the moon when he heard your kind words about your game drives, thank you for sharing such special feedback.

We hope we have the opportunity to welcome you both back again in the future.

Kind Regards,
Wilson Odhiambo
General Manager
Wilson.Odhiambo@mahalimzuri.virgin.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 March 2019

I recently stayed at the camp for three nights with my cousin on a girls trip. I had been to safari before in Kenya several times but wanted to stay at a new place and hence chose this camp because of Richard Branson's affiliation. The camp is gorgeous, very comfortable but the tent we stayed in, which was a twin bed was slightly small. However, the deck of this tent was huge and overlooked the valley and Masai river.
The food was good but not great. The chef however did go out of his way on the second and third night to make extra special and delicious meals for us both. The management also arranged us a bush dinner, which was an amazing experience. They also arranged us a dinner on our deck on the last night. The canapés on evening game drives were delicious. I found out that the camp's executive chef was away when we were there so I am sure the food would be better when he is around. Breakfast could be improved however, I must add that the chef was kind enough to bake us whole wheat croissants when we requested.
The location is really beautiful. The spa tent is very pretty and right down in the valley. It's great to have a massage and facial knowing you are right there in the bush, with the animals walking by. Vera, the therapist is a gem, she has worked in Dubai before and was highly skilled with her massage technique. It was an awesome experience. One of the best massages I have ever had. I highly recommend her.
Cosmos, out waiter was always affable, and super helpful. We were very grateful for his help and pleasant demeanour. Nothing was too much trouble for him.
Our safari guide was Betty and she was one of the best guides I have had on safari. We also visited a Masai village which was a great experience. Betty was very involved in looking out for elusive leopards and gave us a fantastic hands down experience by sharing animal behaviour and hunting patterns. We literally chased cheetahs on a hunt. It was amazing. The quintessential breakfast in the bush on one morning drive was equally great.
The camp itself has a good sized pool with one of the best views of the river and the valley in my opinion. It's great to have a fridge stocked with cold water and soft drinks and good towels always by the pool.
Our tent was quite hot in the afternoon despite the canvas being rolled up to allow the air and a fan. I did leave comments about the possibility of providing more fans/mobile air conditioning units as summer afternoons get stifling in some of the tents.
It wasn't too bad but it was better in the main lounge area of the central camp.Coffee was amazing, the Kenyan coffee brand they use was fantastic.
the bathrooms of the camps have small basins and usually the water does splash out so maybe the management could address this. Otherwise the bath tub overlooking the vista was a dream, straight from Out of Africa.
My review has dragged on but I cannot end without leaving a thank you to Merianna, the camp manager, who was always there for us and on top of everything, having everything addressed immediately when brought to her attention. She is truly fantastic.
The staff overall were super nice, helpful, courteous and went out of their way to make us welcome. It was my birthday a day after our stay but they even went an extra mile and gave me a premature celebration and baked me a heart shaped cake besides giving me a gift. That gesture meant so much to me.
There are other great camps in Kenya but Mahali Mzuri is now home and I would be happy to return another time and have recommended it to my friends and family, who are planning a safari. It would be great if some minor issues were addressed and the main lounge area was made more comfy with better couches. New jeeps which I believe would replace existing ones would greatly improve the safari experience.

Date of stay: March 2019
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank faryal2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VirginLimitedEdition, General Manager at Mahali Mzuri, responded to this reviewResponded 29 March 2019

Dear Faryal2012,

Thank you for taking the time to share your wonderful review following your stay with us here at Mahali Mzuri. I know we’ve already spoken directly and I have addressed your suggestions above, all of which we have taken onboard and hope to further improve on, but I wanted to acknowledge your review here too. Thank you so much for all of your amazing comments about your experience and especially about our team, I know how much it means to them to hear such lovely feedback, so thank you.

To hear you call Mahali Mzuri home is just music to my ears and makes me very happy indeed. We loved having you and your cousin visit us and hope we have the opportunity to welcome you home again soon.

