For a little over 50 USD for a single room off peak season, Swahili House offers great value for money. Spacious, light and airy rooms, beautifully decorated and over-looking the roofs of Stone Town (I was on the 3rd floor. No lift and quite steap stairs.)
The roof-top bar is amazing. The views are stunning but the food is really good too. I had breakfast here and something light during the day on two different occasions. There is a little pool area up there too but I didn't use it.
You can't beat the location. It's a stone's throw from the market. But then everything is really easily reached on foot anyhow... when you manage not to get lost ;-)
I wasn't so happy when the reception staff tried to make me get cash from a cash machine when their card machine wasn't working. It was dark, the next bank quite a walk away, me a female solo traveler and with my departure just a little over an hour away, all I wanted was a shower and a rest before heading back to Europe. They allowed me to fill in a payment form in the end.
The staff also weren't very helpful when I tried to book the room for another half day, something that I've done in India many times where flight always leave in the middle of the night. As my flight from Zanzibar was only at 9 pm I asked if I could rent the room for additional hours. In the end I just offered to pay for it for an additional day and the staff agreed that they would deduct 15 USD for breakfast.
Those were minor frustrations though. I would stay at Swahili House again any time.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the bustling heart of Stone Town the building was originally set up and used as an Indian Merchant House in the 19th century. In the 125 years that were to come the building was home to one of the many Sultan families and then became a hotel some years ago. After purchasing the hotel, renovations started in May 2008. Most of the hotel has been restored into its original state, but we have been making some changes as well. The result is The Swahili House - a sparkling hotel with traditional influences and modern day facilities in combination with authentic Swahili hospitality. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Swahili House Hotel Stone Town
- The Swahili House Zanzibar Island/Stone Town