Re: Royal Mara Safari Lodge
We too just returned from the Royal Mara with our two children age 13 and 14. I would agree with all that you wrote about the beautiful rooms and staff.
I must disagree on a few notes though. We were there for 6 nights. The food ran out twice. The wine ran out, with the only selection being boxed south africian stuff that I saw at the duty free for about 5 US dollars for 5 litres of the stuff. (which would explain why it was so awful).
The gourmet food was a giant stretch. We really did not expect 5 star dining, but we did see the same food day after day, and one night we were treated to hamburger patties with french fries. (I think this was the first time they ran out of food.
The staff are very nice and try their best. They all are hired from local Mara villages. They can only do what they have been trained and taught to do. There are things that they just don't get, for example, on our sidewalk to our tent, a zebra left a pile of dung. The dung stayed there for more than three days, we all walked around the pile, sometimes they would forget and walk though it. When it did leave the sidewalk, it was only kicked off onto the grass. I also went in the restaurant bathroom one morning to find the toilet brush with poop on it in the sink. They also have not been educated on deodarant. Which, one might argue that it is africa, but this place is 5 star and these people have their armpits very close to your face while serving food.
I think this place needs management on site from the 1st world.