Kind Regards,
Wilson Odhiambo
General Manager
Wilson.Odhiambo@mahalimzuri.virgin.com

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Reviewed 22 March 2019 via mobile

We spent 4 nights and almost 5 days. The service WAS more than +5 stars. The food was amazing and the views breathtaking. This was my second time at the resort and wanted to bring the family. Everybody was blown away by the whole experience. The game drives were amazing and saw everything that we wanted to see and more.

Mariana the camp manager met our every need and welcomed us
Betty-our guide was amazing and everyday we didn’t know how she could top the previous drive and she kept delivering
Bob-our resident bar tender and waiter was the best and so accommodating.
Vera-was also so amazing and friendly

I don’t think there is ONE thing that could have been better and we will never forget this amazing time.

Date of stay: March 2019
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank Maureen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VirginLimitedEdition, General Manager at Mahali Mzuri, responded to this reviewResponded 29 March 2019

Dear MaureenAtlanta,

Wow! It’s not every day that we receive such heartfelt and wonderful comments so we wanted to start by saying a huge thank you for sharing your feedback. I’m so pleased to hear that we were able to help make your family vacation the best one ever, that’s quite a statement and one we feel very honoured to have. We’re so grateful to have had the opportunity to welcome you back again to Mahali Mzuri and I’m even happier that the team were able to make it so memorable for you. On behalf of the whole team, thank you for your lovely comments.

Kind Regards,
Wilson Odhiambo
General Manager
Wilson.Odhiambo@mahalimzuri.virgin.com

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Reviewed 3 March 2019

Not much I can add to the other excellent reviews - if you can afford it then go. All our previous safaris have been on a budget. We have stopped in tents on safari but not like the ones at Mahali Mzuri! Super king size beds, mini bar, bath, private veranda and stunning views were not my previous experience under canvas! Game viewing was the best ever owing to the abundance of wildlife, knowledgable guides and no restriction to remain on roads.

A few bits of advice:

Don't buy clothes just for safari, it's not necessary. Just ensure you have layers that you can put on take off - you start early morning feeling chilly and finish the game drive very warm. However, fleece lined ponchos are provided and in the morning you will also have a hot water bottle! Don't worry about the colour of your clothing - your Masai guides will be wearing bright coloured tribal dress and the animals couldn't care less!

Bring your own binoculars - a couple of pairs are available in the vehicle but if there are more than 2 of you on the trip, you will have to share.

Camera - obviously if you have the big telephoto lens then bring it but also bring your wide angle because you get VERY close to all the animals. My phone was all I needed to fill the frame with a one month old lion cub!

Special occasions - if like me you have a big birthday, then let the staff know and they will organise something special for your evening meal.

Tipping - this is always an issue for the British. I would hope all the staff are well paid in light of the high price and the statements Richard Branson makes about supporting local people, however if the service is good then a tip is appropriate. How much? Always difficult - the minimum wage in Kenya is about KS 6000 ($60), so some of the tips suggested in other reviews appear very high. Give what you think is appropriate but don't forget those earning the least will probably be those you less of - use the tip box in the office to recognise cleaners, kitchen staff etc. Also you can give away things you might not want eg clothes, shoes etc. If they don't fit the recipient, they will know someone suitable in their family.

Date of stay: February 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank roger_peatling
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VirginLimitedEdition, General Manager at Mahali Mzuri, responded to this reviewResponded 7 March 2019

Dear Roger_Peatling,

Thank you so much for sharing such a wonderful and useful review for others to read. There really is some great information in your comments and it’s so kind of you take the time.

We are very happy to hear that you thoroughly enjoyed your stay with us here at Mahali Mzuri. We are of course biased, but we couldn’t agree more that the game viewing here is pretty spectacular. We’re thrilled you got to see so much during your stay with us.

Kind Regards,
Wilson Odhiambo
General Manager
Wilson.Odhiambo@mahalimzuri.virgin.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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