Nothing beats the feeling of checking into a stunning hotel, ready to escape the hustle and bustle of life. From unspoiled beaches, picturesque views, unparalleled customer service, and a wide array of delectable cuisines, the best hotels in Kenya have these and so much more to offer.
From a quick online search, you’ve likely come across luxury hotels such as the Giraffe Manor, the number one Giraffe hotel in Kenya, Nairobi, and Radisson Blu Hotel. However, these are just the tip of the iceberg. Kenya strives to provide its customers with a surreal experience that relishes true African culture and hospitality. Without tooting the horn too much, let’s begin the review.
As is with other countries, not all Kenya hotels are luxury. There are different types of hotels to satisfy everyone’s needs. From the Kenya luxury hotels like Sarova Mara Game Lodge and Billionaire Resort and Retreat to boutique hotels like the Giraffe hotel Kenya, camp hotels like the Fig Tree Camp to budget-friendly options to suit every pocket.
To learn more about your options, keep reading as we explore different destinations starting with one phenomenal hotel in Kenya, Nairobi, one of the most touristic and instagrammable locations.
Set in 12 acres of private land within 140 acres of indigenous forest in the Langata suburbs of Nairobi, the Giraffe Manor is one of Kenya’s most iconic hotels. It’s an incredible boutique hotel with an appealing history dating back to the 1930s when African safaris had just emerged as a trend. The Kenya giraffe hotel embodies luxury, comfort, and escapism as you expect to dine with its resident herd of Rothschild’s giraffes, who often poke their long necks into the windows for a treat.
For years, the Giraffe hotel in Kenya, Nairobi, has shone through with a passionate character and a fascinating history hence why the Manor named all its suites to tell a story about its colorful past. During your stay, you can choose any of the six original suites: Betty, Daisy, Jock, Lynn, Marlon, and Karen Blixen. Or any of the new six garden manor suites: Salma, Edd, Arlene, Helen, Kelly, and the Finch Hatton with antique furniture and original art decor.
Being one of the best hotels in Kenya, there’s so much more to explore in and around the vicinity, starting with the infamous Daisy cafe that serves freshly squeezed juices, American souffle breakfast, vibrant salads, and much more. Another activity is to stroll to the nearby AFEW Giraffe Center or the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust for orphaned elephants. And finally, for a relaxed afternoon; take a peek at the Nairobi Art Galleries or relax at the wellness hub and get pampered with pure, premium natural ingredients.
Located in the delightful village of Watamu, Garoda beach, the Kobe Suite Resort is every traveler’s dream. The resort is a true paradise situated close to white coral sandy beaches and a luscious garden with panoramic views. Overlooking the Indian Ocean, Kobe Resort has two suites: oceanic and garden, designed with a rustic Swahili charm and a touch of Italian elegance, branding it one of Kenya luxury hotels.
What’s great about the resort is that you can enjoy a breathtaking sea view by the balcony or large arched windows, stroll along the bamboo-protected gardens, or take a nap on the suspended daybeds. When hungry, indulge in Italian specialties like Gnocchi or Paldina or something more local to Watamu residents.
With such oceanside Kenya hotels, there are also plenty of activities for you and your family. You can’t get bored with activities such as snorkeling, kite surfing, fishing, and diving. What’s more, the resort is one of those well-situated hotels in Kenya where you can take a 30 minutes to drive to the Marine Reserve Park, century Gede Ruins, or the Mida Creek, home to thousands of birds.
Coming in at number three is a fantastic Kenya safari hotel under the Sarova Hotels umbrella: the Salt Lick Safari Lodge. It’s a luxurious Kenya hotel set amid the 28,0000 acres of Taita Hills Wildlife Sanctuary covered in woodland and savanna. That means the game lodge offers the perfect location to explore the environment and wildlife in its natural habitat.
Located within the Tsavo plains, many may wonder if it’s safe or uncruel to disrupt animals from their habitat. However, the genius architecture behind the lodge placed circular accommodation suites, the restaurant, and the bar on stilts above watering holes and feeding pastures, so neither you nor the wildlife is inconvenienced. What’s more, there are floodlights at night that allow you an excellent nocturnal view of the animals.
Yet another Kenya safari hotel is the 5-star Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club situated in Nanyuki right at the foothills of Mount Kenya. They have over 100 luxurious rooms with views of the majestic mountain and a beautifully cured landscape. Each room has a complementary colonial architectural design with a luxurious country club feel to ensure you get the best of both worlds.
