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Forodhani House is managed by Isabelle, the Owner.
400 - 1200/night
Suitable for 10-13 people

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Forodhani House - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
— Isabelle: “Breathtaking sea views, unspoilt nature, welcoming locals and pristine white sand beaches: if you’ve been dreaming of a forgotten paradise... open your eyes, you’re here! And you will never forget it!”
Interview By:

— Your beach house is located on Lamu Island, in the Indian Ocean. What was your inspiration to open a vacation home there?

Isabelle: “I have been dreaming about Africa from an early age. I get to travel or live in several countries in East and West Africa — Mali, Central African Republic, Chad, Botswana, Algeria, Senegal, Tanzania and Kenya, of course — and found a place to renovate or build and be my ‘nyumba tamu nyumba’, home sweet home.

It’s the Swahili culture and its rich cultural mix which have led us to Lamu. It was love at first sight — we fell for the Lamu Archipelago and its communities instantly! It was about three years ago when together with the inhabitants of Shella Village we decided to build our vacation house there.”
Forodhani House - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
— Forodhani House

— Forodhani House means ‘look-out post’ in Kiswahili. Why was it named like that?

Isabelle: “The house is backed by the village, facing the beach and jetty at the very spot where decades ago stood a watch-post that controlled the ships and passengers entering and exiting the Lamu Archipelago. Its location is truly stunning! The house commands superb views of the arm of the Indian Ocean that separates the islands of Lamu and Manda. It towers over the dhows and their crews sliding out to the ocean or returning to the quiet waters after a night of fishing in deep ocean. You have 270 degrees of breathtaking but peaceful views of the to and fro of boats entering and leaving the archipelago!”
Pool - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
— Pool

— What would you describe to be the spirit of your beach house and your philosophy?

Isabelle: “We have done our best to let our vacation guests relax and be lulled by the lapping waves of the ocean. The house is white, with round or Arabic arches which frame the sea views and the sky. I always find it magic! Palm trees, ylang-ylang trees and bougainvilleas add some wonderful colours and scents.

And because of our spectacular location, there is always a show: you suddenly see a bunch of sardines jumping, trying to escape barracudas, or dolphins swimming up the channel, a friends’ dhow sliding from one arch to the other, or a fishermen boat coming from the open sea with a load of tunas. It’s both relaxing and so interesting!

We also have 5 members of staff to pamper you, among them a good cook. It’s really the ideal place to stay with family or a group of friends and relax.”
 - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya

— How would you describe the style of the villa interior?

Isabelle: “We built our beach house in authentic Swahili style with the best craftsmen on the island, Ali Skanda, Mr. Mbwara and his niru artists’ team... We wanted it as a joyful celebration of their ancestral talent. The architecture features zidaka plasterwork and niches, carved and painted beams, daka porch, Arab arches and carpentry work at its finest. The quality finishes make the house one of the finest modern architectural achievement on Lamu Island.”
View from roof terrace - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
— View from roof terrace

— Tell us about the facilities as well as the services you offer as part of the vacation rental.

Isabelle: “We can accommodate up to 12 people with all the necessary comforts. The four double bedrooms have their own handcrafted double/twin beds, huge mosquito nets, separate en suite bathrooms, a shaded terrace, and all have a view over the sea. A 5th bedroom — overlooking the Indian Ocean too — has 3 single beds, a terrace and, of course, a bathroom as well. On the top terrace, the view is just staggering: the makuti rooftops of the village at the back and the whole archipelago in front.

On the ground floor, one big kitchen, a beautiful dining terrace, a large lounge alongside the pool, different areas to take it easy in, and the garden, all offer varied possibilities for dining and relaxing. You walk from room to room through arched galleries, watching the plasterwork, niches and friezes, which ornate the walls. Of course, we also have a pool, which stretches between the garden and the ocean.”
Lounge area - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
— Lounge area

— How would you like your vacation guests to remember their stay?

Isabelle: “Even if it’s just chance that has brought you here, like many of us you’ll definitely find that this place is far more than just a simple tropical beach resort. Time has stopped here: the old town of Lamu still appears to be from the 17th century. There are no cars... you will quickly adjust to the pace of the donkeys.

Enjoy the charm of getting lost in the maze of alleyways in the village, visit the fish market and stroll along the quay in the evening. Breathtaking sea views, unspoilt nature, welcoming locals and pristine white sand beaches: if you’ve been dreaming of a forgotten paradise... open your eyes, you're there! And you will never forget it!”
 - Forodhani House, in Lamu, Kenya
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