One of four Sentido Neptune resorts on the Mombasa coast, the Village is, accommodation-wise, perhaps the least impressive of those properties. On the other hand, it is also right beside its sister hotel the Sentido Neptune Paradise, meaning Village guests may make use of Paradise's facilities; almost like two hotels for the price of one! A great option for families, its big pluses are its range of activities and its position on a stunning stretch of Galu Beach, a great setting for those holiday snaps that will take pride of place in the family photo album.
Situated on Galu Beach on Mombasa's south coast, Sentido Neptune Village is about a 30 minute drive from the Likoni Ferry crossing, and just over an hour from Mombasa Moi international airport. The bustling village of Ukunda is a short distance, while the nightlife of Diani is barely a five minute drive away.
Although another hotel in the Sentido Neptune portfolio, the Palm, is a hop, skip and a jump away, guests at the Village are not permitted to use its facilities. Upgrades to the Palm are possible, where guests are able to 'cross over' to the Village and Paradise hotels.
While Sentido Neptune Village may not be a luxury property, it is clean and comfortable, boasting a good range of facilities and activities. A bright and breezy open-air lobby features typical Swahili architecture; mounted Arabesque wall lamps and hanging lanterns, carved wooden chests, daybeds with sails in fiery shades of orange and red, and a central water fountain. A pergola dripping in bougainvillea provides a shaded walkway through the heart of the property.
On site, guests may participate in a game of beach volleyball, table tennis, darts or mini golf, chill out in the TV area, join the animation team in its variety of activities, or even throw some shapes at the 'disco' (well, on the open-air dance floor) after dark. While it's hardly the place you would want to get some work done, a small business centre is available to guests and WIFI connection throughout the resort is complimentary.
For the younger ones there's a great kid's club (TV, bunk beds, toys and activities) with its own outdoor playground complete with mini football nets. It's worth mentioning that the gardens are spacious and well-maintained, perfect for families and anybody who values space! The centrepiece of the resort is the lovely pool area, with a large pool and for younger swimmers, a large shallow pool as well. In one corner is a sunken swim up bar, although the huge 360° main bar is at a very convenient distance. We also loved the enormous and majestic baobab tree nestled amongst the rooms, the expansive lawns and beachfront and from here, the wonderful views over the Indian Ocean.
The 80 standard and 80 superior rooms are found in a collection of whitewashed hut-like buildings with traditional thatched roofs. The standard rooms are clean but very basic, with a double or twin beds draped in (somewhat faded) yellow/orange bedspreads, and scattered with natural wicker cane furnishings, from the desk to the chest of drawers, to the cupboard doors and mirror frame. A small window provides a view to the gardens, and there is also a tiny terrace with outdoor furniture. The bathrooms are almost as tiny and looking a bit worn out but clean nevertheless. While the rooms contain a television, mini fridge and tea and coffee making facilities, telephones are available at reception only and use of the safety deposit boxes in each room is a charged service, which is a big negative. Guests should never have to pay for the "privilege" of keeping their valuables safe.
The superior category boasts much larger rooms with a newer and more modern feel. Awash is cheery blue and green tones, the rooms' main differences are not only their decoration but their size, which includes a larger bathroom. There is a marked difference between the two categories and it is perhaps worth the money to upgrade from the standard to the superior room, given the opportunity.
The main restaurant at Sentido Neptune Village is huge; a sea of white tablecloths in a high-ceilinged, open-air setting known as 'Karamu' (Swahili for "feast" or "party"), also benefiting from ocean views. The long buffet stations offer a selection of international dishes while another nearby restaurant, awash in pretty mosaic detail, is open all day for those late breakfasts or mid-afternoon snacks.
If there's one thing we really appreciated at the resort, it was its prized location on one of the most beautiful south coast beaches known as Galu. The fine white sand and glistening blue waters of the Indian Ocean are especially tempting along this wide stretch of Mombasa coastline. Not only is there plenty of space on the beach itself to lie about or play a game of beach volleyball, there is also a ton of room on the beachfront lawns to stretch out on a sun lounger. The on-site diving centre and watersports facility are also popular.
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