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Baobab Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #5 of 29 Hotels in Diani Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 January 2011

Exceptional level of service, Excellent swimming and beach facilities, Entertainment was of a high standard - great place for a family or even a romantic break.

Would recommend and return for another break there.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled with family
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Thank Bwana_Shah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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989 - 995 of 1,548 reviews

Reviewed 4 January 2011

My Partner and I came here over Christmas for a week, we booked through Thomsons/First Choice and felt we got very good value for money especially as we were travelling at that time of year.
Due to the snow we were delayed 14 hours which was disapointing when we were only booked there for a week. But the way First Choice/Thomsons staff within the airport and when we arrived treated us and looked after us could not be faulted. We were put up in a hotel and fed while we were delayed.
The journey from mombasa airport to the resort wasn't the best but this was probally due to how tired and desperate to get there we were. We travelled by coach for about 1 1/2 hours but were the first drop off which was great. We were met on arrival by the resort reception staff who offered us a nice cold drink and wet towel.
We were taken to our room in the Maridadi area of the resort which was beautiful, spacious and very clean. We had asked for a sea view and they did not disapoint us.
I was very impressed with the resport as a whole it was always clean, well looked after, spacious, beautifuly furnished and all 3 pools were great in different ways. The Baobab and Kole Kole tended to have more activities at them while the maridadi (which was our favourite) was relaxing with a 3 tiered pool which had a pool bar at the bottom.
As it was Christmas while we were there the staff went to alot of effort to decorate the whole resort and set up a lovely gala dinner on a section of the beach.
The food was always of high quality and a great selection. There was one night we were very tired from safari and slept through the times for dinner but when we mentioned this to a member of staff they arranged for food to be prepared and served in the bar for us later on.
As for our safari we had pre-booked as part of our package to go on the 2day tsavo safari. We had upgraded to the superiour lodge of Kiiguni in tsavo west as my partner had stayed there previously and was interested to go back. As there was a mistake in our booking we didnt upgrade on the second night but the accomadation was still nice at the voi lodge, although it wasn't as high a standard. We had our own safari bus and driver who had great knowledge to share with us. We were not let down by what we saw on Safari and had a great experiance.
We did venture out of the resort but were short on time so didnt get to go as far as we would have liked. there is a shopping centre a short taxi ride away. the reception will call u a driver who will take to there and back for very cheap and who will wait on you while you shop. the shops had some lovely things in them for very resonable prices annd also stalls which were open to haggling. there is also a bar and resturant which serves great food. We also visited Ali barbours resturant which is a beautiful cave tranformed into a restuarant. I really enjoyed the food but my partner who chose something else formt he menu didnt enjoy it as much however we really enjoyed the beutiful surrounding while we ate. They also have a car to take u to and from the resort for free.

Overall this has to be my partner and I's best experiance of a resort and we have been to a fair few! The staff couldn't be friendlier and the place was kept to a very high standard. We only wished we didn't have to leave! Can't wait to return.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank kirstandal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 January 2011

A beautiful resort with everything you could want from a holiday in the sun.
- Brilliant friendly staff
- Three wonderful pools
- Four great bars
- Three buffet restaurants with good quality produce and variety, (all with views of the Indian Ocean)
- Clean spacious rooms

The only thing I would say, is that, it can get a bit noisy in the evening, so bring some ear plugs!
Also, guys, bring a pair of trousers/jeans with you, as you will need them for dinner. It's in no way stuffy, just a bit of a throw back from colonial times, I think..

Quite simply, this is a fabulous resort in a fabulous country, full of fabulous people.
I can't recommend it highly enough....

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Stuart777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 January 2011

A truely wonderful holiday. We stayed in the Kole kole superiour deluxe rooms. Very very nice! the food at the hotel was lovely, lots and lots of variety morning noon and night. The hotel itself was beautiful the grounds and bars were spotless but we mostly stayed at the kole kole end. The animation staff were hilarous, always encouraging you to join in but never pushing.The baboons and monkeys always keeping you on your toes.
The real highlight of the hotel was the staff. They are all so friendly an welcoming and always have a new swahili word to teach you!
Our only disappointment was not the hotel in any way but first choice/ thomsons. We booked our safari through them before we left because although we had heard about JT safaris we just weren't sure. However first choice book the safari through a company called pollmans and we were so disappointed with it that when we returned from our 2 night 3 day tsavo safari we booked another safari with JT thats julius Nzumbi safaris at www.julius-safari.com and here we found every bit what we hoped a safari would be like. It was an amazing experience and it was all down to juluis, he listened to what we hoped for, created us our own personalised safari and delivered much much much more than we dreamed of thank you julius without you we would not know what a safari should be like. Our guide George was brilliant, he gave us an education not just about the animals but about kenya, with animals he was intuative and unintrusive, world apart from first choice/pollmans. thank you Julius you were wonderful and made our holiday.
Kenya is a fabulous country with wonderful people who have nothing but share everything.
I can;t wait to go back again, things we would do differently this time would be:
1 Bring more pens paper and books for the kids these things cost us very little but mean lots to them.
2 Book our safari with JT safari. thats Juluis Nzumbi, there is many names similar to his so be sure its him, he'll meet you at your hotel and take you to his office- the orange hut!
3 gentleman take long trouser with you for evening even if they are jeans

