Image of Baobab Beach Resort & Spa

Baobab Beach Resort & Spa

2 of 12 hotels in Diani

5 out of 5 from 2 reviews
4 stars
P.O. Box 32, Ukunda 80400, Kenya
Baobab Beach Resort & Spa is set in 80 acres of tropical garden, with amazing views of the Indian Ocean. This hotel is located right on Dani beach and hosts three stunning properties to choose from, the Kole Kole, the Baobab and the Maridadi. As one of Kenya’s leading all-inclusive resorts guests rooms are a luxurious treat for all guests.

2 Reviews

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Review Overview

  • Cleanliness
  • Entertainment
  • Food
  • Service
  • Location
Dave Edwards
Lovely hotel for a Winter break
11 years 8 months ago
Stayed at the Baobab for 12 days at the end of October 2012. We were in the Maridadi wing and had a ground floor room 2002.Little disappointed that the "sea view" we had paid for, was a distant glimpse through the trees and over the Maridadi pools and restaurants, but the room itself was extremely comfortable with a huge bathroom. It was kept very clean and tidy and there was always plenty of hot water plus the air conditioning worked extremely well. Also 4 sports channels on the TV, which was great to watch whilst waiting for the OH to dry her hair!

The Maridadi pool was always quiet and we never had a problem getting well positioned sunbeds as long as we were out and about by 10am. The other pools in the complex looked very nice ,the original Baobab pool is a little small when busy but OK, but the day we tried out the Kole Kole pool, it was extremely crowded, VERY noisy and a lot of the clients seemed to be chain smokers.

The beach was absolutely beautiful and great for a morning walk when the tide was out -also great for a swim at high tide - but as many others have said, you need to be very thick skinned to stay on the beach sunbathing as you are targeted by innumerable beach boys trying to sell excursions, safaris watches and attract you to the trinket stores.

Food was generally very good in both buffet restaurants, although we preferred the Maridadi buffet as it was much quieter than the main Karibu buffet. In my opinion, the a la carte restaurant, Marhaba, is overpriced - it would be more worthwhile with a bigger discount offered to the hotel AI guests.

The most disappointing aspect was the hard sell of the "romantic" beach barbeque; some people we got friendly with during the holiday were persuaded to take up the offer - but reported that the food was OK but not worth an extra £80+ -and it was definitely not romantic as tickets had been sold to family groups with young kids who ran around the tables all evening!!!

Service was exceptional everywhere - porters, waiting staff, bar staff, reception - absolutely no complaints on that front.

Paid for a few hours internet access - very good signal in the main block but a bit flakey down in the Maridadi bar area - 7 euros for 4 hours to be used within 72 hours.

Overall, a hotel I would definitely consider favourably if we visit Kenya again and one that I would recommend.
12 years 8 months ago
The hotel is located in the resort known as Diani Beach, the resort is approx an hour and a half from Mombasa Airport and involves a ferry crossing, however the transfer can be considerably longer depending on how long you have to wait on the ferry, our out bound transfer took us about 2 hours.

It is worth noting that Kenya has a lot of poverty and you WILL witness this en-route to the hotel, if you think this will upset you or ruin your holiday in anyway then I suggest perhaps you don’t visit the country.
However it is a fact which you have to accept and appreciate that by visiting the country and staying in hotels and tipping the staff or going on a safari or buying any items you are helping the locals and putting some money in to the economy.

On arrival at the hotel we were met by staff with towels to refresh ourselves and a welcoming drink, some of the animation team were there singing and dancing and showering us with petals from flowers.
Check-in was done quickly despite there being a power failure (the only one during our stay I must add) in the Baobab section of the resort.

The hotel is split in to 3 sections, the Baobab, the Kole Kole and the newest section the Maridadi and as we were there for our 30th wedding anniversary we were upgraded in to the Kole Kole section which has its own reception and check-in.

After you have checked in the porters will carry your luggage to your room so have a couple of hundred Kenyan Shillings as a tip available if possible. The porters will explain how the TV, air-conditioning etc all work.

One thing to point out which is also explained in resort is NOT to leave your balcony door open at any time, even if you are in the room, the monkeys WILL come in and steal stuff from the room, the sugar from the tea making facilities appears to be a favourite along with anything else they can get a hold of. There are mesh fly screen that slide over the gap when the balcony doors are open so if you want a bit of air use them.

Remember when I am talking about the room I am talking about our room in the Kole Kole, there are several different class (standard) of rooms available within Kole Kole and all other sections of the hotel too.

