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“Amazing Stay, Great Service!”

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Chapwani Private Island
Ranked #116 of 172 Hotels in Zanzibar Island
Reviewed January 12, 2014

My husband & I spent 4 days here in December 2013 for our honeymoon. We were blown away by the service, food, staff, activities & the relaxing and private beach. We highly recommend Chapwani to anyone visiting Zanzibar and looking for a more authentic, quiet vacation. We were able to kayak each day, snorkel, visit Stone Town easily with their free ferry service and eat wonderful local food prepared by the staff at Chapwani. We have never had a more relaxing stay, and enjoyed the departure from the mega-resorts that are typical in beach locations. Thank you Chapwani-we will return as soon as we can!

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank marthapp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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15 - 21 of 95 reviews

Reviewed January 9, 2014

I had to share my experience visiting the island and its inhabitants. Our trip was pretty unplanned - decided to go away about 2 weeks before the time and totally by chance was given the suggestion by an agent as an alternative to the place we originally chose. Decided to spend the extra money and were not disappointed at all.

Choose Chapwani if:
You do not like crowds / party animals / large families but you do like some interaction with other visitors
Personalised service
Arent expecting Westernised resort-sort-of-vibe
You like fresh fish and fruit for every meal :)

The staff are fantastic and accommodating - ran out of clothes toward the end of the trip - they were washed and ironed perfectly. I also requested pancakes on our last day for breakfast - I knew these were not on the cards for the following morning but the staff made some for me anyway!

Our hosts Ali and Moira were beyond amazing - as well as the other staff - they both organised everything to perfection, from meeting up with guides to late night ferry trips from Stone Town. One staff member, Katelina, spend over an hour teaching me how to play the game of Bao. I think the best thing about the whole experience of interacting with everyone there was that the staff are really genuine, like its not a job - its their life.

Food was on the whole really good - freshly prepared and for the most part made entirely from scratch on the island - from the crisps to the orange juice.

On our last night we were treated to a candle lit dinner on the beach - just us and it wasnt requested. The staff made sure all the other couples were kept busy dining so we had plently of time to enjoy the beach and food on our own. It was really special. Apparently they do this for their favourite guests. I am guessing it is because myself and my travel partner were the happiest on the island and pretty much embody the idea of Hakuna Matata :)

Drinks and lunches are pricey in South African rands - neither of us drank much and our bill for the week amounted to about R4500 - its pretty much like that all over the island though. See if you can find a deal where drinks are included. Some water is provided daily as well as fruit juice with breakfast for free. Expect to pay upwards from R300 a bottle for wine. There is no aircon in the rooms but there are ceiling fans. Nights are HOT but for me this was kind of part of the deal - authentic travel - just have a shower if you get hot.

The beach is spectacular and kept clean by staff daily. Walking to closer islands is possible at low tide and the ocean pools provide for much entertainment. On a calm day on the other side of the island snorkeling is possible and pretty good.

We loved every second of visiting Zanzibar and Chapwani and staff are definitely a big reason for this.

Room Tip: Either the new villa or Bandas 9-10 - both pretty isolated and private.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Moonumber2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2014

A small private Island paradise off Zanzibar- idyllic, warm tropical ocean, sandy beach directly outside the door of the simple bungalow; only room for 24 guests, so very personal attention; excellent cuisine; super massages; highly motivated friendly staff; a romantic place for couples

Room Tip: Rooms 9 + 10 and the new Villa (two rooms) are at the end therefore more privacy
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank Karl046
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2013

Ali was a very helpful host and that was very important to us. The food was excellent and the dining area overlooked the water which was very enjoyable. There were kayaks and we went out every day for a paddle. Our room was roomy and clean with a separate washroom and shower area. The white sandy beach was just outside out room and the water was clean are great to swim in. There was also a nice salt water infinity pool to enjoy.
We had just climbed Kilimanjaro so it was the perfect place to unwind after our climb, safari & visit to Zanzibar Stone Town. I did not want to leave!!

Louise
Vancouver Canada

Room Tip: They are all good.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank LouiseVanBC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Wow! WE found the perfect spot for our family to chill out. Not only is Ali a nice host, he models a good business practice of giving his staff entrepreneurial opportunities. So we really felt welcome and surrounded by very happy people, so we could really play hard and relax easily.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank 4Soccermom4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2013

This is the most beautiful place! Everyone who works there treats the guests like treasure--and there is no more perfect beach in the world! Go...if you want beauty, serenity, peace and joy. Not for those who want others to provide activities.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled solo
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Thank Nianqua
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

My wife and two kids stayed in the wonderful big house at the end of the island. This house was absolutely beautiful. Lovely interior, great views and private.

Pros:
* Wonderful setting
* Lovely to walk or kayak around the island.
* Owners are relaxed and have tried to provide for local staff (e.g.: local staff earn income from the large house we stayed in and they also earn profits from the guest shop)
* Food is good and varied
* Service is good - cleaning staff are extremely nice
* The pool is kind of cool - taking in seawater is eco-friendly and the pool looks great. I think some of the comments below are misguided

Cons
* The water pressure and the heat of the water in the showers/taps in the end house isn't great. While we did ask for this to be fixed, they can't really fix it. It is an eco island and there are limits. However, you do pay a lot for poor showers and really poor water pressure.
* Noise from Stone Town is a bit too much - yes there was a festival on, however, from comments below, this is not unusual - it woke us but two or three times every night. On balance, I think it is still worth it - however, it's a bit of a challenge.

Overall, lovely spot and would recommend

Tim

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Tim30549
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chapwani Private Island

Address: Chapwani, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#88 On the Beach Hotel in Zanzibar Island
Price Range: $347 - $353 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Chapwani Private Island 2.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chapwani Private island is the perfect spot for those seeking a small quiet lodge with good food on a beautiful peaceful beach with Stone Town (Zanzibar main town) and all its facilities just 15 minutes away by boat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Chapwani Private Island Zanzibar

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