We stayed at Echo beach in November 2008.
The hotel is nice. We liked the "banglas", it was nice chilling out on the veranda's.
Echo beach also has wireless internet connection.
Rooms are spotless which is the most important thing. Decor, fixture and fittings are to a high standard.
Sue is an excellent host, very helpful and informative. Andy is professional and provides a very good service. Having english owners makes your stay in Zanzibar comforting.
Food is nice. Definately not fine dining / Marco Pierre White as I was expecting after reading some reviews. There is an excellent range of wines, reasonably priced.
Marcus and Douglas are very attentive waiters. The staff were friendly and tried to teach us a few words in swahili, they were happy that we made the effort.
The dog Umbaya is very friendly too - too friendly in fact. My husband and I tried to go for a walk on the beach a few times and this massive doggy decided to come with us! He even tried to jump a poor african man on the beach who was frantically waving his arms and shouting at us to get the dog away as dogs are against their religion - we were shouting out "Umbaya" and apparantly that means naughty, I hope the man didn't think we were shouting at him! We felt responsible for the dog, and as we have a conscious and ended up cutting a couple of our walks short because one of the days he came with us for miles and wanted to run into another hotel! I wish I had the courage to ignore him. Another time my husband was having a nap on the veranda only to be woken up by Umbaya licking his face! Umbaya also runs around the restaurant, He did get on our nerves when we were trying to have a romantic evening. Sue did ask us if we minded him, but we were too polite to say that he was, so it's our own fault for not being honest.
The location is just perfect. The beach is pure white powder sand, it's amazing. There's a reef all round Zanzibar, I'm not a great swimmer, but I did miss not being able to splash around in the sea. It was nice to go for walks in the sea though and spot jelly fish - take beach shoes / crocs as there are too many spiky things in the water and impossible to walk in flip flops! The pool at the hotel is small, which doesn't matter if you are using the hotel as a chill out base.
Echo Beach is a great place to relax and unwind and spend time at, the days just went so fast........time flies when you are having fun!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.