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank CarlaandDarren
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2011

The thought of going to Kenya was exciting and yet daunting. It was a long flight but then again so is the Carabean which is where we usually go at this time of the year.
We did upgrade for more leg room on the flight and that is worth a consideration which we would recommend.
The trip to the hotel from the airport was horendous but because of the excitment of being in Kenya it passed by. I say horendous because it was a long drive through traffic jams which went on and on.
The hotel was great and the people so friendly they could not do enough for you.
The food was not up to the standard of say, a european Iberostar which is where we normally stay. On saying that we fully undewrstand this is Kenya and believe it or not other African states which border Kenya the people are staring, so how do Kenya do it?
They are so pround of their country, how many times did we hear "How do you like MY Country" Mmm
The resort was so lovely, the sae so warm, and to see monkeys and baboons so free on the resort was so so exciting.
Yes we had some tummy problems, but that was prbably the malaria tablets which we had to take (and cost a fortune).
A great 10 days.
The trip back to the airport was even worse than before, it took nearly 4 hours due to the traffic and the bottle neck at the ferry at Mombassa, they really do need to have a bridge which is thye only answer.
Will we return?
Well our friends are returning in February 2011 but at a resort where they do not need to cross the river at Mombassa.
This is the only place we would recommend for sandy beaches and warm warm sea. it is so good.
Yes our friends went on Safari, we did not due to tummy problems, they had a great time although it took a two hour drive to get there, but it was well worth it.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DerbyboyTurvesUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2010

We have recently got back from our honeymoon at the Baobab and can honestly say that it deserves all the praise that it gets on this site if not more.

We had the overnight flight from Manchester arriving in Kenya in time for rush hour. The transfer is about 1hr 30 and most of it is fine. The waiting for the ferry journey was the worst part as it’s a shock leaving the UK at freezing point and it being at least 30 degrees all the time!!! The bus really should have air con but once your past the ferry its not that bad. The journey really does give you a chance to see the differences in Kenya. You see everything from the modern city centre developments to unbelievably poor areas.

The resort is in a quiet area, located on the beach. It is a public beach and there are locals trying to sell you a vast array of things so we didn’t use it. As it is a public beach there are no sun loungers on the beach so even without the beach boys it was so hot we probably wouldn’t have used it much anyway.

When you arrive you are greeted with a cool face towel which is needed and also a welcome drink, also needed!! The reception staff are very friendly and efficient and soon you’re on your way to your room. The friendliness of the staff in clear everywhere. Whether it’s the security guards, gardeners, bar staff or entertainment team everyone is extremely polite and helpful. You will find that you cant pass anyone in the hotel without getting the greeting of Jambo and a smile which is nice. The hotel is in 3 parts, each with its own bar, pool, reception, shop and other facilities. Whatever part you are in you can use any of the facilities in all of them.

We were in the Kole Kole wing on the top of the 3 floors. There was an amazing view over this part of the hotel with the infinity pool and ocean behind. The room was lovely with a 4 poster bed, spacious living space and large bathroom area with 2 basins and a double shower. There are robes and slippers as well. The rooms were always very clean and bottled water in the fridge replaced as well as extra bottled water in the bathroom everyday. There was even a turn down service every night. We had let them know it was our honeymoon and when we arrived there was a selection of fresh fruits as well as local tea and coffee to take home and a letter congratulating us which was very thoughtful. There is a tv with plenty of channels, particularly sport ones which was great for me, loads of cricket and football pretty much anytime of the day!! There is a safe is the room and it is free to use.

The hotel has 3 pool areas. Each has its own vibe and set of monkeys!! We spent a lot of the time by the Maridadi pool which was split in to 3 levels as this seemed the quietest pool. But if you do like more activities round the pool then the other pools have this. There are always plenty of sun loungers around each pool although you do usually need to be at the pool by about 9.30 to get one with any shelter. It is very, very hot so you will need to shelter for at least part of the day. Some people leave their towels on the loungers early in the day and don’t turn up til after lunch which can be annoying but this happens everywhere. There are also many loungers located in the garden areas between the different parts of the hotel and a small beach area set back from the sea on the hotel grounds. All the garden and pool areas are very well maintained.

