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Southern Palms Beach Resort
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Reviews (1,424)
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Reviewed 6 February 2012

I did not aware that this would be my trip of the life time. I went to southern palms beach hotel Mombasa Oct-2011 for a one week holiday.

It was about 1 1/2 journey from the Mombasa Airport. Staff warmly welcomed us at the entrance. Their service is excellent. Hotel staff is very kind and they are always ready to assist you. I spent lot on tips. No doubt, everything on this hotel is 4 start except rooms. Rooms are little basic and need renovation to improve the quality. I have no complains about foods. Foods are excellent and had no stomach upsets. They have a rotation every week (Some days octopus also available). They got Italian, Lebanese and a main restaurant. For Italian and Lebanese restaurants you need to book in advance. Menu is available in advance at the entrance of main restaurant.

Beach is nice.. Before I go there I saw some negative reviews about beach boys that do not deserve. Especially regarding the safaris. I booked a two day safari with JT on the beach. (Please be aware that they are not the real JT safari that you see on the internet.) I saw many good reviews about JT safari, so I though its them were on the beach and I paid £50 advance too. Later I realized that they were not them. Real JT don't do on the beach. However following day they came to pick me on the agreed time and they took us on to a great safari on Tsavo East. In our van altogether 6 people. One polish couple, one German couple and a Estonian guy. Soon we became friends. On the first day we saw many animals (Ostridge, Lions, Elephants, Impalas, Gizzels, Ox, Giraffs and many more). We stayed on the VOI travel lodge. VOI was in a great location and the environment is very calm. You can see the animals near the fence. There is no much food collection though.

Following day we went on a 4 hour game and around 5:30 PM we reached our hotel back. It was an amazing trip. Kin was our driver and hi is very knowledgeable about his job.

After the wild safari I went a village trip. If you are planning to visit a school or village please bring some pens, pencils and toffees. I brought some flour packs and gave them to villages. They were very happy about it.

Day before I left Kenya I went to Ali Baba restaurant near by the beach. It was a full moon day and the scene at beach was amazing. I met the food and beverages manager at Southern Palms. He is a kind person and he has done lot of improvements to increase the food quality.

It was very sad to leave. I met very nice people (David, Bakari and Michael) at the hotel. Kenyan people are very friendly. Final day I boarded to the flight and said good buy to Kenya. I was an amazing trip.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled solo
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3  Thank Dennis M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 February 2012

We have been to Kenya 8 times now and chose this hotel on the repeat guests reviews. All I can say is these people cannot have been to any other hotels in Kenya, don't get me wrong the hotel itself is lovely and the pool and amenities are all there, one of the best we've been too but then they are in all other hotels, you will always generally receive good service from all the hotels but this one did not standout at all at first, in fact I'd say that there are a small group of very unhappy workers (3%) at this hotel who probably need to move on. It is such a shame as the managment are really trying hard but they are being let down, we did have an issue with the beach bar and on talking to some guests they had the same problem but did not voice their concerns, we thought we were speaking to a manager to resolve the cold food left sitting on the side waiting to be taken to guests but he was not the manger at all. We tried this bar for two days then decided to buy in from the local supermarket. In hindsight we should have checked that we were actually speaking to the manger because when he found out that we had a problem he took it fully onboard. Anyhow we then went back to the food bar to give it another go as he said things had improved it was exactly the same and the manger was there it to see this.
In all honesty this manager (Mahmoud Alam Eldin) and the guest relations manager pulled out all the stops to improve things for us and they suceeded. I don't think we are high maintenance we just want a quiet holiday to sit and relax take in a couple of safari's and then chill by the pool. This manager will listen to all you have to say and will NOT fob you off
I just wish I had spoken to him originally as it would have saved so much hassle so if your vegitarian or need any special foods then please ask.
Could not fault most staff especially Ali (Pool guy) Dominique and James (Bar) and Fredrick Muteti who was the cleaner by reception he always had a smile and never gave any hard luck stories also Dorcas our room attendant. We felt very safe, security all about and they were nice lads as well and always ready for a chat.
We never sat on the beach but we would go for a walk, beach boys did not bother us, just tell them to go away, you have to be firm but not rude and they will respect that you just want to walk on your own or with your partner......also we found the shop in the hotel to be cheaper than the beach boys even when bartering so check before you buy. My partner did witness a couple of near physical fights at 6 a.m. some mornings with people trying to place towels on beach beds (not pool beds), he though it was hilarious as it even came to pushing and shoving!

