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“Inside Zalu!!!”

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Essque Zalu Zanzibar
Ranked #5 of 19 Hotels in Nungwi
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 September 2011

So I arrived to be greeted by an old college mate of mine who is now the Executive Sous chef @ Essque Zalu hotel. His name, Ian van der Walt, his characteristics, charming, sophisticated and wise. He has an in depth understanding about this beautifully created yet somewhat gargantuan establishment. As a chef myself, at Mnemba Island, I was blown away by not only the kitchen and its toys but by the food produced by it. There are 3 dining areas at Zalu, the ala carte restaurant, the Market kitchen (including full deli) and the restaurant out on the Jetty. All of which have incredibly tasty plates to choose from and to my surprise, very reasonably priced.
My meal @ Market kitchen:

Starter: Spinach and feta ravioli in a beurre noisette
Main: Beef Fillet (cooked to perfection) with trufflued brocolli puree, classic chips and Bearnaise sauce
Dessert: Collared creme brulee with passion fruit ice cream

Oh my word, twas all thoroughly delicious and served without pretense.

An upper bar area casts an incredible view over the architectually astounding infinity pool that creates an atmosphere of iminent freedom, complete with fountains and a built in hot tub.
The staff...all welcoming...literally...Karibu sana voiced at you with smiles of true sincerity. The rooms, what can I say, I pride myself on having slept on some comfortable beds in my lifetime and valued many good nights sleep but @ Zalu the bed I slept in made me feel at home in paradise. Waking with such rejuvination and hopping into a well pressured luxury shower room with high end European toiletries (which I did not knick btw).

All in all even with the extravagent design that, at first, I will admit to be a bit intimidating, it all comes together. Once you explore the art gallery, the 50 meter jetty, the elborate entrance hall and of course the unparalleled professionalism of all involved, it simply just works. I will be back again without a doubt

Room Tip: Any of them, take a Villa if you have the friends to fill it :)
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Simon O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 24 August 2011

We were three friends visiting Zanzibar for the first time........mainly for business, but our stay, facilities and view at ZALU was so incredible, that we felt like we were on holiday!!

The building and architecture is impressive to say the least - the roof pitch has to be the tallest on the island. They have Suites and Villas set amongst fantastic gardens - we stayed in suites and the standard of offering exceeded our expectations. They only opened in June, so everything is in tip-top condition, but the service culture and slickness feels that they have been open for years!

ZALU is part of the ESSQUE group.......i just love their philosophy and 'essence' : "We have a vision and have made it a reality - to create inspirational places for you to stay, eat, play, relax and do business - your way - translating luxury the way you understand it".....they really lived up to it in their delivery!

There is naturally always somebody that has to make it happen on the ground - i have to compliment the very competent and friendly staff that is dressed in the most beautiful uniforms - they always have a smile to offer and welcoming you in their island/Swahili language....KARIBU!! The General Manager, Nicolas Konig is most charming and looks after all his guest with great ease....always around when you need him for assistance.

The food was outstanding - a variety of venues and styles to choose from, so you will not go hungry.......'The Jetty' for lunch was definitely my favorite - the view and intense blue sea around you is to die for....i could have sat there the entire day.

I went for a run on the beach every day at low tide......I felt completely safe and was enjoying the local island-living around me - boats, fisherman, kids playing soccer, tourist enjoying the sun......and the vibrant beach-bars in Nungwi was also a good experience - 'Cholos' is not far from ZALU and we walked there on the beach one night for a different experience. For some pampering, we went for a treatment at their Spa and the ladies made us feel like princesses!!

We did some water sport with EAST AFRICA DIVING company - jet-ski and paragliding (fantastic and very high!!!).....i unfortunately did not have enough free time to go scuba diving with them, but will definitely put that on my list to do next time - i was very impressed with the quality of their equipment.

One of the best things about the location of ZALU is that it is a bit elevated off the beach, so you do not get any disturbance or interference from local traders bothering you - one can enjoy the exclusivity.

The week went by too quickly!! LUCKILY we were introduced to their Private Residence Club and we have an option to purchase a membership......this will give us the excuse to go there EVERY YEAR FOR 50 YEARS!!!

i will sincerely highly recommend visiting this property when u go to Zanzibar.

Room Tip: the suites are one bedroom only, but if you are a group together you should take a 3 or 4 bedroom vi...
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with friends
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5  Thank ilovetravelvw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 August 2011

This is an accident found, once again a wonderful escape spent in Paradise. We loved every minute of our stay and we are already looking forward to our next visit to the beautiful Essque Zalu Zanzibar establishment.

