Just a few hundred meters down the road from the home of Out of Africa author Karen Blixen (also known as Isak Dinesen), the House of Waine is an 11-room luxury boutique hotel that melds traditional English design with the spirit of modern Africa. It is located on 2.5 acres in a quiet residential area of Nairobi and is close to many art and craft galleries, two wildlife sanctuaries, and Nairobi National Park.
House of Waine has spacious grounds with beautifully maintained gardens where guests can stroll or enjoy a sundowner cocktail as the warm dusk descends on Nairobi’s wooded outskirts.
A quick walk or drive takes you to the Karen Blixen Museum, where you may enjoy tours of the author’s home and view original furnishings, coffee farming equipment, and extraordinary lawn and garden. A little farther are the Karen Blixen Coffee Gardens, which are centered around the former home of Blixen’s coffee farm manager. They are a wonderful place to enjoy afternoon tea or coffee.
If you’re more interested in wildlife than history, try the Giraffe Center to feed and pet a giraffe, as well as learn about efforts to conserve the endangered Rothschild giraffe. At the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Orphans’ Project, you can visit with baby and juvenile elephants that are being rehabilitated to live in the wild. Or spend a day at Nairobi National Park, which is one of Kenya’s most successful rhinoceros sanctuaries.
Rooms at House of Waine include satellite television, air conditioning, a marble bathroom, complimentary non-alcoholic drinks and daily pastries, and a coffee-making station with freshly ground coffee and milk delivered daily. Each bedroom is individually styled to reflect a different aspect of the local culture and environment. Facilities include a swimming pool and pavillion, two bars, dining terraces, a dining room, guest lounge and gorgeous gardens.