About the Giraffe Manor
The most unforgettable bucket-list breakfast in the world!
Giraffes are becoming highly endangered across much of Africa. Just by staying at Giraffe Manor you are contributing to the conservation of these gentle giants.
The Giraffe Manor, built in 1932 by Sir David Duncan, is surrounded by 140 acres of its own park and forest thirty minutes from the centre of Nairobi, Kenya’s capital city, with superb views of the Ngong Hills. In 1974 Jock Leslie-Melville, grandson of a Scots earl, and his American wife Betty, who also founded the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife (AFEW), bought the Manor. They then moved two highly endangered baby Rothschild giraffe to the estate, where they thrived and have produced several further generations of giraffe.
When Jock died, Betty decided to open her Nairobi house, now called The Giraffe Manor, to visitors. The Giraffe Manor is one of the most boutique and unique hotels in all of Kenya and possibly in all of Africa – It is the only place in the world where you can feed and photograph the giraffe over your breakfast table and at the front door and even from a bedroom window.
Travellers from all over the world now make The Giraffe Manor part of their East African Safari holiday. Some spend a week here and The Giraffe Manor has many repeat guests, who have become old friends. Personally hosted, The Giraffe Manor is an elegant and exclusive small hotel with a rich blend of welcoming accommodation, highly trained staff and one of Nairobi’s finest kitchens. One of the most fascinating things about Giraffe Manor is its resident herd of Rothschild’s giraffes who may visit morning and evening, poking their long necks into the windows in the hope of a treat, before retreating to their forest sanctuary.
The Giraffe Manor also offers a uniquely untouched wilderness on the doorstep of one of Africa’s most cosmopolitan cities, the adjoining Jock Leslie-Melville Nature Education Centre, better known as the Giraffe Centre. Guided walks through its primeval forest enable you to learn about traditional uses of the varied flora, view some of the 180 bird species and perhaps meet a warthog or bushbuck.
The Giraffe Manor has two wings with six rooms each.
The Manor rooms are located in the original manor house that was built in 1932 and has six rooms: Betty, Daisy, Jock, Lynn, Marlon and the Karen Blixen Suite. Since the acquisition of the Giraffe Manor in April 2009, Tanya and Mikey have turned this property into one of the most sought-after hotels in the world. They have lovingly remodelled the interiors with a passion to ensure that the manor retained its 1930s character and charming history. An original art deco bathroom, antique furniture and the names of each room all reveal something of the manor’s colourful past.
- Betty’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 24 m². Front-facing in the main manor with giraffe feeding access. Double bed with roof terrace, in-room fireplace and en-suite art deco bathroom with bath and shower. Space for a cot for an infant on request only.
- Daisy’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 17 m². Side-facing with view toward the Ngong Hills in the main manor and giraffe feeding access. Double or twin beds with roof terrace. En-suite bathroom with a shower.
- Jock’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 22 m². Front-facing room in the main manor with giraffe feeding access. Double or twin beds and fireplace. En-suite bathroom with shower and bath.
- Marlon’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 43 m². A spacious side-facing room in the main manor with double bed, adjoining lounge and giraffe feeding access from terrace. Large master en-suite facilities with shower. Option for sofa bed for a child upon request. Compact toilet and shower off lounge area.
- Lynn’s Superior Room. Ground floor bedroom with double or twin beds and walk-out terrace with limited giraffe feeding access located on the west side of the main manor. Total approximate footprint including en-suite facilities of 49 m².
- Karen Blixen Superior Family Suite. Large two-bedroom family suite of 113 m² with adjoining lounge and fireplace. Master bedroom with double bed and second room with twin beds, each with own en-suite facilities equipped with bathtubs and showers. Shared south-facing terrace with giraffe feeding access. Option for third single bed in second bedroom for a child upon request.
The Garden Manor is a replica of the original manor house, and although built 78 years apart, you would never know the difference. Constructed in 2011 by the current owners Tanya and Mikey Carr-Hartley, much of it uses reclaimed materials from houses to a similar era as the original manor. It also has six rooms: Salma, Edd, Arlene, Helen, Kelly and the Finch Hatton Suite. Each room enjoys views over the sanctuary and the giraffe experience offered to guests is the same regardless of which area of the house they are staying in – The resident giraffes enjoy daily visits to both buildings in search of treats! The primary difference is that the Garden Manor was created to provide accommodation exclusively for guests of the Safari Collection’s portfolio of properties, so that the main house can be kept as accessible as possible to all.
- Helen’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 25 m². Front and west-facing with giraffe feeding access. Double or twin beds with space to add a baby cot on request only. En-suite bathroom with shower and bath.
- Kelly’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 33 m². Front-facing in the Garden Manor with giraffe feeding access. Double bed or twin beds and an extra single bed. Fireplace and en-suite bathroom with shower and bath.
- Arlene’s Superior Room. Approximate footprint of 22 m². Front-facing in the Garden Manor with no giraffe feeding access. Double bed with en-suite bathroom with bath and shower.
