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“Exeptional” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Essque Zalu Zanzibar

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Essque Zalu Zanzibar
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Nungwi, Nungwi 3151, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 17 Hotels in Nungwi
Aalst, Belgium
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Exeptional”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2013

The best in Africa! Rooms, dinner, staff, ... It's one paquage that fit!it starts from the arrival in the hotel and it stays till the last minute. Didn't know that this existst. Jetty-food at the pier is delicious. Truely heaven on earth. Thanks for the week at Zalu.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, December 5, 2013
Dear Nicholas; thank you for your beautiful comments! Our team does the utmost to ensure you, our valued guests, feel welcome and yes, if we can transform this resort into heaven on earth, this is fantastic. thank you again for your visit and till we meet again somewhere in the Ajuine city in Belgium and reminisce whilst enjoying a Grimbergen! best personal regards. Luc Verschelden
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320 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (65)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2013

We booked in 6 nights through Imagine Africa as part of honeymoon following a few days in the Selous. We stayed in a beautiful sea front suite so we had a great view of the sea and jetty from our bedroom window. First impressions were amazing, the style of the main building, the layout of the pool, the jetty and our home for the next 6 days. The suite was very spacious and clean and no mozzies!
We stayed full board and meal options were good. The only disappointing thing was that the Swahili option in the evening was the same every night so we only had that once.
The real highlight was the quality and value of the spa treatments. Those girls work hard! We had an hour long couples massage included in our honeymoon package but we didn't stop there. I had a further two massages and the wife had a pedicure, facial and another massage. All this in the space of 6 days, you couldn't keep us away. It was real value for money with the effort they put in and if you book a 60min massage you actually get 60mins unlike in most spas in London where you'll probably only get 45mins.
Location on the island in terms of excursions we wanted to do wasn't the best. However, the hotel can organise full day and half day trips out which we would recommend. On one day we had a trip tailored slightly for us. We went swimming with dolphins in the morning in the south before going to The Rock restaurant for lunch. Highly recommend this!
Overall, Essque Zalu was a very beautiful and relaxing experience and is perfect for people who want to kick back. It works for a honeymoon as long as you don't mind seeing people around. There will be other resorts which will give you more privacy and isolation so I depends what you're looking for.

Room Tip: The resort has ocean view and sea front suites. sea front are the ones right on the edge of the clif...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 3
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GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 22, 2013
dear Honeymooners from London! we are so happy to read that you truly enjoyed your stay at Essque Zalu. True, the seafront suites give you that unbeatable view past the jetty (on a clear day you could almost see Dubai, LOL). It will be my pleasure to pass on your comments to our therapists; i do agree they are amazing (i spoil myself once in a while). Zanzibar is a small island destined for R&R. Choice of excursions are indeed limited and if you've been snorkeling in the south, eating lunch at the Rock and then back to Essque Zalu, well, you've toured the island. May i suggest that for your first anniversary we reserve a villa for you: full privacy guaranteed. With kind regards from a sunny Zanzibar. Luc Verschelden
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Jessheim, Norway
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 November 13, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at Essque Zalu in October and fell in love with it! Great salted swimmingpool, lovely suits and villas with elegant furniture. The food at Essque is a pure culinary experience. The chef is definitely a magician!

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 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
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GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 22, 2013
dear Delphine. thank you very much for your compliments on this website. In addition to our Chef being a magician, he has trained his team of Tanzanians and Zanzibari to do magic as well. We are very proud of them. Sunny greetings from a warm Zanzibar. Luc Verschelden
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Farnham, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2013

After five days safari in the Serengeti, I was incredibly relieved to arrive at this five star resort! Cleanliness at last, with proper drainage and sewage systems and everything!! ;)
We arrived in the evening and we were immediately shown through the main part of the hotel (amaaaazing) to our sea view suite, also amaaaazing! Spotlessly clean, beautifully decorated and rather spacious. I had not been well during our time in Tanzania, so this was a very welcome little piece of heaven!
Knowing that it was French owned, I was hopeful that the restaurants would be well kept, and the menu would be of a high standard.
As we were visiting during a quiet period, the only restaurant open in the evenings was the Market Kitchen which was comfortable and pleasantly decorated. After the friendly hospitality of the Tanzanians, the cooler reception from the Zanzibarians staff took a little adjustment.
There was a good amount of choice in the menu, including Swahili option every night, however I was hoping for more fish, considering our location!
The restaurant played an unusual selection of music, that was obviously on a loop, as we heard Mendelsohn's Wedding March (YES, the Wedding March!!!) appx three times during our meal.
I mention this, as it became apparent on the second night, that we heard a constant loop of one of Santana's tracks, around twenty times, before we could take it NO MORE and had to mention it to the staff!! Other diners thanked us for doing so and we all agreed we never wanted to hear it again.
This wonderful resort could be a fabulous, relaxing spa destination if only a couple of details were addressed. I work in the spa industry and have been spoiled with various experiences over the years. Firstly, Essque Zalu should get themselves a soundtrack. Played constantly in the background of all the restaurant and spa areas at the same time, but not at a level that will annoy and it should be the type of music that melts in to the decor. Secondly, the therapists in the spa could be a little more friendly. After we filled out out own consultation cards, the therapists barely said more than a sentence to each of us after they established if the pressure was ok. They tried, but it wasn't quite right.
The pool area was fantastic and kept well, but we only got asked if we wanted drinks once, in a five night stay... :(
I cannot express how beautiful this place is, but I just feel like they're missing a trick or two.
We are not troublesome guests and we praised where praise was justified, and always showed gratitude but it felt as though it wasn't appreciated.
I hope it wasn't us, but you have to question when the staff seemed happier to see you go, than they did when you arrive!?

