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“Exceeded our expectations”

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Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage
Ranked #3 of 121 Arusha B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
North East England
Level 6 Contributor
151 reviews
127 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
“Exceeded our expectations”
Reviewed August 18, 2012

This small hotel has recently been very tastefully extended, with a new restaurant, pool, rooms and also little cottages. This was just an overnight stay for us but it was so comfortable that we wished we were staying for longer.

The food in the restaurant was the best we had in Tanzania (including 5 star hotels) and the service was excellent. I loved the little buckets of hot coals they hung on stands next to the tables at night to keep you warm if you wanted to eat outside!

All food and wines with the meals is included in the price making it very good value.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank Diana014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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295 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    2
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (42)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Wiesbaden, Germany
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 15, 2012

Since the moment we stepped into this little magical hotel we knew everything was going to be great.
The staff was friendly enough to meke you feel at home, the facilities were perfect and the location was wonderful.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank inakibg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Meadville, Pennsylvania
1 review
Reviewed July 24, 2012

Our family (daughters 18 and 22 years) had the pleasure of dining at Machweo the night prior to beginning our climb up Kilimanjaro via the Machame Route. We were excited and nervous about our pending adventure. Machweo was the perfect setting to settle those emotions. Dining on the outside deck overlooking the pool with Mount Meru off in the distance, we enjoyed the moments as they unfolded. The service was excellent. The decor was 'outdoor elegant'. The pairing of wine with each course was tasteful. The choices for the main courses were broad enough to appeal to all. Chef Axel, came to each table to ensure customer satisfaction. As the evening ended, the moments added up to wonderful memories. This is truly a five star dining experience.
Peter and Anne

Room Tip: I would truly love to stay next time-but we consider ourselves fortunate that we were able to experi...
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Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank ANNE W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County
Level 6 Contributor
129 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 143 helpful votes
Reviewed May 11, 2012

We spent the first night of our Tanzanian safari in this lovely hotel. My room was large, clean and nicely decorated. The unit was built almost like a duplex with a sitting area between two rooms. This would have been really nice for couples traveling together or famalies. The bathroom was spacious but the water pressure a bit spotty. But so what, this is Africa not the suburban US.

Here is the real treat, the dinner. We had a lovely dining experience out on the patio watching the sunset and the lights come on in the homes on the surrounding hillsides. The food was very nicely presented, very well cooked and a very inventive menu. Just an absolute surprise in the middle of Tanzania.

The co-owner is a Belgian named Axel. He sat down with us at dinner and told his life story. It turns out his fate was decided by his cousin’s choice in women. Allow me to explain. Axel and Derek co-own Onsea. Axel owned a Michelin starred restaurant in Belgium and was feeling a bit burnt out. He told his father this who shared it with his brother/Dierk’s father/Axel’s uncle who then passed it along to Dierk. Now, Dierk was married to a lawyer (questionable move) who worked in The Hague prosecuting Serbian war criminals. She then had an opportunity to prosecute criminals over the Rwandan genocide in Arusha, Tanzania so off she and Dierk went. Dierk was trying to figure out what to do with his time when he heard of Axel’s dilemma. So he decided to open a hotel and have Axel run the restaurant. Axel said yes, sold his Belgian restaurant and here we were learning this over a fantastic dinner of lobster, sea bass and lamb in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro. We also got a great understanding of how hard this really was for Axel. His biggest problem was help. Your average Tanzanian does not grasp the concept of fine dining per Axel. Food is very basic and utilitarian. Dining consists of shoveling the food in your pie hole with your fingers, drinking from your one cup which you own all your life and getting on to the next thing. There is no talking, just eating. Therefore, Axel has to retrain his staff about food. This seems to be his biggest and only problem in life, so I think he has it pretty good. So does he. I loved this place but we had to leave the next morning at 6:30 for a flight to our safari camp. In another life I will get to spend more time at Onsea House.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank david b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 12, 2012

Onsea House was the first place that we stayed at the beginning of a week long safari in Tanzania and then a few days in Zanzibar. We were a family traveling with twins, 14yrs. old, and the children and my husband and I each had our own, connecting rooms in the newer part of the property. The rooms were perfect, particularly the addition of a small mini-bar in the room, the only place that we stayed which had one. The staff were great, and the food was excellent! We would highly recommend a stay here to anyone traveling in the area.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank ChrisChristine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Paulo, SP
Level 5 Contributor
67 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed March 18, 2012

We stayed at Onsea House in the middle of a 2-week Africa trip that started with an eight-day climb of Mt. Kili, and afterwards we went on to a Serengeti safari. Onsea House was BY FAR the best lodging we stayed in and I include the all-famous Giraffe Manor in Nairobi which was a major disappointment next to Onsea.

We arrived dirty and tired from our climb,but were greeted with friendliness and helpfulness by all the staff and the owner. We had only about 12 hours to get some laundry cleaned and they did it!!

Food was fantastic and they gave us lots of snacks so I'm not sure what another reviewer was talking about on no small snacks in between meals. The chef is fantastic, the wine pairings with dinner were perfect. A nice massage in the room to feel better after our hike--that would be another small idea which would be to have a set massage room--massages on beds are awkward!

Views are lovely, it is an oasis....love love love.

Yes, we also had the complaint of the water pump not working when we first arrived dying for a shower after 8 days. And a little noise from the kitchen staff. But would not trade it for anything...

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Krisbrazil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vevey, Switzerland
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed March 11, 2012

I travel about 40 weeks a year on business mainly in Western & Eastern Europe & have lived in 8 countries over the last 20 years - from this perspective Onsea House is A first rate place to stay - big comfortable bedrooms, (We had number 2 & 6 - different layout but same high standard. Staff were friendly & the owners really helpful. We ate their 3 times and were never disappointed.

Room Tip: Don't think you need a tip - the two rooms I had were both very good.
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Swiss-Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage

Property: Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage
Address: Baraa Road | Moivaro, Moshono Village, Arusha 1259, Tanzania (Formerly Onsea House & Machweo Retreat)
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 121 B&Bs / Inns in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage is voted the best luxury bed and breakfast in Arusha and recommended by several experts as only boutique hotel and hip hideaway in the Arusha/Kilimanjaro region. Enjoy greater comfort and better food than any other guesthouse or restaurant, with more personalized service than in a hotel and more privacy than a lodge resort. Onsea House can be your home base for safaris across northern Tanzania. Machweo Wellness Retreat & Fine Dining offers the guests since September 2011 in total 9 extra spacious rooms, a second swimming pool with sauna and steam bath and a beautiful patio terrace to enjoy a tasty lunch or a candlelight dinner. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Onsea House Country Inn & Guest Cottage Hotel Arusha
Onsea House Country Inn And Guest Cottage
Country Inn Arusha
Arusha Country Inn

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