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“Family away from home” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mashariki Palace Hotel

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Mashariki Palace Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Nyumba Ya Moto Street | Cn. 293, Stone Town 3904, Tanzania   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 29 hotels in Stone Town
Manama, Bahrain
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Family away from home”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

As a newly wed couple, my husband and I went to Zanzibar and spent 11 nights at Mashariki for our honeymoon. We absolutely loved everything about this hotel. The design of the hotel is wonderful in capturing the feeling of a thousand and one nights. It is very well restored and beautifully furnished. The staff were super friendly and very helpful, and the owners who happened to be there during our stay were wonderful and attentive to our needs. Unfortunately I got sick with the flu and the hotel arranged for a doctor to come since I hardly left the room in 3 days. They were all very caring and would even call our room to make sure I was ok. They were all our little family during our stay and we created such wonderful bonds with the owners and staff. The hotel is super clean with modern toilets (which is very important in third world countries). The hotel is located close to a market, several restaurants, and a park all within walking distance. Be aware that Stone Town is a bit noisy in terms of the people talking loudly outside, so when in your room there are times when you will hear children screaming or loud salesmen. Nevertheless it's a wonderful experience to get away from the materialistic world of today. My husband and I plan on visiting again in the future and look forward to staying at Mashariki once again. Thank you to the Mashariki family for making our honeymoon one we will never forget.

Room Tip: Try and ask for a room that overlooks the garden or the hotel entrance, as the room we stayed at ove...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
silvanoalb, Owner at Mashariki Palace Hotel, responded to this review, January 12, 2013
Dears, we would like to thank you for your stay with us. It looks you are still here when we pass in front of your room....of course...after eleven days!!!...and your sofa' is still there waiting for you again! All the best from your "zanzibarian" family! Ciao!
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187 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
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English first
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2012

We had one night at this overpriced and average hotel and I would not recommend it to anyone. We chose to stay here for 2 reasons..one was the glowing tripadvisor reviews and the other was the bed size that was advertised on Booking.com (a very large double bed and when you hover over that it says 181-210cm ie a UK king size). Plus when you are paying almost $300 a night you expect a certain standard. We stayed in 6 or 7 hotels or safari camps in Africa and this by far the worst experience of service and expectations not met.

First up, you will be dropped off by taxi about 4 minute walk from the hotels front door... you walk up these dodgy back lanes. Its like a bomb has gone off...rubble everywhere etc...while this is not the fault of the hotel, it doesnt lead to a good first impression.

The staff don't speak great English so when you have a problem or express a concern they are unable to comprehend what the problem is or what you are asking. Our first issue about the size of the bed (as opposed as what was advertised on booking.com) was not addressed. The hotel felt empty (i think there was only 1 other couple staying) which was due to the riots that have been going on in Stone Town, but they were still unable to address our unhappiness about the incorrect advertising of the bed size and understand the complaint OR how to resolve it. Because of this the quality of service you can expect is quite poor. The staff are also NOT helpful..they will watch you "lug" bags up and down the stairs from the front desk and not run to assist you. If I was staying in a backpackers hostel and paying less than $100 a night that would be fine...but this is meant to be a 4-5 star hotel and $300 a night...

I was expecting something "palatial" or like a Palace...and it certainly was a great dissapointment. After the entrance via "rubble" , Be prepared to walk up alot of stairs - The rooms are small, they are not stunning and not spacious as some of the other reviewers have said. There are not curtains over all the windows allowing light in and no way to stop that..and cheap fitttings for everything...(it certainly didnt "charm me" and the decor was not stunning or beautifully renovated or "special" in any way...at best a 3 star hotel experience...but for the price well over priced. It has lead me to think that some of these TA reviews are not genuine reviews and we were mislead.

The breakfast was very average...2 choices of fruit (pineapple and papaya) 3 average cereals and hot breakfast..Again the issue of English came up ...My breakfast order for an cheese, tomato and mushroom omelette came as a cheese omelette with grilled tomato and what looked like tinned champignon on the side. Not a big deal...but for something that is billed as "5 star and luxurious" it certainly wasnt that!.

My advice...is do not stay in Stone town....its not a nice place..lots of people lurking around...riots, police killed, tear gas etc...if you "have" to see Stone town..then do a day trip...that will be enough....I couldnt wait to leave this hotel or Stone town.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
silvanoalb, Proprietario at Mashariki Palace Hotel, responded to this review, October 24, 2012
Dear lady, ALL the revievs (good or not) are true and what you declare is a Defamation OFFENCE. The AWFUL Stone Town (as you said) is an UNESCO world heritage.The minimum international size for king bed is 150x200 cm. and we have high quality mattress. The ceiling of your room (n.12) is more than three meters height. You did not inform the receptionist to take down your suitcases. Regarding your 4 minutes walk from the parking to the hotel, I am looking for crane.
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Cape Town Central, South Africa
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2012

A good option for a Stone Town stopover, this hotel is beautifully renovated in a minimal style while still preserving the Stone Town character. The comfortable rooftop bar / restaurant offered spectacular sunset views and our breakfast there was enjoyable the following morning. WiFi signal was good and the staff friendly and helpful. Recommended.

