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“Hospitality with a heart”

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Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage
Ranked #4 of 132 Arusha B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 4 October 2013

In addition to the clean and spacious room, the beautifully landscaped grounds, and the gourmet dinner served in the open pavillion with a night view of the city, we were impressed with the heart and soul of Onsea House. Many of the staff are young adults from very challenging circumstances who are taught everything from personal care to customer service to restaurant skills in an effort to give them the opportunity to create a better life for themselves. When my cellphone was not working properly, the young concierge did his best to help me. And when that failed, the owner gave me the hotel phone to use in order to contact my provider. The owner also arranged for us to visit a nearby school, with which they have a charitable connection, in order to deliver supplies we brought with us specifically for that purpose. A perfect combination- a nice touch of luxury with the opportunity to give back.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Susan F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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121 - 127 of 301 reviews

Reviewed 2 October 2013 via mobile

Beautiful location. Helpful staff. Rooms are a nice size and have a great bathroom - huge tub and awesome shower. Dinner was fantastic, but way too much food. Next time we come to TZ, we'll be sure to spend more than one night here.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank JCCreviews
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2013

We stayed in Onsea House for 3 nights earlier this year.

We had some concerns about the way the owners treated the local Tanzanian staff. We did some digging with contacts in Arusha and have been told that Onsea have a reputation for not treating their staff respectfully or fairly. This feedback is unsubstantiated, but we wouldn't stay here again based on the information.

Regarding the property, the setting is lovely and we enjoyed staying just out of the centre of Arusha. Our room had a big bathroom with a bathtub and a shower with good pressure. Our room was next to the pool so it was nice to be able to walk straight down to the pool. However, it also compromised privacy as when there was a group next to the pool we could hear them in the room. We enjoyed the food however found it to be overpriced for the quality and serving sizes. The tasting menu was nice but it took a while for each serve to come out, so if you order that, order early.

The hotel itself capitalises on Arusha and it's beautiful surrounds, and on the tanzanian locals to provide great and friendly service. We hoped this would be reflected in the treatment of the staff by management, however sadly this was not our experience.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank AmeliaMay84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OnseaHouse, Owner at Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage, responded to this reviewResponded 17 September 2013

At Onsea House we value constructive criticism and input for improvement from our esteemed customers but when something is completely unsubstantiated (as mentioned in the review itself) we feel the right - and need - to give feedback. The review has really touched us. Onsea House is known in Arusha and abroad for its efforts to help the community through employment of people from the neighborhood, continuous in-house training to underprivileged young people and the many benefits we provide our staff (in addition to higher salaries, medical care and proper social security).
We are pleased with the more then positive 7 page review which currently features in PAA Tanzania, the quarterly in-flight magazine of Precision Air (the biggest airline in Tanzania) and the many positive comments from guests, which we believe are a result of combined efforts from staff and management.
I can reassure that we will take these unexpected remarks on the size of the fine dining portions and the noise into account. We can, and do, however, take stock of our operation and with a clear conscience and strong conviction feel that we have a real positive influence on the development and wellbeing of our staff, their families, and a whole community around them. We have many more daily substantiated testimonials from guests who enjoy the excellent, friendly and committed service of happy, loyal staff than we have unsubstantiated rumors.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2013

Visiting Onsea House and Machweo, the connecting boutique hotel, was a real dream to us. We visited Onsea House for 10 days and all 10 were unique. We had two beautiful connecting rooms, with a living room in between. On top of that we could swim in our private swimming pool in the beautiful garden. Ideal for a family with kids. The culinary treats from top chef Axel are amazing! Best in the area and far beyond. Dirk is the perfect host and does everything to satisfy and please his guests. Griet is the newest star on the Onsea staff: a true talent in hospitality. It was a real pleasure staying at Onsea House and Machweo!

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank FredKnight
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2013

My husband and I just stayed in the new Machweo wing of Onsea House. We thought our stay made for a great first night in Tanzania. The hotel and grounds are lovely and our room was beautiful. I took advantage of having a large sunken tub and we both enjoyed our dinner. I would rate the food as good, not great. However, the view from the dining terrace was beautiful and live music provided by a violinist and guitarist created a wonderful atmosphere.

Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank ash5704
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2013

This hotel on the way to Arusha from the Kilimanjaro airport has nothing to do with the sea. Founded in 2006 by a Belgian, the name derives from a Belgian word for a panther or leopard. The rooms are clean and nicely furnished. However, room # 2 in the main hotel is adjacent to the kitchen and you can barely cut out the background noise by closing the door to the bathroom. The cottage near the entrance to the hotel is a better choice for accommodations; however, the climb to the main facility is a bit of an effort. Although the facility claims gourmet meals, the multi-course dinner takes two hours and can be tiresome for children. (We happened to have two on the trip - ages 7 and 10.) Should you decide to stay at the Onsea, take a guided walk around the facility, meet the local Maasai people and visit the orphanage.

Room Tip: If you are willing to do some uphill climbing, stay in the cottage at the entrance to the hotel.
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Sanford C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2013

We stayed 2 nights at this hotel before driving to the Ngorongoro crater. The rooms are separate collages all situated on the side of a hill with a view of the valley. Our room was very well appointed with a wide screen tv-- which we did not watch. The restaurant also had a view and the food was gourmet prepared by a chef from Belgium. They have 2 pools on the side of the hill also. Our room was No. 2 where the wifi signal did not reach, but I heard it did work in our friends rooms. The employees were pleasant and helpful. Plenty of birds on the flowers on the wall near room 2.

Room Tip: Don't take room 2 if you need the internet although you could take the computer to the restauran...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank JamesV1941
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

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 #4 of 132 B&Bs / Inns in Arusha
Price Range: £194 - £244 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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