“Hey guys, do you need an extra player?” I shouted to the five young boys playing football on the beach.
It was a Friday night at dusk in Diani and I had just walked the beach, “Yes, please join!” one of the boys called back.
I had just arrived at Diani beach and I was looking forward to enjoying a unique experience at Leopard Beach Resort and Spa. I had wandered down the secluded beachfront cove and strip that fronts the exceptional resort. With a backdrop of a purple and pink skyline, this was the setting where I happily came across the game of football and had a post-match swim in the ocean – a perfect start to my weekend vacation.
Over many years of coming to Diani, it has sometimes been rare to find a truly boutique-like experience at the large beachside resorts on the Kenyan Coast. In the past, I have found these resorts to be somewhat identical and predictable in look, feel, food, and amenities. Yet, after this latest trip to Leopard Beach Resort and Spa, it is clear that this is not your typical Kenyan resort.
Leopard Beach Resort and Spa truly exceeded my expectations and proved to be one of the best and brightest hotels in Diani. Fresh off of upgrade renovations of the hotel rooms and villas, the lodgings are both elegant and inviting, providing a fantastic garden view literally steps from the ocean. With differing accommodation options for every traveller, including suites, villas, or cottages, it’s the perfect venue to bring the entire family.
After exploring the expansive grounds of the resort, I was struck by the sheer number of awesome dining options, lounges, bars, and the pool and sitting areas. During the day I could relax under a veranda with a book and iced coffee, or soak up the sun by the poolside. My favourite hangout was definitely “Marcos Bar,” a setting that resembled a ship built from pure mahogany. This was the location where I enjoyed my afternoon cocktail overlooking the Indian Ocean, right before I luxuriated in the relaxing Uzuri Spa with a massage: the spa offered a comprehensive list of various treatments.
At night, I was able to enjoy a variety of dining experiences – from the buffet at “Horizon Restaurant” to the Oceanview pizza and pasta restaurant. I was completely surprised on Friday night when I was escorted to the beach for a special “Coco Beach” barbecue. With a band playing Kenyan songs and Bob Marley hits, sand beneath my feet, and a starry night sky, it was truly a dinner experience to remember.
I will return over and over again to Leopard Beach Resort and Spa, confident in knowing that each time I visit, I will be offered revitalized and imaginative experiences that I will remember for a life-time.