As one of the best hotels in Kenya, you can expect warm and inviting accommodations, personalized first-class service, and many exciting outdoor activities to keep you indulged throughout your stay. For your list of activities, you can take a short drive to the Equator marker, golf, horseback ride in the forest, or visit the nearby Mt Kenya Wildlife Conservancy/animal orphanage.
Boasting the Conde Nast award for the best spa in the world, the Lion in the Sun Billionaire Retreat is among the top Kenya hotels that offer a tasteful experience right on the Kenyan coast of Malindi. The Resort’s concept suggests open spaces, warmth, relaxation, and comfort, where guests can relax, soak up some sun and breathe in fresh air from the adjacent Indian Ocean.
Its architectural design borrows interior inspiration from Arabs and Indians to fuse into a harmonious and unique cultural heritage in the area. Their 16 elegant rooms also exhibit bits and pieces of local architecture to Africa’s soul, precisely Kenya. What’s more, the resort lies amidst the exotic aromas of frangipani flowers which you can smell indoors and outdoors.
Like other Kenya luxury hotels, Lion in the Sun Billionaire Resort offers an ideal location for relaxation via its wellness center that features six treatment cabins and three sea-water hydrotherapy facilities, all for your utmost relaxation. For some outdoor activities, you could visit the Watamu National Marine Park and the Malindi Marine National Park or head out to play at the Mayfair Malindi Casino & Club
Camp hotels like the Fig Tree Camp are excellent for more affordable yet beautiful hotels in Kenya. Located at the banks of the Talek River amid the Maasai Mara National Reserve, this Kenya safari hotel offers a chic and comfortable escape from reality. It’s right at the hippo hotspot, and central to all game drives, so you don’t miss any wildlife sightings.
Upon its new renovations, the camp offers three types of accommodation: safari tents, garden chalets, and Ngamboli tents/ super luxury tents with either jungle or river views, designed to suit its guests’ needs. As for its services, you could request special Champagne Bush Dinners, champagne breakfasts at the planes of the national reserve, barbecue dinners, or black tie dinners to suit the occasion.
Before your trip ends, don’t miss a chance aboard the hot air balloon safaris available daily at the camp.
Diani Beach is the place to be for an idyllic beach getaway. Nestled within 26 acres of indigenous coastal forest in Ukunda, the Sands at Nomad is the perfect location to enjoy most, if not all, the watersports. The resort has a watersport center with first-class equipment and experts to guide ocean-bound activities.
From kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, wave and windsurfing, kite surfing, and deep sea fishing, you can enjoy and explore the magical depths of the Indian Ocean. Furthermore, at the Sands at Nomad, you can join the PADI-certified diving courses at the 5-star diving center and enjoy wreck explorations and whale/ shark spotting.
Being one of the best hotels in Kenya, this luxury boutique hotel undeniably has so much more to offer. From spacious and relaxing accommodations on mahogany beds surrounded by contemporary Swahili architecture; to tropical delicacies finely crafted on their a la carte menu; to their forest breeze traditional and Ayurvedic massages alongside reflexology treatments. Truly, this resort is one of a kind
Just 16km from the Amboseli National Park, Kibo Safari Camp is a superb Kenya safari hotel with 73 self-contained tents designed to create a beautiful blend of bush and city. This Kenya hotel is a luxury-tented camp situated at the foot of the highest mountain in Africa: Mount Kilimanjaro, offering stunning views of the mountain and adjacent green landscape.
Much like other tented Kenya hotels, this Kenya safari hotel has a custom African rustic design with a Maasai cultural influence. The beds, amongst other furniture, are made from bush logs blended with traditional fabric and white linen for a clean, sophisticated look. Regarding dining, expect meal service anywhere; inside the tent, at the poolside, in the open skies under the stars, or under the open terraced restaurant set under vast acacia trees.
Only a few hotels in Kenya can come close to the Swahili Beach hotel as it engulfs a beautiful ambiance influenced by different cultures and heritages. Looking at its architectural style, you can see it has borrowed inspiration from African countries like Zanzibar and other areas like India and Arabia. Moreover, the hotel staff has customer representatives who speak multiple languages, such as German, French, and English.
The Swahili Beach resort is strategically located on Diani Beach. It boasts contemporary-style rooms designed with Arab and Swahili decor and Swahili culture food fusion aimed at offering its guests a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Like other Kenya luxury hotels, this 5-star property also has an archeological wonder: a seven-layer cascading pool that’ll get anyone dipping into it as soon as you arrive. Of course, let’s not forget the myriad of activities you can indulge in, such as biking, playing table tennis, darting, and playing billiards, all at the resort.
