Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has announced that the Norfolk Hotel in Nairobi has been re-branded as Fairmont The Norfolk after a multi-million dollar renovation program. The famed hotel joins recently opened sister properties Fairmont Mara Safari Club and Fairmont Zanzibar. The Fairmont Mount Kenya Club will soon join the portfolio in representing the company’s East Africa collection.
Opened in 1904, Fairmont The Norfolk stands as one of Africa’s most fabled gathering places, hosting luminaries from President Theodore Roosevelt and Out of Africa’s Isak Dinesen to present day celebrities and royalty. Set in tranquil gardens, the 165-room hotel is only a short distance from the city centre, providing guests with a sophisticated retreat from the bustle of Nairobi’s downtown business district, and the ideal spot to depart for a safari adventure or beach escape.
Fairmont The Norfolk’s four restaurants include Nairobi’s most famous meeting place, the Lord Delamare Terrace, the perfect place to sit and sip after a day exploring the city’s markets. The hotel also offers old colonial charm in the Lobby Lounge, which hosts an elegant afternoon tea, a sophisticated new wine bar, showcasing wines of the world, and a restaurant that highlights Kenyan delicacies and local ingredients. An outdoor pool, health club and day spa as well as an elegant ballroom and several newly renovated function rooms are also featured.
Fairmont The Norfolk is the company’s third property to open in East Africa, following last month’s announcements welcoming Fairmont Mara Safari Club and Fairmont Zanzibar.
The Fairmont Mara Safari Club, located on the edge of the Masai Mara, is the epitome of tented luxury. The property offers 50 superbly furnished, sumptuous tents, and a main lodge at the centre of camp which hosts an indoor restaurant, bar and library and an outside deck leading to a heated pool, complete with bar and private massage tents. Guests can choose from a wide range of activities, including game drives and balloon safaris over the Mara plains, and the location provides a perfect base for visiting the Masai Mara, one of the world’s richest wildlife reserves, and home to an astounding array of animals including the “Big Five”; lions, African elephants, African buffalo, leopards and rhinoceros.
The 109-room Fairmont Zanzibar is located off the coast of Tanzania, in the Indian Ocean. Fringed by uninterrupted miles of powder-white sandy beaches, the property compliments the company’s African safari offerings with a beach experience, and lush, tropical gardens. The hotel offers unsurpassed water sports facilities, including windsurfing, boating, fishing charters, as well as a fully equipped dive centre with a decompression chamber, one of only three in Africa. Other amenities include two swimming pools, fitness and spa facilities and several restaurants and bars overlooking the Indian Ocean. Fairmont Zanzibar also offers a full range of business amenities including wireless Internet, business centre, and meeting and banquet facilities. Visitors may enjoy highlights of the “Spice Island”, such as historic Stone Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and cultural heart of Zanzibar, and the Jozani Natural Forest Reserve.
Also opening soon under the Fairmont banner is the Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club, which is in the final stages of refurbishment. Situated at the base of Mount Kenya, the second highest mountain in Africa, the property features 120 rooms in cottages, villas and suites on 100 acres of grounds, as well as a nine-hole golf course, pool, tennis and varied opportunities for adventure including horseback riding, bird watching, fishing, and an animal orphanage, as well as being a celebrated base for safaris. Founded by Oscar-winning actor William Holden, club membership included Winston Churchill, Bing Crosby and John Wayne.
This collection of East African properties will afford travellers a variety of options from which to enjoy warm hospitality and create truly memorable experiences. Fairmont’s commitment to the land and communities where it does business is a hallmark of the brand, and the company looks forward to furthering not only its approach to responsible hotel operations but also developing innovative community outreach programmes in Africa.