Peponi Hotel

Destination Experience, Family-run, Laid back

Peponi Hotel, Lamu Island, Kenya

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At a Glance

No trip to Lamu is complete without visiting this iconic, family-owned establishment that is a destination in and of itself.

Indagare Loves

  • The curated dining experiences throughout your stay—from a traditional Swahili dinner by the pool to a sushi lunch under the trees on the guest-only veranda
  • The warmest welcome and family hospitality that makes one feel instantly at home
  • The daily guided tours of Lamu Old Town, a 14th-century UNESCO World Heritage Site characterized by its unique intersection of Swahili, Arabic, Persian, Indian and European architecture


Peponi (meaning “a place in the wind” in Swahili) is a small, family-run boutique hotel whose white-washed walls have become synonymous with the beachfront of Shela Village. This iconic Lamu establishment first opened in 1967 after the Korschen family happened upon the old building by chance. To this day, the hotel is managed by Carol Korschen, who treats every single guest with the utmost care and attention to detail. Upon arrival, one can (and is greatly encouraged to) relax and embrace the slow life on Lamu.

Each of the 28 rooms at Peponi has an ocean view and is unique in layout. Guests who will appreciate this property the most are those who enjoy “barefoot luxury” and are open to basic, eco-conscious amenities and an ocean breeze over air conditioning. With coconut trees and two giant Baobab trees reigning over the private swimming pool, the hotel is home to one of the most varied collections of tropical palms and exotic plants on the Kenyan coast.

Although guests can dine alfresco throughout the property during their stay, most meals will take place on the veranda of the restaurant–famous for its crab as well as its legendary bar, which has helped the hotel claim its status as the social epicenter of Lamu. Music may linger late into the night, as those in nearby private villas or hotels inevitably find themselves at Peponi’s bar overlooking the beach.

The friendly staff can help arrange all the must-see activities and excursions while in Lamu, including a sunset cruise aboard a traditional dhow, snorkeling in the reef by Manda Toto, swimming with dolphins and a tour of the Takwa Ruins. Make sure to spend some time leisurely exploring the small village of Shela and shopping at local boutiques.

In many ways, Peponi is far more than just a hotel. One can feel the genuine hospitality and tight-knit community this family has built for over half a century. The Korschens care for not only their guests but the locals and native wildlife, as evidenced by the Lamu Marine Conservation Trust the family set up in 1989 to protect turtle nests on the archipelago. It’s no surprise that this special place has attracted a worldwide cult following.

Who Should Stay

Laid back travelers amenable to more basic accommodations rich with charm and character located at the heart of the Lamu scene

Written by Diana Li

What's Nearby
Indagare employees walking up stiars

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