Similar to the Salt Lick Safari Lodge, the Sarova Mara Game Camp is also under the Sarova Hotels umbrella and it’s amid another game reserve: the Maasai Mara Game Reserve. Ideally located in the heart of the reserve, this camp gives you a unique opportunity to experience an unmatched safari, precisely, the Wildebeest Migration that occurs between July to October annually.
Besides the abundance of wildlife, the camp is surrounded by exotic trees, a vast fish pond, and a local Maasai village ready to entertain you during your arrival. Regarding accommodation, let’s just say it’s in the same league as the best hotels in Kenya. These are spacious tents with zipper mesh windows, natural wood floors, clear glass panels, and a comfortable game-viewing deck for all tents.
For extracurriculars, you could try out walking or hot air balloon safaris, boma or bush dining or visit the Tulia wellness hub for aromatherapy, Ayurveda, and Swedish massages.
At the Central Business District of Nairobi stands Kenya’s number one staycation destination and one of the best Kenya luxury hotels: the Radisson Blu Hotel. Unique in style and design, this iconic hotel embodies Nairobi’s diverse and vibrant culture to bring you to class in all its forms.
From signature dining concepts like continental breakfast options and all-day indoor grilling to treatment rooms and privately accessible balconies: Urban contemporary room designs to fully equipped conference rooms and business lounges, this hotel in Kenya Nairobi is the place to be.
For the icing on the cake, this Kenya hotel has an immense capacity of 271 suites offering different views such as the Nairobi Arboretum, the city’s skyline, and the hotel’s exquisite indoor pool.
An equally stylish sibling to the Fairmont Mount Kenya hotel, this Kenya safari hotel is ideally situated at the foot of Aitong Hills just northwest of the Maasai Mara National Game Reserve. The Fairmont Mara Safari Club is in the Ol-Choro Oiroua Conservation, surrounded by the three sides of the hippo-filled Mara River guaranteeing its guests incredible views.
The club may not be among the most luxurious hotels in Kenya, but its rustic vibe spread across the club indeed gives off authenticity. The tents are braced with antique furniture, wooden roofs, and oriental rugs, while the restaurant and lounge serve delicious traditional cuisine full board.
By now, you’ve probably noticed that most of the best hotels in Kenya are in the coastal region; this is no exception. The Majlis Resort is in Lamu, Manda Island, off Kenya’s north coast. This idyllic beach hotel is one of Kenya luxury hotels that serve Italian elegance and Swahili culture on one plate. This unique fusion brings to life wood-fired pizzerias, creamy pasta, mbaazi, biryani, and fresh seafood, amongst other international dishes.
In terms of accommodation, this state-of-the-art resort offers two suites: garden and sea view, with each room designed with off-white interiors and traditional furnishings. Again, being one of the oceanic Kenya hotels, you also have plenty to do, such as kite surfing, windsurfing, and canoeing.
With just ten months of operations, the Billionaire Resort and Retreat in Malindi has earned its spot as an impeccable Kenya hotel with exquisite customer service, a tranquil ambiance, elegance, and thrill in one package. It’s situated just 300 meters from the Lion in the Sun Billionaire Resort, but this 5-star retreat has its ultra-modern appeal with Italian fusion that’s just magnetic.
The resort has 24 spectacular seafront apartments strategically placed amidst beautifully cured gardens and beach cabanas. Did we mention the infinity pool? Well, the retreat has a vibrant appeal making it the perfect location for mingling and networking.
The last pick on the most beautiful hotels in Kenya is yet another beauty under the Sarova Hotels umbrella: the Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge. It is in Nakuru, at the Lake Nakuru National Park, where it offers stunning views of lake Nakuru: home to thousands of pink flamingos.
The lodge imbues a warm and inviting atmosphere with 64 elegant ensuite chalet-style accommodations and three luxury suites with garden pathways, private patios, and open fireplaces to keep you warm throughout the night.
There are a good number of hotels we haven’t included in this list that should’ve been. But one thing’s for sure: from the location to their design, to the food, the best hotels in Kenya are perfectly built to offer guests unmatched experiences. From strolling with giraffes at the Giraffe hotel Kenya to New York Mansion vibes at the Radisson Blu Hotel Kenya Nairobi and multicultural fusions at the coast.
If you’re looking for a possible experience, book a trip to any of these hotels and explore what it means to relax, unwind, soak in some sun, and discover Kenya.