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.

“Nice resort, slightly dated, service needs some work”
Review of Hemingways Watamu

We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Watamu
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Hemingways Watamu
Ranked #20 of 26 Hotels in Watamu
Reviewed 27 July 2014

Hemingway's Watamu occupies a fantastic location on the beach. Being one of the older hotels in Watamu it has a significant beach frontage that affords great ocean views in most of the rooms.

The hotel itself is slightly dated. The plaque in the lobby indicates that it was opened in 1988. Some areas of the hotel seem to show its age and could do with some renovation. The decor is... interesting... Lots of large plastic fish trophies adorned the lobby and bar area. I guess this is an ode to the big game anglers who seem to be regulars at the hotel. Not to my taste personally.

The atmosphere in the hotel likewise reflects an old style of hotel service and travel. Breakfast, afternoon tea and dinner are all included. It has a very packaged tour feel about it although there were none there when we were visiting (low season). You get the impression that this is a place that people tend to come back to regularly as evidenced by the elderly British couple who had been back every year for the last 22 years.

Our room (222) was large and clean and had a great balcony overlooking the water. I believe that generally the second floor rooms in the hotel are the best solely for the view.

From a service perspective we were disappointed. While the staff were generally friendly, particularly the bar/restaurant staff, the smile was not matched by efficient service. Despite being low season with few other guests we were regularly waiting longer than expected for drinks and food service. The tours/activities desk was particularly disappointing as the staff did not appear particularly knowledgable (or were indifferent). For example when told that the hotel car (complimentary for guests) was not available to take us to the Gedi Ruins they suggested we catch a tuk tuk which would cost 1000ksh return. Thinking this was expensive we found one ourselves for 250ksh one way.

Overall, the hotel is nice. I personally wouldn't stay here again over other options downed the beach however this is largely attributable to personal tastes rather than anything particularly wrong with the hotel.

Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Declan W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review
Reviews (252)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

73 - 79 of 252 reviews

Reviewed 6 July 2014

I was there for only a night to attend a function. Really nice room. Spacious modern clean bathroom.stunning view right on the sea front. Clean and large pool with friendly staff. The meals were also very good esp breakfast with a very wide selection. The function I attended was a Chaine De Rottiseur dinner and I give it full marks. The GM personally supervised the event. I will not hesitate to recommend Hemingways to a visitor looking for a nice beach resort.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Mombasahotelier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 June 2014

What a beautiful location and hotel. The staff were incredibly friendly and the childcare very cheap meaning we could relax as a couple whilst our four year old daughter was well looked after! The food was excellent and we had many relaxing evenings together, which are far and few when we are at home.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
2  Thank Tom L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 June 2014 via mobile

Beautiful hotel. Very romantic for couples.however have zero tolerance to kiddy meals and taking care of kids.they need to improve service on this otherwise if you travel with small children you will not enjoy your stay.

  • Stayed: May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank ohor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 June 2014 via mobile

There is a reason we don't generally stay in hotels like this.

The air conditioner in the vehicle that picked us up from the airport was broken resulting in an extremely uncomfortable trip.

Toilet waste pipe was leaking causing a stinking bathroom, front door was broken aluminium frame came off in my hand. My wife dealt with the issues we'd reported them twice and noting done until she raised her voice.

Lots of rules and regulations and this business of having to dress for dinner in a beach resort is just ridiculous in 2014.

"Gym" is in a storeroom in the back, scandalous that in a beach resort your gym has no windows and hence no view!

They cocked up the booking for snorkeling at the marine reserve, something that our son had looked forward to the entire day.

Deep sea fishing was great, crew was fantastic.

The owners daughter was getting married the weekend we were there, lots of very drunk English people around the pool to whom clearly the rules of keeping quiet and not diving etc. did not apply.

Wouldn't rush back.

Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank comradestuart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2014

Sits on a beach close to the Marine National Park , boat trips from the beach to the coral reefs . Dinner menus vary daily around themes , all buffet style with lots of choice . Hotel staff very friendly and most rooms overlook the ocean .
Nice and relaxing , only 30mins from Malindi airfield . Comes highly recommended !

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Keith R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2014

The staff of hemingways watamu are among the most friendly and helpful I've met in my travels. The rooms are clean with more than enough supplies, we never had to call for any thing. All rooms are beach facing. nice gym but no windows:( Great vacation for families with young kids. Recommended

Room Tip: All rooms are beach facing.the junior suites don't have an open balcony. If not traveling with k...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Ciru M
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
0.1 mi away
Ocean Sports Resort
Ocean Sports Resort
#16 of 26 in Watamu
198 reviews
2.7 mi away
Mawe Resort
Mawe Resort
#5 of 26 in Watamu
283 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.6 mi away
Crystal Bay Resort
Crystal Bay Resort
#4 of 26 in Watamu
825 reviews
0.9 mi away
Lily Palm Resort
Lily Palm Resort
#18 of 26 in Watamu
165 reviews
0.2 mi away
Medina Palms
Medina Palms
#2 of 26 in Watamu
352 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

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
#9 Luxury Hotel in Watamu
#10 Spa Hotel in Watamu
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Watamu
#18 On the Beach Hotel in Watamu
Hotel Class:5 star — Hemingways Watamu 5*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hemingways Watamu is an iconic tropical paradise on the Kenyan coast sitting right in the middle of the pristine Watamu Marine National Park with its idyllic white sand beach and turquoise waters. The exceptional personal service and sincere charm of this established hotel has come to represent Kenyan coastal luxury to so many travellers for close to 30 years. There is so much to do here - learn to kite-surf; get your PADI certificate, take a sunset dhow cruise on Mida Creek, play a round of golf on the nearby world class golf course, Vipingo Ridge; or go on safari for a few days in Tsavo or the Maasai Mara. If that all sounds a little too energetic, relax around the pool with a good book as you work your way through our cocktail menu. ... 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