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Reviewed 23 March 2021

My best ever game drives. Very experienced and friendly Ranger. The tent was great, food very high quality, friendly staff.

I flew in on a private aeroplane with my wife and they were there waiting for us at the airstrip. A very smooth experience.

I'm thinking of going back for the Wildebeest migration.

Excellent value for money.

Nothing was too much trouble for

Date of stay: March 2021
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank HornyViking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rami Serhal, General Manager at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara, responded to this reviewResponded 24 March 2021

Dear HornyViking,

Thank you for the taking the time to review and rate your recent experience at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara.
My team and I are very pleased to read you had a super safari with us and we look forward to hosting you for the Migration.

Best Regards
Rami Serhal
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 March 2021

In the time we stayed in Kempinski Olare Mara we had the best time of our Life.
Thanks to Danson and Moses and all the Camp guys. We booked 8 days but stayed 14. We recieved an upgrade to a pool tent and every day the cook ased what we would like to eat. Food was perfect and very delicious. Our game drives started when we wanted (not early 6.30am) . So we could sleep a little longer even when the hippos wake us up very early. The amazing wildlife is close to the camp and every day was a new highlight. Thanks again Oliver and Inna

Room tip: If you choose a tent close to the hippo pool it can be loud at night
Date of stay: March 2021
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Family-Kargus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rami Serhal, General Manager at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara, responded to this reviewResponded 15 March 2021

Dear Family-Kargus,

I am so very pleased to read that you decided to stay with us for 14 days instead of the 8 initial days that you booked, that clearly is an indication of the lovely stay that you had at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara.
My team and I are delighted to receive all your kind words on your experience with us, and we look forward to hosting you once again in the very near future.

Best Regards
Rami Serhal
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2021 via mobile

Our stay at the Olare Mara Kempinski has been absolutely spectacular! The camp is situated right next to a river where there are plenty of hippos that roam around. Every game drive has had spectacular sightings from a huge pride of lions, to cheetahs, to a lepoard and her cubs and even mating lions. The hot water bags at night are an absolute treat in the crispy cold night.
Our tent is spacious and absolutely luxurious! Every detail is taken care of. Eric the guide has made such a massive effort to spot the animals and he is sooo good. Dominic Sakut the manager Has made our stay very comfortable and special.
Our meals have been beautifully made and every dietary care has been taken care of by the staff, especially Moses and Michel. The chef makes some fabulous food. I would 100% recommend staying here and experience glamping in the mara!

Date of stay: March 2021
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank Shaheheh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rami Serhal, General Manager at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara, responded to this reviewResponded 12 March 2021

Dear Shaheheh,

Thank you for the five star rating on your recent experience at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara.
My team and I are glad to read you had an exceptional stay and enjoyed the game drives, comforts of your tent and the overall service.
I will also share your kind words regarding dining in the bush with Chef and his team.
We look forward to hosting you once again in the Masai Mara and thank you for recommending Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara.

Best Regards
Rami Serhal
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2021 via mobile

