Thanks! Didn't look under B&B and Inns, hopefully the review gets moved to a more relevant place :)
I have visited the hotel and it is really quite impressive. The hotel being brand new is very elegant and has a rich traditional decor. The swimming pool that extends from almost the reception area to the sea is really state of the art and there is plenty of space in the garedens to find alittle corner to call your own.
I agree with Trevor, very impressive architecture, but it's still very new indeed (various elements, including health club, spa were still being finished when I had a good look round the week before last) and there are as yet very few guests. It had a soft (local) opening in December and the first tour operator guests arrived in mid-Jan.
No problem finding a corner to call your own!
It's not only open BUT has special introductory offers at the moment too! Just got an eShot about it myself from The Safari Company... it's not on the Swahili Beach website but the email is worded such:
"We wish to offer an introductory discount of 20% for Swahili Beach Hotel for the months of :- Late January , February and March 2012 .
For bookings made before the 31st March 2012 covering the period from 10th April to the end of October 2012 the same introductory offer of 20% will apply.
Please note :- “This is a Special Offer and thus cannot be combined with any other offers; we therefore request you to mark/ code all the booking under this offer for the purpose of identification and billing”.
So might be worth asking them if they can apply the offer if your travel dates are covered. If they won't apply the offer on direct bookings, go through the agent :-)Edited: 8:23 am, February 21, 2012
My husband and I spent six nights at the new Swhili Beach Hotel in February. We were so disappointed with our experience. There are a few points to note, on the Kuoni website the reviews for this hotel are actually reviews for the a hotel in Zanzibar and so are very misleading. Also, this is a very expensive hotel, top of the scale, London type 5 star prices and so when you are paying this you expect top quality service. This was not what we got. Yes, the building is aesthetically pleasing and the pool is pleasent and compared to neighbouring hotels, Swahili, on an aesthetic level definitely has the edge. However, from the moment we arrived to the morning of our check out we experienced what can only be described as shambolic service. Note that if you book and pay for full board you will only be dining in the buffet style dining hall, right next to the lobby and without going in to details, this area lacks atmosphere and the food is mediocre. Of the four restuarants, only two are open. Bahirini, the second restaurant is much more atmospheric, on the beach and with good and reasonable food, from pizza to fresh seafood and the staff are friendly, however, not efficient, it could take thirty minutes just to get your bill! We were booked in half board and despite having our itenary from Kuoni confirming this, it took a full day for hotel staff to "believe this" and trust me they did not do a good job at hiding their scepticism. The spa is not yet functional and they are operating out of hotel rooms but charging full price and most annoying the wifi did not work at all in our room and was very tempermental around the resort, working sometimes in some spots and not at all in others. Our room was new, nice and spacious, but the view was non descript and there was no drinking water, no wifi, no slippers and no personal touches and the lighting is very poor at night when moving between the room and the lobby area. Highlighting our frustrations with management did mean we were saved from the drudgery of eating mediocre food night after night in the dining hall, where the sound of the refrigerators was your most common background sound (apart from valentine's night when there was some caboret music, nothing African inspired, in fact, Chris de Burgh's lady in Red, gives you an idea of the crooning..) and we were permitted to eat in Bahirini also, but as expected on check out despite promises to the contrary all the food appeared on our check out bill (which was thirty minutes late despite having asked the manager/proprieter to ensure it was in order the evening day before). So not only was it late but we then had to call the GM as we were not going to pay 600dollars for food when booked in full board. The GM did rectify the matter, but without so much as a word of apology and in fact our encounters with this man during our stay left us uninspired and certain we would meet incompetency on our check out, to which we were proven correct. In summary, nice building, frustrating, completely overpriced stay and we will not be recommending to any of our family and friends. We were so hugely disappointed.
Thanks for that very honest and useful account Jillian and what a pity you has such a mediocre experience. It does speak very loudly of a hotel that has opened before it's really ready.
This hotel is fully operational... I was there last weekend and it's amazing...it is a true 5 star hotel...and with a total of 140 rooms.... and the managers are amazing... the rooms are so spacious and with probably the biggest swimming pool in Africa...8 level swimming pool.
I see you registered with Trip Advisor today in order to post this message.
Please tell the forum what is "amazing" about the managers? Can you give us any solid information at all?
This kind of blatant boosting of what may well turn out to be a very good hotel – in time – does it no favours whatsoever.