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Hotel Baobab Beach Resort and Spa Hotel 4 star
Easyexperts
Diani Beach Road, Mombasa south coast Mombasa, Kenya -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

One of the oldest hotels on the Mombasa south coast, the Baobab is something of an institution, still going strong after 36 years. Traditionally a hit with German holidaymakers who had always thought it "their hotel," the Baobab is now a place where tourists flock to from all over Europe. Large and unpretentious, this all inclusive beach resort is all about the wide range of activities it offers its guests, while the animation team is excellent, making the Baobab a great choice for families.

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    • Hotel Baobab Beach Resort and Spa

      Baobab Beach Resort and Spa   -   © Luis David Alvarez / EASYVOYAGE

    • Hotel Baobab Beach Resort and Spa

      Baobab Beach Resort and Spa   -   © Luis David Alvarez / EASYVOYAGE

       
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    Location 5.0 /10

    Situated on a coral headland on Diani Beach, the Baobab Beach Resort & Spa is in the heart of this much-frequented part of Mombasa and about a 20 minute drive from the Likoni Ferry crossing to Mombasa Island. Allow at least an hour for journeys to and from Moi International Airport.

    Accommodation 6.70 /10

    The Baobab has 183 rooms; sea-facing wing standards, garden view bungalows and sea-facing superiors. The standard rooms are found in two large stone buildings with mangrove wood balconies and thatched roofs. The rooms consist of a double or twin beds and are simply furnished and decorated. While these rooms are clean, they err on the small side. Each room has a small terrace or balcony with outdoor furniture, and a small bathroom (shower, no bath). While the mangrove wood rafters are a cosy touch, these rooms would really benefit from a little makeover. However, the pleasant surprise is that all standard rooms are sea-facing.

    The garden view bungalows are found in circular stone 'huts' that house four bungalow rooms each. As their name suggests, they are set back further from the beach and look on to the Baobab's gardens. These rooms are large but have small bathrooms (shower, no bath). The four poster bed is draped in blue-green palm-print linen, while the rest of the room is spotless and simply decorated. A mosquito screen door opens on to a small balcony set up with a table and chairs. The bungalows are air-con only (no fan) but boast a small flat screen TV and flowers on arrival.

    Overview 8.95 /10

    Efficiency is the name of the game at Baobab Beach Resort, and at such a large property you'd expect it. Impeccably uniformed staff pop up everywhere; from the enormous plant-filled lobby (a hive of activity with an Internet corner and a list of animation activities - more on that later) to the hotel restaurants. Right beside reception is the Sultan Lounge, a casual seating area with several daybeds and armchairs inviting you to seek respite from the hot Kenyan sun.

    The Sultan Lounge sits between the pool, bar area and the buffet restaurant. The medium-sized pool (underwhelming and beach front), is often busy, while the neighbouring Tapa Tapa bar is found under a high-ceilinged gazebo offering splendid views of the Indian Ocean. This tends to be the hotel meeting point; before dinner, after dinner... Outdoor seating is provided in the form of cane chairs with bright and cheery orange cushions and matching parasols. A few steps away you'll find the Karibu (meaning "welcome" in Swahili), Baobab's buffet-only restaurant. During breakfast, guests are introduced to members of the 33-strong animation team and the day's various activities.

    If you feel the need to work off the previous night's buffet, a fully-equipped gym (with Technogym gear, no less) is on site for a fee of 250ksh (about £1.95) per day. If you plan on hitting the gym more than once during your stay you can sign up for three days (600ksh, about £4.65) or seven days (1,200ksh, about £9.30) - these days do not to be used consecutively. OK, the fees aren't expensive but it's certainly the first hotel we've come across in our travels where this facility costs extra. Guests may also play a game of tennis, beach volleyball, boccia ball and table tennis.

    Next door to the gym is the hairdresser and beauty salon, marking the entrance to the Ayfa Bora Wellness Club & Spa which offers a range of treatments. Massages are given in small, private gazebos with thatched roofs, while soothing music tinkers softly in the background. An alfresco Jacuzzi overlooks the ocean and it is one of the few quiet corners of the resort.

    We must give special mention to the 80 acres of tropical gardens that are well-maintained and provide plenty of shade. A stroll past the acacia, baobab, palm, sycamore, tamarind and Indian sea almond trees is a pleasant one indeed. We are also very impressed with the Baobab animation team and an exceptional entertainment program, which only repeats itself after 14 days - meaning you have to stay at least two weeks to see the same thing twice. The evening shows take place in the open-air Porini amphitheatre (680 seating capacity) and are of a high quality, compared to other resorts along the coast. We witnessed an excellent, impassioned adaptation of The Lion King, complete with costumes, lighting and music. Afterwards, the theatre becomes the setting for the nightly disco, while the nearby Porini bar is the place to be for that "post-show" cocktail - open until the last guest leaves!

    Guests with children are welcome to use the kid-friendly facilities found at the next door Kolé Kolé hotel. Not only is there a dedicated kid's club, but also a wading pool, pool games and plenty of other animation activities to keep the little ones occupied. A range of water sports and water-based excursions for all the family are available at an extra charge.

