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“Stop over before & after a safari...”

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Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage
Ranked #3 of 104 Arusha B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
75 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Stop over before & after a safari...”
Reviewed 16 August 2013

We stayed here for a night before & after our safari, we found the place good enough for a night with the basic amenities at Onsea House. The cottages here are single detached units. Comfortable with hot & cold showers, mosquito nets, flat screen tv, etc.
We preferred the stay at their other property though, the Machweo, which had nicer facilities, bigger bathroom & shower, and felt relatively newer.
Breakfast was good and sufficient with home made breads, made to order eggs,etc. They don't rush you to check out after breakfast. The staff was friendly. We arrived a bit tired at the end of our safari and in time for dinner. The dinner service took almost forever, about 2.5- 3.0 hours. It started with a 30 minute wait for the bread basket & drinks to come. Followed with a small plate of appetizer, a cup of soup and the main course. We can understand the wait if this was a degustation dinner, but it certainly was not & everyone in the restaurant were just having the same pre fixe meal. (A little boy on the next table literally fell asleep on the table & his dad had to carry him out of the dining area.)
We were too exhausted to wait & have dessert so we skipped this part.
Overall though, if they can improve the lunch & dinner service, it is a nice place to start & end your safari.

Room Tip: Room # 7 is quiet at Onsea House & Room #3 at Machweo on the 3rd floor is nice with a balcony...
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank angelfish22_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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284 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (42)
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English first
Dundas, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 August 2013

My husband and I just recently returned from our honeymoon in Tanzania, Africa. We traveled to Tanzania to climb Mt. Kilimanajaro and go on a safari. Between our trek and safari, we stayed at the Onsea House for 3 nights in total.

Let me begin by saying the Inn itself is simply amazing! The decor, the layout of the rooms and hotel, the dining room..everything was PERFECT!! Very clean, extremely safe, welcoming atmosphere- second to none!

The service was outstanding! The people working at Onsea House were very very friendly and inviting. The owner is constantly available to chat with (an extremely nice gentleman), and the receptionist was always very helpful! It really does feel like a second home when you're traveling.

As for the food- WOW!! The cook is incredible! Dinners were excellent.

I would NOT hesitate at all to recommend this hotel to anyone seeking a luxury inn! Lovely, lovely place!!

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jeremy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 2 August 2013

My wife and I recently spent a couple of nights in Onsea House, before -in between -and after safari and climbing activities. We travelled a lot in Africa but never had this experience before. Thank you Griet for your soft, welcoming nature and thank you to all the staff who made our stop-overs unforgettable. The scenery is fabulous, the food finger-licking, the rooms of an unimaginable comfort on the continent and the people are touching, warm and helpful. Our number one in Africa so far! Stay blessed Onsea People

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JayShine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2013

Really welcoming hotel - we only stayed one night but the staff were excellent. Our room and bathroom were gorgeous. Lovely big bed. The restaurant was fantastic and we would not hesitate to recommend the hotel and food to anyone.
We booked via Nick from Tanzania Specialists and he was amazing, booking us fabulous accomodation for our safari's and Zanzibar stay.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank ShudTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
singapore
Level Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 July 2013

