The Ole Sereni located near the Nairobi Airport is much more than an airport hotel. Host to Prince William and Kate Middleton on the night after their engagement, the hotel is literally fit for a king. Not only does it boast a royal following but it is the only city hotel in the world located on a game park. If its royal heritage doesn’t woe you, the view from the pool will.
Located just minutes from the Nairobi airport, the Ole Sereni hotel is one of the most unique airport hotels in the world. The main reason being that Nairobi, Kenya, is the only city to have a game park within the city limits. As we drove out of the Nairobi airport, my son exclaimed “Look a giraffe!”. I tried to calm his excitement and told him we wouldn’t be seeing any giraffes just yet. He smiled and said “Not a giraffe. Three!”. There, in a field not 50 feet away, stood the first of many wild animals we would encounter in Kenya. As we drove up to the gates of the hotel, I knew we had found the perfect family friendly luxury hotel in Nairobi, Kenya.
As I researched out trip to Kenya, I found a few references to the Ole Sereni. Most of them told of the night Prince William and Kate Middleton came to stay. Instead of staying within the downtown core of Nairobi, Will and Kate headed to the Ole Sereni which dubs itself a “luxury airport hotel.” As we entered the building, I could see why.
The hotel stands on its own with very little surrounding it. The back of the hotel looks out onto a watering hole in the Nairobi National Park. From our room, we could see ostriches playing in the morning and animals settling in for the night. The lobby areas are large and welcoming while the pool deck hosts live music with the Nairobi National Park as a backdrop.
Will and Kate raved about the service and view but will the Ole Sereni be a good fit for families looking for a family friendly luxury hotel in Nairobi, Kenya? We think so.
What Works for Families
- The pool area is extremely family friendly. The pool is small but warm and there is a shallow childrens’ pool for smaller children to splash in. The live music is kid friendly and a lot of fun. There is poolside food and beverage service which comes quickly.
- The rooms are clean and have a full bathroom as well as a sitting room that looks out onto the park. Like most hotels in Kenya, the rooms only have two twin beds or one king size bed so families of four will need to split up into two rooms.
- There are several dining options at the hotel including a buffet restaurant, a cafe and poolside service. The highlight of our stay was dining at Eagle’s, a fine dining steakhouse. The staff welcomed our children with open arms as we enjoyed incredible local dishes with a view of the sun setting over the park.
- The hotel can arrange transport to and from the airport.
- The staff is incredibly friendly and welcoming.
- On Sundays, the hotel hosts a family day with bouncy castles for kids.
What Doesn’t Work for Families
- As mentioned above, if there are more than three people in your party, you will need to book two rooms. This is standard in Kenya but still hard to take. While Will and Kate enjoyed a top floor jacuzzi suite, even the biggest rooms only come with sleeping space for two. Adjoining rooms can be requested but are not guaranteed.
- The hotel is close to the airport but not much else. Don’t expect to walk and explore from the hotel. You will need to catch a taxi to get to the gates of Nairobi National Park.
Fit For Royalty
If anyone knows quality hotels, it’s clearly Will and Kate. With unexpected amenities like a gorgeous spa and gym with personal trainers, the Ole Sereni is a destination in itself. Whether passing through Nairobi on your way to a family safari or looking for somewhere within the city to experience the magic of a game park, the Ole Sereni a great choice for families looking for a family friendly luxury hotel in Nairobi, Kenya