There are monkeys everywhere around the hotel. They are on the balconies, in the grounds and around the pools. If you listen to the advice and don’t feed them or leave food out then they are fine. The vast majority of people do this and the monkeys are very entertaining playing around the pool all day. If you feed them they will pester you but you’re told not to so it is your fault. Everyone seemed to enjoy the monkeys and everyone round the pool looks out for each other to make sure they don’t get in anyones bags!! They are scared of us and any movement towards them does make them back away. By the pool we stayed by there was also a baboon who wandered around the pool everyday at 3.30. even though these are far bigger than the monkeys they don’t bother you unless you bother them and they simply walk past you all. One German guy did make the mistake of bringing some cake up to the pool so the baboon liberated this from him which was actually very amusing!!

The weather was scorching all the time so strong sun cream is definitely advised. Even with high factors you will still get a good tan. It is also humid so even just lying by the pool takes it out of you. it’s a tough life!!!

Some reviewers have made some negative comments about the food at the hotel. All I can say is I wish I could eat with them every night at home if they think this food was bad!!! The restaurants are buffet unless you go to the a la carte ones but by far the best buffet food we have had at hotels in this country and the Caribbean. There is always lots of choice at every meal so if you can’t find anything you like them you are probably just a very fussy person!!! Again the staff in the restaurants are very polite and helpful and are remember things like where you like to sit and what you like to drink. People have said this is to get tips but even if it is what does it matter. In this country you rarely get any service like that and they still expect a tip. With the evening meals there are several theme nights where the staff and restaurant appearance changes to match the theme. The food also changes with the themes so it doesn’t get boring or repetitive and one night there was even oysters. My wife is vegetarian and sometimes this can be a problem abroad but she loved the food as well. Each night there was 2 different soups, one always vegetarian and the same with the curries, pasta and other stations. The pasta, meat and fish stations cook most of the food to order in front of you so you can have things just as you want them. If you don’t like one ingredient they simply don’t put it in for you. There is also a very wide selection of fresh sauces, herbs and spices so you can add extra touches to your meal if you like. This is on top of the usual cold selection of food and salads you would expect. The quality of the food is also fantastic. The different types of fish were lovely even though I am not usually a big fish eater, while the curries, meats and pasta were always top notch as well. My wife loved the pasta station in particular and the variety and choice of desserts made sure I never left being anything other than very full!!!

There are about 4 or 5 bars we think all together and as always the staff are very friendly. They have a few different cocktails to choice from although you can make your own if its not on the list. There’s the usual shorts and plenty of fresh fruit juices and the local lager as well as wine so again should be something for everyone

There is entertainment every night usually at the amphitheatre. This means if you don’t want to see the show then the bars are more quiet and you don’t have to go to them. We would recommend you do though as they are good. The lion king night was a favourite of my wife and the acrobat night was outstanding. You have to keep in mind that the people in the show have day jobs in the hotel as well and this is not the West End or Broadway. However the shows a entertaining and there is a disco after them for anyone to join in. if you don’t want to join in the staff are not pushy and you can just sit round chatting or laughing at some of the dancing from the guests!!!

We did go on safari for 2 days. We went to Tsavo East and West. We booked with JT safari’s and have absolutely nothing but massive praise for them. There will be a more detailed separate review for this at http://www.tripadvisor.com/ Attraction_Review-g317068- d318009-Reviews-Julius_ Safaris_Day_Trips-Ukunda.html
but the level of service, politeness and professionalism of everyone we had contacted with at the company was outstanding. The company was JT Safaris (Julius Tact) (www.julius-safaris.com) and not one with a similar name which has recently started up trying to use the very good reputation of JT. Several other people used JT while we were there and not one person had anything but the highest praise for them. The fact that there was only me and my wife were the only ones on the bus made the whole experience even more special.

Overall we would definitely recommend this resort for pretty much anyone as there are facilities for families, couples, young or old somewhere on the resort. You should be able to find whatever type of activities you want or a quiet spot to just relax.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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11  Thank caerbryn10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 December 2010

I returned from a 2 week stay at the Baobab last thursday and have had such post holiday blues after visiting this amazing, life changing country that me and my partner shall definitely return to in the near future. I do not even know where to start... i suppose with the start which was not the best i had read about the transfer (we flew from Manchester on a evening flight) so we arrived in to Kenya in the morning and it is sooo hot there i would recommend that you take a change of summer clothes to put on on the plane, as the transfer takes around 1hr30 but its on a bus with very poor air con but the windows need to be closed for it to work, so as you can imagine blistering heat through a bus window with poor aircon for a hour and a half makes you very uncomfortable, i was in a long sleeved floaty dress and leggings and i really didnt know how much longer i could stand the heat so next time i am definitely changing in to shorts and a vest before the bus trip!!! the sight you see on the way to the hotel just make you realise how poor but also happy and hard working the residents of Kenya are, as we did the ferry crossing i do not think i have ever seen so many people in one place at the same time (not even oxford street at lunch time!), but after the hot and long transfer you arrive at the most beautiful hotel, with the most welcoming staff and i just cant explain how breath taking it is when you first arrive there you completely forget about the transfer!!