Onsea House was the last stop in our 12-day trip in Serengeti. It was touted (by guests I think) as a luxury lodge in Arusha. Having not seen what the other lodges/hotels were like in the city, we can only judge it on its own merit. Top of the main things going for it was the food! Our package included dinner, and I have to agree that the quality of food is top notch. Head chef Axel, who is also a partner in the lodge, produced excellent food and we enjoyed every morsel of it. We had lunch just before we left, but we had major issues with service. We gave ourselves over an hour to have lunch as we needed to depart at 1.30pm for our flight, but by 1.10pm our orders – a burger and a chicken salad - hadn’t arrived! Though we were almost packed, there were last minute things to throw into the luggage. I was most disappointed, when the chef and joint owner arrived for their lunch at 1pm, they were served first. in the end, we told them we couldn’t wait for the food and went off to our room. But because we had already paid (to save time since the food was so late), they sent it to the room. We only had 10mins to rush through the grub, I wished I had a longer time because the chicken salad was indeed yummy, and so were the fries. I went in to do the last minute packing and when I came out for more fries, they were already cleared. So service needs to be improved!
Two other things we enjoyed at Onsea house – the running hot water from the handheld shower! Glorious upgrade from the bucket showers we had for a week. and a moisturizer which helped our dried sunburnt skins. Oh, and we had a lovely visitor in our room – one of the resident cats who followed me wherever I went.
Other than these things, unfortunately, we weren’t impressed with Onsea House. We had room 1 at the main building. It had a lovely terrace that we shared with room 2, which was occupied by the most sullen family we had ever met throughout the whole safari (everyone we met during the trip were smiling and so friendly). Although the room was spacious and sunny, the furnishings look really worn out and dated. It reminded me of a motel room. The curtains were frayed, while those in the bathroom were yellow with stains. The wardrobe doors couldn’t slide, and though they gave tea bags, there was no kettle or a flask of hot water. We each had one hard lumpy pillow each and one blanket on a soft bed. When I asked for an extra blanket as it was chilly in the night, they didn’t have extras. In the end, the lady gave us the throws that were in the terrace.
We had a quick look at the rooms close to the restaurant and they looked newer and in better shape, so request for those rooms. The owners should spend a bit on upgrading the rooms in the main building. it's such a pity as the grounds of Onsea House is beautiful.
Sadly, it was back to hard reality at Onsea House, after being pampered by managers and staff at the bush camps and lodges in the safari.

Room Tip: Ask for room closer to the restaurant - they are newer, cleaner and warmer
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank kimmietravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tel Aviv
Level Contributor
103 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2013

My wife & I stayed here before and after our hike up Kilimanjaro. We enjoyed our stay very much. The rooms were clean and spacious, the staff helpful, and the food was absolutely amazing. Many others have written about the chef when reviewing this hotel, so I don't feel the need to repeat what has been written previously, other than to say that this is world class dining without a question. When we returned from our trek (a day early) all of our luggage was waiting in our room, our laundry was done and staff immediately brought our valuables to make us feel at home.

If I were to make some constructive criticisms, I would say that the breakfast selection could be better. There wasn't a great deal on offer, with even a jug of water not available on the breakfast table. Also, the room we had was relatively near to the restaurant and thus a little noisy both in the evening and early morning.

One other point to make would me to guests arriving in the middle of the night, as we did, there is no one available at reception so it took quite a while for us to receive our room key which was a little frustrating after a long, tiring journey.

However, these points should not detract too much from what was a really enjoyable stay in a quiet, well maintained hotel, with a world class chef making it a memorable hotel for us.

Room Tip: Get a room away from the restaurant.
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank SJL1605
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Antwerp, Belgium
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2013

We only stayed at the Onsea House for 1 night, our last night, and it was a great experience. It's a fantastic place to relax, enjoy the food and peace and quiet.
- wonderfull surrounding, you're outside of Arusha (not in the city center)
- excellent food
- beautifull room decor
- small, cosy and domestic
- luxurious (!)
It's recommended to stay here at least 1 or 2 nights when you're in Arusha. I'm going back for sure!!!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank NickyAntwerp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage

Property: Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage
Address: Baraa Road | Moivaro, Moshono Village, Arusha 1259, Tanzania (Formerly Onsea House & Machweo Retreat)
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 104 B&Bs / Inns in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage is voted the best luxury bed and breakfast in Arusha and recommended by several experts as only boutique hotel and hip hideaway in the Arusha/Kilimanjaro region. Enjoy greater comfort and better food than any other guesthouse or restaurant, with more personalized service than in a hotel and more privacy than a lodge resort. Onsea House can be your home base for safaris across northern Tanzania. Machweo Wellness Retreat & Fine Dining offers the guests since September 2011 in total 9 extra spacious rooms, a second swimming pool with sauna and steam bath and a beautiful patio terrace to enjoy a tasty lunch or a candlelight dinner. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage Hotel Arusha
Onsea House Country Inn And Guest Cottage
Country Inn Arusha
Arusha Country Inn

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