Overall we did really enjoy this holiday after a dodgy start and that was all down to Mahmoud and the Guest Relations manager. Would I stay here again YES I probably would and I never usually repeat . Lets hope these two managers stay at the hotel and get the full support of main managment.

One tip....we ordered a packed breakfast for 5 a.m. for our safari my partner went to check and they had the wrong time so they amemend this but when we went to collect at 5 a.m.they did not have it ready. Trish on eception was very arrogant, they did manage to get one for us but do make sure that they put it in the book correctly.

Kenya is so beautiful and the people are lovely and driendly so go and enjoy

Room Tip: Block with room 252 in had no probelms at all, plenty of hot water, some noise from the entertainment but then you expect that. We had the second bed made up as I like to skleep on my own!!!
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank didcotoxon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 February 2012

My boyfriend and I stayed here over a year ago so this review is a bit late! However, having just written a bad review for a terrible hotel in corfu I felt I should write about Southern Palms as well!

I was a bit worried about going to Southern Palms and I haven't ever stayed in an AI place before. However, I was really pleasantly surprised.

Yes, the rooms are a bit old looking and the bathrooms aren't great. However, the rest of the hotel is so fantastic that it more than makes up for it. Our cleaner was also wonderful and kept leaving us sweets and chocolates on our pillow - we later learnt that these aren't provided by the hotel but by the cleaner themselves as they get paid very little and are trying to boost their tips so please do tip the cleaner!

The pool is wonderful - I don't swim very much so didn't spend much time in the pool and was happy to lounge on a sun bed or sit by the pool bar - but my boyfriend spent a lot of time in swimming. Some people have commented on the fact that the chlorine in the pool turns swim stuff green but it wasn't too bad and washed out very easily.

I was very pleasantly surprised by the food. There was at least one type of fish and meat being grilled each evening, along with a varied selection of salads, side dishes and big stews / casseroles. There was also the standard pizza / chips combination but we stayed clear of these. Breakfast was fantastic I started every day with freshly made pancakes and pineapple. We also tried the Italian restaraurant and the grill while we were there - the Italian restaurant was amazing, the grill was average.

Location / beach etc - on the first day we walked to the nearby shops along Diani Road and we were basically followed there by a group of Kenyan men trying to sell things to us. They weren't threatening, just very persistant, and the guys on the beach were the same. It does get a bit annoying but they are just trying to make a living and some of them have interesting stories. The beach itself if beautiful.

Trips - we did a couple of trips, the first was a safari which we booked through the hotel. We could ony afford the day trip to Tsavo but it was still brilliant. We booked our second trip to Wasini Island through one of the locals on Diani Road (we just couldn't say no to him so we felt a bit annoyed at being pressured into booking with him but in hindsight we wish we had also booked the safari through him!) Not only did we get a very good price but also felt the money was going to the correct place. I definitely recommend the Wasini Island trip - I had never snorkelled before and had the most amazing time.

All in all, this was a fantastic holiday. I don't like going to the same place twice as there are so many places I would like to go that I think it is a bit pointless but having stayed here I can understand why some people return time and time again. I won't come back for a while but if I do, I would definitely stay at Southern Palms.

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank EmilyBris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2012

A nice hotel. Pools are very good. On the whole staff are very helpfull, but they are doing it for tips! The Italians have there own entertainment people, two very loud girls who seemed to be every where!!!! Paid extre to have sea view was really worth it. Some parts of hotel are a little tired, especially bedrooms. Are phone never got fixed, are safe took a day to get to someone to get it to lock. Food good, not massive choose. But after driving from the airport via ferry to hotel and seeing how the people live no one could complain about the food or that the staff needed extra money!

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank wen43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2012

the pool is big with swim up bars. great pool for little kids and adults alike. Beach is nice but beach boys drive you nuts!! rooms are just ok but ours needed some repairs - light bulbs out, no batteries in the AC remote, door lock broke and the mini bar fridge did not work. i called about all of these things and then followed up with a visit to reception. just the door lock was fixed ... the rest nothing was fixed. Food was not good at all. Buffet is especially bad and the buffet restaurant is super hot and not enjoyable to sit and eat in a sweat pit. i recommend eatting at one of the two restaurants where you make reservations - food is a little better but definitely better ambiance and not as hot. And if you have kids bring your own high chair! the high chairs they have are dirty and infested with ants.

Room Tip: the entertainment is loud and goes until 11 so ask for a room away for it if you go to bed early.
  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
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Thank WorldTravelerNairobi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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