We were on a family friends trip to the Amani Tiwi Beach Resort in Ukunda Diani Mombasa, the staff was very friendly and had a good reception,hotel still under renovation but was not very intrusive First impressions of the hotel were very good.
The entrance lobby is cool and airy, the reception staff friendly and the hotel itself very welcoming.
The hotel is approximately 1.5 hours from Mombasa airport with a short ferry crossing - an experience in itself!
Overview if this Hotel
My room was spacious, clean and airy. It had one queen size and one single bed, both with mosquito nets (which should be used!). There was a separate dressing area, seating area, separate w.c. and bathroom.
The rooms had air
conditioning and ceiling fan. Power cuts were a feature of the holiday and so I
would recommend that you leave your ceiling fan on as well as the air
conditioning when you leave the room because the air con stays off when the
power is resumed.
All rooms overlook the amazing pools. Each room had a balcony with table and chairs.
As Kenya is a malaria hotspot I would
recommend that travellers take a plug-in mosquito repellant and leave this
switched on all day and night.
Most rooms were equipped with a safe and telephone. Generally, the rooms were above average, and towels and sheets were changed regularly. 2 bottles of (sealed) mineral water are provided each day free of charge.
On check-in you are provided with a card which is exchanged for beach towels on a daily basis.
BEACH AND POOL
The pool is amazing, it consists of 3 large pools which are interconnected by narrow river-like channels and slides.
The beach is beautiful, sandy, plenty of shade via palm trees. There are plenty of (very heavy!) sunbeds and mattresses (which the staff bring you).
You run the gauntlet when the leave the sanctity of the private area of the beach because you are approached by local people selling spears, trips and jewellery.
However, the people are very polite and if you tell them you are not interested they (eventually) leave you alone. On the whole it did not spoil the beach experience for me.
I would recommend taking
beach shoes if you decide to swim in the sea - it is very rocky when the tide
is out and generally people used the pools to swim or cool off.
DRINKING AND DINING
The hotel operates a cashless system whereby you sign a slip of paper for any drinks, snacks, meals, you buy during your stay.
This is very useful as it avoids the need to carry cash with you. You settle
your bill at the end of your stay
The food is very good if you enjoy buffet type meals, with plenty of variety.
There is an indian, chinese, and italian restaurant where you can dine at no additional cost and a lovely seafood restaurant on the beach for which you pay extra. The seafood restaurant is definitely worth a visit.
ENTERTAINMENT AND STAFF
The entertainment can be repetitive (there is only so much masai dancing you can see in one holiday!), the acrobats were amazing, and the live bands fun.
The animation team (Howard, Victor, Rama,
Tony, Antonio, Linda and Damaris) are lovely and try very hard to keep you
entertained all day (they work approx 18 hrs per day in high season). Diamonds,
the nightclub on the site, is air conditioned but is usually under utilised
(which was a shame).
Daytime activities were good and varied. In fact you can be as active or lazy as your mood takes you. I would recommend the daily aqua-aerobics session.
The staff work very hard, are courteous and friendly and they really put themselves out to make your stay more pleasant.
Our New Year's Eve was amazing! A gala dinner, followed by cabaret, live band and then disco on the beach. It really was unforgettable and will be difficult to surpass!
During your stay guests are not expected or hassled by staff to tip. However, these people are paid very little (trainees are not paid at all for 4-6 months!) and are very grateful for any tips they receive.
We left a "group" tip which was distributed to all staff in their pay packets but also gave individual tips to trainees and staff who we considered were extra helpful during our stay.