Holiday day out with the kids – Kitengela Hot Glass Factory

Posted on March 21st, 2012
Categories: News

We have all been into the gorgeous Kitengela Hot Glass shops, but did you know their factory is only 30 minutes out of Nairobi.

I have to say, firstly, that should a UK Health and Safety Officer have stepped in this area, they would have fainted in seconds and you would have heard a rippling of shuddering clipboards from miles away!

However, we have lived in a land with little or no health and safety for the last 8 years and know nothing else!  We set off down the Magadi Road and turned off towards Kitengela area.  From Galleria Mall, Bomas, it would take you about 30 minutes in a 4WD car, not really to be attempted in less.   We drove alongside the National Park and had stunning views of the CBD from up where we were. Map to Kitengela.

As you drive up towards the glass factory and showroom, you are instantly transported into a sort of Willy Wonka Land;  glass domes and buildings with birds and arrays of various coloured glass dazzling you, very clever stuff.  We parked in the car park and it was all very clear were to go.  We were the only people there, but perhaps advance warning wouldn’t be a bad idea (Studio 0732 876507, Studio 020 2531009 or Office 0733 826629).  We were shown into the glassblowing area, which does have a cordoned off, far enough away from the roaring furnaces, but close enough to really see the glass blowers in action. Quite magnificent to watch so much real talent.  We learnt that Kitengela Hot Glass receives tons of broken / recycled glass and glass bottles weekly;  of which they feed about 250 kgs into the furnace in the early evening. The glass then melts overnight and from there, they then use it in the morning only once it has achieved the right texture and pliability.  We were fascinated watching them make the elephant ears and trunks for the elephant handled jugs.

Once we had sufficiently heated up our noses and ears, we were shown around their glass and welding furniture workshop, which I must excited my  8 and 6 year old boys even more, as sparks flew and reminding them of fireworks night!   Final stop is Kitengela’s little shop.. A very quick tour given who my companions were!  However, if you aren’t being accompanied by adventurous little boys, you can pick up some great bargains and end of line glassware.

Our little adventure lasted about an hour and a half and was a great little tour for the boys, they learnt lots and really enjoyed getting out of Nairobi.

To read more about Kitengela Hot Glass click here: