At Fatuma's Tower you are invited into the home of Gillies and Fiammetta Turle, who want you to feel at ease and experience the peace and comfort of this tranquil space. More than a guest house they refer to it as their house for guests - a hidden corner of the world where you can find time for yourself.
The Tower is named after Fatuma Abu Bakar a Swahili noblewoman who lived in this sanctuary attended by five female slaves until the end of the 19th century. After her death and the abolition of slavery the house fell into ruins and the magnificent tamarind tree growing in the courtyard established itself in the ruins of the fallen masonry.
Carefully restored and modified in 1998 the historic tower house has five double bedrooms and a large yoga hall. Included behind the same compound wall is the Sand Castle with it’s ground floor family apartment of three double rooms. In the surrounding gardens, the Garden Cottage has two double rooms both with bathrooms. These ten double rooms are all furnished with local antiques and fabrics in a simple yet elegant style to recreate the atmosphere of a fine Swahili house. No two rooms are the same and the cool, airy spaces retain an informal feel while several shaded balconies provide comfortable areas for avoiding too much sun and generally enjoying the peace and fresh air. The peaceful gardens have been recently “ enlivened” by the refreshing sound of a fountain splashing over coral rocks into a small plunge pool.
All rooms have solar powered hot water, fans and mosquito nets.
- Balcony Room
- Top Apartment
- Acacia Room
- Garden Room
- Sand Castle
- Garden Cottage
- Peacock and French Rooms
In the oldest part of the house, the spacious yoga hall is cool and airy and features the slanted windows adopted by mosques. Classes take place daily and our resident teachers have been practising Astanga and Hatha for many years. Overseas teachers are welcome and we have special rates for yoga groups. The tangible feeling of peace in this room greatly encourages the practice of yoga and the warm/hot climate makes stretching noticeably easier. The hall can comfortanle accommodate up to 15 mats.
Gillies specifically encourages Overseas Yoga Teachers to bring their own groups, remembering that there is a total of ten double rooms and one for the teacher..
Fatumas Tower daily afternoon practice at 5pm all year round with Gillies and Morris. Cost of one hour for our guests $5 and outside drop-ins $8.
The retreat centre also has a ‘Therapy room’ in the gardens. Two sisters who live in the village give excellent body massages and are trained in reflexology, etc. Several visiting therapists can also be made available.
Fatuma's Tower is over 300 years old and is named after its most famous yet mysterious owner, Fatuma Abu Bakar - a swahili noblewoman who lived here during the 19th Century. Preferring to live alone, she remained in her tower attended by five devoted female slaves. Although she had many suitors vying for her beauty and property she remained unmarried, ruling successfully over her lands on Lamu and neighbouring islands until the abolition of slavery. Over time the house fell into disrepair and had been abandoned altogether by 1900 allowing the tamarind tree in the courtyard to flourish amongst the ruins.
When Gillies and Fiammetta bought the property in 1990, they were able with careful restoration to save many of the original features of the tower and recreate the atmosphere of this once fine Swahili house. In the wall plaster of the hallway downstairs etchings of ancient dhows were uncovered.
Gillies and Fiammetta have been living in Kenya for many years and know the area well. They are happy to share the history of the house neighbouring houses.
Rates valid as from 1st January 2011.
Rates in Euros per double room with breakfast. All double rooms ensuite. Boat transfer included.
Book with Lamu.org and receive up to a 10% discount on the lowest advertised rates!
Simply fill-out the form on the left to make your booking.
|Rooms (per double) |
Double room (single occupancy)
2 x single rooms (sharing bathroom)
Acacia rooftop suite
|€ 95* |
|Extra Bed - € 40 |
Child Bed 1-3 years - € 15
Child Bed 4-11 years - € 30
*Christmas double rooms are € 125
Christmas Season: 20th Dec – 8th January. No single occupancy of apartments or rooms over Christmas period.
Low Season: May/June long rains. Climate: Excellent all year round except during the May/June long rains.
Medical: Locally experienced paramedic assistant.
Self Catering Options
Treat the kitchen as if you were at home! Our kitchen staff are fully trained and buy kitchen provisions on your account. A list of suggested menus is provided, or just leave it to the cook.
Your cook will keep a book of all kitchen purchases made on your behalf and will ask you for funds periodically. He/she will produce at the times you request and left to him/herself will make a variety of exellent meals without any further supervision.
If you want some suggestions, these are favorite dishes all done beautifully at Fatuma's Tower:
Breakfast: Fruits, fresh juices, eggs, pancakes, fish cakes, tea, coffe.
Lunch: Pizza's, potato salad, mixed & green salads, hot and cold soups, gazpacho, onion, avocado, tomato, vegetable, etc..), fish.
Dinner: Many different fish (whole, grilled, fried, fillet): crabs, prawns, calamari (squid) - curries (prawn, fish, vegetable), beans, dhal, lentils, etc... Pasta forno, and short of long pastas with sauces. Cauliflower cheese, cheese souffle, roasted potatoes and vegetable. Puddings: fruit crumble, fruit fritters, fruit salad, creme caramel, tarts, flans, cakes, birthday cakes.
Fatuma's Tower makes their own bread, they brew a delicious lemon and ginger tea from the garden, and purchase local honey. The fruit and vegetables are bought in the local shops and sea food is served fresh everyday. Oysters are available at low tides and lobster are still being caught but are mostly immature.
Book with Lamu.org and receive a 10% discount on the below rates!
Simply fill-out the form on the left to make your booking.
|Rates per night || |
20th Dec – 8th Jan
|Fatumas Tower. |
1 x triple, 3 x doubles
(excludes yoga hall and ground floor)
|Fatumas Tower. Top Apartment |
2 x doubles
|Sand Castle Apartment. |
3 x doubles
|Garden Cottage. |
2 x doubles (one up, one down)
|Acacia Suite || |
To make a booking and get a 10% discount on the above rates please fill-out the form on the left.
Reservations for Fatuma's Tower
Owners: Gillies & Fiammetta Turle
Phone: +254 (0)722 277138