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“Perfect hotel for a relaxing end to our vacation”
Review of The Zanzibari

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The Zanzibari
Ranked #12 of 17 Hotels in Nungwi
Certificate of Excellence
Ohio
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Perfect hotel for a relaxing end to our vacation”
Reviewed 4 September 2011

We booked the 2 suites for our family and were so happy with our accomodations. Our rooms were clean and well cared for during our stay. The setting with our own small pools overlooking the ocean below was wonderful. We had a variety of seating including hammocks , swings and comfy lounge chairs for outdoor relaxation. Our beds were very comfortable and the ac in the bedroom made for great sleeping. We loved the second floor open air area and the view.
Eugene, the manager, was so very helpful in all requests from airline schedule changes to transportaton to snorkeling tours. Thank you so much Eugene! Any problems we had with our rooms were immediately addressed. The food was quite good although the bartender struggled with mixed drinks. We loved the open air dining and the bar in the Dhow boat. The beautiful landscaping added to the privacy of the resort, a feature that many other hotels lacked. We highly recommend it.

Stayed August 2011, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank MaddieOhio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Zanzibari1, General Manager at The Zanzibari, responded to this review, 25 September 2011
Many thanks for the complimentary feedback.
I would also like to thank all our other guests over the past two years and to those that have taken the time to write their reviews.
Wishing all future guests many happy stays and to Mike the new hotel Manager the best of luck for the future.

Best
Eugene
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Hertfordshire, UK
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 4 August 2011

Our aim was to end our amazing adventure in East Africa in luxury...and this is certainly what we got at the Zanzibari. Having stayed at several other locations around Zanzibar, we made our 4 night booking at the Zanzibari very last minute after a recommendation from a local friend. The last room available to us was one of the two suites on site, which were not cheap, but worth every penny. The hotel and location is peaceful, although it is possible to walk the beach to the busier area of Nungwi when the tide is out.
The suite was beautiful and originally decorated with wooden 'dhow ' furniture. The room was immaculate and staff kept it that way for our entire stay. Bed was very comfortable and the large bathroom (and hot water!!!) was appreciated. The suite had a private pool with picturesque views of the ocean.
The staff were incredibly helpful (the manager Eugene was exceptional), especially when our flights home we're cancelled last minute. Internet and phone access was provided and nothing was too much trouble for anyone. The food was very good and varied each day.
Overall we could not fault any part of our stay here and will hope to return one day...don't go changing.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CatLoHughes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Panama
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 August 2011

We stayed at the Zanzibari one month ago and the experience was not the best. Once we arrived we noticed that the hotel was very quiet and a little bit isolated. There is nothing around the hotel so if you don't like to be isolated do not go!
Everything seemed ok at first, the room was not the best, but passable.
During our stayed I have to admit to being extremely disappointed, indeed a little horrified, at the standard of the rooms. We pulled back the duvet to find a stained bed sheet (which looked very much like blood!). Also the bathroom did not meet my expectations on how a decent bathroom needs to be and considering that the hotel rate is expensive compared to what you get.
However I need to give credit to two (2) positives things that this hotel has: good quality of food (the food was delicious with plenty of choice) and the staff (when they could be found!) were generally pleasant and helpful.
In summary, if I need to come back to Zanzibar, I will choose another property to stay.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank alik06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Shanghai, China
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2011

Overall it was a pleasant, albeit expensive stay at this very very quiet hotel. I would agree with other comments that is fairly expensive for what you get; and more importantly, compared to similar offerings around the area.

The hotel needs to be commended on the service staff -- really helpful, welcoming and attentive. Dont be expecting promptness though, but that´s more of an island/location trait that is not isolated to this establishment.

Another highlight is the food. Due to its relatively isolated location, we tended to have all meals in the hotel. The quality of the food/drinks was outstanding. Breakfast and dinner was included in the price of the room. This was probably the biggest plus of our entire stay.

