This hotel was quite lovely, and I can see why a lot of guests really love it. We went for 5 nights in the middle of March. During this time, the temperature was around 32 degree with 85% humidity. It was almost unbearable, and definitely made us rethink if Zanzibar was the right choice at this time of year. Overall, I rate the hotel is very good to excellent, but if we returned I think we would choose someplace different. I
Luckily, the hotel upgraded us to a Shamba suite so the bedroom had AC. The rest of the suite felt like a hot yoga class, so we didn't use the other areas of the suite at all. Sidebar regarding AC: the a/c only works when they have main electricity, and this is very inconsistent. It worked at night, but not often during the day. If the electricity is not working, then the back up generator comes on. One time there was neither AC or fans working for about 6 hours in afternoon.
The hotel gets very little wind from ocean; the breeze is blocked by the trees that line the front. At first I thought that maybe I was being a bit wimpy regarding the heat, but after talking to one girl who was thinking of sleeping on her bedroom floor because it was cooler, I knew it wasn't just me. We spent the days sweltering away, and often it was too hot to be outside. Breakfast was the worst. My boyfriend likened it to some weird type of endurance contest: US ve THE HEAT. I was fully covered in sweat in 30 minutes and this was at 7am.
We were bitten like crazy during the night. I am not sure from what (mosquitoes, sand fleas?), but the oppressive heat, the bits, and the harsh sun made it very uncomfortable.
I think this place is perfect for a getaway, especially if you are living on the Tanzania mainland. After 12 days of Safari, in hindsight, I would have preferred someplace more substantial with proper AC.
The food was outstanding! On our whole Safari the only place better was Gibbs Farm.
The beach is good, not the best beach I have been to (Thailand, Australia, Bali, Mexico all have nicer beaches), but Matemwe has its own charm. There is a lot of seaweed in the water and on the beach so it is not quite the powder white sand/blue water I was envisioning. Nothing compares to the water and sand of Mnemba island; it was unbelievable. We did snorkeling with one ocean, and it was worth it just to go out in the boat to Mnemba island. It takes around 6 hours to do the snorkeling trip, which I found to be a bit long, but worth it.
Laundry service was great, and very cheap. I have never seen my white sundress so clean :)
Drinks are cheap (if you are Canadian where we pay way too much for alcohol). Vodka was $2.50 and a bottle of wine was $22. We had brought a few bottles of wine with us from stonetown, and kept them in the mini-fridge to enjoy in our room.
On the way back to the airport, the hotel recommended a reliable taxi driver who waited for us while we explored stonetown. We keep our luggage in the taxi, but took valuables with us. No issues.
Shamba suites have a/c in bedroom only, but better than nothing. The shamba suites are much more su...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.