Lifestyle

REVIEW: Sarova White Sands Mombasa

Comfort on the coast

The cool breeze and white sands of Kenya’s coast are truly unbeatable. There are hundreds of destinations to choose from, but Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa Mombasa is a classic. 

The Location

The resort’s location is a perfect mix of privacy and convenience. It’s quiet and removed from the hustle and bustle of Mombasa, but still a short distance from local bars and a 200KES tuk-tuk/car ride to Nyali Shopping Center.

When You Arrive…

You’ll be greeted by one of Sarova’s many helpful staff with a refreshing (non-alcoholic beverage). While you’re being checked-in you’ll be invited to take a seat on one of the Swahili-style couches. Feel free to wander around and look at the various tapestries hanging in the lobby, providing a glimpse of traditional coastal life. 

After check-in, you’ll be escorted to your room.  Sarova Mombasa does not have elevators, but luckily, the rooms sit no higher than the third floor, and staff will carry your bags to your room for you. 

The Rooms

The rooms are tastefully and carefully decorated. A standard pool-facing room is fashioned with pristine white walls, seafoam green chairs, and orange accent pillows. Be aware that rooms are charged per guest (see prices below).

Photo Credit: Sarova Whitesands
A 2 person garden room

Each room comes with drinking water, robes, slippers and standard toiletries. If you need something you can’t find in the room, guest services will bring it to you.

One of the best qualities of Sarova’s rooms is the large, soul-cleansing, waterfall shower. The water pressure is dreamlike and the water gets as hot as you can stand it.

What to do 

First, the resort is equipped with four different pools. One comes with a water slide and activities suitable for children, the other is a quiet pool for those who want to splash in peace, the next is a deeper pool for strong swimmers. The last, and our favorite,  is a beach-facing pool complete with a swim-up bar where the cocktails come as cool and refreshing as the water. 

Photo Credit: Sarova Whitesands
Pool-side drinks and snacks

Tea time is from 4-5 pm by the koi ponds. Tea, coffee, and a selection of pastries are on offer. If you’re in the mood, you can also play a quick game run by the resort’s entertainment staff. 

The resort is beachside, a feature that you’ll definitely want to take advantage of. It’s clean, pristine, and (partly) private. Be prepared to tell the escari your name and room number as you leave the resort’s gates and enter the white sands of the beach. The tide varies throughout the day, so the best time to go for a swim is anywhere from 7 am – 3 pm when the tide is just high enough.

Photo Credit: ThisNairobi
A view of the coast

You can also book water sports directly through the hotel. Options range from jet-skiing to glass boat rides. Both are affordable and easy to book with a simple call to the front desk or visit to the beachside booking center.

Meals

The dining room is beautiful. It’s covered with high ceilings and colorful chandeliers but still open air. 

Breakfast is from 7-10 am. The selection is to be expected: omelets made to order, pastries, potatoes, and Swahili-style breakfast options one day a week. 

Fresh fruit options are also served at every breakfast including 2 different types of fresh-squeezed juice and a smoothie. 

 Beware that as breakfast-goers clear out towards the end, the dining room is slightly over-run by the invasive Indian house crows. Never fear because security patrols the perimeter with slingshots ready to scare them away.

Dinner runs from 7 – 10 pm. The dinner selection varies from day-to-day. The general meal offering is a salad bar and cheese bar, Indian-food section, Kenyan food section, continental food, fish, and nyama (grilled meat), dessert, and ice cream. 

The meal selections are ample and delicious. The food wasn’t too oily, was fresh and the service was great.

The Cons

The nyama at the dinner buffet is delicious but be warned that if you like rare meat it will be hard to find. Almost all meat offerings are well-done. 

COVID19 has also added a few complications to life at Sarova. For example, at mealtimes, it is hard to communicate your requests to the chefs, as you are both required to wear masks and speak through a clear plastic guard. 

In addition, the pools close way too early, we assume it’s to give the staff a chance to go home (understandable). Still a pool that closes at 6 pm leaves little time for an evening swim. 

These minor inconveniences are understandable because of COVID, but we still had to mention them. 

Last, wifi quality is good, which can be hard to find on the coast. It will definitely suit your needs if you need to do a bit of work while on vacation. But, it is capped over a certain limit and will disconnect intermittently if you go over. 

All in all, we loved the experience. Sarova Whitesands Mombasas’ service is prompt and unbeatable, the staff is friendly and we felt truly relaxed upon our departure. 

The Price

How to Book

Call: +254 709 111 000

or

Book Online: https://reservations.sarovahotels.com

Find out more here.

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