- Edd’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 29 m². A ground floor room with private veranda overlooking the garden terrace with no giraffe feeding access. A double bed with space for an extra sofa bed for child on request only. En-suite bathroom with shower and bath.
- Salma’s Superior Room. Approximate bedroom footprint of 23 m². Front- facing overlooking garden terrace with a balcony with no giraffe feeding access. Double or twin beds with space to add an extra sofa bed for a child on request only. En-suite bathroom with shower and bath.
- Finch Hatton Family Suite. Approximate bedroom footprint of 40 m². Accessed from the ground floor beside the dining room with no giraffe feeding access. Ground level double bed with twin beds on mezzanine/loft level (suitable for children only) accessed via spiral staircase. In-room fireplace and en-suite bathroom with double shower and bath.
All guests enjoy full-board during their stay, which includes all meals and most drinks (house wines, spirits, beers and soft drinks, excluding champagne and specially imported wines and spirits). The dining areas are set up with plenty of space between tables with a minimum of two metres between each in the dining rooms and courtyard. Guests staying in rooms with balconies also have the option to dine there if they wish.
Daisy’s Restaurant and Bar at the Retreat welcomes guests from Giraffe Manor. The restaurant serves up a delightful menu of freshly prepared snacks, meals and beverages at any time of the day. All food and drink at the retreat is excluded in the prices and can be added to a room tab or settled directly.
- Stroll through the sanctuary & visit the giraffe centre; Stroll across the front lawn of the house and you will reach the AFEW (African Fund for Endangered Wildlife) Giraffe Centre. Founded in 1979, the centre’s mission is to educate school children about their country’s incredible wildlife and environment, alongside their breeding programme of the endangered Rothschild’s giraffe. Each guest of Giraffe Manor pays a donation to AFEW which goes towards their wildlife conservation projects across Kenya.
- Visit the orphaned elephants at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (SWT) and watch their keepers feed and interact with them. This is an incredibly inspiring and moving experience and is highly recommended for anyone that has the time. SWT is the world’s most successful orphan elephant rescue and rehabilitation programme and the life-saving conservation work they carry out is incredible. At the 11:00 am viewing visitors can watch the babies enjoy their midday mud bath and milk feed, tumbling over each other in the red earth or playing football with their friends
- Enjoy afternoon tea on the terrace as the sun sets behind the Ngong Hills, accompanied by a few long-legged friends. Relaxing in the tranquil setting of the manor gardens with a giraffe or two in view, you will be served with a tasty assortment of homemade cookies, cakes, sandwiches, scones and fruit platters. It is also a great chance to kick your legs into the air on an over-sized garden swing and perhaps even snap a swing selfie as you feed a giraffe!
- Wellness and spa & an Infinity room at the retreat: Wander over to the new wellness centre, The Retreat, just a short stroll away in the same forested sanctuary as Giraffe Manor. Here you’ll find yourself entering a haven of relaxation. Take a dip in the infinity pool, relax in the steam room, sauna and hot tub or re-energise with a workout in the fully equipped gym. Two spacious treatment rooms offer a range of massage and beauty treatments designed to restore your body’s natural balance and soothe away any stress.
- Note: Complimentary chauffeured vehicles are available for sightseeing, however guests may need to share vehicles depending on demand and availability.
The Retreat at Giraffe Manor
Located on the same sanctuary as Giraffe Manor, The Retreat provides a wellness experience for the Giraffe Manor guests, as well as a day room facility for guests of The Safari Collection portfolio. Giraffe Manor guests are welcome to use The Retreat facilities (pool, gym, steam room, sauna, hot tub) during their stay at Giraffe Manor. They can also visit The Retreat’s Restaurant (Daisy’s) and book a spa treatment at The Retreat (all treatments and food and drink are excluded from the Giraffe Manor rates). Use of The Retreat facilities, restaurant and spa are only accessible to Giraffe Manor guests within the check-in and check-out hours. It is located just 80 meters to the left of the main manor house and shares the same tranquil outlook over the forested giraffe sanctuary.
The retreat offers the below;
- A pool – Glide through the 21 metre infinity pool which looks out over the giraffe sanctuary. The herds of Rothschild’s giraffes are able to wander up to the end of the pool, so you might have a long-legged spectator or two! The poolside deck with sun loungers is a lovely space for relaxation and listening to the birdsong floating down from the surrounding trees.
- Spa – Two spacious en-suite spa rooms and expert therapists offer a pampering selection of massage and beauty treatments. They use delightfully aromatic, all natural and organic products from Healing Earth and Cinnabar Green. Book your treatment in advance!
- Sauna, Steam & Hot Tub – The soothing spa area also has a traditional sauna, steam room and bubbling hot tub that guests can combine with their massages.
- Gym – A fully equipped gym looks out onto the garden and has everything needed for a full-body workout.
- A tranquil green roof space, ideal for reading a book or simply contemplating the African adventure you have just experienced, or are about to embark on.