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“Honeymoon”

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Diamonds La Gemma dell' Est
Ranked #5 of 17 Hotels in Nungwi
Certificate of Excellence
macclesfield
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Honeymoon”
Reviewed 16 September 2009

We really enjoyed our honeymoon. The hotel is beautiful and the surroundings are stunning. However, nothing really to do so one week here was enough. The animation team don't really offer much entertainment except volleyball once a day. Anything not included in the all inclusive was overpriced and the staff were mainly europeans and understood very little english. I found the african staff much friendlier and helpful. I didn't like the fact that everything was charged in Euros as we had gone to Africa. Nothing near the hotel but if you like sunbathing in stunning surroundings then this is the hotel for you

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank susie1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Edinburgh
Level Contributor
39 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 September 2009

This really was a nice hotel. We were all inclusive and it pretty much includes everything you would expect. The only thing it doesn't include would be certain drinks (if you need the expensive brands), day trips and the spa. I thought these things were pretty expensive but I suppose a hotel of this standard will charge that sort of money. The rooms are very adequate and kept very clean. The grounds are spectacular and the colours of the plants incredible. The food is very good although i would say if you are there for more than a week, you may get a bit bored of the setup. That said there are 2 food pay options - a sea food restaurant and an on the beach bbq which we did not try. 'African night' was a good night and a bit different to the hotel norm. Staff were all very friendly; could not fault them at all. The beach is excellent. Nicest part of the beach having walked the whole stretch. The water is very nice. Wading in is debatable or just lucky. We had no problems at all and were walking in each time, as were most people. We did see someone though who had stood on some sort of urchin and it looked sore to say the least. Once on the resort you are pretty much there. You may be able to go along to a bar at another hotel but that is about it. There are some tents selling goods (touristy things) along the beach. No town or supermarkets though. We travelled to the hotel from Stone Town - the taxi cost $35 there and the hotel organised one on the way back that was $40. takes about 1 hour. A negative was internet - we tried to check in on our return flights. You surely shouldn't need internet on holiday but if you do, it is slooowwwww....and they charge for it! Thoroughly enjoyed this place and would recommend.

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank EdinburghGlaswegian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
breda
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 August 2009

I stayed at this hotel with my dad when we went on safari in Tanzania. We wanted to dive so booked 4 days in this hotel.
The rooms overlook the see (perfect white sandy beach!), you have the sunset right in front of you.
It was valentines day and they even put roses on our bed and put a cake in the shape of a heart in the fridge (had to tell the cleaners we were father and daughter, not husband and wife haha).
We were welcomed by one of the many italian staff, who was very friendly and welcoming. (loved the watermelon drink!)
She and all the other italian & tanzanian staff made our stay an unforgetable one.
I can't believe i see people who give this hotel 1, 2, 3, or even 4 stars..
I've worked in a hotel and restaurants myself, so i know it is hard work and there is always someone complaining.

I went diving for the first time and went to one that is at the hotel. We had an South African instructor. He was very friendly and patient with me and my dad.

Food was good, staff was nice, rooms were spotless, pool and surrounding very clean, nice garden, perfect bounty island beaches and a lot of extra's in the hotel.. I can recommend this hotel to anyone.

It is a hotel you want to book on a honeymoon, romantic getaway, relaxing holiday.
Because we only had two full days we could dive, we stayed on the resort.
So i do not know at all if the resort was close to anything interesting in Zanzibar. We just went for diving.

  • Stayed February 2008
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank AnOpinionBreda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxon
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 July 2009

I have mixed feelings about this hotel.
Firstly the resort itself is set on a large plot which always gives you a sense of personal space. The grounds and beach area are immaculate, constantly being cleaned and maintained. The hotel is built on a slope which does allow great views but if you have any disabilities you may find the steps and slopes difficult. Thus said the resort does have quite a corporate feel to it with a conference centre when you first come in and while we were there a couple of groups where having a team building event. This didn’t worry us at all as we like to be left alone but if you want a small and intimate atmosphere this may not be the place for you.
The food was a fair quality, sometimes a bit samey but we were never hungry and the all inclusive was extensive, good cocktails, local beers and wine and always snacks available, sandwiches, ice cream, cakes etc.
The bars were fun. We were always entertained by the crooner in the Rock Bar especially his rendition of P Diddy’s “I’ll be missing you” and the jetty at night was lovely.
Now for the mixed bit.
We stayed in a villa room which consisted of our bedroom and a communal area shared by three other bedrooms. The bedroom was comfortable but not huge and the communal area was large and probably very useful if you are with family or a group of friends.
The butler and room girl were friendly but we found the service to be erratic. On a regular basis we had to ask for things to be restocked or changed. The kettle in our room was broken and it took 4 days and several enquiries to get a new one.
We are not unrealistic travellers and we know things do go wrong but I think the test of a place is how it’s dealt with when it does. On the second night we were there the air conditioning in our room broke. We reported it the following day and someone finally came out after the3rd call at 7.00pm the following evening. We were told it could not be fixed that night and we were to move to the room next door... fine. We packed and started to move our things and after moving over half we were told we were now not moving so could we move back. We were allowed to sleep in the vacant room as ours was too hot but our belongings were still in our original room. Holidays should not be difficult.
The local staff was very friendly and helpful but the management who were all international origin ran around like headless chickens.
Overall after a rocky start we had a good holiday in a well kept, impersonal hotel.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank issywhite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ayrshire scotland
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 July 2009

