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“Warm welcome & a great stay” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Unguja Lodge

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Unguja Lodge
P.O. Box 675, Kizimkazi, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Oxford
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“Warm welcome & a great stay”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

Our flight was delayed & we arrived much later than expected. Our hosts were around to welcome us. We had missed the evening meal but no matter delicious sandwiches, desert, fruit & wine were provided.

What looked good by night looked even better in the daylight!
Fantastic setting on a very quiet part of the island.
Lovely spacious clean accommodation.
Interesting design features.
Staff were courteous & always helpful.
Special thanks to Mona who helped us sort out our flight re-confirmation.
Site security was impressive.
Food delicious - we were well catered for as vegetarians.
Beautiful grounds with baobab trees.
Friendly monkeys nearby - inquistive - but not pests.

Only negative - the locally booked spice tour.
Expensive & disappointing.

Room Tip: Some rooms face the beach - those that don't each have a plunge pool.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, January 14, 2013
Thank you very much for staying with us and for writing this very nice review. It is highly appreciated. We're glad you enjoyed your stay with us but I am very sorry the spice tour was dissapointing for you. Please feel free to write us an e-mail about what went wrong so we can discuss this with the company that organised the tour.

Warm regards from all of us in Unguja Lodge.
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168 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (54)
Date | Rating
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English first
Barnham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2012

We wanted a place to relax after a week on safari in Tanzania, and as a special birthday treat for my wife, decided on Zanzibar. We could not have chosen better than Unguja Lodge. Apart from being in a lovely natural setting the facilities are superb and all in keeping with the natural surroundings. The unique thatched villas are spacious and comfortable and the regular visits by the monkeys adds to the charm of the place. The staff are all exceptionally pleasant and attentive, but the real added bonus is the way that the proprietors, Elise and Ralph, take a personal interest in all their guests. The walk around the local village with Rachid as our 'guide' was quite an eye-opening experience!!! Thanks to all who made our stay so memorable.

Room Tip: Most rooms have a view over the sea and the way the villas are arranged means there is little, if an...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, December 21, 2012
Thank you very much for choosing Unguja Lodge to celebrate your birthday and for sharing your experience on TripAdvisor! It was very nice getting to know you.
Also big thanks for your support to the village of Kizimkazi by doing the village walk with Rashid. This is highly appreciated by the villagers, the staff and by us!

warm greetings from all of us at Unguja Lodge.
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2012

This is an amazing place. Wonderful villas, outstanding dining and pool and dive facilities. The owners couldn't have made us more welcome and the staff want you to enjoy every minute of your stay. You can borrow a snorkel and just head straight out from the beach to see an amazing reef - right on your door step. They have a dive centre so you can pay for dives or other sea trips. The pool is great and there is plenty of places to sit in the shade if you want. A trip into the local village is a must - take time to see real zanzibar. We stayed here after a safari in saadani (a 20 minute flight) it was the perfect place to get away and unwind. The food is amazing and caters for all tastes.

Room Tip: Choose a sea view - it is so worth it!
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  • Stayed November 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.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, December 21, 2012
Thank you very much for staying with us this month and for writing this very kind review. It was a pleasure talking to you at the bar in the evenings.
We also very much appreciate your effort to explore the village of Kizimkazi with Rashid.
The local football team will get their new shirts and shoes tomorrow. You will soon find pictures on our facebook page. Also, the building of the netball pitch will start soon!
With warm regards from all of us at Unguja Lodge
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

A week’s relaxation at Unguja was the perfect end to our honeymoon. Our seaview villa was idyllic, looking out onto the gorgeous turquoise sea. We watched the sun set over the sea every night.

The quality of the food was superb, for all meals. Drinks were reasonably priced and there was a great variety on offer – the cocktail of the night was always fun to try. Special touches like the welcome drink, the menu scroll and messages left at night from Ralph and Elies were appreciated.

We highly recommend the village tour of Kizimkaze. Unguja Lodge is a wonderful paradise-like bubble, but it is no bad thing to learn where and how local people live. Unlike (we hear) some other villages in Zanzibar where there is hostility towards tourists, people in Kizimkaze are friendly (and the children particularly so), and no doubt this is largely down to Ralph and Elies’ relationship with and support of the community.

We went on two trips with the dive centre (which Nick runs superbly with his team) - snorkelling and the dolphin trip, both of which were enormous fun – there was so much to see at the reef, and we were fortunate enough to see dolphins very close up.

Room Tip: The sea facing villas are amazing
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  • Stayed October 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, December 4, 2012
Thank you very much for staying with us as part of your honeymoon and for writing this very nice review! We appreciate your effort to learn more about and to support the village of Kizimkazi by taking a walk to the village with Rashid. We just donated money again, including the donations of our guests who did the village walks, to the Kizimkazi Development Committee. With this money we support the local football team and the building of a net ball site for the women. The project that we will start in January is supporting the secondary school with English and Swahili literature.

