Friends of ours recommended we stay at Hotel Zenji and we are glad we took their advice. We were looking for a relaxing end to a 3 week holiday in Zanzibar after climbing Kilimanjaro and going on a low budget camping safari and our stay at Hotel Zenji delivered.
The front desk staff of Chris, Sara and Ivy went out of their way to be helpful and always had a smile on their face. We stayed in the “Spirits of Nature” room, which while small, had plenty of closet and shelf space and a huge, comfortable bed. They say it is a double bed on the website, but I think it is actually a queen size and the pillows were comfortable (a nice thing after sleeping on the ground in tents for the previous 2 weeks). I’ll take a bigger bed over a bigger room every time.
The high heat and humidity kept us off our personal balcony except for the early morning but I still enjoyed reading there before breakfast on the padded bench and watching the activity on the narrow street below. Note: this room does not face the main road and we didn’t have any problem with noise keeping us awake – just the 3:30am call to prayers at the mosque but I’m used to that having travelled in Turkey. Their roof top covered patio is ideal for breakfast (and the breakfast staff were incredibly friendly too). The patio was nice later in the day for relaxing under a fan and watching the ferry passengers and port traffic. They even have a few games available for guests to play. My husband really, really, really appreciated the reliable air conditioning for a good nights’ rest, especially as it was so hot and humid during the beginning of the rainy season.
The location may be a concern to some as it is about 5 minutes from the main park in Stone Town but I felt safe walking in the narrow back streets or on the main street past the ferry terminal. We did always made sure we had our money belt stowed. Not everyone will feel comfortable away from the tourist areas so keep this in mind when you are looking for a hotel in Stone Town.
We booked a spice tour and snorkel trip through the hotel (which we never do on other vacations being so independent) and know we paid a bit more than by booking it ourselves but the convenience was a relief and both were great experiences.
book a room away from the main street for a quieter nights sleep
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.