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“Relaxing Stay at Hakuna Matata” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa

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Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Chuini Ruins, Bububu, Tanzania   |  
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Eastern Package
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Bububu
Fredericton, Canada
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Relaxing Stay at Hakuna Matata”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2012

We stayed at Hakuna Matata for three days, flying in from JRO after a safari. Arrival was a smooth process (we opted for the airport pick-up), and a welcoming refreshment was a nice touch during the registration process.

Overall - everything about Hakuna Matata was excellent. The rooms (small bungalows) are nice, but with a beautiful beach and all the other attractions of Zanzibar, you won't spend much time in your room. Only issue I had was trying to figure out the air-conditioning controls. The staff and management were all quite friendly and welcoming - and I particularly liked how they had organized a beach dinner (with live music) on one of the nights.

The beach was great and the water warm (February): we liked how the HM part of the beach was nicely maintained, and low tide was a great opportunity to explore, chase crabs, and walk down the beach.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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365 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Lexington, Massachusetts
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2012

We stayed here in March 2011 after a safari in Kenya. The location is fabulous, the staff is well trained and extremely friendly, the food is far above what you might expect to find at a small lodge in Zanzibar, and the proprietors couldn't be more welcoming or hospitable. Don't miss the dramatic sunsets on the pier, and make time to take a day trip by boat (extra charge) out to the sandbar that will appear as if out of nowhere when the tide goes out, making a private island for your lunch picnic.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Zurich, Switzerland
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2012

We were looking for a relaxing week at the beach. And that's exactly what we got. We enjoyed our stay at Hakuna Matata. Rath is a perfect host, always trying to make your stay as comfortable and pleasurable as possible.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Budapest, Hungary
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2012

My wife and I were looking for somewhere we could relax and rest in comfort over Christmas & the New Year. Hakuna Matata was the ideal place for us, being a relatively small and quiet resort at Bububu on the west coast of Zanzibar, about 12km north of Stonetown. Our bungalow was large and very comfortable with a lovely view over the small cove that the resort lies next to. We had a living room with separate bedroom and bathroom and our own terrace. Our only quibble was that the air conditioning was not really adequate to cool the bedroom.

The owners (Rose & Fritz) and all of the staff were very friendly and welcoming and the service was excellent at all times.

There is a small private beach on the cove, but it is not ideal for swimming as the water is shallow and the tidal range is very large, so only really good at high tide. Nonetheless, at low tide it was possible to take long walks along the very attractive beaches either side of the cove.

The food was uniformly excellent, though we sometimes found it a little heavy (hot soup in 30C heat!), but eating dinner in the open air while watching the moon set into the sea is a real treat.

There is a tour agent on site who will organise trips out. Expensive but very good.

Altogether our stay was excellent, and exactly what we wanted.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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DC
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2011

After several days in a bumpy car in the Seregeti for safari drives, we had a great stay at Hakuna Matata. At first when you drive off the road towards the resort, we were nervous because you have drive through some slums, but the resort ended up being beautiful and very private. The food was delicious and the staff was very friendly. We are not German, but the resort is very popular with Germans, but they spoke English perfectly and we did not feel out of place.

As other reviews indicate, the views are great, but the swimming options are limited. The resort is not located on the famous beach portion of the island - so we did not get to experience the white sands and beautiful beaches that Zanzibar is famous for. We did have an opportunity to check out the market downtown, which was disappointing for tourists because they only sell practical goods for locals.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Utrecht
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2011

We started our 4 weeks of Tanzania with a few days at the Hakuna Matata lodge to lose the stress of work a bit. We arrived very late and were picked up from the airport and arrived in a nice and comfortable room. The beach looks very nice, but isn't a very good swimming spot (we knew this and don't care too much about swimming). The pool is good and clean and the grounds in general are a beautiful surrounding. There are several cosy, exotic spots where you can retreat to read or just sit and look around. The staff was friendly and the food was good.

The lodge is situated at about 2km from the main road. This road is quite bad and it takes about 20 minutes walking through Bububu to the main road. There, you can easily hop on a local bus to Stone Town (which can be crowded). This is all safe during daytime. Taxis will take you back from Stone Town to the lodge. So while Hakuna Matata is a good basecamp for visiting Stone Town, it will either be through the hotels tour operator (rather expensive) or involve some walking.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington, Kentucky
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2011

For our Zanzibar honeymoon, we decided for our first few nights to be at the Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge. I really wanted to impress her with a room in their honeymoon suite that looked over the water. Our trip for October was booked in March with confirmation for the honeymoon suite. You can only understand our surprise when they put us in a "regular suite." They had no record of our booking the Honeymoon suite and luckily I had saved the email from 6 months ago telling me of our booking.

Rath, the manager had felt so bad over this mishap and compensated us very well. In truth, it was not about the money as much as we flew halfway across the globe for our honeymoon to stay as "2nd class" guests at such a wonderful hotel. We were very grateful for Rath giving us his personal attention for our three nights that we stayed there. However, our last night there, Rose, the owner stops by our table for dinner and without introducing herself or apologizing, she states that she just got back in and confirmed our departure the next day. My wife and I had never felt so alienated. Then she proceeded to come back over and talk to us in German the next morning(as it wasn't already obvious that we were the only Americans at the place).

Truth be told, we just did not want to spend a honeymoon day driving around Zanzibar trying to find a new place. I have a feeling that had Rose been present on the day of our arrival and mishap, she would not have compensated us any. Rath and the rest of the staff were so nice to us, that it was no point in being upset and we were happy just making the best of the situation. Beware, just because Hakuna Matata says that you have a particular room, does not neccessarily mean you have that room booked.

Room Tip: It helps to speak German. The people who ended up getting the Honeymoon suite that we booked were f...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa

Also Known As:
Hakuna Matata Beach Hotel Bububu
Hakuna Matata Beach Hotel
Hakuna Matata Beach Bububu
Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa Zanzibar/Bububu
Address: Chuini Ruins, Bububu, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Bububu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Bububu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa. Located on the west coast of the exotic island Zanzibar under shady age-old mango trees, bordered by a secret private bay you will find our 4 star hotel Hakuna Matata Beach Lodge & Spa. Our beach hotel offers 13 comfortable bungalows - all with a spectacular view to of Indian Ocean. The new Villa Zanzibar is the highlight of all bungalows. Weddings and honeymoons - are you are looking for a romantic place to get married under palm trees, on the beach or next to historical palace ruins? Here, your dreams will come true. In our unique Day Spa you may revitalize your body and soul. Enjoy the breathtaking African sunsets. Let your eyes wander to the south, see the skyline of Stone Town, the small Chapwani and Prison Island, and just ahead the silhouette of the African continent. You will feel enchanted. The hotel is managed by the German owners Rose and Fritz. We are looking forward to welcoming you soon. ... more   less 
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