The Sarova Stanley launched itself into Kenyan history in 1902 by becoming the first luxury hotel in Nairobi and the gracious host of prominent world leaders, renowned authors, and international celebrities. These early years depicted the dawn of a new era, and the Sarova Stanley immediately distinguished itself as a beacon of luxury and unrivalled hospitality.
In the early 1900s when the Sarova Stanley opened its iconic doors, Queen Victoria presided over the largest empire in history, Conrad penned Lord Jim, Picasso painted Le Mouline de la Galette, and American R.A. Fessenden transmitted human speech over radio waves. Within just a few years, the hotel’s permanence in Nairobi became clear, and the Victorian façade was quickly expanded to embrace the immeasurable greatness that originated within its walls. 1922 saw the first order of a locally brewed beer, and the hotel’s authentic Exchange Bar sowed the seeds that grew into Nairobi’s first and only Stock Exchange.
The verdant location for numerous films over the years, the Sarova Stanley welcomed classic Hollywood luminaries such as Grace Kelly, Ava Gardner, Clark Gable, and Gregory Peck, and offered them a quiet repose under the shade of the acacia trees that frequent the outdoor gardens. A lavish oasis in the undisturbed Kenyan desert, the hotel entertained royal guests, including the resplendent ball for their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Gloucester in 1928, and a regal luncheon banquet for Prince Philip and, then, Princess Elizabeth during their world tour in 1952, shortly after which Princess Elizabeth succeeded to the throne to become queen.
With each enchanting suite named after an important person or place in the hotel’s history, the Sarova Stanley’s illustrious guests play a supporting role in the grand traditions of the hotel and are engulfed in the warm hospitality, architectural charm, and unparalleled service.
Sarova Stanley, a charter member of Historic Hotels Worldwide since 2011, dates back to 1902.
Turn of the Century, 1902 ~ 1913
The Sarova Stanley launched itself into Kenyan history in 1902 by becoming the first luxury hotel in Nairobi and the gracious host of prominent world leaders, renowned authors, and international celebrities.
Learn more about the History of Sarova Stanley.