My wife and I recently stayed here as the second part of our honeymoon following our safari in Kenya. As stated in the heading we really came at the wrong time and that obviously had quite an effect on our trip. For starters we looked around and were told that the rainy season was over at the end of May, but it is quite common knowledge locally that in recent years it has extended quite a long way into June, so while we were there the weather wasn't as nice as we had hoped! Still you can't blame anybody about the weather, its just tip for people heading there in future!

I will start with the positives are there were many: The beach is great, lovely sand, reasonable space and not to much hassle off beach boys etc. The bar there makes amazing cocktails with fresh fruit (as it also is in the rest of the resort). The sea is lovely with plenty of fish swimming around the jetty. We found snorkelling there on par with the snorkelling trip (run by the hotels dive centre) we went on but with the saving of 30 euro per person- but then again we might have been out of luck on our trip! Entertainment in the evening was good at both "the rock bar" and also the jetty. We even enjoyed paying a small (£2) fee for the Cafe Moresca (the place has a really nice atmosphere) where we as non smokers (surprisingly) quite enjoyed the Shiska pipes. Food was better than we expected with plenty of choice and the house wine was also reasonable. They had an evening bbq one night we were there where they had a freshly caught Blue Marlin which was one of the tastiest things I have ever tastest! All waiter/ waitresses were polite and efficient and during our ten day stay we had no complaints- however it was still quite low season so it wasn't too busy.

Next the not so good stuff: Unfortunately we were the some of unlucky ones to be there during the pool closure, now I know we said before the sea was lovely but with the pool being on the seafront the worksite was right next to us- and hence the noise and workforce that came with it. This alongside the building of the new diamond villas up at the top of the resort meaning that the secondary pool (normally the private pool of the presedential villa) was also suffering from the noise created by this construction so really we had no where with utter peace and quiet which we were looking for on our "honeymoon in paradise". This was obviously the main sore point, but there was also work going on on the beach to erect fence/barriers to try and stop the sea washing away the beach (sadly it is slowly being washed further and further back) which involved another large workforce and more noise again.

The room also failed to meet the standard that we were expecting, as there was a fair bit of damp in the bathroom, the silicone around the shower was black and our A/C failed. The management must be aware that the rooms needed some work as they had yet again another workforce going around refurbishing rooms all around the complex which-yes you've guessed it- also created more mess and noise around our room.

Now basically it was all this work which really left a sour taste with us as there was no warning that this work was going on from either our travel agent or the resort, no offer of alternative accomodation/ upgrades etc and we are currently battling our travel agents for a refund. As far as I am aware we had no reduced rate for our stay as we had it booked about 8 months before we left and when we got back we went online and looked at booking for the following month and it had no increase in costs.

Zanzibar is a beautiful island, but unfortunately the standard of the hotel (at that moment in time) did infringe upon our enjoyment. However, I can appreciate the good reports that this resort gets and after all the work is done it will probably be a brilliant place again. I just wish we had been there a month later to experience it at is best rather than its worst- and it is due to my own personal experience that I have given it a low rating.

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
6 Thank fleeinscotsman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brighton
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2009

My husband and I stayed at the Gemma Dell' Est following a week's safari in Tanzania, and it turned out to be the perfect end to a fantastic honeymoon.

Gemma Dell'Est itself is at least an hour's transfer from the island's airport, but it's definitely worth the trip. The hotel is situated on the north west of the island, and isn't affected by the low tide seagrass/weeds as the hotels on the west coast often are. As a result, the beach is wide, pristine and perfect at any time of the night or day.

The hotel itself is pretty big, low rise and set over a wide area of perfectly manicured lawns and flower beds. Our room was set at ground floor level, just above the pool, pool bar and a couple of restaurants, and was clean and perfectly adequate. The suites looked very spacious (through the windows - unfortunately we didn't get to stay in one!), and the villas looked plain spectacular!

The restaurants were fantastic, with plenty of choice, and something to suit all palates. Funnily enough (for an Italian hotel), the Italian restaurant was our least favourite, but there you go! One night we treated ourselves to a lobster meal on the beach, which was cooked on the barbeque and delicious! We'd definitely recommend it.

We sampled the entertainment every night, which had us giggling most evenings. Our favourite nights were the performances by the Tanzanian dancers, and the disco night which was held on the jetty bar - even though we were the last couple left standing on the dancefloor! By the way, cocktails here are fantastic - and served in eye-watering measures.

