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“A little slice of paradise”

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Essque Zalu Zanzibar
Ranked #2 of 17 Hotels in Nungwi
Certificate of Excellence
Richmond, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“A little slice of paradise”
Reviewed 12 April 2013

We were looking for a place to completely refresh and recharge ourselves and that is exactly what we got. From the moment you step inside until the moment you leave you feel cocooned in luxury and style.

The hotel is simply beautiful, a combination of contemporary, art deco and traditional African but in a very cool and minimalistic way and we were in one of the bungalows near to the ocean which followed the main hotel theme. The bed was huge and so comfortable – almost too good to leave some mornings!

Although we had been on a three day Safari at the start of our trip we had expected to explore the island at least a little, however, we found we had everything we could possibly ask for at the hotel and, apart from a couple of days diving and some long beach strolls, did not leave for the remaining 11 days. I must just say here that this is not usually like us as we are always out and about exploring wherever we may be, but we did not want to leave – we had no need to.

We were on a half board basis and after a late breakfast of outstanding choice and quality, did not have the room to sample lunch at the pier restaurant (where the lobster looked amazing). Dinner was 4 courses and could almost be described as ‘fine dining’.

The drinks were all very reasonably priced and, in the evenings, were always accompanied by delicious canapés – be sure to leave room for dinner though.

The staff cannot do enough for you and seem really happy to be there – we had particular soft spots for both Amani (a lovely very sweet and brilliant barman) and Fortunata (our breakfast waitress with a big personality and cheeky smile who obviously loved making us feel special).

The managers were very hands on and made sure all was to our liking and, in particular, Nicolas the general manager, really went the extra mile to make sure we were made to feel special.

To sum up, this hotel is truly a five star and in our opinion is excellent value for money. If you want to feel bathed in cool, calm luxury you will not find much better than this regardless of where you are in the world.

Andrea & Harvey

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AndHarv100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (124)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 April 2013

Spent a good 6 nights at Zalu. Food was amazing, however the serving time is very laid back. Dinner can take up to 2 hrs to arrive but they compensate that with excellent tasting menu.
Rooms are spacious and each suite has 2 aircons keeping you cool 24/7.
Staff are very accommodating and will go out of their way to get things done.
We went out fishing and came back with a catch and they chef was more than pleased to prepare the fish to our liking.
Amazing place to just relax and unwind. Def recommended.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Zaine K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2013

This is a beautiful hotel, the manager is excellent and the staff are very accommodating and friendly. The infinity pool is Gorgeous and the SPA is excellent. But all that comes at a price of course. If you want to tan on a beach or swim in the ocean, this isn't the place for you. If you want to swim in a beautiful pool and enjoy an ocean view, then this is your place. Make sure that the hotel itself books airport pickup Bc it's not easy to find. Our driver got lost BIG TIME and if you're like most people that go to Zanzibar after climbing Kilimanjaro, getting lost is the last thing you need.
Also, most people that stay at the hotel are either families or old people Bc it is expensive. If you're looking for a hip young place, you'll need to leave the resort.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank nawwarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2013 via mobile

Wonderful place, great ambience, excellent staff, an experience in extreme Luxury! We spent time with friends hosting their son's reception. The cottages and suites are tastefully done, great food, live band and a beautiful infinity pool!

Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Raajeevbopiah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dublin
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 April 2013

I was staying in Nungwi and visited this hotel for the afternoon and evening. As such this review does not reflect accommodation or quality of guest service. We ate lunch on the terrace and it was delicious. I thought it was very reasonably priced, similar to prices for mch poorer quality food around Nungwi. The spa was fab. very restful, spotelssly clean, good faciliteies - shower, changing room, steam room, sauna, resting area! Massage is excellent.

We had the A La Carte menu in the evening. Initially we were seated in the dning room upstairs which although was nice with good views out to sea, it was completely empty and we felt a bit foolish sitting there by ourselves in an enormus dining area. Luckily the chef and restaurant manager realised this almost before we realised it ourselves and suggested they set up a table for us down on the terrace. This was much better.

