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“Perfect bliss” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Stonehouse

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Stonehouse
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Jambiani,Kichakanyuki:East coast., Jambiani, Tanzania   |  
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Ranked #8 of 22 Jambiani B&B and Inns
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
“Perfect bliss”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

We had come to Jambiani without making prior reservations, so we went ahead and checked a couple of places out before deciding on where to stay. Stonehouse was the first place we saw, and we were foolish enough to waste time looking at other places only to return to Stonehouse because it was just the best! Imagine this: azure and turquoise waters, sparkly white beach, waving palm trees, all in your back yard.

Immediately after arriving we were given a warm welcome by Zion, and we later met the other super friendly staff members like Elias and Maraka. This is once of those places that is not just a hotel or guest house, but actually a home away from home. It's the people that make it so special. Stonehouse is small scale so after a day you'll know everyone around here and you'll find out how friendly and accommodating they are. To give some examples, they prepared vegetarian meals on request for us, got a hold of fresh coconuts when we asked for some, and when Zion spotted us far out somewhere on a walk he offered us a ride back home. You'll be sure to make new friends here. The place appears to be mainly run by men (I've only seen women come in to clean every morning) but if you are a lone female traveler please don't let this put you off. You're in good hands here.

Other than this welcoming atmosphere, Stonehouse has some other major pros:

- Location right on the beach: at high tide you step from the garden right into the warm Indian Ocean, at low tide the beach is just at your door step. In your backyard, you find the wonderful village of Jambiani. You can walk right into the village and observe the locals in their daily life. This does not feel like a beach resort aimed at westerners, but simply as a great place to relax right in the middle of Zanzibar life.

- The house is spacious and breezy, with pleasant (if simple) rooms and shared bathroom facilities which are kept very clean. The warm showers were also very enjoyable. Besides the garden it has two big common terraces / balconies with sofas and beds and books and a spectacular view on the ocean.

- The garden is a wonderful place to hang out, to enjoy your breakfast (included in the price, and very yummy with fresh fruit, juice and chapati) or a drink. It has a small bar on site where you can order drinks and snacks and you can also have lunch and dinner here on request (don't expect swift service, ingredients usually have to be collected before they are cooked so have patience like anywhere else in Africa, or order well in advance)

- It won't hurt your budget! We found this a very good deal considering what you get. Of course you must keep in mind that this is not a luxury resort but a simple guest house, but it had everything we needed and more.

Nearly every night the owners would make a camp fire on the beach and position logs, chairs and couches around it to create that perfect island feeling. If you are lucky, their acquaintance Yahya will come over with his guitar to complete the picture.

When we were here the tides were pretty extreme: the water went out really far at low tide. This however created a spectacular variety of colours of the beach and ocean, and when the tide is out the local women come to gather sea weed and small shells/clams which is interesting to watch. The best times for swimming here are at sunrise (around 6 am, and of course this is also very beautiful) and around 4 pm when the water is fully back again. I understood from a local that the extremities of the tide depend on the season; in other months the sea does not venture out so far at low tide.

In the neighborhood are plenty of simple restaurants to choose from and while the beach is fantastic, just make sure not to miss out on a walk through the village. You'll meet lots of cheerful kids who are definitely not camera shy.

The owner Elias is in the process of building a second Stonehouse, more inland. From the looks of it, it will also be wonderful.

Originally, we had planned to spend most of our time in Jambiani in a low budget place like this one, and then splurge on something luxurious and more expensive during our last 1 or 2 nights. In the end, we didn't go anywhere. We gladly stayed in Stonehouse, because why would you go anywhere else but here? Perfect island bliss is what you'll find here.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, April 29, 2013
Dear Mrs/mr!
Greetings from Stonehouse.
Thank you ever so much for your warmly feedback. We are very gratful to se that your vacation/dream cames true here at Stonehouse.
Kind regards/Stonehouse team.
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21 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013 via mobile

We just spent 2 and a half weeks at stonehouse and had an amazing relaxing stay. Zion and his staff became family with personal and friendly service continually striving to assist and provide you with anything you needed. Breakfast was good with a selection of fresh fruit egg and chapati or bread. we had intended to travel around the island but stonehouse soon became our home. We look forward to going back. If you are looking for a quiet laid back vacation this is the place for you.

