Msambweni Beach House
Diani, Lamu and the coast, Kenya
At a Glance
Enjoy romantic beach dinners on a secluded stretch of paradise
Sample the ocean’s freshest and finest food, all prepared by a celebrity Belgian chef
Take a plunge in to the 14-metre infinity pool overlooking the Indian Ocean
Free yourself of tension with a beach-side massage
Take to the water in February and March to snorkel with majestic whale sharks
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
Msambweni House is closed in May.
The rainy season on the Kenyan Coast is generally May/June. So from July onward the weather is gradually getting hotter and dryer until March/April when it reaches the high 90's (over 40 degrees C). Christmas/New Year is generally considered the peak season and the weather is lovely then with constant sunshine and gentle off shore breezes. If you want clear seas for diving then make your trip after August/September.
Msambweni Beach House is a wonderfully secluded beach house, south of Diani Beach, Kenya. Offering a chic Swahili style, fabulous food and miles of palm-fringed beach, Msambweni Beach House is incredibly relaxing and perfect for a Kenya beach honeymoon.
Msambweni House is set in a quiet, unspoilt location surrounded by 28 acres of private land, on the Southern Kenyan coast. The house has its own 700 feet of beach which is part of a four mile palm-fringed sandy coastline.
Msambweni House is uncompromisingly luxurious. It is family owned and run exclusive house with three spacious and luxurious suites and two smaller rooms on the second floor. The house can be sold on an exclusive basis together with the luxury tented room located just outside. There is a gorgeous 25-metre infinity pool and a jetty, which provides the perfect spot for sundowners.
The three Lamu Villas are separate from the main house and are ideal for those looking for complete privacy. With your own private pool and Jacuzzi looking out to the Indian Ocean as well as a butler, chef and waiter, you will not want to leave your room.
With good home-cooked food and wonderful service, Msambweni House and Villas is a superb rustic beach retreat, for those wanting to relax and do very little.
The Main House has six rooms, three master rooms which have air conditioning , en-suite bathrooms and private verandas and two rooms upstairs which are naturally cooled by the sea breeze also with their own bathroom and veranda. Additionally, there is a tented room right beside the house which sleeps two.
The three Lamu Villas both sleep two adults with an additional two children upstairs.
The Master bedroom is air-conditioned and both the Lamu villas have their own swimming pool and private Jacuzzi overlooking the sea.
Children of all ages are most welcome at Msambweni House and Villas. There are no specific child care facilities but babysitting can easily be arranged. It is possible to tailor food requirements to children's tastes and arrange for earlier meal times if required. The coast of Kenya is a wonderful place for a family holiday with calm safe waters, endless activities and plenty of cultural interaction to inspire children.
The house’s main facilities include a beautiful dining area, serving a range of Swahili, Belgian and French cuisine. There is also a large infinity pool with a winding jetty ending in the perfect sun-downer spot on a cliff overlooking the Indian Ocean. There is a treatment room on the beach for pampering and kayaks and bicycles on offer too.
Msambweni House and villas are fully staffed including chefs taught by a celebrity Belgian Chef who offer a range of Swahili, Belgian and French cuisine. A babysiting/child minding service can be arranged. There are guides on hand to take you on excursions to visit the nearby Msambweni village or to the Shimba Hills.
From Msambweni there are plenty of activities to chose from like snorkelling and fishing from either just off the jetty or further out by boat. Walking along the white sandy beach with a pre-arranged picnic is a favourite. A little further afield other activities can be arranged, including excellent scuba diving, kite surfing, golf or an excursion to the Shimba Hills to see elephants.
Louisa Ross-Taylor (Staff)
Msambweni House and Villas are found in a remote area to the south of Diani. For me the magic started on the last part of our drive there, as the (slightly bumpy) dirt road passed through many rural Kenyan villages. Msambweni is owner run and Frederick is passionate about working with and supporting the local community. One afternoon we took the mountain bikes out to the mangroves and then back through the meandering paths through the villages, with all the children greeting us like royalty as we went. We found a local artists house whom had recently come to their attention and popped into his and his friends houses to see his fascinating work, and had the pictures explained.
The food was all delicious and fresh and there are so many different places to eat in and around the hotels grounds. It was the most heavenly and relaxing stay.
Sarah Clegg (Staff)
Msambweni is a fair distance further from Diani than most properties in the area, about 1 hour drive south of Ukunda. This is, however, the essence of the place, and once you get onto the beach and look back up the beach you are quickly aware that there are none of the back to back large resorts of Diani further north.
There is not a lot to do here other than lie by the pool or down on the beach and relax, maybe breaking for a massage or a quick snorkel at high tide.
All the accommodation is extremely spacious. There are three villas, ranging in size, each with their own private pool, dining tables and great views. Around the communal area are three bedrooms in the main house, and a tented room with much more of a 'safari' feel to it. There's plenty of space throughout Msambweni for everyone, the staff are extremely welcoming and at hand to help.
Msambweni is perched high up on a cliff, a flight of steps access the beach below, and the views are beautiful out over the Indian Ocean. However, the style is typically Kenyan in its laid back character. Do not expect the same sort of attention to detail as is available at other resorts, but if well and truly getting away from it all is what you are after Msambweni could be just right.
Children under 16 are not allowed in the main house, and under 12 are not allowed at all, with the lack of a range of activities and the style of the accommodation, this is probably appropriate, so this is very much an option for couples only.
Camilla Smith (Staff)
The last 20 minute drive into Msambweni in down a long and bumpy track, you begin to ask yourselves where on earth you are going. However this really is part of the experience and the general feel of being completely isolated at Msambweni. The hotel is positioned on a remote beach with only a few other residential houses in the vicinity. It is completely different to the feel of Diani which is about 40 minutes away which is busy and has a number of large hotels. Msambweni is the most wonderful place for the more relaxed guest looking to completely unwind and get away from it all. There is very little to do at the property itself. Spend your days lying on the beach or around the pool, walking along the beach, swimming, they do have some cycles to explore the area a little, wander into the local village and see the community projects, have massages from the local masseuse, but other than that any diving, snorkelling, fishing or golf is about an hours drive away.
The atmosphere at Msambweni is relaxed and informal, the staff really could not be more friendly with beaming smiles and plenty of laughter.
Everyone joins in the evenings at sunset for cocktails around the fire before dining separately for dinner. Dinners are positioned in different areas each night and made to feel a really special event.
This is not a Mauritian style hotel in terms of accommodation and service, it has a very Kenyan feel with warm hospitality, local service and plenty of interaction with the staff. I absolutely loved it, but Msambweni is not for everyone.
Location & directions
Diani, Lamu and the coast, Kenya
Msambweni Beach House is in a quiet, unspoilt, unique setting on the beach surrounded by 28 acres of natural land. Located about forty five minutes south from Diani Beach, on the coast, South of Mombasa in Kenya.
How to get there
Flights to Mombasa via Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), take 11-hours 30-minutes. Msambweni House is approximately a 1-hour 30-minute drive from Mombasa. Alternatively you can charter a flight to the nearby airstrip.
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