Private Home, Wellness, Luxury

Arijiju Retreat, Kenya

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At a Glance

Arijiju is a luxury, private home on Borana Conservancy that masterfully blends in with the landscape. It is an unrivaled retreat and sanctuary; a true destination in and of itself.

Indagare Loves

  • The wellness experience at Arijiju, where five hours of daily treatments are included in your stay
  • The infinity pool, which looks directly to Mt. Kenya and doubles as a watering hole
  • The dining program, which infuses healthy eating with delicious Ottelenghi-style recipes
  • The Swarovski binoculars that are handed to guests at the beginning of their stay to use on drives


The family who built Arijiju camped on the plot of land for years before settling on the exact location of the lodge. They wanted to see where the sun landed, where the breeze came and went, and how Mt. Kenya anchored the view. Then, a team of brilliant architects and designers worked to ensure Arijiju seamlessly blends with the landscape. The goal of the owners—who grew up in Normandy and West Africa—was to craft a home that worked with nature and reminded them of their carefree childhoods spent exploring the wilderness. They wanted their family home on Borana Conservancy to combine their passion for conservation and pure, unspoiled wilderness experiences.

Arijiju sits low on the land. Its grass roof links the property with the forest and allows it to disappear into the landscape. The entrance is subtle—all things considered—and opens into a green, cloistered courtyard inspired by a French abbey and Ethiopian monastery giving the property monastic calm. Walls of stone create vaulted walkways that lure you into the various rooms of the property. In the main house, you’ll find three-bedroom suites. Around the courtyard, you’ll discover the kitchen, library, boot room (don’t worry about bringing any of your own sporting gear), game and cinema room, dining room, bar and two sitting areas. Next to the main house, there are two large, discreet and private guest suites complete with floor to ceiling windows and their own sitting areas, bedroom and indoor and outdoor showers. The use of raw materials, local hand-cut Meru stone, wooden Lamu-style doors, timber, iron work, copper accents and chandeliers make the space iconic. The color palette is simple, and the design is contemporary, giving the space a feel of incredible comfort.

Up the hill is a squash and tennis court, and adjacent to the main house is a large olive tree giving shade to the daybeds beside the infinity pool, which doubles as a frequent watering hole for elephants. Beyond the pool, along a winding path, is the gym and what they call the spirit of Arijiju: The Retreat, the property’s wellness area, with a yoga and meditation deck, hammam, and a treatment room. Apart from the hammam, these makuti-thatched structures are open to the elements, allowing you to game view while receiving treatments. You’re meant to leave Arijiju feeling better than when you arrived, and with The Retreat and the magic hands of Frida and Eunice (Arijiju’s in-house wellness gurus who create their own essential oils, soaps and salts), it is impossible not to feel rejuvenated after your stay.

Meals are a huge part of the Arijiju experience. The food is regenerative. The chef uses energy rich, quality ingredients and creates healthy and delicious recipes in the Ottelenghi style (gourmet, but unfussy). If you can pull yourself from the property, the activities surrounding Arijiju are endless from heli excursions and bush runs to horseback riding and rhino tracking. Be sure to plan active meals and sundowners in the bush in between your meals on the property itself. No detail goes unnoticed at Arijiju, and the service is hightouch. It is a true sanctuary in the African bush that works great as a standalone destination or a retreat at the end of a trip to Kenya,

Who Should Stay

Guests with a passion for wellness looking for the ultimate, indulgent safari experience and a base for adventure

Written by Kathryn Nathanson

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