As others have mentioned, the hotel does not face any big expansive beach. But little what is out there is really gorgeous. One of the most beautiful stretches of sand that I have seen. In all fairness, having explored the area, you´d be better off sunning in the privacy of the hotel than on the beaches (especially if you´re a woman). If you´re looking for long stretches of sand, where you can relax and chill without being disturbed, look elsewhere.

The hotel was pratically dead while we were staying. It was my party and two other couples. There was absolutely nothing to do at night in the hotel nor within walking distance either. To head to ¨town¨ it is best to hire a taxi. It didnt feel safe to be walking around the area, nor on the beach at night.

We had a minor encounter with some lady from ¨management¨ asking us to quiet down one afternoon, even though there wasn´t any other guests in the hotel- we had seen the other two guest couples leave the hotel, and confirmed later with the staff. Even though she was polite, it seemed odd given that we were the only ones in the hotel and thus not disturbing any other paying guests.

My biggest complain is the hotels ´hardware´. While nothing was broken the hotel room´s state left much to be desired. The bathroom fixtures were cheap and rusted, the toilet felt like it was going to break apart, and it was full of tiles falling apart/moldy areas.

Worse were the stained sheets !! And they looked like blood stains!!! GROSS !! Unfortunately we didnt see them until our last night.

Also, there werent enough beach towels - we literally felt we had to fight or scavange for them -and the hotel was less than a quarter full !!!!

For the price paid, level of occupancy, service and staffing, I find these items unacceptable. I mean, there were tons of people working in the hotel and these issues could not have been taken care off. Major oversight !!

Overall, relatively pleasant stay though I would check the other offerings around the area for better options. !

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ColoColo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Trier, Germany
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 25 July 2011

We booked our 7-day stay at the Zanzibari as a last point of a 3.5 weeks stay to Tanzania including a 10days volunteering in Arusha at the CWCD (Centre for Women and Children Devlopment) and a 7day Safari in the Northern Circuit.
We stayed in room 4 and had a very nice look through the lush tropical garden all the way down to the sea. The room was very clean, equipped with fan and ac, having nice add-ons as a hairdryer, water boiler and tea box and minibar.
The atmosphere of the whole place is peaceful and quiet. Especially the team is charming and always friendly. We really appreciated their kindness. The furniture is made of old dhow wood, which gives the place a unique Zanzibarian flavour. The restaurant is a very spacy place with excellent and varying food served at place. The garden is truely a jewel!
A thing to note, but which is clearly stated on the webpage and has also been told by our travel agency, is the tides, which make it difficult to swim in the sea during low water. However, you can use the hotel's sea-water infinity pool or walk 300m along the beach to a less coral-rock and more sandy beach part, where it is no problem at all to swim even during low water conditions. However, the upper (and private) hotel beach offers little palm-roofs and relax chairs which are perfect for reading, relaxing and chilling.
Finally, you should remember and honor being in a developing country. We encountered some very short (order of seconds) power outages until the hotel's generator kicked in. Also, it is true that hot water is solar-heated and therfore varies a little in temperature and amount. However, it was never too cold and one should keep in mind being in Africa and try to avoid wasting of water anyways. Concerning other shortcomings mentioned in other reviews of this hotel, we did NOT encounter ANY of them and even if, we think that would be resolved as quick as possible.
To wrap up, we looked for a quiet place to relax and found the Zanzibari exactly providing this in a beautiful and charming atmosphere. We can recommend this place 100% !

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MarkKath
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cleveland, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 July 2011

Avoid this "luxury" hotel. It was awful. We went there on our honeymoon expecting it to look at least close to the pictures on the website. It did not. It was so terrible that we had to move to a different hotel in the middle of our trip.

First of all, there is no beach. The tide is either high, covering any beach there is, or it is low tide and then there is a very brief portion of the beach that you can walk on, which is certainly not white and certainly not pristine.

Second, there was no electricity either of the nights we were there. They blamed it on the poor electricity on the entire island and lack of a working generator, but by the second night, you would think they could have resolved the problem.