    Food and drink 8.20 /10

    The Karibu restaurant is found close to the waterfront; next to the pool, Tapa Tapa bar and the Sultan Lounge. The thatched roof structure is an odd shape; with the seating on one side, a small courtyard in the middle and a large buffet area on the other side. Large windows in the dining area allow for views of the ocean, but despite all the space, the restaurant lacks charm. Tables and chairs are placed on different levels, and diners must navigate the steps and cross the courtyard to enter the large buffet area. As expected there are three buffet services for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Most dishes are prepared right in front of you and there is a large selection of starters, main dishes and desserts to choose from. The cuisine is international and themed evenings are not rare here, ranging from African to Italian and Oriental. Guests may also dine at The Maridadi and Kolé Kolé buffet restaurants on either side of the Baobab as part of the all inclusive meal plan. Due to the size of the resort, room service is not available.

    Beach 8.70 /10

    The beach is none other than the celebrated Diani Beach, a gorgeous 500m stretch of white sand and warm waters, a short stroll through the gardens from the Baobab accommodation. Sun loungers are available in the gardens and not on the beach itself. It's true that the local "beach boys" (beach sellers) flock to this part of the beach but although they are persistent, they are harmless. While it is a pretty corner of the Mombasa coast, it is certainly not the quietest, what with all the hotels that line this particular spot in Diani. Various animation activities also take place on the beach.

    RHP

    To know

    The Baobab Beach Resort and Spa is an all inclusive property that counts The Maridadi and Kolé Kolé hotels (on either side of the resort) as part of the Baobab family. Guests from each hotel may use the other hotels' facilities but it is advisable to book the à la carte restaurants (at The Maridadi and Kolé Kolé) in advance, especially during busy periods. The Baobab scores extra points for the fact that guests may cross over to the other hotels, and therefore a wider range of facilities is available to them. The hotel also boasts its own 24 hour taxi service.

    Equipment

    • Car park
    • Handicap access
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      massage, beauty salon, sauna, hammam, stretching, keep fit, spa, Turkish bath, wellness

    • Swimming pool
    • Sports equipment

      tennis, gym, aqua gym, aerobics, volleyball, beach volley, basketball, golf, sailing, kayak, step, archery, water-polo, fitness

    • Hairdresser
    • Whirlpool bath
    • Safe
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • Friendly staff
    • The dynamic and energetic animation team
    • Lovely, well cared for gardens

    disadvantages

    • Standard rooms need to be "freshened up"
    • Gym fees

    Traveller Reviews

    4
    • Overall Score nc/10
    •  Anonyme. Anonyme.  
      1 Opinions
      • Package deals in août 2012 Posted on 2013-12-09 Seul - Une semaine et plus (Chambre avec vue)

        excellent hotel et bonne prestation. la plage est juste sublime

      • Advantages

        service hotel plage

      • Disavantages

        les singes chapardeurs lol

      • Infrastructure
      • Logement
      • Situation
      • Restauration
      • Sports / Loisirs
      • Animation
      • Qualité / Prix
      • Overall Score 9.50/10
    • Emilie M. Emilie M.  
      1 Opinions
      • Package deals in septembre 2011 Posted on 2013-09-18 Seul - Une semaine et plus (Chambre avec vue)

        top très agréable et belle vues sur le rif

      • Advantages

        buffets très complets barrière de corail coin détente spa très calme chambre spacieuse plage au pied de l'hôtel piscines agréables

      • Disavantages

        singes un peu trop présents personnes faisant du troc ou autre sur la plage de l'hôtel un peu trop présentes!!!

      • Infrastructure
      • Logement
      • Situation
      • Restauration
      • Sports / Loisirs
      • Animation
      • Qualité / Prix
      • Overall Score 7.50/10
    • Jonathan C. Jonathan C.  
      2 Opinions
      • Package deals in octobre 2011 Posted on 2013-07-12 Seul - Une semaine et plus (Chambre avec vue)

        Un excellent hôtel avec une plage magnifique et des prestations de qualités. Je le recommande!

      • Advantages

        alimentation nombres de piscines plages chambres

      • Disavantages

        un peu loin de tout singes beach boy sur la plage un peu collant

      • Infrastructure
      • Logement
      • Situation
      • Restauration
      • Sports / Loisirs
      • Animation
      • Qualité / Prix
      • Overall Score 8.00/10
    • Martine C. Martine C.  
      1 Opinions
      • Package deals in septembre 2011 Posted on 2011-10-19 En couple - 3 à 5 nuitées (Chambre avec vue)

        hotel superbe. restauration variée et de belle qualité. equipe d'animation au top. cadre de reve au bord de l'ocean indien.

      • Advantages

        que du positif. seul regret une semaine c'est trop court. il y a tellement de choses a faire. a conseiller le safari sur 2 jours

      • Disavantages

        absolument aucun sauf le prix des sorties achetées a la carte via l hotel aux tours operators

      • Infrastructure
      • Logement
      • Situation
      • Restauration
      • Sports / Loisirs
      • Animation
      • Qualité / Prix
      • Overall Score 9.43/10
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