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“Awesome rooms” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Marijani Hotel

Marijani Hotel
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Marijani Hotel
Ranked #13 of 22 Watamu B&B and Inns
Nairobi
Level Contributor
24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Awesome rooms”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 April 2012

We stayed at Marijani over Easter for four nights, it was really nice. Try and get a room on the first floor, it was spacious and the balcony was just lovely. The place is beautiful and really good value for money. Philip was really helpful and friendly, so ask to see him when you arrive.

I feel that Marijani has a lot of potential, they should stock alcohol for one, as they have a great space on the roof for a bar. I think we would have spent more time (and money) there as opposed to going to other bars. Also, the breakfast could be better, the pineapples tasted weird.. like onions (must have been the knife), there was no water provided with the breakfast, my friend asked for some bacon and sausages and she got it.. one little piece of bacon and half a sausage on a saucer.. we were shocked into laughter.

All in all a great stay.. one thing I forgot to mention, the cashier who received our money was a bit standoffish.. and he had us write our own receipt because "you know how much you are paying".

Might consider coming back.

Room Tip: Get a room on the first floor.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Powsily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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36 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    14
    4
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Naro Moru
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2012

Usually I don't like to write negative comments, but in this case I think it's necessary to give my honest opinion. Please note that I am NOT a picky traveller, I am a backpacker and have seen many hotels in Kenya, and this one was my least favorite of all.

Let me start by saying that indeed, the location is great, the rooms are spacious and have just great balconies, and that the breakfast is really good, so no complaints about that.

What bothered me the most was the (lack of) staff. The people with whom I was arranging our stay, I have never even met.

When I sent the money through my phone to the manager, after a while I received it back. When I called the guy to ask what went wrong he said: 'Oh sorry, I was too busy this week to accept the money.' How can you be too busy to accept money from your clients?

And when we arrived, the manager was not there, so instead there was another guy, one of the most annoying people I've met during my 5 month stay. During the day and the night he invited his friends over to hang around at the hotel and just sit there.

Also, he asked my divorced mother where the father was, and why he was not travelling with us. That's none of your business!

He also asked me if he could marry me. I see that he meant this just as a joke, but you just don't say such things to clients.

And then he just hung around us, took a chair, and didn't seem to notice that we preferred to be by ourselves.

I could go on for hours about this guy, but I think I have made my point clear.

This was my main point of critique. Besides there were some smaller things, like:

- the fan really made so much noise that you couldn't go to sleep, and nobody came to fix it

- when we asked for toiletpaper in the morning, the guy promised it would be there in the evening, but it wasn't, because he was probably too busy hanging around with his friends.

- the Yu-Gi-Oh pillowcase gave me the impression that the owner uses her children's old bed linen and towels (which smelled really bad by the way) for the hotel

- there were white (!) stains in on my bed linen

- there is no drinking water available at the hotel, not even for sale. I've seen cheap backpacker's hostels where cold drinking water is offered for free.

Anyway, I'm sure I'll never return (in fact we left earlier than planned), but I realize it's the cheapest you're gonna find in Watamu, and if you're on a budget there might be not many other options.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank DeBommie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 January 2012

Nice and friendly atmosphere with staff who has a personal and warm style. Safe and close to the beach and the village. Very good budget option and reasonably priced. We are a family with two children, 7 and 10 years. We spent 11 nights at Marijani. We had two spacious rooms next to each other on the second floor (room number 6 and 7). The veranda outside the rooms served as an "extra outdoor room", with comfortable daybeds to relax in. Both rooms were equipped with large double beds and mosquito nets. Our ceiling fans did not work well but we had a floor fan in one of the rooms. If you are sensitive to heat make sure before booking they give you a fan that works. Rooms are large and for budget travelers it works fine with extra beds in one room. Some of the rooms on the ground floor is dark and not as airy as the rooms we had. Own safety box in room.
Breakfast was boring, except the fruit, but acceptable because the price is so low. It's fine to ask the staff to purchase special request at an additional cost.
Well-kept garden and really close to the charming village beach, where locals like to swim. Watamu is a nice village and all the beaches are great. Unfortunately, sex tourism and tourists sexual-abuse of minors occurs and the extreme economic disparity is sadly clear. Apart from this dark side, the village is very charming, with many good places to eat and safe even during night time.
Check rates with several actors before you shop, book boat trips and excursions. You have to bargain! Prices are lower farther from the beach and main streets.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank EmmaJanke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
21 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2012

We stayed here for a few days over Christmas and had a really lovely time. The guys who run this place are extremely helpful and friendly; they made us feel very welcome. My 4-year old son loved the pet turtle, dogs, cats and dancing parrots and had more than one giggle with the staff.
The rooms were simple, great value for money and kept clean all the time. Breakfast was delicious and they even offered to organize any foods we thought were missing such as yoghurt.
Organizing our stay with the German owners was a piece of cake with very prompt responses.
There were lots of mosquitoes, so do make sure you bring your bug spray. The nets provided were great, and the staff brought us a second new one within minutes so one of us could sleep on the balcony.
The location is great; a stone's throw from the beach and still close enough to shops etc for convenience.
They also helped us to arrange snorkeling trips with Carlos - a very lovely and caring man who made it his business to ensure that we had a good time and that we were doing what we wanted to do as opposed to following some sort of schedule. If you're ever in Watamu, I highly recommend asking around for Carlos if you're interested in doing any trips.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank onceinabluemoonmoi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 January 2012

We stayed at Marijani for 5 nights in December just before Christmas. We arrived after a very long bus journey and our room wasn't ready but they kindly let us use another room to have showers and freshen up. We found the hotel to be very secure, there was always someone watching the gate. The staff were really helpful and friendly, we made some good friends there who we even spent the evenings with. We stayed in the budget room which we found to be clean and comfortable. The staff cleaned our room and changed bed sheets and towels every other day but would have done it everyday if we'd asked. We also hired bikes from them which was a great way to explore the area. The breakfasts were great, especially the fruit platters! If we had any questions there was always someone to ask. At one point we had a problem with our bank account and they were really helpful with this matter.
The hotel is so close to the beach and also to the village so excellently located for whatever you want to do. The only thing that is a shame is that perhaps the owner who isn't there too often could put more effort into the upkeep, although it's a brilliant place to stay it has even further potential. Also if the website were updated business would probably improve greatly. Thank you to the staff for making our stay here so enjoyable.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank esr2505
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Deal, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 July 2011

The Marijani is a very friendly guest house in small village of Watamu near Malindi, Kenya. The room rates are very good and the staff so willing to help the guests. It is set in lovely surroundings near Watamu beach on the Indian Ocean.

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Sue F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nairobi
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 April 2011

We came for the 2nd time at Marijani after 6 months, with some friends.
The house is still charming, the garden is OK, the staff is friendly - location perfect very close to the beach. But it is also true that their is a total lack of maintenance: windows broken, one shower not functioning well, and the ceiling fan absolutely terrible, making such a noise that we could not sleep. We asked for a standing fan and were providing one that was broken, so we had to fix it with a chair. Given the heat in the Kenyan coast it is a big issue.
The staff is friendly, but also very pole in getting things done.
In short there is a lack of management. If nothing is done, the place will be below standards.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Soph6907
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Marijani Hotel

Property: Marijani Hotel
Address: Watamu, Kenya
Region: Kenya > Coast Province > Watamu
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 22 B&Bs / Inns in Watamu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
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Also Known As:
Marijani Hotel Kenya/Watamu

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