With warm regards from all of us at Unguja Lodge!
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

Our family of 4 (2 adults and 2 grown up children) spent 3 nights here from 1 November following a week's safari in the Serengeti. It was the perfect antidote to busy bouncy days viewing game from a vehicle. Friendly, informal and very relaxing. Great rooms with an interesting design, beside the Indian ocean; good food; and very friendly staff. We did the Robinson Crusoe day trip which included an hour or so excellent snorkelling and then lunch on a golden, sandy pimple in the middle of the sea. We even saw dolphins on the return trip. Thoroughly recommended.

The Theakston family - London

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, December 4, 2012
Thank you very much for staying in Unguja Lodge last month with your family. I am glad you enjoyed your stay and appreciate your very kind review on Tripadvisor.

Warm greetings from Martin, Mwona, Nick and all staff at Unguja Lodge
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London
Top Contributor
84 reviews 84 reviews
63 hotel reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2012

We stayed here for the second part of our honeymoon (six nights), following a safari at the excellent Selous Safari camp and were very happy with our time at Unguja Lodge.

The hotel is small (just 12 rooms) and looks out west towards the sea and sunset. Rooms are split into Baobab (non sea-facing, with a plunge pool) and Seaview (no plunge pool). The hotel has its own dive shop which also organised other water activities (snorkelling, sunset cruises and swim with dolphins). There is little beach area as the high tide covers it but the poolside is pretty tranquil and a sandy beach can be found a short (5-10) minute walk away even at high tide.

Overall we had a great time. I did lots of water-based activities and the dive shop (led by Nick) were wonderful. My partner doesn’t dive so they arranged for her to snorkel while I dived which was a great compromise. The hotel also arranged transport to the local Jozani forest to see the previously endangered red colobus monkeys.

The room was actually more than just a bedroom with a separate lounge, bathroom, shower-room and sea (or tree) view. It also had a second sleeping area and all beds had mosquito netting. Housekeeping was well run and no complaints on that front.

The food was a bit hit and miss. Breakfast was consistently fine but lunch and dinner options were sometimes a bit tired looking especially the soups, puddings and desserts. Lunch was either from a set menu (a couple of options for each course) or from a short bar menu, and dinner was also from a set menu (usually three options for each course, being fish, meat and veggie). I’d readily accept that this is an area of personal preference and we certainly didn’t go hungry.

A lovely touch was that guests all seemed to meet up just before dinner for drinks, by unspoken agreement. It created a lovely atmosphere and gave a personal feel you’d miss in a larger hotel. We were also treated to a private dinner on the last night which was a delightful end of honeymoon gift.

In all I’d not hesitate to stay here again, and very much hope to!

  • Stayed September 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, October 23, 2012
Thank you very much for staying with us as part of your honeymoon and for your informative and kind review.We are glad you enjoyed your stay and the water activities. After reading your comments about the food, we are even more on top of it and do our very best to serve high quality and 'good looking' dishes.
We'd love to see you back one day for an anniversary :)

With warm regards from all of us at Unguja Lodge
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Leicester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2012

After a few days in the Masai Mara we went to Zanzibar to relax for a few days. We received an amazing welcome when we arrived at the lodge, even though we were really late we had a really warm welcome and a snack left in our room after our long journey. When we walked into our Baboa Villa my jaw literally hit the floor! It was fantastic and far surpassed anything I though, the pictures do not do it justice!!!! If you like monkeys you'll love the baboa villa as we had a small troop who visited us during our stay, although they are fairly tame they only watch from a distance and were very entertaining. If you would prefer an ocean view then there was an option. The food was fantastic and the staff were all really friendly.
We went on 2 trips during the stay, one was to stone town, which is about an hour away,I really enjoyed the trip and our guide was incredibly knowledgable. We also went on the one day snorkelling trip, we got to swim with dolphins and had lunch on a secluded sand bar.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
UngujaLodge, Owner at Unguja Lodge, responded to this review, October 13, 2012
Thank you for staying with us as part of your honeymoon and for writing this very nice review. We really appreciate it! We wish you a very happy married life and hope to see you back one day.
Warm greetings from all of us at Unguja Lodge!
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Additional Information about Unguja Lodge

Address: P.O. Box 675, Kizimkazi, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Kizimkazi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty lodging in Kizimkazi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Eleven spacious private villas. From your ocean view terrace you can watch the local fishermen sailing the Indian Ocean. A breathtaking sunset is yours. All villas are beautifully decorated in Zanzibar style. In our beautiful garden with old mango and baobab trees many indigenous animals find their home. The rare Red Colobus monkeys often come and play. In the middle of the tropical garden, a large specially conditioned swimming pool is situated. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Unguja Hotel Kizimkazi
Unguja Resort Kizimkazi
Unguja Lodge Zanzibar/Kizimkazi

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