  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, March 27, 2013
Dear Mr/mrs.
Thank you ever so much for your positive feedback, you are giving us so much more energy.
We are very happy to hear that your vacation become wonderful and you did enyoy to stay at the Stonehouse.
WELCOME AGAIN!
kind regars/ Stonehouse team
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

I stayed at the Stone house for 3 nights when exploring Jambiani & reccommend it highly. It's a run by a group of local people who are really friendly. It's not your all inclusive place but that's not what i wanted - it's a cracking place to chill out out, relax and enjoy the beautiful environment. The house is in good condition and the rooms are clean and spacious. I had a great time chilling with the guys who run it, smoking the local 'erb' who are all really friendly and good guys. Recommended highly.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, February 26, 2013
Dear customer!
Thanks very much and we are so much greatful to receive your feedback. we are going to listen yours and others voice.
Thanks ever so much and hope to se you again !

Stonehouse team.
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Barton-on-Sea, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

Arrived on the open daladala from Zanzibar Town (took around 1.5 hours) and stayed 2 nights. Positioned a footstep away from the beautiful beach. Excellent service from staff - organised a great snorkeling trip for us in a dhou. Unique little bar out at the front of the building - I asked for a coconut with lime and the guy went and knocked one off the tree in front of me ... only cost 1000TSH (40p). Occasional power cuts in the village but the staff provide you with lanterns and candles.
We were late getting back to the bus stop to get the hourly daladala back so the manager drove us to the Paje stop to catch up with it. The best place I stayed in Zanzibar.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, February 22, 2013
Dr ,Mrs/Mr.
We thank you very much,for your feedback and time. Hope to se you again in the future. Who knows!
Stonehouse team.
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Galway, Ireland
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2012

The staff were so welcoming and the Guesthouse was well-kept and modern. Our room had a bed with a canopy and a beautiful wardrobe with windows to allow the sea breeze flow in. I highly recommend this spot as it is not too close to other guesthouses and has a beautiful view (like most of Zanzibar... :)

  • Stayed August 2012, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, February 3, 2013
Dear mrs/mr

Thank you very much for your time and feedback .Your feedback means a lot to us . Our vision is to become even more comfortable then it is today. Thats why we are listen very serios and carefuly both yours and others comments.
Welcome back!

Kind regards/ Stonehouse management

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

We spent 3 nights at Stonehouse ($35 usd/night) and they were fantastic. In retrospect, we should have stayed longer. We arrived in Jambiana by the shared bus and initially planned on staying at another hotel listed in Lonely Planet but the driver suggested we "check out" Stonehouse first. We did - then went to the other hotel down the road which was charging more and the staff, upon our arrival, seemed less than enthusiastic. Seriously - if I'm coming to check out your complex and havent yet given over my money - you should TRY to summon some sort of enthusiasm to encourage me. Does being listed in a travel guide make these places complacent?
Anyway - we opted for Stonehouse. Zion - the manager - was so welcoming and was super friendly too us throughout the stay. When my husband was feeling a bit ill he made some really strong and delicious ginger tea for him which was very thoughtful.
The rooms are basic - but were bright and airy. Bathrooms are clean and shared. There is a large deck on the 2nd floor for reading, having a cup of coffee, and watching the ocean. The beach is clean and the beach bar is cute.
No wifi - but there is a really nice little cafe ( Sal and Pepe) with decent food about 5 mins walk from the hotel that has free WiFi. Order a beer or fruit juice and spend hours surfing too your content.. It was actually faster than most of the internet cafes we PAID for in Stonetown.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, February 3, 2013
Dear mrs/mr
Thank you very much for you help and time you took.Your feedback means a lot to us.
Our vision is to become even more comfortable then we are today.
We hope to have you back again.

Best regards/ Stonehouse management.
Peter F
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tralee, Ireland
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2012

Stonehouse is a fantastic place to stay in gorgeous Jambiani. It's right on the beach and there is a bar and dining area outside with great views and the seafood is very nice.

There is also a balcony chill-out area upstairs that looks out over the Indian ocean. I stayed here for 3 nights and I had 3 of the best nights sleep I've ever had as the beds were extra comfortable. The staff were excellent and we stopped by one evening to book our room for the following day and when we arrived next day we were immediately top to go straight to our room without hesitation and to feel at home.

Jambiani itself is beautiful and the beach stretches for miles. Paje is within an hours walking distance too if you need a change of scenery for a day.

Room Tip: Upstairs rooms are best so that those walking around outside do not bother you as much as they might...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peter F, Manager at Stonehouse, responded to this review, February 3, 2013
Dear Mrs/mr

We are very appreciate for your feedback and time. It means a lot to us.
We will work each and every day (24/7) to become even more comfortable. We are not sitisfiad yet,thats why your comments are very important to us.
We will listen them carefuly. Thank you very much!

Kind regards/Stonehouse management.

Peter F
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Stonehouse

Address: Jambiani,Kichakanyuki:East coast., Jambiani, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Jambiani
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 22 B&Bs / Inns in Jambiani
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 8
Also Known As:
Stonehouse Zanzibar/Jambiani

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