Hotel Radisson Blu has opened its doors in Upper Hill. Located on Elgon Road it is an elegant hotel and I got to check it out a couple of days ago. As you go in and go through the rigorous security checks you can already tell that the hotel is a cut about the rest.
Radisson Blu’s décor is a mix of western and African influence. I love how they have managed to artistically blend western design with African décor. The different spaces have chairs in different sizes, designs and shapes. The signature flower is orchids which are everywhere, and they range in colour from white orchids to tiger orchids. They are a point of focus, brighten up the spaces and give them an elegant look. I loved the way they used gourds and different everyday items like uteos to give the spaces an African touch. Apart from the beautiful exotic orchids my other favourite thing was the giant flowers in different colours made out of feathers along one corridor.
There are different restaurants including “chop up” restaurant which is not open yet but has the most comfortable seats ever. The “Chop House” will feature modern African cuisine while “The Larder “ offers international dishes with an African twist. The Larder is all day dining.
The hotel has 271 guest rooms which include 13 suites and a presidential suite (the suites are still under construction. The guests can choose from three room designs, the Urban Room style, New York Mansion or the Naturally Cool themes. Depending on the side the guests are on they can either view the Nairobi City Skyline or the Nairobi National Park.
The Radisson Blu is managed by The Rezidor Hotel Group, which manages more then 280 hotels in 62 countries.
The conference rooms are named after the Big five animals in Kiswahili and the three highest peaks of the mountains in East Africa. The hotel offers free high speed wireless internet, the latest audio-visual technology and different creatives types of breakout rooms where guests can break off for smaller group meetings. There is also a special menu for breaks (on request) for conference meetings which is called Brain food. This is healthy food that regulates the sugar levels and keeps the brain active. There is also a spacious 590 square metre ballroom where inviduals and organizations can have events.
We got to sample different dishes in small portions with wine so don’t think the pictures represent the actual size of the portions.
The Malindi Seafood Salad had prawns, seared snapper, scallops and green leaves with a lemon basil dressing. It was paired with a virgin Mojito. It was delicious and was a wonderful start to the meal.
We then had some spicy Indian soup which is called the Lakhani Shorba. It is an aromatic Lamb broth with fresh herbs. It was abit spicy for me but when I had it with bread it balanced it out. The soup had some crispy croutons and small pieces of tender lamb. This was paired with the franschhoek cellar club rose wine from South Africa, which according to one of the wine people at the table is one of the finest rose wines.
The main course was some local aged rib eye with chunky potatos, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, and red onion confit. It was fantastic and went very well with the wine it was paired with Robert Mondavi Woodbridge Carbanet Sauvignon. It really brought out the flavour of the food.
I have a sweet tooth so dessert is my favourite part of the meal. We had Vanilla Cheese cake with a dark chocolate base, fresh cream and passion fruit coulis. It was perfect. It was paired with Gallo Moscato, which is a sweet white wine.
The meal was excellent. The Radisson Blu Chef choose the perfect combination of food and wine to give us. The service was also exceptional.
The price range for a meal at the Larder Restaurant is between Ksh. 900 for a starter and Ksh. 4000 for a full meal. A beer is Ksh. 550 so you can gauge the price of drinks from that.
Some of the things that impressed me
There is a balcony area which has a pool, Jacuzzi, and a pool bar. They also have a kitchen where one can prepare their own meal (koroga style) but this is not open yet.
Instead of a portrait of the president they have an image etched on 4 wooden panels. It is a creative way of following the directive to have a picture of the president.
If you are having a car exhibition you can drive your cars up to a special room which has specially fitted doors that open up. The driveway and room were designed with that specific idea in mind.
Radisson Blu has a concierge app that you download to your phone and allows you to get service at the touch of a button. If you have the app you can book a room from home, request changes for your room before you arrive and request for service from anywhere in the hotel. The system has been timed so that your request has to be met within a specific number of minutes.
Radisson Blu is the kind of hotel you go to if you are looking for the very best in service, food and comfort and you know that they will deliver. They look at the little details, and it makes a big impression when everything is put together. It places the Radisson Blu in a league of its own in terms of hospitality and facilities. So make a point of checking it out.
Potentash Founder. A creative writer. The Managing Editor at Potentash. Passionate about telling African stories and stories about the inclusion of minorities. Find me at email@example.com.
“We're all stories, in the end.” ― Steven Moffat