Wow. What a scam. At $850 a night what a con... there are places that charge 10% of that in the Mara that are way much better.
So, we book a 3 night stay to spend the new years, based on the Kempinski group flyer and correspondence with their sales team in Nairobi going back to November. The razz matazz sweetness that sales staff pitch we were hooked and seeing its a kempinski brand, you can't go wrong right????
Haha were we fooled.
So we arrive at the lodge after passing through cattle and goats. And I mean herds of them... to the left, to the right, infront of you, driving through them... oh its a private conservancy all right, but overflowing with livestock. No wonder we never saw any animals, and only a few weeks later authorities killed a lion cos it attacked a herdsboy and his cattle. Anyways thats a story for another day.
So we drive through overgrazed plains with the stench of cow manure everywhere. Not an animal in sight. Not even a zebra.
We get to the lodge /camp and find 5 maasai clad men waiting at the entrance chatting away in their mother tongue and laughing. Now I dont know who they are but I presume they work at the camp...
I still don't know. So I remove all my luggage from the vehicle whilst they and some office staff watch. My wife heads on in and finally someone moves by baggage to the side.
As I walk in the assistant manager has already finished briefing my wife. He looks at my face and tells me (and this is the first thing he has said to me), "you must wear your mask at all times. We are very strict about covid".
Umm ok... yet the entire 24hours I was there i didn't see one other guests wearing a mask. There was a family of some morrocans or French ppl who numbered like 9 or 10 no one was in a mask. But hey ok.
So we are told room is not ready wait.
Already I'm sensing something is wrong.
We tell this guy Dan, the Assistant (Ass.) Manager that whats the story with game drives. He says he will brief us later.
So we wait. Whilst we wait I'm.asked to write in a book what I expect from the camp. I do. I never see anything.
Fast forward.
We had clearly requested on our booking voucher after reading someones review on TA that we didn't want room no 1, near the staff quarters and generator cos of the noise...

Lo and behold we are given room number 1!!!! Seriously??
I refuse and ask for another room. Lodge has maybe 14 guests maximum, they give us another room.

We move towards our room and we are told be ready for game drive at 4. We say we do not want to do afternoon game drive but want night game drive as we were told its possible.. Ass.Manager says not possible. We must go at 4pm. I ask if because of covid are we getting our own vehicle.. he says no, we will share one with 3 adults and 1 child..I ask how on earth is that being covid compliant. He has no answer. I refuse saying we cannot be grouped with people we don't know and that to 4 pax, making 6 pax in a car. Every other camp in the mara does a maximum of 4 pax during covid.

We leave. Manager comes and assures us he will arrange night game drive as well.
Room is fine..massive. some wear and tear, mould in the shower area, torn tent but....and its the only place in the whole of mara where I have seen a property with a padlock on the tent. Wonder why..??. can't be the monkeys with tent opening skills...

We go for lunch. There is no table for us. Waiters busy pouring over the foreign looking clients. We are asked whether we are guests???
Seriously!!!
After lunch of green grams and rice no one tells us about the game drive. We call the sales agent to tell them that there is no communication from anyone. They promise to call back. 26 phone calls later, over 24 hours (major issues) they didn't pick half our calls and when they did promised to call back. It never happened.

Manager shows up in the afternoon and assures us we don't have to do afternoon game drive we can do night from 7pm to 830pm as vehicle is not available and we have to wait for afternoon game drive group to come back by 630pm.

No vehicle available!!!!!

He says His assistant to communicate to us.

At 3pm thinking we can have a siesta we are interrupted by motorised grass cutting machines cutting grass outside the tents. Massive noise for like 15 min. We call reception to ask if they can cut the grass later. They will look into it. It continues.
430pm we decide to shower. No water.
No water in a $850 a night hotel??
Ring reception again. They will send someone.
15 min later there is water.

We head to reception at 615pm. We ask if we are ready to go as no one has informed us. Ass. Manager tells us we have to wait. There is no vehicle. They will be back at 630pm.

Manager comes at 615pm, apologies for everything. Assures us he is giving us best guide for a night game drive
700pm to 830pm and we catch up for dinner.

Guide comes at 645pm drops off afternoon clients. We leave at 7pm sitting in a relic of a vehicle. Literally no leg space at all.No sanitizer no nothing, covid doesn't exist.
No introduction nothing at all by the guide. Most unprofessional experience in almost 15 years of me visiting the mara.

In fact the armed ranger guide who came along was the only one who interacted.. I have no idea how the guide is considered the best... a joke.
Game drive begins. Hardly any animals
1 elephant..
We drive around the camp area as you can see the red aerial beacon light the whole time
We are back to the camp in 46 minutes. 46min!!!!!!!

