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Dream of Zanzibar
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Reviewed 23 October 2013

We stayed for four nights at Diamonds having checked out a lot of competition beforehand. For the price and all inclusive we went for it - and we're not disappointed. It's set on a lovely piece of beach front with the sea rolling back almost a mile at low tide. Beach walks early in the morning let you soak up the peaceful setting and as the days hots up so too does the atmosphere.

We soon realized that advanced hospitality hasn't quite made it to these shores BUT the attitude from top to bottom was wonderful. It sometimes feels that if you want something that has run out - eg bacon for breakfast - that the staff will always say 'five minutes' in hope rather than fact - but that really is the charm of the place. Nothing was too much a request - John the bar waiter refused to consider that we could carry our drinks and regularly came out to the beach to top them up. And throughout our stay we were charmed by the waves, big grins and hi fives all round.

Lovely stay and thoroughly recommended.

One curio is that this is clearly a favorite Italian hotel - even one of the channels is dedicated to it - but that meant polite and well raised kids as well as an animated and conversational guest atmosphere.

We'll return.

Room Tip: Upgrade to The Ocean view - close to all facilities
  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Kungfuchoirboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 October 2013

This is truly a 5 star hotel with great rooms with sea view (only the junior suite with Jacusi have sea view), manicured gardens, very friendly staff, all-inclusive setup and a great beach.

I would recommend it as it seems the only hotel around with a direct access to the beach (the 4/5 hotels north and south seem to all have stairs to access the beach).

However it also attracts local "beach boys" looking to sell their products. They can be quite overwhelming and make walks along the beach annoying.

The restaurants are hit and miss. The breakfast and lunch are quite comprehensive buffets but are identical everyday. it get boring after a week.The other 4 restaurants are either a restricted menu (Asian: chopsticks, Seafood: Blue Vanilla, and Italian) or a buffet style (African)

Stay away from the excursions office. Very useful tips but extortionate prices. I would recommend getting a taxi (not through hotel who charge over double the normal rate) to Stone Town (50min), to Jozani forest (to see Red Colobus monkeys) and to the Spice Farm.

The animations are very restricted (2 italian organisers to cater for the mostly Italian guests), the water centre organises diving trips through another company (which required an 30 min bus journey).

Hoping this helps.
Philippe

Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
2  Thank ppringuet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 October 2013

We visited on our honey moon last month. All in all we had a great trip, but it might not be for some. We stayed in a junior suite. The Room was very nice. Very comfortable bed. Very large room with a sofa area. The bathroom was spacious (no bath). The cleanliness was very high.

The Staff were extremely friendly. Very natural and happy.

It did feel at times that the staff were perhaps a bit inexperienced and this is frustrating sometimes as they were not able to answer questions. Whether it be about the food on the buffet (what is it) or the local area (is there a shop nearby). However this is more than made up by their sunny disposition and willingness to help.

It's not 5 star food. The food is good enough. But if you are a real foody type and this is an important part of a holiday for you, it might not be up to scratch. The 'outlets' restaurants have small set menus, so check the daily choices if you are a selective eater.

We Found it a little annoying that fairly simple questions cannot be answered. You feel a little stranded. Main reason is only the senior managers seem to get a proper grasp of what you are saying. I think it was mainly a language barrier. Just things like, where is the sushi bar, is the sea safe, how can we get a taxi. Everything felt quite hard work to resolve. We wanted to try a different (reccomnded on here) restaurant on the island but could not find out where they were, or how to get there. We couldn’t locate anyone who could help.

The Reception is quite far to go and get things sorted each time.

We felt a little shocked that we are paying almost 400$ per night for all inclusive, to then have to pay for WIFI. That is bad enough but that it is extremely slow and not worth using at times makes it worse. For 3 of the 7 days it didn’t work at all. The hotel refunded this to us after our stay. I realise we are on an island, in Africa so i don’t have massive expectations for internet. In fact I would have been happy not to have had it as an option on honeymoon. However if you charge it should be working. I felt at the price you pay for your stay it should be free or don't have it at all! In this day and age I would have thought all decent hotels offer free wifi to guests? They do in my experience.

Blue vanilla fine dining is not great. Not worth paying extra im afraid. They are trying hard but the food and atmosphere isn’t great.

Breakfast buffet is more than adequate, the freshly cooked pancakes very nice!

Pool snacks are poor. Tiny stale sandwiches. Dry tasteless cakes. They offer cocktails all day which is brilliant for all inclusive.

What is amazing is they actually provide waiter
Service for the all inclusive drinks by the pool and they are not shy in offering drinks!

The F&B staff are so friendly, helpful and willing. Anna especially is everywhere. It seemed clear to me (I have worked in the industry for 13 years) that there are a few qualified/managerial trying to push the rest. Unfortunately for all their enthusiasm, willingness and smiles they lack the finished article do call themselves 5 star in my opinion. But the friendliness again compensates for this and we loved the service style.

