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“Does it get any better?” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pongwe Beach Hotel

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Pongwe Beach Hotel
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pongwe
Certificate of Excellence
Hartland, Wisconsin
1 review
“Does it get any better?”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 December 2013

The Pongwe Beach Hotel was the perfect place to relax after a week long safari. While obviously smaller than a Caribbean resort, the beach was just as pristine, the rooms were just as (or more) comfortable and the food was infinitely better. The private pool was a wonderful and unexpected touch. We celebrated our anniversary with dinner on the beach and were treated like royalty - just an amazing experience. The people were gracious, friendly, accommodating and a joy to be around.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 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 BooleanMS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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839 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (159)
Date | Rating
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English first
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 December 2013

After a dusty, taxing week of safari, Pongwe was the perfect spot for four nights of relaxation. By no means is the place a five-star resort, but the service is beyond compare and the attention to detail on point.

We stayed in a sea-view suite, only a modest upgrade in price from the cottages but newer and inclusive of a private plunge pool. We spent our days on the beach reading, drinking, and jumping in the warm, clear waters of the beautiful, secluded bay, often finishing up our afternoons in the comfortably heated infinity pool. At night we'd enjoy the amazing options from the daily-changing dinner menus, then chat with the friendly bartenders. Our final night, we took to the beach for the candlelit seafood platter dinner (an additional $40 per platter for those on half-board).

We were most impressed with the level of service. We noted that every Tanzanian hotel or lodge we'd stayed at had exceptional service, and Pongwe was among the best. Every member of the staff was unfailingly congenial and helpful. From pickup in Stowe Town to reception to table service to beach and pool service to housekeeping, there was no request too big or small to be taken care of. When my foot grazed a sea urchin while we kayaked in the bay one afternoon, one of the Masai guards (Thomas) broke off the tip of a palm frond and helped me pick the needles out.

Many other reviewers have pointed out the brackish water in the taps as a letdown. My wife and I found this to be only a mild irritation (leaving a slightly sticky feeling afterwards), but it was no big deal. The showers left us feeling sufficiently clean and we felt it a small price to pay for staying eco-conscious.

Otherwise, the little details were notable: the option to bolt or key-lock the back doors of the suite to allow re-entry from the back, a tap before entering the room to allow you to wash sand off your sandals, a beach bag for each room equipped with a flag to have service on the beach. And when we arrived Day 1, a bottle of champagne and note of congratulations was waiting for us. It's clear the owner put much thought toward maximizing the comfort and happiness of guests.

To anyone looking for a relaxing, affordable, sublime beach stay, I'd recommend this place in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sonicw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 November 2013

Pongwe was the perfect finale to Kili, safari and gorillas. The staff was sooo pleasant, always smiling and accommodating. The beach was perfect every morning for a sunrise swim. (The seaweed is raked up). There is no detail forgotten. The snorkeling is good, you can kayak, wine selection is great, a Masaii is available to make jewelery...the pool is stunning...it was perfect!

do not go onteh spice tour...it was a complete let down. It is best to be at Pongwe.

Room Tip: 'Vals room' is the absolute best...walk out the door down to the beach.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • 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 ldysrvyr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 November 2013

This place is truly a bit of heaven on earth. It was even better than the pictures we saw on their website and layout of the gardens were great. Due to the positioning of the beach - you have a lot more swimming time each day even when the tides are out. Picture perfect and safe.

We stayed in a beach front room, which had a great balcony and day beds - the size of the room was really big too. Will definitely recommend getting one of these rooms as although everything looked great, and basically all the rooms can see the sea, we were a bit more tucked away and private.

We stayed on half board whilst we were there and this is the way forward. The food without exception was excellent, weather breakfast, lunch, snacks and especially dinner. I did not really see any other real options for meals at other places, as the tide can lock you in.

The atmosphere and service was really good, everyone was incredibly friendly and i was a bit under the weather for a couple of days and everyone was so lovely and trying to make me feel better as soon as possible.

Also easy to do day excursions from Pongwe and the hotel can arrange it all.

I can really recommend this hotel - outstanding service and was so relaxed whilst staying there. Also when on the beach, you can just pop your flag in the sand and someone will come and take your drinks order. At about 4pm every afternoon they gave everyone some fresh fruit, whether you are on the beach, at the swimming pool or on your balcony.

Excellent value for money if travelling from London like we did. Good choices on wine and drinks as well and they have a happy hour each day where cocktails are only $4

Room Tip: Beach front rooms towards the south side of the beach are the best. Think there are two even better...
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled with friends
    • 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?
2 Thank BonitaTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2013

We spent the first four nights of our honeymoon at Pongwe Beach Hotel. The cottage with its own private pool was very romantic. Upon entering the room we found the bed covered with rose petals and a bottle of cold champagne waiting for us. The food was in one word excellent - really the quality of a top restaurant. We had our meals every night on the beach, where the staff will upon request put your table for you to be alone with the sound of the waves, the soft sand on your feet, and the starlit sky. The staff and management were extremely friendly and helpful in a very genuine kind of way and did everything they could to makes us happy. Absolutely recommendable!

  • Stayed August 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 Ruud K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amman, Jordan
Level Contributor
50 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2013

The north of Zanzibar might be a place to go if you are looking for a party but if you are looking for a piece of mind and have a special connection with nature and surroundings, the Pongwe Beach is your ultimate choice. We stayed at Pongwe Beach Hotel for 3 days and have only good things to say about this charming hotel. It is very well maintained and looked after, with friendly staff who are ready to help with anything. We were worried a bit about the food as there is not much of a choice to go around, but breakfast and dinner were delicious and different from day-to-day. Loved the atmosphere where we felt like at home and that white sand beach... check out my photos and for more details visit alextravelblog.com

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Alex F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amman, Jordan
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2013

The north of Zanzibar might be a place to go if you are looking for a party but if you are looking for a piece of mind and have a special connection with nature and surroundings, the Pongwe Beach is your ultimate choice. We stayed at Pongwe Beach Hotel for 3 days and have only good things to say about this charming hotel. It is very well maintained and looked after, with friendly staff who are ready to help with anything. We were worried a bit about the food as there is not much of a choice to go around, but breakfast and dinner were delicious and different from day-to-day. Loved the atmosphere where we felt like at home and that white sand beach... check out my photos and for more details visit alextravelblog.com

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AlexTravelBlog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pongwe Beach Hotel

Property: Pongwe Beach Hotel
Address: PO Box 297, Pongwe, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Pongwe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pongwe
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Pongwe Beach Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on what could perhaps be described as the best beach in Zanzibar, Pongwe Beach Hotel is a tranquil place where one can escape the hustle and bustle of modern day life. It is modestly sized, with 4 Sea View Suites, 13 traditional Beach Villas as well as 3 Garden Rooms and has an intimate, personal atmosphere. Set within a secluded bay on the east coast of Zanzibar, Pongwe Beach is a true paradise retreat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pongwe Beach Hotel Zanzibar Island

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