Built in 2007, Msafini Hotel is situated in the middle of charming Shela Village on Lamu Island, off the northern coast of Kenya. The limestone, five-story structure combines modern architecture and traditional Swahili design for an authentic yet comfortable stay.
The hotel is a two-minute walk from the white-sand beaches of Shela, and a 10-minute boat ride to Lamu Town, the oldest Swahili settlement in East Africa and a UNESCO Heritage Site.
Msafini is a family-owned and -run hotel. We’ve been in Lamu for centuries and we’re happy to share our culture and traditions with guests. We can customize your stay for the perfect experience, organize celebrations, and easily accommodate groups and conferences.
Our Mango Rooftop Restaurant boasts views of the entire village, the sand dunes, Manda Island and the sea. Enjoy made-to-order breakfast, lunch or dinner on top of the tallest building in Shela. The rooftop is breezy and serene, and the food is delicious.
Our chef specializes in Swahili cuisine, which features a variety of seafood, flavorful sauces, exotic spices, fresh vegetables and fruits. Common staples, such as rice and beans, are made with fresh coconut and stewed to perfection.
Watch the sunrise while sipping on fresh passionfruit, watermelon, lime or mango juice… or enjoy the sunset with a cup of brewed Swahili tea or coffee, prepared with ginger, cardamom and cinnamon.
We’re also happy to provide all-day room service, where you can enjoy views from your private balcony.
About Shela and Lamu
Before becoming an attraction for its pristine white-sand beaches, Shela was a sleepy fishing village on the southern tip of Lamu Island.
The tropical island off the Kenyan coast in the Indian Ocean is rich in culture, tradition and natural beauty. Lamu Old Town, the oldest Swahili settlement in East Africa and a UNESCO heritage site, is a 10-minute boat ride, or 40-minute stroll, from Shela.
With no cars, our healthy Swahili cuisine, regular yoga classes, and of course the sun-sand-sail draw, we are quickly becoming East Africa’s wellness destination. Without the stress and rush of modern life, it’s easy to feel a million miles away, especially in tranquil Shela Village.
There’s plenty more to our story, of course, and we’ll gladly set you up on a guided walking tour of Shela and Lamu.