The manager comes us at dinner and tells us, "in spite of the heavy cost, we have decided to allocate you a vehicle for your sole use for tomorrow game drives".
I never asked for anything free.
No one even discussed anything.
He is so condescending. We tell him about the game drive being only 46 min, he says nothing.
We are so disappointed. Next morning no one informs us about the game drive.
No wake up call no information whatsoever.
We go for breakfast, no one has told us anything about what we do where we go, game drives or anything. Meet some other guests who are complaining about seeing no animals in 2 days.
We go back to the reception and ask about the game drives
The assistant manager rudely says the car is there u can use it.
Never have we felt so cheated, or scammed. No communication no public relations, nothing.

All lies and empty promises from the sales team in Nairobi to the management at Kempinski to the mara management.

I request for a refund. I even propose I stay at the camp and not do game drives, they refund me that.
They tell me they will look into it.
2 hours later no one has spoken to us. I mean can you imagine your spending a new years eve holiday and going through this nonsense!!!??

At 10.15am the Nairobi office call me and tell me the management have refused to give a refund and its a take it or leave it situation.
We check out from Mara Kempinski 30 min later.

No one, not one single person even bothered to resolve the matter or offer a solution.
$2500 of ours they keep.

We check out from the lodge ourselves, no interaction or assistance from the management and leave

The manager rings me up around 5 hours later and tells me there is nothing they can do and wishes us the best.

If your reading this I implore you, do not stay here. If you love wildlife, stay away from this area. If you want luxury there are over 100 other camps much better

Unless you have personal connections with the dodgy management or have never been on safari in your whole life you may get fooled into believing its a worthy stay, but after what I went through i can never visit this place again or even remotely recommend it.

Stay away
Rather you donate the $850 to the local community.

And to the Management who never even bothered to enquire or follow up or even contact me
I have emails, call records, screenshots and pictures so before you try and discredit my review, you know the truth and how you conned us out of a holiday.....

Date of stay: December 2020
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
3  Thank Kenyandes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rami Serhal, General Manager at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara, responded to this reviewResponded 17 February 2021

Dear Kenyandes,

Thank you very much for sharing your experience at the Olare Mara Kempinski.
I am sad to read your recent review regarding your last stay in December 2020.
This is definitely not the safari moments that we would like our guests who stay with us to experience, and I am sure you can see this from all the reviews that our guests have shared.
We would be happy to connect with you personally on your time with us, please do get in touch with us via the contact :-
margaret.kinyanjui@kempinski.com
My team and I look forward to hearing from you.

Best Regards
Rami Serhal
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2021

The tour guides both Alex and Eric they both are one of the best tour guides I have ever seen they drive so well they both know all the characteristic of the animal and because of both of them we saw all the animals, like on the first day we saw "Fig" The leopard, Honeymoon lion and lioness and also saw different species of birds the whole place has a whole awesome different vibes it's just epic ama say more than 5/5 and just an amazing experience to stay @olaremarakempinski

Another thing that we liked was the food it was epic af all because of chef David and Bernard and also the waiters both kelvin, Moses, Micheal they serve well and both are experts at their job...

Also not to forget the tents or rooms they are well equipped and well furnished and their beds are well cleaned and their camps are so big and well kept and also lastly their lounge area is well designed together with the dining area and all in all I would like to say that this words are less to explain the beauty of this Conservancy and all the staff which are lovely❤❤ and caring...

Waiting to come here again to have an amazing experience with lovely people aroun us

LASTLY thank you @olaremarakempinski for having us hoping to come again

Date of stay: February 2021
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank yash_200418
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rami Serhal, General Manager at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara, responded to this reviewResponded 14 February 2021

Dear yash_200418,

Thank you for taking the time to review and rate your recent experience at Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara.
I am very pleased to read you had an amazing stay with us.
Thank you for commending the team. It's always such a pleasure to learn that our guests have enjoyed their safari moments with us.
Yes, indeed our conservancy, is a beautiful gem in the Masai Mara.
We look forward to hosting you once again in the coming days.

Best Regards
Rami Serhal
General Manager

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