We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lots of money but not lots of fun!”
Review of Hemingways Watamu

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Hemingways Watamu
Ranked #19 of 26 Hotels in Watamu
Pays de la Loire, France
Level Contributor
31 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Lots of money but not lots of fun!”
Reviewed 24 February 2012

I visited Hemingways in July 2011. I have been to Watamu before but not this resort. I must say I had high expectations but was very disappointed.
First of all the room was very well appointed, especially the spacious bathroom, but it smelt terribly! Musty and damp and a very strange chemical smell. Admittedly it was their low season but the room smelt as if it had been locked up for days and had not been aired before I arrived. I asked very courteously at reception for something to be done but nothing happened at all so the first night was very uncomfortable and cold!! I returned from dinner to find the bed turned down, which was nice and that the air conditioning had been left on full blast...which was not! This was the winter season so the evenings are very cold. It then took another day to get an extra blanket!
Service was slow and really rather unco-operative in the dining room. Break fast was cold and the afternoon tea had the smallest selection and size of cakes I have ever seen!
The guys at the pool side bar were friendly and the lunch was nice (but extra and very expensive)
Altogether a very disappointing but expensive stay.
I then left and went a few kilometres down the road to a little place that cost a fraction of the price and had a lovely time!

Room Tip: Try to get one that smells nice!
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank sueskenyatravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

250 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    158
    51
    22
    9
    10
See reviews for
76
75
12
13
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (64)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria
Level Contributor
15 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2012

i spent 4 days at the Hemingways Resort in Watamu Kenya in January 2012...to cut a long amazing story short, it was the best 4 days of my entire life. as the entire resort is locate on the amazing white sand shoreline of kenya, it is the best natural location for constant fresh sea breeze, peace and quite, sea food all day long and the most amazing freshly squeezed everything! the rooms are absolutely perfect, the service staff are extremely professional (the front desk ladies are the best), there is real security of your assets (i left money, ipad, phones on my room table in plain view for all 4 days and not a shilling disappeared even though they came into my room every evening while i'm at dinner to spray insecticide)and free fast wifi in your room! i mean seriously?! it is to die for.

i am thinking really hard to find some criticism of this resort and can't find a single one. the odd thing though (not their fault), is that the entire beach empties out naturally by 6 pm everyday. i found this intensely weird cos one would expect that such a beautiful seaside location would have people on the beach all night long but i guess thats also why their beachfront is so clean. it is so clean that fish swim right up to your feet along the shoreline and i saw an eel right by my leg as i waded through the water one evening. super cool!

the beachboys were great :). they just say hello to you ten times over, and if you mistakenly speak to any of them, you'll realize they've been monitoring you more than you'd be confortable to know. however, they're pretty harmless (don't quote me on that as i never carried a camera or money along the beach) and always trying to sell something to you. ladies will love the attention these boys give, plus they'd even ask you to marry them! i think thats code word for paying them to be your 'escort' during your stay.

all in all, absolutely fantastic experience and totally worth every single penny you spend there. lots of fishing club guys from italy too if thats your thing...so there, i honestly must go there again very very soon.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank oroque
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2012

What welcoming and courteous staff all round. This hotel has recently been refurbished, based on our comparison to other well established hotels in the area, we found it to be value for money. The rooms are well presented, clean and the beds are comfortable, the bathroom has been kitted to a high spec. We had a Deluxe room in the North wing, fabulous view with free wi-fi!! Our vegan dietary requirements were catered for to the finest detail!! Hustle-free complimentary shuttle service to the airport was included in the cost. We would like to thank Hemingways for a great experience.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Palmfox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
jeddah
Level Contributor
31 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2012

We have arrived to this hotel from safari and started comparing right away,luxury was gone Hotel is on a long beach , with other hotels on right and left, Beach crawling with annoying local population, sitting, waiting , starring flipping mouth at tourists, no escape.!!!! And it is very difficult to avoid them, something should be done about this !!!!! i wanted enjoy water and sand in peace not to swat at lazy locals, beach was absolutley covered in seaweed and weaving between dirt and locals was a challenge!!!!!!. weather was just perfect, windy, stormy, cool, we had open windows at night ( 2 floor). Do not order a la carte ( if possible) or you will be waiting for a long time for dinner, open buffet preffered, rooms are simple, big , and bathrooms nice, go "deep sea " fishing, but choose your captain wisely. once is enough, I will not be comming back, reason ? locals. I dont pay to be harassed... small.boutiqe hotel status????? you sure???? really??????really?.........?

