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“Relaxing, Private Beach for a budget traveler with good taste” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sazani Beach Hotel

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Sazani Beach Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   po Box 4200, Nungwi, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #14 of 17 Hotels in Nungwi
Saint John, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Relaxing, Private Beach for a budget traveler with good taste”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

If you are reading this review than you have probably figured out that Zanzibar is a fairly expensive place for accommodation. I chose this place based on the price, reviews and promise of a private beach and it delivered all this and so much more. The current manager Nikki is a carefree & vivacious Irish woman who also teaches yoga (upon request) for a small fee overlooking the beautiful private beach. The whole island is fairly busy with loads tourists, as we were two 30 something couples, we wanted some privacy and we got it here...although the main town is only a 20-30 min walk along the beach in low tide or a 10 min taxi ride, which costs about $10.00. The rooms are clean and a great size with fairly comfy beds (keep in mind most of Africa have harder mattresses unless you are staying in luxury hotels). Each bed has a mosquito net (although I didn't notice many bugs) and they are all covered in lovely clean white linen. The bathroom shower pressure is hit or miss, but it gets the job done! The staff are very friendly and helpful. The breakfast (which is included) is great, they provide free coffee & tea all day & a fresh fruit plate as a starter then a choice between 3-4 breakfast options which are served plated. If you chose to eat at the hotel for lunch and/or dinner make sure you order it in advance usually right after breakfast, otherwise the wait can be really long if you don't order in advance (ie: 60-90 mins). This is because they are a little short staffed and have to prep everything well in advance. Every time we ate here the food was good sometimes excellent. I would also recommend the resort next door (the the right of Sazani, 2 min walk on the beach) for lunch (however dinner is usually full as it is reserved for their guests, we got turned away for dinner). Also if you decide to go in to town then make sure you have the lobster at Paradise or the curry at Lang Lang! Enjoy you stay!

Room Tip: Make sure you try a morning yoga class with Nikki Book a snorkel full day trip with the resort next...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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97 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
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English first
Quito, Ecuador
Top Contributor
110 reviews 110 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 11, 2013

The hotel is located about 20 minutes walking from Nungwi and it was good for us to relax far from the noise. The cottage we got didn’t have A/C only a fan, so be aware of this, since during December Zanzibar is really hot. Cottages are simple, nice and small, compared with hotels in other beaches from the same range.

Nikki, the manager is really kind and helpful as well as the whole staff. Food is good and breakfast quite simple, however if you want to order a la carte dishes and more variety, you rather go to a restaurant in Nungwi , since they prepare a day menu (lunch/dinner) for everyone. You can also have a complementary coffee/tea during the day. It combined perfect with a book in a hammock in front of the ocean.

The only big issue was power. We had long power shortages, so it became a problem when you need at least the fan to work.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buckinghamshire
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
47 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

We stayed in the family room for 4 nights, it was a beautiful location with rustic furnishings. The beach is right on the doorstep, and we felt it was far nicer beach than the main touristy area of Nungwi- the hotel is around a 25minute walk to the main centre. The staff were incredibly friendly and helpful especially after having stood on a sea urchin - emergency treatment of papaya was given!!

A lovely breakfast is included - fruit, eggs, fruit juice and toast. You can order lunch and dinner however we felt the choice was a little limited and overpriced. There is lots of choice for food in the town - about a £4 taxi ride in.

Overall we loved our stay at sazani, you can relax on the hammocks next to the turquoise sea and really relax. We would definitely go back.

Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
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Swansea
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2012

We stayed here during 4 weeks from mid October to mid November 2012. We were partly holidaying and partly working. We have travelled widely around the world for work and and pleasure, experiencing everything from Intercontinental look-alikes to flea-ridden hell-holes in S.America. This has to be one of the best places we ever stayed at. It is by no means grande-luxe and its charm and attraction is its simplicity and attention to the needs of guests. Created on a slope leading down to the sea, the cottages and public rooms have a fantastic view over the Indian Ocean. Early morning tea arrives with a smile. The menus don't provide a great range of choice but the food is well-cooked and plentiful. Nikki the manager is a great Yoga teacher and early morning Yoga by the ocean is a great experience. All the staff are attentive and put themselves out to ensure you have a good time. It's relative isolation from Nungwi is an advantage if you are looking for a peaceful time rather than nightclubs. But it is not that far into Nungwi.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

We stayed at Sazani for three nights in November. As seasoned travellers/African enthusiasts in our early 40s from London it is fair to say that "we've been around the block" and as Trip Advisor followers I do feel that some of the comments on here are misleading.

Yes - the staff are friendly, the food is great, rooms have incredible views of beach and ocean and it's a lovely 30 minute walk (tide dependent) to the main drag. This makes Sazani both wonderfully accessible and beautifully secluded.

That said however we left disappointed. Nikki does what she can but the owner (who was visiting during our stay) by her own admission is a reluctant hotelier and the lack of maintenance is apparent throughout the site. Bathrooms badly need upgrading (our loo cistern fell off the wall) our mosquito net did not reach the floor and the promised early morning tea only reached us on one out of three mornings. Bottled water was only left with us on day one, an issue when we were left struggling without water on our second evening having discovered that the bar had closed and all staff disappeared at 9.30pm.