Third, the room was horribly dirty and filled with 70's era furniture (that was also dirty). The sheets had a blood stain on them and they were not changed until we specificaly asked that they be - which resulted in a different set of blood stained sheets being put on the bed.

Also, they floors were so dirty that you could not walk around barefoot. And there was a blood stain on the floor by our bed. Also, the mosquito netting was very poor and so we were bitten terribly every night.

And...the place smelled like cat pee - so badly that I couldn't fall asleep the first night.

I could go on, but I think this gets the point across. No wonder we were 2 of the 6 people staying there....

Do yourself a favor and AVOID this hotel.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank OSU1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Zanzibari1, Manager at The Zanzibari, responded to this review, 27 July 2011
Dear OSU1978

With regards to the electricity, we have gone as far as importing a third generator as a result of the electricity supply in Zanzibar and to ensure that our guests are not affected by this.

Further it is a pity that you do not understand the concept of the Dhow furniture. The furniture is manufactured from old sailing Dhows that are going out of service, this is very sought after style of furniture and we have received so many compliments regarding this from our previous guests and the same extends to the style of the suites. This is also a green and environmental decision made by us to rather recycle the wood from the Dhows instead of chopping down healthy trees to make contemporary furniture.
You are clearly not familiar with natural flooring either which is a shame, the Tanga stone floor that you refer to as 'dirty' is a natural brown sandstone, it is varnished as well. The cement we used is a white cement that is mixed with a colour dye to enhance the finish and the appearance for uninitiated can be confusing I guess?
We all of our own tastes though.

Regards,
Eugene
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bahrain
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 June 2011

Our holiday to Zanzibar was a bit of a last minute decision but the country along with the hotel in which we stayed, was by far one of the best decisions we have made. Although only a short trip of 5 days, we both wish we had had an extra few days to enjoy more of what Zanzibar had to offer, from a spice tour, to snorkelling and scuba diving or just relaxing. But the main reason I am writing is to tell you about the extraordinary hospitality of the Zanzibari and all those working there. From the wait staff to the cleaning staff to the management, you could not ask for a nicer bunch of people who were willing to make your stay unforgettable, not only because of their constantly happy demeanour, but also those little touches that ensure you always have a smile on your face – from the fresh flowers on the bed to the tea and home-made biscuits served by the pool at 5pm every day. And as someone who is a bit of a picky eater, I have to say, the food at the Zanzibari is some of the best I have eaten, but then this is not unexpected when they have 3 wonderful chefs and two pastry chefs attending to the culinary needs of the guests.

With regards to the atmosphere – you are surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens and no matter which room you stay in, you have got a glorious view of the sea. The pool is refreshingly cool and the hotels private man-made beach area (which ensures you are undisturbed by the friendly, but slightly annoying locals trying to sell you things) is perfect for those of us who would rather lie on a comfy sun bed than on the sand. And for those people who have complained about there not being a beach – well I honestly can’t understand where you have got that idea from, as although it disappears under crashing blue waves at high tide, during low tide you can easily walk down the half a dozen steps to the beach and long the waters edge.

If you are looking for an unforgettable holiday during which you will meet unforgettable people, both in the form of staff and guests, then I would recommend a stay at the Zanzibari!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Caroline_264
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Zanzibari

Property: The Zanzibari
Address: Nungwi Road, Nungwi 10437, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Nungwi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#10 Luxury Hotel in Nungwi
#10 Romantic Hotel in Nungwi
#11 Family Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Zanzibari 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Zanzibari is located in Nungwi on the northeastern tip of Zanzibar. Set above the beach on a low coral cliff with easy access to the sea you are offered privacy, peace and tranquility while taking in the stunning views of the Indian Ocean. The hotel has many high quality facilities, including our infinity pool, spa and famous Dhow Restaurant. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Zanzibari Hotel Nungwi
The Zanzibari Zanzibar Island/Nungwi

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