I kept saying to my wife, 'the food is great as far as all inclusive goes' and perhaps it is. But considering the price paid and the way the hotel promotes its outlets, perhaps it should be a bit better?

The Italian simply seems to offer the same food from the main restaurant buffet but in a different room! They do have pretty ok pizza here. The pasta I had (ravioli) was very good.

The Asian themed chopsticks was ok but just has 1 set menu per day.

The main restaurant is pretty good for lunch but almost the same for dinner and got pretty boring.

Lunch is in general the best options we felt. Large buffet in main restaurant, BBQ on beach and a pretty decent sushi option also on the beach. It's a bit hidden so go and ask! Again, like lots of things whilst looking for the sushi (we had read about on TA) we asked at reception, in the main restaurant and at the pool bar on our 1st day but NOONE knew a thing about it!

The tours office is a bit of a farce. The guy is never there! We managed to make an appointment through reception.

When chatting to the rep from ‘zan tours’ he seemed arrogant, uninterested and like he is quoting high prices so you will be put off.

We really fancied the stone town tour, so booked a half day tour at 84usd
Per person. This was private drive from hotel and a tour with a guide for 2 hours. Then a ride back. Average town, average sites although I'm glad we saw it. The tour guide was pretty useless. We saw prices for local tour companies and online which made our price seem a complete rip off.

In general you get ripped off all the time. I don't like the fact that we pay a hefty price to be here, enclosed in a resort and then they charge guests 25€ for sun cream, 40€ for 7 days net (poor), the tour prices are overly inflated on site (ok it's external company) and 240+€ for tattinger champagne! We paid the hotel 215usd return transfer, offered at time of booking. At the airport this was offered for 50-75USD each way. So maybe pre book that!


Be aware that there IS NO WHERE to buy anything. So bring anything you will need (film / batteries / snacks / pain killers / insect repellent / power adapters).

The TV In the room had very poor channels for 5 star hotel. 8 maybe 10 channels but nothing worth watching. It didn’t bother us but might for some people.

Perhaps I am dull on holiday but in a place like this I'd expect a pay per view movie selection.

There is a DVD player in the room, but nowhere to rent DVD!

The in room booklet says they rent USB stick with movies and music. This is a great idea as the DVD player takes USB. So we went to reception to ask to rent it. Doesn't exist! Bring a USB with movies / seasons on if you like a tv before bed.

I asked reception if I can borrow a phone charger as mine broke. They asked me what phone I had. I needed a micro USB. They didn't have ANY phone chargers! Now I only worked in 3 and 4 star hotels but as a matter of course we kept one of each main line charger for guests to borrow - for free of course! Or had a service where you could get some charge at reception and leave your phone there! The guy in the tour shop let me plug my phone in there for a few hours – thanks!

I'm sure that most people who come to a resort like this are happy to not leave the premises. There isn't any reason to. The drinks are generously free flowing and there is all right food available from early until late. But if you like to look at a shop, buy some snacks for your room etc, forget it! There is NOTHING anywhere near here.

Security advise not walking down the beach (outside dreams private patrolled area)

Zanzibar is a very poor place. As soon as we travelled to stone town you get a glimpse of the reality. Don't expect a 7-11 down the road and come prepared with things you will want here!

By the pool the music is same American pop all day and night. Terrible and repetitive . Then no background music in restaurants but the SAME pool music in the bar again! Come on – mix it up! Chilled house for the pool!

If you are un-well / un-fit or don’t like steps, the daily steps from hotel rooms to the pool and all restaurants is a bit of a drag.

The tide goes out A LONG WAY. From around 1000-1400 the sea is maybe 600-800 metres away! That’s a long walk for a dip! The sea is also quite rough. The pool is so nice though, so there isn’t much need for the sea we felt.

Daily Power cuts.. Have candles ready!

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank jezsta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2013

We just loved everything.. Excelent staff, Excelent quality.. Excelent price. Excellent service.. Food was Excelent, Drink was good.. Enjoyed alot with family.. Just Perfect.. Amazing... Beautifull view.. Great Swimming pools

Room Tip: All side are excelent
  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank SunilMaugi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 October 2013

We went on holiday to the lovely Dream Resort in Oct 2013 we had a breathtakingly awesome time, all the staff was so friendly and helpful. The rooms are equipped with everything you should need to make you feel right at home! We will definitely recommend this resort!!! A useful tip take a lot of sunscreen as you would need it! Take along waterproof camera and water shoes! Thank you so much for a amazing stay at your resort, Hakuna Matata

Room Tip: Building 15 had a great sea view and were also close to beach and other entertainment and restaurants.
  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank CheneBredenhann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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