We were lucky enough to stay in one of the deluxe Maridadi rooms which was gorgeous, but from the others we viewed all the rooms were amazing, ours was in almost a round house 2 rooms on the top and 2 on the bottom right next to the pool but also the favoured place for the monkeys to hang out, as soon as they hear your balcony doors open they come running, they are comical but do not feed them as we saw a few people feed them and then they start to become pests they go through your bags when your by the pool and trying to get in to your rooms, they are harmless and there are security guards around that scare them off if need be ( i had 6 of them surrounding my room door and had 2 call for some one to get rid of them as they were not scared of me at all!!)

We had a wonder around on our first day and could not get over how friendly the staff were (every one says JAMBO all the time its quite difficult to adjust back to the ignorance of the UK and you find your self wanting to say Jambo to everyone) and how beautiful the surroundings were pictures just cannot translate how perfect it is there, the food was amazing a wide variety of food that was cooked fresh in front of you we only went to the main restaurant a few times as the Maridadi was nearest to us and the staff remembered us, always sat us in the same seats and remembered every detail including our first day back after a 4 day safari (which we did with JT safaris see separate review) we were asked how our safari was i thought that was a nice touch as well as one waiter called Emmanuel who i told i had a upset stomach due to my malaria tablets made me fresh peppermint tea and every day for the following week came to find me and my partner at meal times to see how i was feeling that to me is amazing service.

The pool was lovely as we were in the Maridadi section we just stayed there for the whole 2 weeks it has the infinity pool with 3 tiers and even when the hotel was 90% full you felt as though it was empty, the lizards do like to swim in the pool (they dont bother with people) as a short cut from one side to another which i think is another lovely touch to the hotel as well as the monkey not only pinching your drink but drinking out of the pool, you never had time to get board of sunbathing as there was always something to watch the monkeys all came out around 2 looking for food and drinks which kept you entertained for hours. The heat is very hot i am dark haired and with olive skin and i rarely went below factor 30 and after 2 weeks i am browner than i have ever been even after 6 weeks in france!! it is very hot so i would take a lot of cream/oil and stuff to moisturise with as your skin gets very dry.

We never got to see the evening entertainment which we were sad about as we heard it was amazing, but time just seemed to fly and it could go from 8pm to 11 in no time, whether we were talking to other visitors or the bar staff. Our main fear was mosquitos but they were not a problem they only time we came across them was on safari (which was expected) but we had Pyramid 100 mosquito repellant which is extremely strong so nothing dared come near us. The beach was lovely but does have quite a bit of seaweed and as it was a public beach there was a lot of beach boys around, people we met had found that the best time to go out was around 2-3 o'clock when the sea was in so there was less sand to cover before you got to the sea, its understandable that they want to sell you things as it is their job that is how they make a living, so the best thing to do is take pens, paper and other extras which you can swap with them for presents, also the hotel staff welcome pens, paper, clothes and tips as they do really earn next to nothing( if you leave gifts for the people who service your room you will need to leave a note to prove they can take the items).

We also went to Ali Barbours twice which was a amazing experience which every one should do, i am not even a big meat fan but the steak was fantastic as was the entree and the puddings, it really is a all round fantastic experience from the setting to the food to the staff everything is spot on and is a dining experience you would struggle to find in the UK. Enough rambling this place is fantastic i cannot recommend it enough i hope i haven't missed anything there are just so many high points of this place its hard to remember them all!! Me and my partner are already planning our next visit but 2 weeks really did not feel long enough normally i find a week enough but at the Baobab everything is perfect and you feel as though you never want to leave.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank eviehart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Baobab Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Ukunda 80400, Kenya
Region: Kenya > Coast Province > Ukunda > Diani Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Diani Beach
#4 Romantic Hotel in Diani Beach
#4 Family Hotel in Diani Beach
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Diani Beach
#5 Business Hotel in Diani Beach
#5 Luxury Hotel in Diani Beach
Price Range: £121 - £293 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Baobab Beach Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 321
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the world famous Diani Beach. The resort comprises three luxurious properties – The Baobab, The Maridadi and Kole Kole, offering a unique selection of exquisite accommodation and facilities spread across the resort grounds. Guestrooms have been specifically designed to provide paramount comfort and luxury for all our clients. Guests may utilise leisure facilities across the resort including 3 swimming pools, dining areas and much more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Baobab - Baobab Beach Resort And Spa
The Baobab - Baobab Beach Hotel Ukunda
Baobab Beach Hotel Diani

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