Pongwe Beach Hotel was PERFECT! When I heard that all beach front rooms were already taken and that I had to stay in a garden room, I was a pretty disappointed. But once I got to Pongwe, I realize that all rooms including garden rooms were only a few seconds of walking from the beach anyway! I mean the rooms are literally "on the beach", the minute I stepped out of my room, I am touching white sand on my feet. Everything was great including safety. (I am woman and traveled alone in Zanzibar)
Service was incredible, the moment I walked in the hotel I was offered fresh mango/passionfruit juice and greeted by all the staff. Never did I encounter any rude staff during my 4 day stay. The managers specially were really helpful. I lost my adapter and they even let me charge all my electronics in their office. All the tips they receive are also shared equally by every staff.
Food was amazing, they prepare everything fresh (I would recommend any of their seafood dishes!). The dining area is right at the beach front and couples have an option of doing romantic private dining right on the beach, separate from the common dining area. During the afternoon, they would walk around the beach and give free fresh fruits to guests.
The beach was just incredible. Clear turquoise water, and the whitest sand I've ever seen. Also plenty of space to have a peaceful alone time which I absolutely love. It truly felt like my own private beach right outside my room.
Safety is also very important for Pongwe. There are guards posted at the front gate of the hotel. You would also see guards dressed in traditional Massai warrior outfits guarding the beach front against any intruders. So staying at Pongwe was even more relaxing knowing the place is well protected.
PS- Cute little bush babies come out at night and sometimes they would pop-in the main lobby or near the rooms. (They are friendly and never attack, unless you hurt them). You would also encounter weird insects once in awhile, but this is just expected when you travel to an exotic place like Zanzibar. So bring enough insect repellent!
Overall this was an amazing experience. I would definitely come back here again!