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“Very good hotel” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Bluebay Beach Resort and Spa

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Bluebay Beach Resort and Spa
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   P.O.Box 3276 | Kiwengwa, North Coast, Kiwengwa 00000, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 11 Hotels in Kiwengwa
Sweden
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
50 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
“Very good hotel”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

We stayed at the hotel a week from 6 to 13 february.
We got a nice room on the second floor (203) with a huge double bed with mosquito net around. Very comfortable bed.
The room was large and had a "walk-in closet. Bathroom was spacious and the shower great and good. Balcony was also large and had two" armchairs "and a table.
The restaurant in the hotel the was approved but no more. Positive was that they had different themes every night and sometimes it was buffet and sometimes alacarte. they succumbed at the pool sometimes and the Chinese New Year drew up tables it in the middle of a grass field in the hotel, very nice.
The food however was not as good standard.
The breakfast was not as plentiful as we would have liked. As a three-star hotel.

There were plenty of sunbeds and you did not have to get up early to book, there were always chairs.
The beach at the hotel is fantastic and you can walk right out to the reef at low tide. Just be sure to go back before the tide comes.
The pool was good.

I tried massage and it was very good.

Everyone was helpful and service minded and there was free Wi Fi access in the reception area.

We are very pleased with our stay and the food had been better it would have been five stars.

Room Tip: We liked 203 on second floor.
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  • Stayed February 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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429 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (63)
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English first
Copenhagen, Denmark
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

The staff at the Bluebay resort are genuinely trying their best to satisfy their guests and they should be rewarded for their efforts. Unfortunately it does not help the guest experience that the hotel charge for everything, incl. wifi and towels, which is fine for a business hotel but not for a leisure destination in my mind. Pricelevels are quite substantial, and you can buy 4 beers in the city for the cost of 1 in the hotel, thats too steep.

Contrary to other reviews on this site i found the staff quite welcoming and compared to other hotels on the island, they seem very well trained. The housekeepers were very polite, discrete and I had no issues with lack of cleanliness. Well done housekeeping.

When I heard the restaurant was offering buffet most nights I was a bit worried as I am not a big buffet person, However I was positively surprised about the food offerings of this particular buffet. The buffets are quite large and the selection varies daily. You may not like the type of food which is served, but the quality is decent. On three evenings the buffet was closed and they offered 4-courses from an a la carte menu which was a nice change from the buffet style dinner. Lunch is offered in the beachbar and the options are very standardised but it is all you need mid-day on your vacation.

The biggest problem with the resort is that it should not be called a 5-star resort, it is a good 4-star resort but simply does not have the capacity to live up to the 5th star. The pool, the rooms, the buffet restaurant are all absolutely fine for a 4-star product, but when you sell (and charge) for a 5-star experience, you will fail to live up to the expectations of some guests.

The Bluebay resort is linked with the Sister-hotel, Sultan Sands 4-star, which is a better option if you are looking for value for money.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
iLoveHotels2010
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2013

This hotel had so many negatives that outweigh the positives. I'll start with the negatives. During breakfast my boyfriend asked for a big bottle of water (which should have been included), but they ended up charging us. EVERYTHING is extra, even Internet, extra tea after "tea time," and extra bottles of water (and it's not cheap). You can tell the staff there just want nothing to do with you or the hotel. The hotel is extremely dirty - bugs everywhere, hair in the room, dirty linens. The housekeeper after cleaning our room one day, put my brothers clothes inside the dirty, and rusty bidet (gross!). We had to throw the clothes away (obviously) as this is worse than putting clothes in a toilet! Another thing that was really disturbing was the fact that they had a book that you had to use to take out towels. The book was just sitting by the towels, open for any passerby to see, and has information like your name and room number. Talk about a lack of security!
Positives - the music was good at night and they had a few good bottles of wine on their menu.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2013

We visited Bluebay Beach Resort in Zanzibar at the end of January for 2 nights. We were quite impressed upon arrival but it was short lived. Below are the pros and cons:

Cons:

* Food was mediocre at best. The buffet choices were oily and some of it was cold.
* Our bathroom shower had hair left over from the previous guest, towels did not smell clean and the mosquito net had holes in various places.
* Rooms are dated and need to be renovated.
* Lunch and dinner service is slow and at times they will simply forget your order.
* High tea is offered at 4-5pm and it's a joke. Dry cakes and cookies left over from breakfast are served. My mom asked for tea at 4:45pm and was told that the hot water machine was broken. At 5:15pm they fixed it so she went back to get a cup of tea but was told that since it was past 5pm, they would have to charger her?! Ridiculous
* We asked for hot sauce with our fish and chips ordered at lunch and were charged 3US dollars for hot sauce. They nickel and dime you for everything.
* During breakfast we asked the server for water and rather than informing us that it is available at the buffet at no cost, they charged us for the bottle.
* Breakfast is the ONLY time you get free water - you have to pay for it during lunch and dinner.
* Towel service makes no sense. Half the time no one is there to take your room number and provide you with towels. The book where you have to write you room number and last name is left in the open for other guests to see. (You can charge anything to another persons room if you have their last name and the room number!)
* Pool is small and there is no hot tub. (There is a sitting pool near the spa but it's not hot - same temperature as the pool)
* Beach has tons of sticks and seaweed on the shoreline.
* Wifi only available near the game facilities not in the rooms.