The food was easiy the best I had in Zanzibar. Special mention for the tuna sashimi and the steak. The wine list was very reasonably priced in comparison with other restaurants in the area.
One downside for me were the hovering waiters. However it didnt bother my dinner companion so maybe it wouldnt bother other people.

From what I saw of the hotel it looks stunning. The pool area is amazing. The place exudes zen.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Marguerite_2011_1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2013

We recently stayed at the Essque in a Sea View Suite, and were very happy with our room (# 24) which had an unobstructed view of the ocean. The suite itself was spacious and if not for the abundance of beautiful nooks around the resort in which to relax and unwind, we would have just relaxed on our patio overlooking the blue ocean.

As other reviews will attest to, this is one unforgettable place. The architecture is stunning, the ambiance is remarkable, and the service is almost impeccable. Nicholas, the GM, also makes a point to greet and check in with each guest. This is highly appreciated, especially for a resort of this caliber and style. So long as you are comfortable with the fact that there is not a beach on site (and it can be quite taxing to swim around the jetty, I tried), I would very much recommend staying at the Essque.

Food was exceptional, all around.

Two areas of dissatisfaction:

1) Prior to arriving, we had extensive e-mail correspondence with Godfrey, one of the reservations managers, about booking a one-way airport transfer ($100) for our departure. It was important that we had all our transport sorted out before arrival, so as to maximize our time at the resort before having to leave for the airport. At check in, we confirmed our transfer and the gentleman who checked us in said it would arrive at 2:30PM. But at 2:30, no transportation arrived. Turns out the transfer was never booked, despite our best efforts to ensure that it was. We waited about 15-20 minutes until the van showed up and thankfully made it to the airport just in time. This is a small issue, and it was likely the result of some very understandable miscommunication or clerical error. Those things happen, I know. But they really shouldn't at a place like this.

2) Prior to leaving, we asked for a small bottle of water to take on the 1.5 hour journey to the airport. We were told that it must be purchased from the bar, and that the only complimentary bottle of water is provided during the morning cleaning. We said no bottle had been provided, and following a check with her superior, the receptionist graced us with a complimentary bottle of water. This was kind of ridiculous. I understand that bottled water is not complimentary at this resort ($4 for a large bottle) (although it is free at some other resorts), but most standards of hotel courtesy (not to mention common sense) would provide a departing customer upon request with a small bottle of water for a long road journey. We shouldn't have had to negotiate for water.

Neither of these things would dissuade me from recommending this place, and I hope to have the chance to visit again. These are merely very small areas for improvement at a hotel that is on the path of becoming one of the most distinctive in the world.

Room Tip: Sea view suite 24 was superb.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank SRP17087
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
1 review
Reviewed 31 March 2013

An excellent place to relax and yet have all the luxuries be available. The check-in procedure is outstanding. No need to queue at the reception (they don't have a reception as such). You are taken straight to your suite after a welcome drink and a brief of the facilities.

The Jetty is an amazing place to have lunch or coffee in the evening. The view is simply breath taking.

Staff are all very friendly and at service at all times. For us it was the kind of break we were looking for. Privacy, quietness and Luxury. Food is remarkable and all freshly prepared.

Mr. Nicholas was always around and went out of the way to ensure the guests comfort.

One of the best hotel experience we have ever had!

Will definitely come back.

Thank you once again Mr. Nicholas, looking forward to another Zalu experience and seeing you again.

Regards

Mr. Relax (As you addressed me from my T-Shirt)

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jq007
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

Property: Essque Zalu Zanzibar
Address: Nungwi 3151, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Nungwi
Amenities:
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:
#1 Spa Hotel in Nungwi
#2 Luxury Hotel in Nungwi
#2 Family Hotel in Nungwi
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Nungwi
#5 Romantic Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
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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