The dive school was great, and although we didn't scuba with them, we did go on a snorkelling trip to Mnemba, which had an incredible variety of fish - and a school of dolphins to boot.

We didn't visit the spa (although it did look wonderful) but we did work out at the open-sided gym most evenings, overlooking the jetty and out towards the sunset. Wonderful!

Just a few negative points...
We realised that this was an Italian resort before we travelled, but what we didn't bargain on was that we would be one of just three British couples staying at the hotel - and one of the couples left half way through our week there! Everyone speaks Italian - including the local hawkers. It really threw us for our first couple of days.

We had also been told that there would potentially be upgrades (subject to availability), and a free a la carte meal on the beach, because we had chosen to honeymoon at the Gemma Dell'Est. However, on arrival we were told that upgrades were available , but only if we paid, and on departure we were told that the a la carte meal wasn't free either. We've noticed that Virgin has now taken the 'honeymooners offer' down from its website - at least no one else will be caught out.

All in all, a fantastic holiday and honeymoon destination.

  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Smartiebee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
85 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2009

We stayed at this hotel following 10 days on safari on mainland Tanzania for 7 nights. I had read the reviews prior to leaving the UK and had asked our agent to check out the issues over renovations and the pool being closed. I can confirm that the pool is open and looks like it has been completely overhauled. Although we had been assured that no work was being done to the hotel prior to our departure, on inspection of the site, we found that the suites were being renovated. In addition we had been advised that works were being carried out to villas adjoining the site. In reality, neither works affected our stay although the renovation of the suites which appeared to be in Block 6 were sufficiently far away from our room in Block 2 to have no effect on us. This may not be the case with rooms in Blocks nearer to Block 6 so it is worth asking before you depart. I did see men carrying planks of wood through the site on a couple of occasions but this did not adversely affect our stay.
I have seen comments that suggest that the site is so spread out that it is necessary to access the rooms by means of golf buggy. On arrival and departure, your luggage is transferred to and from your room (and you are too) by means of a golf buggy. Otherwise, the distance from our room to the main restaurant and the pool/beach took only a couple of minutes on foot. The site does slope but not to excess. The grounds are very well kept and landscaped by a number of gardeners who we saw on site every day.
The pool and beach are clean and well maintained. The beach is white sand and the water is clean with some fish. We were advised to wear shoes in the sea because of sea urchins but these were a little way out. There is security on the beach to prevent hassle from people trying to sell things. This is very effective without seeming oppressive. You are also advised not to use the beach after 6pm as it is not private. The system for towels works well and there were always plenty of loungers available. The hotel did not seem very full although it is possible that as the suites were being renovated that the hotel was not fully occupied. We were advised that booking a table at the pizza restaurant would be necessary and although we did, it would have been possible to get a table without doing so on the night.
The main restaurant is sufficiently large to ensure that a table is always available when you arrive. The food was excellent and plentiful. The evening buffet always had pasta dishes and curries. We were too full from breakfast and dinner to eat in the main restaurant at lunch although we did have snacks from the beach restaurant. There was also good ice cream available. The all inclusive package included wine from either South Africa or France, African beers and cocktails. The staff were charming and attentive although if I was being picky sometimes you had to ask for more wine/coffee as they did not actively look out to see if you had an empty glass or cup. The African theme night was excellent with a barbeque on the beach and entertainment. There are two restaurants that serve food at additional cost to the all inclusive package. Although some people did eat in them, they were generally very quiet and we did not eat in them.
The deluxe rooms are comfortable (especially the beds) and the maids do a good job in keeping them clean and refilling the mini-bar. The bathroom was a little past its best and I think that the shower could do with refurbishment although there was lots of hot water and it worked well. I would recommend that you bring your own shampoo and conditioner because the stuff provided was not great. There is cable TV which after 10 days without any TV was much appreciated by my 12 year old son!
My husband and son used the dive centre which they enjoyed. There was enough to see in the area adjacent to the hotel to make it worthwhile diving. They found the staff friendly and helpful. I also used the spa which seemed reasonable value.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank KateREBristol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Diamonds La Gemma dell' Est

Property: Diamonds La Gemma dell' Est
Address: Nungwi Road, Nungwi 2019, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Nungwi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Nungwi
#4 Luxury Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Diamonds La Gemma dell' Est 5*
Number of rooms: 138
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set within exotic tropical gardens and water features inviting guests to enjoy the pristine view over the Indian Ocean, Diamonds La Gemma dell' Est is located on the north-western shores of the magical spice island of Zanzibar. This enchanting, luxurious and environmentally friendly resort is famous for its magnificent beach and large wharf built onto the open waters of the Indian Ocean and stretches out towards the sunset. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Diamonds La Gemma Dell` Est Hotel Zanzibar
La Gemma Dell Est Zanzibar
Gemma Del Est
Diamonds La Gemma Dell' Est Zanzibar Island/Nungwi

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