Our Kole Kole room was large and exactly as we had wished for, entering the bright and airy room there was located to the right a toilet area with bidet and vanity area including a basket of toiletries, soap, shower cap, moisturiser etc, to the left was the more than adequate wardrobe and storage space including a free safe. Also located on this side was a huge shower enclosure with dispensers for shampoo and shower gel which are topped up daily.
This area of the room is sectioned off from the main area of the room by a dividing low wall.

Entering the main area of the room again this was very spacious with a large king-size four poster bed, a seating area with table and chairs and a dressing table which has a free of charge fridge located within it.

There is a 40 inch flat screen LCD television with several dozen channels including sport and English channels.

Tea & coffee making facilities are provided in the room with a kettle and sachets of tea / coffee / sugar / sweetener provided and replenished on a daily basis, bottled water is also provided daily.

Out on to the large balcony you have a couple of chairs and a table along with a double bed size lounger, very nice.
Be aware that you will have regular visits from monkeys on to the balcony who will steal any food or drinks you leave unattended or try and get in to the room if you leave the door or screen open.

The house keeping of the room was first class with the room cleaned daily along with any toiletries used replaced and bottled water replenished. The house keeping team work very hard and come round again in the early evening (from about 19:30 onwards) and provide a turn down service, when you come back to your room at night, curtains are drawn closed, the bedside lamps are on to welcome you in and the bed has been turned down, not only that but the room has had another service with bins emptied, new clean towels, more bottled water etc. A very nice touch indeed.

As I mentioned at the start of my review there are three different sections to the Baobab Resort, however you are free to use the pools, facilities and restaurants in any of the three sections.

From what I could see the sections are split roughly in to guest geographical areas, the Kole Kole where we were located is mainly Italian, the Baobab is mainly British and the Maridadi is mainly German, obviously there is a mix of other nationalities spread throughout.

Each section has its own pool and bar area which you are free to use no matter what section your room is in, the Kole Kole has a lovely infinity pool with ample sunbeds and umbrellas providing shade either beside it or on the grass areas to the side of the main pool area overlooking the Indian Ocean, there are a couple of nice secluded sunbeds in this area.

The pool bar here is called the Kipepeo and located beside it is a snack bar which serves (I think) Pizza, chips, cakes, sandwiches.

The animation team will have events including volleyball, aerobics, water polo, etc running in this area during the morning up until twelve and then again from 15:00.

The Baobab pool is located in the centre of the resort and this area overlooks the Indian Ocean, again there is a large bar located here which also becomes the main bar in the evening. One thing to point out is that there are no umbrellas provided here and you have to get shade from tree cover.
Again the animation team have a programme of events running in this pool so it can be busy at certain times.

The pool at the Maridadi is what you would call the quiet pool, no music or animation events are played here. This pool was my favourite, a bit larger than the other two and also split over 3 levels cascading from one down in to the next, there is also a real pool bar here where you can swim up and sit and have a drink if you so wished. Once again plenty of sunbeds with umbrellas to provide some shade in this area.

Each pool has its own towel station where you can get fresh clean towels whenever you want them, you are issued a card for this and a small charge is made should you lose it.

I will just mention that all the pools are kept spotlessly clean and you see the water quality getting tested regularly throughout the day.

Each pool has a bar located beside it providing the usual AI style local drinks, Lager, wine (red & white) whisky, gin, vodka, brandy etc, you also have a small list of cocktails including what was my favourite, a local drink called Dawa.

Soft drinks include lemonade (Sprite), cola including cola light, decent coffee including cappuccino and espresso are made to order in the bars. All drinks are signed for, no wristbands are worn.

The pool bars at the Maridadi and the Baobab also double as a sit in style bar while there is a separate dedicated bar located beside the Kole Kole pool.

There are again 3 AI restaurants located beside each pool serving lunch & dinner, it is worth noting that each restaurant has a different feel and ambiance to it however it is the same food that is served in each restaurant. We tended to mainly eat dinner in the Jodari as we preferred it, this was perhaps because it was the first one we used, I did over hear other guests commenting that they preferred a different one, so each to their own preference so try them all and see which you prefer.

The restaurants are all self-service buffet style with a very wide choice of food available from the many different cooking stations.

A large choice of items available at breakfast that include fresh fruit and freshly squeezed fruit juice, cereals, yogurts and cooked foods including sausages, bacon, eggs (various types made to order) crepes, pancakes various pastries etc.

