Set in over 10 hectares of coastal forest that leads to a picture postcard beach, The Sands at Nomad is a pleasantly relaxed hotel where couples and families feel equally welcome. Make yourself at home as you laze by the pool, stroll among the trees in the gardens watching for monkeys and birds, and enjoy tasty food at the various dining venues. Whether you are staying after a safari or enjoying a beach holiday, this is a great choice.
Rooms, suites and cottages provide comfy and characterful accommodation, complete with Swahili artworks, textiles and furniture. All benefit from air conditioning to keep them cool, and have minibar and internet access. Some rooms overlook the sea and others face the gardens, and some have private terraces. Suites are more spacious and some have a veranda and jacuzzi. Cottages are set along the beachfront and have a cosy feel.
Days can be spent by the pool and on the sandy beach, enjoying spa treatments, yoga classes and simply relaxing by the Indian Ocean. The water sports centre offers a choice of activities including snorkelling, SUP and kayaking, and there's a PADI dive centre, for exploration of the nearby coral reef. Wildlife lovers can go on safari at Shimba Hills, and sports fans can enjoy a game of tennis or golf.
There is a selection of places on site to eat and drink. The main restaurant serves a generous buffet breakfast and a choice of buffet and a la carte options for lunch and dinner. There's a pizzeria by the beach, and the Red Pepper Restaurant offers traditional Kenyan and Japanese food at lunchtime and in the evening. Rivas Bar is located by the pool, and there's a second bar on the beach, both of which serve light meals as well as range a drinks.
Photographs courtesy Sands at Nomad
Open: Sands at Nomad is open all year. It first opened in 2005.
Location: The hotel is on Diani Beach, 45kms southwest of Mombasa. It is about a 15 minute drive from Diani airport, and 2 hours from the international airport in Mombasa.
Rooms: There are 18 rooms, 7 cottages and 12 suites. All have air conditioning, Swahili furniture, minibar, internet access and en-suite bathroom. They are in different locations, some with forest views and others overlooking the beach. Some room have 2 bedrooms and can be used by families. Cottages offer greater seclusion, and some of the suites have terraces and jacuzzis. The luxurious master suite and beach cottage superior suite are ideal for honeymooners. Room service is available.
Activities: Stroll in the gardens, relax by the pool, in the spa or with some yoga, go snorkelling at Kisite Marine Park and enjoy a safari in Shimba Hills National Park. There is a water sports centre on site with snorkelling equipment, kayaks, skim boards, SUP, boogie boards and windsurfers. The hotel has a PADI centre for diving at the coral reef and offering PADI courses. There is a tennis court and an 18-hole golf course nearby. Horse riding can be arranged.
Facilities: The hotel is set in just over 10 hectares of forested grounds leading down to the beach. The grounds include a swimming pool, jacuzzi, terrace, restaurant, pizzeria, 2 bars, spa and gym. The Sands has its own farm which provides much of the fresh produce for the hotel.
Dining: Meals are eaten at individual tables at a number of venues. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast is a buffet, and lunch and dinner can be a buffet or a la carte meal. Sushi and sashimi are available, as are pizzas baked in the special oven. The beach bar serves snacks and ice creams as well as drinks, and the main bar also offers light meals. The hotel has a resident sommelier.
Children: Children of all ages are welcome. The 2-bedroom rooms make good family accommodation. Cots and children's beds can be provided.
Health: This is a malarial area.
Communication: There is free wifi internet access.
Sands at Nomad perform regular beach clean-ups, which guests can join if they wish, to maintain the environment. They follow recycling and waste reduction practises at the hotel. The hotel has built a turtle hatchery in co-operation with Diani Turtle Watch to protect these vulnerable creatures, and guests are welcome to visit this and observe the hatchlings.