Sazani and its sister organisation, Sazani Associates, makes much of its environmental and sustainable credentials but little of this is yet apparent at Sazani. An environmentally friendly and sustainable hotel is a great idea but shouldn't be used as an excuse for basic service. If this is a key driver then why not publicise it?

I don't enjoy writing these type of reviews, and rarely have to, but on this occasion I feel it is only fair to fellow travellers based on our experience and the price paid. It does however remain a lovely spot on the beach.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sazanibeach, Manager at Sazani Beach Hotel, responded to this review, June 30, 2013
Dear Jedward
Thank you for taking the time to post a review on our Hotel .
We at Sazani value honest and constructive reviews and take Guests comments both good and bad very seriously.Hence we have just been awarded the Tripadvisor @Travellors choice@award for 2013.

In reply directly to your review .I have recently taken over from Nikki as manager at Sazani Beach and find Cathryn ,the owner, far from a " reluctant Hotelier".Indeed she takes the smooth operation and guest experience here at Sazani very personally ,including the staff moral and development.
Even if she doesn't get to spend as much time as she would like at the Hotel itself.

I agree with You that Sazani is an excellent secluded yet accessible location and the food in the
restaurant is top notch.

Since my arrival at Sazani a refurbishment program of the bathrooms has just been completed.

We do have a policy of supplying guests with a bottle of water on their arrival and then leave it to them to purchase further bottles,as they need, either in Nungwi village,on their excursions or indeed here at the Hotel.There is always some one in attendance 24hrs a day that can deal with any Guest request.
Tea is served outside each room every morning at 7am. If however it has not been taken,after the second day we desist so as not to intrude into your personal space .

Regarding our participation in the Climate change Adaptation Sustainability Award(CASA) scheme,we are now fully powered by solar PV and have solar hot water heaters also.
Part of our commitment to CASA involves a lot of subtle things such as keeping our sandy paths for use by the local hermit crab community at night., managing our gardens in a way which gives the local fauna a good habitat to live and breed successfully and reducing our water usage/wastage as good clean water is a scarce resource here on the Island .
We only recruit locally and in coalition with local colleges provide training for the young people of Zanzibar .We source our products from the local producers in nearby Nungwi.

I do agree you that is important that we have to make more of an effort to to bring this to peoples attention and ensure that this policy has little impact on services and standards here at Sazani .

Once again Thank you for taking the time to review our Hotel I will ensure that we continue to maintain high standards here at Sazani Beach Hotel

Thanking You
David Lee
(Manager Sazani Beach Hotel)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
United Kingdom
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
102 hotel reviews
Reviews in 86 cities Reviews in 86 cities
141 helpful votes 141 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2012

Stayed here for a week and found it very agreeable. Cottages have a great sea view, are set on a nicely nice landscaped grass area and lead down to an idyllic stretch of beach. There is a decent dive shop (Zanzibar Dive Adventures) situated in the hotel next door. Breakfast was good although, if you wish to eat lunch or dinner at the hotel, there is only one option of food and we felt it was a little overpriced. This wouldn’t be an issue at all but the hotel is a 25 minute walk to the beach area by the village (and other dining options – including amazing, cheap seafood) as, surprisingly, the other (top end) hotels on the way also seemed to offer only a restricted choice. The hotel is not cheap to stay at and offers pretty basic accommodation when you consider the price tag, but the general price of accommodation is Nungwi is extortionate (except in the village area where music from nearby bars could be an issue); with almost zero mid-range options available. This is all the more painfully juxtaposed when you walk though the village and see the absolute grinding poverty that the inhabitants live in, no wonder it’s not safe to walk home after sunset. I think the place would greatly benefit by having a few decent budget or mid-range Tanzanian owned hotels.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Nelson-Tasman Region, New Zealand
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2012

I had a wonderful 3 night stay at Sazani and was so impressed with the staff who really went out of their way to make it a lovely experience. It's not a good place to stay if you have trouble with steps but once on the beach it is gorgeous and very isolated. Thanks to the "boys" who walked us along the beach at night so we could enjoy Nungwi night life. I loved the hibiscus decorating the bungalow when I arrived-a nice touch. The food was great!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Sazani Beach Hotel

Address: po Box 4200, Nungwi, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Nungwi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Nungwi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Sazani Beach Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Feel like a castaway at our 10 room beach lodge, a perfect paradise for beach lovers, kite surfers and divers. An oasis of calm just five minute taxi ride from Nungwi's busy strip of music bars and hotels. Our bungalows are designed in a traditional Swahilli style with coconut thatch roofs in a tropical garden setting, each with a sea view and sandy path down to our secluded pristine beach and the turquoise ocean. Stay with us and help us to develop our sustainability ethos to be an environmentally and socially responsible hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sazani Beach Hotel Zanzibar/Nungwi

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