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“Interesting place... Great for the value”
Review of Kinazi Upepo Hotel

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Kinazi Upepo Hotel
Reviewed July 14, 2011

We are three American female volunteers who are all around 60 years old. We were looking for a three night break from responsibilities. We found it here! Please realize that we are used to no hot water, very little electricity, and puting up with whatever life throws at us including sleeping in tents at times. Because we wanted to put our monies to good use, paying for a high class hotel room wasn't an option.

We wanted clean comfortable beds, a great view of the ocean on the east coast, good food, and a bar. We found it at Kinanzi Upepo Hotel. Magembe was very welcoming at the front desk and had answers for all of our questions. The included breakfast was wonderful, and cooked to order. We ate all of our meals here, and have no complaints. The burger was actually one of the best we've had.

The snorkeling was fantastic. We would reccommend it for every visitor. It far out ranks the Carribbean or shores off of Florida and all for $15!! The hollowed out mango boat made it all the more fun. Unless you are a very strong swimmer, we would forgo the swimming with the dolphins.

All in all, Kinazi Upepo Hotel offered everything we were looking for.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank MarilynAK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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19 - 25 of 46 reviews

Reviewed March 20, 2011

We stayed at this resort for 2 weeks in February in a wooden bungalow right next to the beach. The interior of the bungalow was nice, the bed comfortable, and the view out of the window absolutely amazing. The bungalow has an open structure - a window net instead of glass windows and there's a gap between the walls and roof. The advantage of this is that it's always aired and cool inside, especially that there is usually a fair amount of wind in Paje. The disadvantage of the open structure is a feeling of limited privacy, and the ability of mosquitoes and other animals to get into the room through the gap between the wall and the roof. The bed has a mosquito net, but we somehow always managed to get a few mosquitoes inside the net, which would then have exclusivity in biting us during the night.
Overall, we were very comfortable and happy staying in the bungalow, and it was really just like living on the beach. Also, for 40$ a night for a double room, it was good value.
Breakfast at the hotel was a very frugal fruit platter, with a few thin slices of fruits and a small banana, a glass of fruit juice, instant coffee or tea, and a choice of eggs (spanish, omlettes, or scrambled) or crepes, and a bun. We tried eating dinner at Kinazi Upepo twice, but we didn't like the food. Luckily in Paje there are quite a few options when it comes to eating out.
There's a restaurant a few hundred meters north down the beach called Malaika. It's a small, locally-owned unimpressive shack with four tables next to the beach, but the service there is really good, and the food is absolutely amazing. We ended up eating all our lunches and dinners there for over a week. The place is really great if you like seafood.
The beach in Paje is beautiful, especially when the tide is coming in or going out. It's not a very good place for swimming though. The tide goes out around 2km, and even when the tide is in, the water isn't very clear and there is a lot of sea weed floating around. Kite surfing is the water sport which prevails in Paje because of the frequent wind.
What is a annoying about Paje are the beach beach touts, who try selling you snorkeling trips, dolphin chasing trips, fruits, drugs, etc. Usually, one person will offer all the above mentioned services. I think hotel security could do a more to stop touts from talking to guests sitting on the hotel's beach beds.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank chris_clz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2010

We were told that we were getting a hot water room when we arrived we were given a stinky room with no hot water. The drain leaked and smelled like rotting crayfish. When we complained about the water management said sometimes hot sometimes cold, and tried to get us to upgrade. Eventually I put my foot down and from behind the room came a broken geyser.

Nice location on beach.

I can aliken this to the cessspit of Zanzibar.....

Overall a very bad experience.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank RVTCapeTown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 14, 2009

The bungalows are nice (although there isn't a bathroom door.....), however, some of the staff members were ridiculous! One in particular was rude and continually laughing at us? He threw a big fuss when asking for new towels ("that towel doesn't look dirty to me", etc). Be careful that you are not followed to the hotel by someone looking to get commission - we knew we were staying at the Kinazi, but a guy followed us to the hotel, and we later found out that he was paid commission for 'showing us the place'. Resulted in us not being able to negotiate down our price. However, with all that said, the rooms are great - right on the beach. Plus, the breakfast is good.

Their sister hotel, the Cristal Resort, might be a better bet. They had free wi-fi and good food/drinks!

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled with friends
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1  Thank kmb045021
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 9, 2009

I stayed in Kinazi Upepo for 5 days with a group of friends.
The place is wonderful but is is poorly managed. Letting aside some minor problems, the water was often missing due to loss in the pipes.
I also see rats wandering in the restaurant during the night, the same rats that eat holes in a couple of sweater of mine (the staff did not even apologize for this).

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with friends
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1  Thank MrcTorino
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2008

I tried several times to book online from the website: kinaziupepo.com and called the number but no response.
Disapointed not being able to book at this hotel because a read so many good reviews, i tried once more when i arrived in stone town through this local agent and finally i was able to stay one week.
The problem was that the managment had changed and so did the contact details and the website.
The beach is amazing , the staff friendly and great easy food.
The old rooms are ok, but i stayed in the new wooden bungalows and they were great.
I hope to come back in this wonderfull place.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with friends
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Thank ninick1947
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2008

A friend living in Stonetown suggested this place. It's cheap ($35 cash for a cold water bungalow) and the restaurant used to be good. We stayed about 3 or 4 nights and were dismayed by the restaurant. They ran out of food at breakfast, served nothing during the day, and dinner was kinda pricey for the area and only so-so. They used to have a better menu, we had been told, but have since really scaled back the service.

In fact, ignore everything your Lonely Planet guidebook says about this place: there's no good food, no smoothies, no music, etc.

We left due to them being booked for the weekend and went 2 doors up the beach to a much better place.

  • Stayed: February 2008
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Thank Kelly5612
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kinazi Upepo Hotel

Address: Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island
Hotel Style:
Ranked #132 of 245 Specialty Lodging in Zanzibar Island
Number of rooms: 8
Also Known As:
Hotel Kinazi Upepo

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