Room Tip: We stayed in suite 25 which was next to the boundary wall, which meant we had security hanging about...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 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.
GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 14, 2013
Thank you for your comments. Yes as in most places, the music is on a loop and the Wedding March is a tribute to the many honeymoon couples that visit our resort. We will ask Mendelsohn to take a break more often and we'll make the music selection and volume less imposing. Santana has left the building! The spa therapist has been spoken to as well. Not that this would be a reason or excuse but Essque Zalu is not French owned. We would like to hope that you will visit us again and you would notice the improvement in all area and that the "trick or two" have been added. Thanking you again for your valuable feedback. Sunny Greetings from Zanzibar, Luc
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Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2013

The hotel is amazingly beautiful! The architecture and the greenery around the bungalows is just stunning. We also really enjoyed the delicious food and the super friendly service. One thing that we missed was a proper beach. Unfortunately, the hotel is located directly at a reef. Therefore, there is only a small beach which is underwater during high tide. Entering the sea is only possible from the jetty. Also there is no dive shop attached to the hotel. However, they cooperate with a shop from the next village. A dive trip to Mnemba Island, including 2 dives was 150 USD per person. Much more than I had expected.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 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
    • 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.
GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 14, 2013
Dear friends from Dubai. Thank you for sharing your Essque Zalu experience on this website. As you will agree, we do not promote our resort as a beach destination, though a lifestyle resort. You are right, the beach is accessible by low tide only. The snorkeling and other activities are organized by fully licensed, well equipped and fully insured third party companies and with a guarantee of total satisfaction. We hear many unpleasant experiences about tourists that book with the "cheap" guides. We would not want our guests to encounter any mishaps that could put a damper on their stay at Essque Zalu or even Zanzibar for that matter. Thank you again for your compliments about the food and the service. Kind regards, Luc
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Accra, Ghana
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013

There's simply no better hotel choice you could possibly make for your holiday in paradise! Zalu is truly the most spectacularly good hotel I have ever had the pleasure of staying at! A special thank you to Edgar for taking such good care of us. The only let down was the spa. My fiance and I had massages with two different therapists & were very sore & uncomfortable afterwards. Despite this, we were so blown away by the beautiful rooms, fantastic food and absolutely phenomenal service that we have decided to get married at Essque Zalu next year!

Room Tip: If at all possible, choose a villa! The privacy, space, private pool and butler service are worth it...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 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.
GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 14, 2013
Dear Tash & Marcus. Thank you for your comments and yes, we are already working on your menus, decorations and other preparations for D-Day next year. I will pass on your thanks to Edgar. We did talk to the massage therapist and apologies for the discomfort. As Essque Zalu is already known as honeymoon destination, you will make it your wedding destination, honeymoon destination and hopefully your wedding anniversary destination as well! Like you, we can't wait to the big event! Till then, best personal regards. Luc
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Nairobi, Kenya
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

My newly wedded wife and I were here for our honeymoon in October 2013. It was a wonderful experience that words couldn't do justice to. The staff were excellent, the spa was magnificent, the beach and the pool are conjoined and beautiful. the food was culinary heaven- with a wonderful swahili menu that every person who is there should try. The General Manager (Luke) and the marketing manager (Julia) deserve special mention. They were so friendly and helpful and are on hand to sort out any issues. We will hopefully return there someday soon!

  • Stayed October 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GM-Essque_Zalu, General Manager at Essque Zalu Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 14, 2013
Dear Sam. How can we forget these lovely newly weds! It was a real pleasure meeting Janet and you and we are glad that you enjoyed your stay at Essque Zalu. Don't forget to come and celebrate your first wedding anniversary with us! Best Regards. Luc
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Additional Information about Essque Zalu Zanzibar

Address: Nungwi, Nungwi 3151, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Nungwi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Nungwi
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Nungwi
#2 Family Hotel in Nungwi
#3 Luxury Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Essque Zalu Zanzibar 5*
Number of rooms: 49
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Essque Zalu Zanzibar is an intimate boutique destination nestled in a natural cove on the island’s north-eastern coast overlooking the Indian Ocean. Choose from 40 suites, all with picturesque views over the lush tropical garden or the ocean turquoise blue. Ensconce yourself in luxurious-styled spaces crafted from local materials, adorned with native artwork and housed under a traditional pitched Makuti roof. If you need extra space to spread out, try one of our nine expansive villas; 3 or 4 bedrooms. Stretch out in the spacious living room, rustle up a snack in your own kitchen or just chill in the privacy of your very own plunge pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Essque Zalu Zanzibar Hotel Nungwi
Essque Zalu Zanzibar Nungwi

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