Food was outstanding and the service level is unbeatable. Best place on earth to relax and recharge your batteries. We can only recommend the place and more...
We were very impressed that Nicolas came to chat to us one evening and he was such a warm and friendly person despite his position as GM of Zalu. The other highlight for us was the amazing long deck to restaurant and bar which was one of the major reason why we chose Zalu...

Room Tip: Get the ocean View suite...
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank abdulKampala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2011

We came to this hotel by accident. The hotel we booked had a broken generator and therefore they gave us the chance to stay here. How lucky were we ! By arrivel at the Essque Zalu Hotel we were immediatly impressed. Beautiful design, lovely people, ... It was peaceful, quiet and relaxing. Polé Polé as the locals would say. A nice younglady brought us to our junior suite, of which we had anything except complaints. The bathroom didn't have a bath, but the shower was so luxurious big, that we didn't miss a bath at all. After unpacking our baggs, we went for some food. The hotel has 3 different places where you can eat: in the hotel downstaires (outdoor of indoor), one upstaires and one in the middle of the ocean. We ate at all 3 and the food was outstanding ! We've been to many restaurants in our lives, but this was the best food we've ever ate, by far ! (also the best Mojito).
We would like to thank all the people who work at the hotel. They are so motivated and very kind. Therefore, our special thanks to the men and women from the restaurants, Mr. Aman and his collegues at the bar, the manager Monsieur Nicolas, the Chef, ...
The hotel is situated right at the beach. It's very nice to take a walk over the beach. It also has a fitness area, a spa and a shop, where you can buy souvenirs, juwelery and others.
Only the pool requires some taking use to, because of the salt water. But except from that, we have absolutely nothing bad to say about this hotel. We simply miss it already. A lot.
Kind regards,
Nils & Nakita Timmermans

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank NelisAnita
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2011

This is real value for money. The best setting in zanzibar with the staff catering for all your needs. It has been a long time since we experienced professional service with smiles non stop! Nicolas and staff to be congratulated on the service levels already achieved with a hotel so recently opened. I wil recommend to anybody to stay there.Herman , Marisa and Susan de Bruin from South Africa

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank herman99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 November 2017 via mobile
Google Translation

Stayed: November 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank philliphagen5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 October 2017 via mobile
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Stayed: October 2017
Thank Erika O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Essque Zalu Zanzibar

Address: Nungwi 3151, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Nungwi
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Nungwi
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Nungwi
#3 Spa Hotel in Nungwi
#4 Luxury Hotel in Nungwi
#5 Romantic Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range: £279 - £523 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Essque Zalu Zanzibar 5*
Number of rooms: 48
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Take a deep breath of fresh Indian ocean air, relax and unwind. Essque Zalu Zanzibar is an intimate boutique destination nestled in a natural cove in the north east coast of Unguja (alias Zanzibar). Essque Zalu Zanzibar combines contemporary luxury with a real sense of place. This boutique hotel has the turquoise waters of the Indian ocean to one side and lush green forest to the other, and there is just a hint of spice in the warm and fragrant tropical air. At Essque Zalu Zanzibar, create your own personal paradise, your own kind of luxury, an experience of a lifetime. Choose from 40 individual suites and 8 villas all with picturesque views over the lush tropical garden or the ocean turquoise blue. Our suites offer a luxurious-styled space crafted from local materials, adorned with native artwork and housed under a traditional pitched makuti roof. From farm to table, we take great pride in our sumptuous cooking. Satisfy your taste buds with a choice of two unique restaurants, three well stocked bars and a variety of destination dining experiences. Unashamedly indulgent, the Spa comprises of two couples treatment rooms, four single rooms, vichy shower, a sauna and steam room - a haven of restorative and rejuvenating perfection. Using only 100% truly organic and natural ingredients, our focus is on capturing the intelligence of nature in the restorative process. We know that the essence of nature can synergistically interact with the energy system, and this knowledge forms the basis of our Africology creations, all orchestrated to help you lead a more holistic lifestyle. Essque Zalu is your outpost into the first steps of the wildness and tranquility of Zanzibar. Reconnect with nature and experience a land rich in life and uninhabited space. We offer guests the opportunity to partake in activities to experience some of the islands most Spectacular and scenic excursions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Essque Zalu Zanzibar Hotel Nungwi
Essque Zalu Zanzibar Zanzibar Island/Nungwi

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