My wife and I and as my parents recently stayed at the Anjiamarango Beach Resort for four nights and had an absolutely amazing time.
1. Location: a fantastic setting. Unspoilt and tranquil with lovely views and spectacular sunsets. The beach is very quiet without the hassle of people trying to sell you things. Granted, the hotel was not full when we stayed but we had the beach and sea to ourselves.
2. Value: we found the hotel, given the facilities and setting, to be extremely good value for money.
3. Owners/staff: from the moment we arrived, the owners, Philippe and Monique and their son Igor were very welcoming. They would come to speak to us at breakfast and dinner to check everything was okay. I noticed they did the same for the other guests too. That personal touch was great and helped us to plan our days. A couple of examples of their generosity:
(i) in true British fashion, I got quite badly burnt by the sun whilst out snorkelling. When we returned to the hotel, Monique was there to greet us as we got off the boat and, having taken one look at my back and the back of my legs, immediately disappeared to get some Biafine (an very effective after-sun cream that for some reason you can get in France but not the UK). Monique insisted that I held on to the cream for the duration of our stay. A very nice touch;
(ii) after a day out snorkelling and exploring a nearby island, Philippe and Monique were there to greet us when we got back with cold towels to wipe our faces and hands down and delicious home-made fruit juices. In fact, on more than one occasion, we were greeted with the delicious fruit-juices. Another nice touch.
Igor was also very helpful and more than happy to help with any query we had. For instance, we were discussing hiring a car for the day and touring the island with him and he immediately disappeared to look into various options and prices that were available. Having decided on the car we wanted, he immediately took care of the arrangements.
The staff were all very pleasant, attentive and helpful. The service at breakfast and dinner was excellent.
4. Resort: the bungalows are lovely with many nice touches. The attention to detail is very impressive and they are a very good size. The spacing between each bungalow is more than enough to give you a feeling of privacy and the outside space is wonderful with lovely plants, flowers etc. The rooms were immaculately cleaned at least twice a day and the selection of shower gels was great. The shower was fantastic – powerful and hot whatever the time of day! Needless to say, the views from the bungalow were to die for. Because the resort is tucked away in a very tranquil location it is very quiet and peaceful at night which made for a great night’s sleep.
The lounge area was fantastic, very spacious and the sofas/armchairs were very comfortable and great for enjoying a cocktail in. We had great fun playing pool and table football.
The dining area is wonderful, offering great views of the sea. The lighting is just right and the tables are all very far apart which gives you a sense of space. All in all, the dining experience was first class, so good in fact that we had dinner there every day!
5. Food: delicious, absolutely delicious. I wonder if I will ever have such tasty fish again in my life! I would go back again just for the food, it really was that good. The menu is very interesting and varied and everything was so full of flavour. The Zebu meat was the nicest we had in Madagascar. The fresh bread rolls (soaked in balsamic vinegar and olive oil) were delicious, even if I did find myself eating too many! The desserts were varied and again, very good. I thought the pichets of wine were also very reasonably priced.
Another nice touch was the head waiter popping by whilst you were relaxing by your bungalow early evening to take your food order.
Breakfast was fantastic. A selection of cold meats, cheeses, cereals, fresh yogurts and eggs as requested. There was definitely something for everyone. Excellent filtered coffee too.
The service was, at all times, excellent.
6. Facilities: second to none. Surfboards, snorkelling equipment, windsurf etc are all available to use, free of charge. The swimming pool is superb. There is even a gym with a good selection of machines which I used on a couple of occasions.
7. Overall experience: 10/10. There was so much to do, I think you could easily spend a week or more at the resort. As mentioned above, it is in a picture perfect, tranquil setting. Philippe, Monique and Igor have, as they admitted to us, sought to create a relaxing and peaceful resort – a place where you can sit back and take it easy, not surrounded the noise of Jetskis or by people trying to sell you things etc.
However, there are also a lot of day activities you can do and the owners will take time to talk you through the various options. The highlight for us was the day out on the Pirogue boat. We visited a nearby island (which we had to ourselves!) and had, sunburn aside, a great time snorkelling and getting a guided tour of the island and the caves by the one of the members of staff. Lunch was fresh fish caught that morning just off the island. It was wonderfully prepared using various spices. So simple yet so good. There is cold water provided all day as well as delicious fruit etc. Once the wind picked up on the way back we were able to put the sail up on the way back which was great fun.
Again, nothing was too much trouble for the staff who were always keen to help. As I have said, the staff were always very friendly – I think they are very well looked after by the owners (for instance, they are trying to help them improve their English by paying for them to attend English lessons).
I would say that the resort would be suitable for couples as much as it would be for families. There is a lot to keep kids entertained, even a resident lemur!
8. Cons: quite simply, none. Electricity being limited is absolutely the norm in Madagascar and was the same wherever we stayed. If you want electricity all day and home comforts like WIFI, air-conditioned hotel etc and a choice of restaurants a short walk from where you are staying then I would recommend somewhere La Plantation in Hellville or Hotel Colbert in Antsiranana. If you want an authentic, local experience, where you will be very well looked after, eat/sleep well and feel very relaxed, Anjiamarango Beach Resort is the place for you. Yes, it is fairly isolated but, in fairness, that is the whole point!
Our only regret – not staying longer!
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- Also Known As:
- Anjiamarango Beach Resort Madagascar/Nosy Be