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“Great location in a beautifully restored property”

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Zanzibar Coffee House
Ranked #3 of 33 Hotels in Stone Town
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great location in a beautifully restored property”
Reviewed 19 September 2013

While everything in Stone Town is difficult to find, Zanzibar Coffee House is worth a few wrong turns! The property is basic, but impeccably clean and has great character. The upstairs roof is incredible and the breakfast served is top notch.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Andrew M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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508 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (49)
Date | Rating
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English first
Adelaide, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
121 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 September 2013

We stayed here for 2 nights in August and had the Macchiato room. The hotel was built in 1885 and has 10 rooms that all bear coffee style names. Our room was rather basic but we gather this was intentional in keeping the décor traditional. The bed was large with mosquito netting but the ensuite was small and a good tip is to shower in the morning before the hot water runs out. If you are expecting amenities 'a la Hilton' then don't stay here. However the location in the midst of the Old Town is good and you feel you are immersing yourself in the local amenity but if you are not an adventurous traveller this area may not be for you. Try something closer to the harbour.The Old Town is literally a maze of streets and very easy to get lost in - speaking from personal experience but happily we were rescued by 2 local girls who escorted us back to our hotel (with nothing for payment but a smile).
Our tariff included breakfast and this was wonderful. It is served on the upstairs terrace - you have to walk up some windy narrow stairs to get there - and platters of colourful, fresh fruit, pastries and juices are set out for you to enjoy. You are then asked what cooked breakfast you would like and this is individually prepared for you in the kitchen below along with coffee or tea in any style you like. You can eat breakfast on one of the outside tables on the balcony or lounge inside in Arabic cushion splendour. Breakfast definitely was the highlight of our stay here.
At other times of the day you are free to come up here to relax and enjoy the rooftop view and can help yourself to drinks (you pay extra for) from the small fridge close by. There is a coffee house downstairs (open to the public) where you can have a light lunch if you want but for dinner you need to walk to a nearby restaurant. There were not many restaurants to choose from actually but we did go to The Spices restaurants (5 min walk) which was very good and inexpensive and entertaining when there was a blackout midway through our meal. This seems to be a regular occurrence as candles came out quickly but were not needed for long as the power came back on (they were cooking with gas anyway).
Staying 2 nights in the Old Town is enough though - we did a walking tour one morning (streets too narrow/jumbled for cars) and also looked around the harbour and fresh food market. We then headed to the beach on the East Coast for a different type of Zanzibar holiday.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Carolynt23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland NZ
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 6 September 2013

My wife and I spent three nights staying in this small hotel. It was a real surprise being so deep in old Stonetown history. The room that we stayed in was fantastic with olde world charm and very nicely decorated with heaps of hot water in the shower! The roof top restaurant was an amazing way to start the day with a huge breakfast and fantastic views over Stonetown. The area itself was right in the middle of old Stonetown and once we got our bearings was easy to find in amoungst the labyrinth of streets. I would highly recommend it.

Room Tip: We had a look at most of the rooms and they were all amazing
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Craig K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tauranga, New Zealand
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 September 2013

Right in the heart of Stonetown and handy to the sights and waterfront once you know how to orientate your way around the alleyways. The building is well presented and really gives you a sense of the history of the place. I thought the coffees were average and a couple of the staff members weren't particularly friendly compared to the other places I stayed at in Tanzania. I had a comfortable nights sleep and overall the stay was OK. Tip - for lunch or a few drinks head to the Rooftop of the Swahili House next door for a great view of the town and coast.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Waynesworld1nz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 August 2013

This is fantastic hotel with the best coffee in town. The staff is very happy and helpful. Rooms clean and breakfast was generous. Location is great, close to everything. The manager, Paola Gentili is a great host. We stayed for few nights and never had any problems. Internet was fast and smooth.

Room Tip: We stayed in Espresso, nice room, we liked it a lot.
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Yuri G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Limerick, Ireland
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2013

We booked into one of the $150 per night rooms as that was the cheapest that was available. The shower didn't work properly for the three nights we stayed there, it was a drizzle rather than a shower of water. The hotel is next to a school so our rooms was really noisy early in the morning when the kids arrived at school. The only outside space is up on the roof so there isn't anywhere to go and have a drink or just chill out. I would definitely not recommend this hotel. We were hugely disappointed.

Room Tip: Don't get a room near the school
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank NiamhOD2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2013 via mobile

We took 3 rooms paid 500 usd for 1 night.
Excepting that this place would be good, this place is WORST AND NEVER RECOMMEND anyone to stay here.
The heater doesn't make hot water, room has lizards, the floor was dusty as if the room was closed for years, no wifi working. The coffee shop which is their speciality is closed by 6 pm.
The stair case is dark, lights r there but as if they are not there.
There is nothing like room service or housing.
Even when coming to the hotel the taxi can not reach the hotel therefore you have to get down at point and than YOU have to hire a trolley with your bags to the hotel.
If you need something in the middle of the night the hotel does not have any facilities, infact there is no receptionist but only the guard is there.
The staffs are not friendly.

WORST WORST WORST HOTEL

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank aliredha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Zanzibar Coffee House

Property: Zanzibar Coffee House
Address: Mkunazini 1563/64, Stone Town, Zanzibar City, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Zanzibar City > Stone Town
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Stone Town
#5 Romantic Hotel in Stone Town
#6 Business Hotel in Stone Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Zanzibar Coffee House Hotel offers a touch of magic and romance in an authentic Arabic house deep in the heart of Stone Town. Transformed into a stylish hotel with harmonious interiors, antiques and rich fabrics, it is one of the oldest buildings in Zanzibar constructed by the Wazir to Sultan Said Bargash in 1885. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Zanzibar Coffee House Hotel Stone Town
Zanzibar Coffee Hotel
Hotel Zanzibar Coffee
Zanzibar Coffee House Zanzibar Island/Stone Town

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