Room Tip: I regretted not opting for one of the premium rooms as our standard room was on the small side and a...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Bangor, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2012

My family stayed in this fantastic hotel, regrettably only for 1 night at the end of a week on Zanzibar. We had been booked into another hotel but when we read the reviews we switched, and are very glad we did so. From the moment we arrived in the calm, and coolness of the hotel reception which is decorated in neutral earthy colours, we knew we had made the right choice for the night.

We were greeted by Farooq, who I think is the manager, and who gave us a bit of history of how the old palace had been restored and a guided tour of the premises. The refurb has been carried out in such a tasteful manner and in total harmony to its surroundings and history.

We were taken to rooms 21 and 22 I think and had our own shared landing sun lounging area and as many amenities as one could try to immagine for a 4-5 star hotel.

Once we had ventured out and visit some of the many sights and atractions Stonetown has to offer, and been stifled by the heat, the crowded labrynth of narrow streets and alley ways it was an absolute pleasure to return to the hotel. We felt as though we had arrived back in some sort of oasis, and this was only enhanced by adjourning to the rooftop bar / terrace for a cocktail whilst watching the crowds gathering in Fodorahni Gardens, the Dows sailing past on the coast and a spectacular sunset beyond.

As stated earlier our only regret with our stay at the Mashariki Palace was that we were staying for only 1 night. If in Stonetown, I would really loved to have stayed another night. It is the only city in the world where I have ever felt like I had entered into a new world when I left the streets and walked through the doors of a really special hotel.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
silvanoalb, Proprietario at Mashariki Palace Hotel, responded to this review, August 29, 2012
On behalf of all our staff : thanks thanks thanks a lot ! Wishing for you all the best.
Silvano.
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1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2012 via mobile

The mashariki palace is absolutely stunning the decor is simply beautiful and the location is perfect! My room is large with every facility in perfect working order. The staff are very helpful, courteous and friendly. The rooftop restaurant has an amazing view and the food is just as amazing!
I would recommend this hotel and I intend to return

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2012

The things we loved: the architecture, the views from the terrace, our room facing old narrow residential streets in Stone Town, the food, the location and most of all the Manager and Staff's hospitality. I'm not sure if the Manager is the same, but he took the time to tell us all about the hotel, the area as well as helped us get hooked up with our next destination outside of Stone Town. I was amazed at the pampered treatment we received! Great find, great place and great management.

Room Tip: We preferred the top floor rooms (bottom floor is nice too--but to floor gets you the experience of...
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
silvanoalb, Proprietario at Mashariki Palace Hotel, responded to this review, August 8, 2012
On behalf of all the staff I wish to thank you for your stay at Mashariki Palace hotel and for your comment. To think that a crumb of us is in your heart is great!
All the best.
Silvano.
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Melbourne, Australia
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012

We stayed here for three nights recently at the conclusion of our holiday in Tanzania. And what a fantastic hotel this was! This achingly beautiful hotel resides in a renovated palace complex that once belonged to the Sultan of Zanzibar. One can best fully appreciate the palpable history and romance to this hotel on the roof top bar, cocktail in hand and to the background of the call to prayer from distant minarets. Amazing rooms that takes you back to another place and time. Staff are helpful and knowledgeable and willing to make the extra effort to make your stay memorable. A special thanks to the manager that arranged for an escort to our restaurant during the recent protest at the edge of Stonetown.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
silvanoalb, Proprietario at Mashariki Palace Hotel, responded to this review, July 24, 2012
...simply brillant...is your comment. Thanks a lot!
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Additional Information about Mashariki Palace Hotel

Also Known As:
Mashariki Palace Hotel Zanzibar/Stone Town
Address: Nyumba Ya Moto Street | Cn. 293, Stone Town 3904, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Stone Town
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Stone Town
#1 Family Hotel in Stone Town
#1 Luxury Hotel in Stone Town
#2 Business Hotel in Stone Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Mashariki Palace Hotel 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Stone Town, Zanzibar: Exotic and mystical, evocative of the centuries of sultans, traders, adventurers and explorers who came to these magical isles of Zanzibar off the Swahili East African coast, leaving a cultural and architectural fusion which echoes its proud history of Persian, Arabian, Indian, Colonial and African influences.Stone Town is now home to the new MASHARIKI PALACE Hotel. This is the Eastern Palace on the islands, once the seat of the Omani empire spanning a thousand miles, created by the first sultan of Zanzibar almost 200 years ago. The domicile of the Sultan's religious councillor is now restored beyond its former magnificence.The MASHARIKI PALACE Hotel is a privileged residence for travellers choosing refined hospitality in a historical setting. ... more   less 
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