Hemingways Nairobi is the sister hotel to the famous Hemingways in Watamu. A plantation style property with views of the Ngong Hills is an exceptional place to stay be it for one or two nights in Nairobi. The staff are gracious and provide a seemless service that Hemingways, Watamu is famed for. The rooms are bright and large with beautiful bathrooms and the rooms have used the best of the natural light available, making guests feel that they are not staying in a city hotel.
The style of the hotel is classical with contemporary touches and all the modern conveniences that one would expect of a new boutique hotel. The butler is attentive and on hand to rustle up a treat from the pantry or assist with packing your cases on departure. The hotel has a choice of restaurants and lounges to enjoy and offers a variety of cuisines. Afternoon tea is a spectacular affair with a variety of homemade cakes and speciality teas available.
ol Donyo Lodge
Ol Donyo Lodge is in the heart of the 275,000 acre Mbirikani Group Ranch, located on the slopes of the Chyulu Hills National Park between the Amboseli and Tsavo West National Parks in southeast Kenya. Its location is unrivalled with full views of Mount Kilimanjaro and in the path of seasonal elephant migrations. It is a lodge rich in history, passion and conservation.
Ol Donyo Lodge’s founder Richard Bonham had often flown over this spectacular landscape but one day in the 1980s, he was moved to land his Cessna on the open plains and meet the local Maasai. That was only the first of many meetings, before the birth of a pioneering community conservation tourism project. The concept was simple: Richard brings guests to this remote group ranch to participate in safaris, and the Maasai share the benefits. But nothing in Africa is that simple, really. And so began a life-long relationship with the Maasai, the wildlife and the game ranch.
Lewa Wilderness Camp
Lewa Wilderness is located in Lewa Downs at the foot of Mt.Kenya and is one of Kenya’smost successful private conservation areas. It has been the Craig family home since 1924 when the Craig grandparents came from England and began raising cattle here, and is still the home of Will and Emma Craig. Accommodation is in 9 comfortable cottages with en-suite bathrooms and the food is wholesome, ranch style and organically grown. Lewa Wilderness offers an exclusive hideaway from which to explore the African bush with a diverse array of wildlife in some of Kenya’s most spectacular scenery. Activities include day and night game viewing drives, bush walks, horse riding, camel rides, farm visits and cultural visits. There is also the opportunity to visit the on-going conservation projects and also the craft centre run by the local community. For those wishing to relax, there is a swimming pool which seems to flow right over the escarpment.
Angama Mara, Masai Mara
Angama Mara is set across three kopjes in the Rift Valley, overlooking the Mara below. The tented suites are strung out across two of the kopjes, but third remains untouched: this is the very site where the loveliest scenes from the Oscar-winning film Out of Africa were filmed, such as horse-riding and the famous picnic scene. It’s no wonder, as the area is one of the most beautiful – not to mention unspoilt – areas of Kenya. While tented camps in the Mara are the norm, what defines Angama is certainly its exceptional location: every tented suite shares panoramic view of the Mara below, with almost ring-side seats for the Great Migration which runs from July to October each year. The site is split into two camps of 15 tents each, meaning it feels intimate and relaxed, and totally uncrowded. There are two sets of interconnected guest suites in each of the two camps, so families needn’t miss out on the views (children of all ages are welcome).
The tents themselves seem to hang off the escarpment, maximising those priceless views. The interiors are minimalistic and contemporary to focus the attention on the views, with end to end glass frontages, sweeping canvas, polished parquet and just the right amount of furniture from which to enjoy looking down onto the Mara. At the Pavilion, the centre of the two camps, you’ll find a fitness centre, a swimming pool, an art gallery with pieces available for purchase and a sun-filled studio where Maasai women bead bespoke items for sale. Activities on offer include safaris into the Mara Triangle, walking safaris on the escarpment, in room massage, hot air balloon safari and community visits.
The focus at Angama (after the view) is on service, service, service. Angama’s staff village has been built from scratch with the same attention to details as the guest accommodation, fulfilling the ethos that happy staff create a happy environment. The staff village includes a community-owned shop and clinic.