Room Tip: for those who are looking to relax ha..ha..ha..go in september, it is stormy season, pick rooms dir...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank marginjeddah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manaccan
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 January 2012

We arrived after a safari in the Masai Mara in between Christmas and New Year. We received a lovely welcome from Simon and were immediately shown to our rooms and given cool towels and a drink. The Hotel is in a stunning location, white sand blue sea and very hot, the pool area, bars and restaurant are immaculate and the service very good. We were in the South Wing which unfortunately has seen better days, decor 70's Spanish not very luxurious for the money, the bath was chipped with rust on and furniture is sparse. I understand the North Wing is more modern and nicely decorated. We soon discovered that the hotel was full of families (older children not kids) who all knew each other and go there year after year, it became obvious that no-one was going to talk to a couple on their own and we felt very out of it. New Year Gala was very good, food amazing however this was a black tie do which everybody knew about apart from us so we felt very conspicuous. There were only 3 tables with 2 people on and we only got to speak to one of these couples the day we were leaving. Do not go to this hotel at Christmas and New Year unless you are going with a large group, you will feel quite lonely.

Room Tip: Insist on North Wing
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Heather I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
52 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2012

I have stayed at Hemingways five or six times now and continue to return. Lovely clean rooms, super friendly and efficient service. Excellent meals. A great welcome every time. The horrible journey from the UK is soon forgotten!

As a keen salt-water angler it is the best of my many fishing locations.

I prefer the North wing of the hotel. The rooms are smaller but are very well laid out. Beach is fabulous white sand.

I would recommend a safari trip.

Room Tip: My preference is for a room in the North wing
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Peter F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nairobi
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 4 January 2012

We were at hemmingways for our honeymoon in March 2012. The place is amazing (heaven on earth) . The staff is friendly and greet you by your names.... :-)
The food is delicious and the rooms very clean.
We'll definately come back toHemmingways to enjoy all this again.
Whenever we meet people planning for holiday we always recommend Hemmingways.

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank dorcasmwisa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Watamu hotels
3.2 mi away
The Charming Lonno Lodge
2.7 mi away
Mawe Resort
Mawe Resort
#3 of 26 in Watamu
269 reviews
0.1 mi away
Ocean Sports Resort
Ocean Sports Resort
#16 of 26 in Watamu
195 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.6 mi away
Crystal Bay Resort
Crystal Bay Resort
#4 of 26 in Watamu
751 reviews
0.9 mi away
Lily Palm Resort
Lily Palm Resort
#17 of 26 in Watamu
116 reviews
0.2 mi away
Turtle Bay Beach Club
Turtle Bay Beach Club
#13 of 26 in Watamu
911 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hemingways Watamu? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hemingways Watamu

Property: Hemingways Watamu
Address: P.O. Box 267, Watamu 80202, Kenya
Region: Kenya > Coast Province > Watamu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Watamu
#7 Luxury Hotel in Watamu
#10 Spa Hotel in Watamu
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Watamu
#17 On the Beach Hotel in Watamu
Hotel Class:5 star — Hemingways Watamu 5*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hemingways is nestled on one of the world's top ten beaches and few places can compare for relaxation. Every one of our 74 rooms offers an views of the ocean and the endless white sands of of the Watamu Marine Park. Gentle sea breezes tame the hot equatorial sun keeping the tropical landscape surrounding the gardens, pools and terraces cool and comfortable. Simple yet luxurious this very personal hotel has tradtional thatched roofs, white washed walls and uses bright local materials for decor and furnishings. Friendly helpful service in a relaxed and elegant setting where mobile phones are silent and stress has no place. Our chefs make the best possible use of the abundant offerings of the Indian Ocean, the delicious organic meats and an abundance of home grown fruits and vegetables from our farms. Special diets are happily catered for; let us know what you need. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hemingways Hotel Watamu
Hemingways Hotel Malindi
Hemingways Resort Malindi
Hemingways Watamu Kenya

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing