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“beautiful location, wonderful food, great hosts” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Shamba Kilole Eco Lodge

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Shamba Kilole Eco Lodge
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Mafia Island
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
“beautiful location, wonderful food, great hosts”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2013

we flew over from dar with our 13-month old daughter in the standard 13-seater aircraft. Francesco and Marco are complementary hosts, each with their own specialities. Marco handles the diving and snorkeling (at very reasonable prices) and it was one of the best dives of my life. the coral is fantastic, and the dhow takes you to the best places off the coast. Francesco prepares the menu, which are highly creative and original, using local ingredients. literally every dish is a treat. And every meal has several courses. The staff is very attentive without being obsequious, and the tip policy is indicative of Francesco and Marco's philosophy: you are encouraged to leave a group tip, while extra tips for specific staff members are noted in a book that everyone can read. There's a nearby village that one can walk to very easily. the pool has no chlorine, but is cleaned with a type of salt solution so we were able to allow our daughter to put her head underwater for the first time. the sky is very beautiful at night, and the whole experience is very familial, but not in a cloying sense.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank t g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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110 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Savona, Italy
Level Contributor
68 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2013

We stayed for 5 nights.
It's a very nice lodge, quiet and peaceful, great to regenerate after a stressful period, in a wonderful location.
The staff is really experienced and professional, but at the same time welcoming and friendly.
The activities are really well organized and everything is perfect.
Food is excellent and there is a good selection even or vegetarians.
Thank you for the hospitality
I hope to come back soon

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank stgpoggi81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 January 2013

Shamba Kilole is an amazing lodge to stay at when traveling around Africa. You can actually relax and enjoy the stay. They organize activities perfectly and professionally. The staff are all extremely friendly and accommodating. I will definitely recommend this lodge to anyone and would love to be back ASAP.

Thank you for a wonderful stay

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank JustinBrooker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
uk
Level Contributor
90 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2013

We stayed for three nights at Shamba Kilole over New Year and had a wonderful time. The property itself is very stylish and thoughtfully conceived. Francesca has a great eye for detail; just perfect for a boutique/eco resort. There are only 6 bungalows so it feels very exclusive. The common areas are also well designed and it really pushes folks to be sociable - which was really nice. They have a pool and the resort faces the sea - but no beach as mangroves are the original inhabitants here. The food is lovely -and there is plenty. We had to cut down on the lunches - you will not starve and its all inclusive in the price. There are other nice touches like a free laundry service (very much appreciated after a safari). Francesca and Marco offer a set of day activities, like snorkelling, skuba diving, trips to sandbanks and Chole island...very nice to do. Thanks also to Francesca for helping when my partner developed a fever. We would definately recommend Shamba Kilole and the island of Mafia in general. It is less developed than Zanzibar and the village has a very real Africa feel to it. We liked to wander around the village and engage the local people; who are very welcoming.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank vince092
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
haarlem
Level Contributor
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 January 2013

We spent 8 days at Shamba Kilole at the end of 2012 and had an amazing time. Here are a couple of things to take into account:

-Excellent food with generous portions
-Excellent diving with great staff
-Excellent accomodations with great decor
-Extremely helpful and friendly owners (Marco + Francesca)
-Extremely helpful, polite and well trained staff
-Whale shark expedition is amazing, but make sure to go with Kitu Kiblu as they are the most responsible operators that have the well-being of the whale sharks as a core value.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank haarlemchris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
35 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 January 2013

We stayed here just for one night but it was wonderful. The rooms are beautiful, possibly the best we have seen anywhere (we were in the cheaper room!), the food is excellent and it's set in lovely tropical grounds with a nice pool. The communal lounge and dining area is perhaps a little small (if being very fussy!) but the whole lodge gets the perfect balance of feeling like a luxury place whilst also looking like part of its natural surroundings. The owners Marco and Francesca are incredibly helpful and nice.

If you go to Mafia and this lodge is in your budget then it's highly recommended.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank A C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Krakow, Poland
Level Contributor
27 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 November 2012

We (a family of three) spent almost a week in November 2012. We traveled with a 2-year-old toddler. We don't dive yet, but enjoy snorkeling.

Food was excellent -- ideal and very tasty drinking water (amazing!), delicious, various and always fresh meals. For dinner, we had our dinner table at different places (by the swimming pool, near the fire, in an old boat, etc.) -- it was very nice. Good quality of tableware -- always clean.

Bungalow -- it would be very difficult and unfair to try to find any complaint. Very clean, functional and aesthetic interior -- decorated with taste. Bed was comfortable. No problems with hot / cold water, nor toilet. Everything was functioning well.

The lodge's area is green in November, many plants, flowers, birds, two cows, donkey, bull calf, dogs and cat -- this info may be important for other parents. Thanks to the owners' kindness, our daughter had chance to meet those animals closer.
There are only six bungalows which makes the place very calm and relaxing.

Service was very good. Nothing to complain about. Everyone was very helpful especially considering special needs of 2-year-old child.

Snorkeling (and not only) trip were organized well. Snorkeling by itself was great, of course.
We didn't find any good beach around; instead there are mangrove trees -- it's understandable, since they saves the coral reef. Coral reef fish may be up to twice as abundant on reefs adjacent to mangrove forests compared to reefs that aren't.

The atmosphere created by the owners in Shamba Kilole Eco Lodge is very unique.

We're hoping to go back soon.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Indiana55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shamba Kilole Eco Lodge

Property: Shamba Kilole Eco Lodge
Address: | Kilole, Kiegani, Mafia Island 0000, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Pwani Region > Mafia Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Mafia Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The relaxing lodge has 6 bungalows facing the sea all surrounded by trees and garden. Swimming pool, private jogging park, dive school, restaurant with conference room, wine cellar, terrace top. All rooms are in different style following Swahili tradition and history. Ideal for sea lovers, honeymooners, bird watchers. ... more   less 

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