Again a large selection of foods available for lunch, starting with 2 different soups, moving on to a choice of salads, then a large selection available from all the cooking stations that change on a daily basis then finishing with a large choice of puddings and desserts / cakes.

Again following the same style with various starters and dishes from the many cooking stations and selection of desserts.

There are regular theme nights with foods that reflect the theme of the evening.

The waiting staff (particularly the staff in the Jodari in our opinion) are excellent and very attentive and will happily get your drinks and refills and generally look after you during your meal.

The waiting staff will get your tea & coffee, there are also various herbal teas available ask for or make your own Masala Chai tea using the supplied Cardamom, Cloves & Cinnamon sticks, very nice.

There is afternoon tea / coffee & cakes served at 4 o’clock in the bars, you still have the other snacks available all day.

You also have the option of dining in a couple of A La Carte restaurants where guests on AI receive a 20% discount on the final bill.

A special meal dining option is available on the beach where you have a BBQ and food cooked down on the beach with tables set up on the sand, not cheap but a nice way to finish your holiday or for a romantic evening.

Afya Bora Wellness Clun & Spa offering a variety of treatments including massage, body scrub, pedicure, manicure, facials, hairdressing. Steam room, hydro bath, gym etc all at reasonable prices.

Amphitheatre where the evening entertainment is performed by the animation team. The animation team put a lot of work in to their performances, to be honest some work well and are good while others are nothing special.
Try and see their production of The Lion King which one of if not the best and shouldn’t be missed.

Tennis Courts and equipment hire is available beside the amphitheatre.

All the grounds and public areas are kept immaculately clean and well maintained, the toilets in the public areas are spotless.

Dotted around the hotel in various locations are double bed sized four poster loungers which are nice for having a relaxing drink, again the waiters will come round and take orders and look after you.

Exchange facilities are available in the hotel at the reception or if you are out in nearby Diani you have access to banks there.

On site you have several shops, there is a fixed price hotel shop located at the Kole Kole and close to the amphitheatre there are a few small shops selling locally produced tourist type items, you can haggle over the prices here.

SCUBA Diving and windsurfing also on site and golf can be arranged locally.

The hotel is set on a fantastic beach with beautiful sand that stretches for miles and crystal clears waters of the Indian Ocean.
The beach sellers can be a bit of a pest approaching you and walking beside you particularly if you look as though you have just arrived. You just get rid of one when another arrives, but hey that is part of the experience and if you don’t want to talk to them just ask them to leave you in peace.

If you walk along the beach going left out of the hotel you will come to a fun beach bar called Forty Thieves which makes a nice change with live music, oh and if you really want a Sunday Roast they also do that.

There are security guards all around the hotel and also watching over the beach area in front of the hotel so you are perfectly safe.

If you want to go a bit further afield take a taxi or there is a bus (not for the faint hearted) stop at the gate of the hotel and go in to Diani which is about 7 minutes away, here you will find a small shopping centre and other shops, supermarket and banks.

I know that many of you will be going to Kenya and going on a safari, in Diani you will find many companies selling safari’s, I can personally recommend a company called EKEA Safari’s.
We used EKEA Safaris based in Diani and had a fantastic time, remember there are many Safari companies so it is worth shopping around and getting exactly what you want with a company you feel comfortable with.

Now I have to mention a particular restaurant that if you really want to go for a special meal must not be missed, Ali Barbours Cave Restaurant in Diani, WOW.
This must be one of the most spectacular setting for a restaurant and both the service and food were first class while not being overly expensive, I cannot recommend a visit highly enough.

If you want to go to Ali Barbours you need to book in advance, just go to the reception at the Baobab and they will arrange it for you, Ali Barbours will pick you up at the hotel and drop you off again whenever you are ready.

Just a couple more points worth mentioning, The Kenyans, now we have travelled to many destinations worldwide and I have to say that the Kenyans have made a lasting impression on us for their lovely friendly attitude, we met some absolutely lovely people who couldn’t do enough for us without once giving the impression they were doing it for a tip.

Talking of tips, please, please try and give a tip, it doesn’t matter how small every little really does help.

One last thing, you will be greeted ALL the time by JAMBO, this is hello and it is considered rude not to reply or say Jambo, you will find yourself saying Jambo dozens of time throughout the day.

Did we enjoy our holiday?

This was one of if not the most fantastic holidays ever, the hotel, the staff , the Safari, the people we met made this a truly memorable holiday and I would highly recommend both Kenya and the Baobab to you all.

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