Pros:
* Rooms are spacious
* Awesome bands play at night during your dinner. We really enjoyed the music and they took requests too!
* Ping pong and pool tables were provided which was great.

After reading so many positive reviews we were so excited to stay here but my entire family did not enjoy this resort. We will never return and would never recommend it to anyone.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2013

We had a great six nights in this hotel. Beautiful location, good service and lovely spacious room with good quiet AC.

Pros:
Location - Fantastic beach with endless white sands and snorkelling, good sea breeze to keep you from overheating.
Great swimming pools set amongst the palm trees. Plenty of sun beds and the beautiful extensive gardens set this hotel apart from others in the area.
Variety in restaurants and pools, you can also use the facilities of the sister hotel Sultan Sands next door which is little more informal.
Good food, my wife loved the Swahili buffet and the band were good entertainment whilst dining.
Doctor on Site, my 4 year old son had a nasty graze that became infected but the on site doctor managed to fix this saving us any inconvenience of searching for a doctor/antibiotics.
Good Rooms - plenty of space and well cleaned, our room was always cleaned on return from breakfast.
Friendly and helpful staff and management.
Great Cocktails !

Cons:
The only con we could find, and it is only a minor gripe, was the WIFI. It was only available free of charge near the games facilities. If you wanted in-room WIFI it was an additional charge which I think most hotels these days supply free of charge. But lets face it WIFI is not a big issue when you have all the other distractions that this hotel has to offer.

Overall, I would definitely be happy to spend more time in this hotel, next year hopefully !

Room Tip: As the rooms are mainly set in extensive terraced gardens in the form of two level "bungalows&q...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Ontario
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2013

we spent 2 restful days at the Bluebay after a week of safari. lovely welcome with cool towels and drinks and a beautiful set up with open air dining, plenty of lounge areas and a good beach...a bit of a relief after the long drive from the airport. Water in the Indian ocean was bathlike and pools a little more refreshing. Staff was attentive and eager to please. Rooms were spacious and cool ...AC was very welcome and worked well. We loved our balcony seating area. Food was good. Make sure you order the local beers for real refreshment! We enjoyed entertainment as we ate and the Masai set up a market on our last evening. we had a small problem with a leaking fridge which was addressed right away.Make sure to use your bug spray in the evenings as you will enjoy sitting outside. overall a very pleasant experience!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Victoria, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2013

After our safari in the serengeti we visited Blue Bay to relax and reflect.
It is a perfect location on the northeast coast of Zanzibar.
Our second floor balcony room was very nice with a fantastic view of the gardens and Indian Ocean.
The staff were wonderful. The dining room was comfortable and the dining was great.
Beautiful swimming pool and gardens and incredible beach.

The clientel was very international.

I heartily endores this resort.
The beach was very entertaining. At low tide the tide was out almost a kilometer.
The water is very warm and the waterfront has many working boats and fishermen.

  • Stayed January 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bluebay Beach Resort and Spa

Address: P.O.Box 3276 | Kiwengwa, North Coast, Kiwengwa 00000, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Kiwengwa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Kiwengwa
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Kiwengwa
#6 Family Hotel in Kiwengwa
#7 Romantic Hotel in Kiwengwa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Bluebay Beach Resort and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 104
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
FULLY REFURBISHED IN 2013 this family owned and run resort exudes authentic Zanzibar style. Located on an exceptional white sandy beach our several dining options provide for lunch with your toes in the sand and intimate candle lit dinners, the wide range of facilities found at our elegant resort were created for the discerning traveller. The Spa with views over the ocean is a heaven of peace with exotic treatments created by our expert therapists. Rooms are in cottages nestled in tropical landscaped gardens with views through lofty palms to the sparkling Indian Ocean. Combining comfort and authenticity, this unique resort has captured Zanzibars relaxed island feel delivering personal attention from our warm and smiling staff. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bluebay Beach Hotel Kiwengwa
Bluebay Beach Resort And Spa Zanzibar/Kiwengwa

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