The Ocean Spa Lodge
A peaceful retreat with ocean views and leaping dolphins
The Ocean Spa Lodge
Finishing off a Mara safari? The Ocean Spa Lodge is a great place to wind down and feast your eyes on the blue, blue Indian Ocean before heading to the airport. Opened in 2014, this pretty resort offers everything you need and more. Its 14 thatched suites are strung along quiet, white-sand Msambweni beach on Kenya's secluded south coast, just 40 minutes south of populous Diani. It's a great honeymoon destination and a safe place to holiday with your children. Expect crisp accommodation, really good food and watersports for everyone, if you manage to get off your lounger!
At the lodge
You'll love the thatched main areas the minute you step inside. The interior is crisp white with Arabian-style windows and soft furnishings that reflect the ocean. Just settle back. The Italian owners have clearly focused on the wellbeing of their guests – the Mediterranean- and Swahili-inspired menu is fresh and tasty and it's served in a variety of locations; pilates, yoga or boot camp will tone your muscles; and there's a spa to recover. Outdoors, the huge pool is surrounded by loungers, and there's a pool for children.
There are just six villas – one with four suites and five with two suites. Each suite has a beautiful bedroom furnished with local woods and bright ocean colours, a lounge area (either open-sided or with a terrace) and private uninterrupted sea views. All have en-suite bathrooms and air-conditioning, and some have been designed for families or groups of friends (children are welcome, and under-5s stay for free).
When you've had your fill of chilling by the pool, hop onto a boat to any of the local marine reserve islands to snorkel and explore the underwater life or, on Funzi Island, to see some of Kenya's best nesting sites for sea turtles; or go deep-sea fishing to find marlin and sailfish. If you're wanting to swim from the lodge, remember that there's quite a walk to deeper water at low tide (although the rock pools are interesting), and waves at high tide can be rough.