25 Years and they just keep coming back….
Meet Lewis and Margaret Small (pictured with Serena’s Victoria Nyamunga) a retired couple from Wales in the UK, who just can’t seem to get enough of Kenya and Serena Hotels. They simply keep coming back.
Their love for Kenya dates back to 3rd November 1988 and they have returned every year since.
On their most recent trip to Kenya, we were delighted to welcome them back to Nairobi Serena Hotel, where we got to share their story…
Their first visit to Kenya saw them visit Amboseli with Kuoni Safaris. They stayed at the Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge for three nights and it was here that they celebrated their silver wedding anniversary. During this first visit, the Smalls enjoyed not just the beautiful scenery, landscape and wildlife but also the Serena hospitality and genuine warmth of the Kenyan people.
“We knew instantly we wanted to return to Kenya…” says Margaret during an interview.
On their return to Wales they immediately started planning their next visit to Kenya.
Over the last 25 years, they have visited various Serena Hotels in Kenya and Tanzania.
We ask them why they keep coming back? Lewis gently offers, “Our experience in every Serena we have visited has been the same- if not better. For a prestigious hotel group of this magnitude that receives all manner of important guests from all over the world, we have never at any one point felt as if we were received any different or served below par. And this is something we have closely observed in how other people around us are handled…all clients are important”.
One of their favorite holiday destinations in Kenya has been the Tsavo West, where Kilaguni Serena Safari Lodge is situated. And staying here, they have enjoyed, not just the captivating view of Mt. Kilimanjaro, but the guided bird and nature walks, night game drives, visits to Mzima springs, bush breakfast at Lion rock, sundowners and lava cave explorations have made all so worthwhile. There is so much that makes them smile when they think of the holidays here.
Margaret and Lewis get great fulfillment from giving back and are involved with communities and conservation activities supported by Serena Hotels, “There is always something happening every time we have visited your units”…Lewis adds. Margaret also participated in a 400KM bicycle race from Meru town to Kisumu City to support cancer patients (www.farajacancersupporttrust.com). “I knew that I wanted to take part, and so I got friends talking and involved- and I was able to raise 50,000pounds….”
The Smalls are already planning their next trip to Kenya for November this year. This time it will be to celebrate their Jubilee. Margaret tells us “We would like our daughter Sandra to share in our 50years anniversary – with our Serena Hotels family. We also promised our grandson Tyler who is 10years old than when he turns 12years old, we will bring him on a safari to Mara Serena Safari Lodge and Serena Beach Hotel & Spa, he loves the pictures we have taken in those places”.
Margaret and Lewis are still nostalgic about the bush dinner they recently had at the lodge. This place so far seems to be “their second home”, at least going by how they go on and on about the Mara Serena Safari Lodge. They remember a fun- filled evening. After a sumptuous dinner; their vehicle got stuck in the mud on the way back to the lodge. “It was dark and drizzling, but the Lodge Manager- Paul Chaulo was quick to get us alternative transport. He laid stones on our path so we could not get our feet dirty! We will never forget that – see why we feel pampered?” says Margaret.
They have so many more memories and stories but the big story is their loyalty to East Africa! Thank you Margaret and Lewis Small for making Kenya your second home, and for making Serena Hotels, Lodges and Resorts your preferred host for the past 25years! We look forward to welcoming you back soon……