We are just finishing our stay here, spending 3 nights after climbing Kilimanjaro. I have stayed in some amazing hotels all around the world, and this ranks up with the best. This is probably the only hotel I have ever stayed in where their website doesn't do justice to the reality. First of all - the bungalows are super private and beautiful. Authentic, relaxing, beautiful and every need is taken care of. The double hammock is so relaxing that we have barely moved from it apart from meals. The bed is super comfortable and the bathroom is simply spectacular - larger than some hotel rooms. It is VERY romantic for a couple or a honeymoon.
Then there is the staff - the two managers can't do enough for you. Sandy has arranged transportation for us in Dar Es Salaam after our stay, they welcome you with genuine hospitality and NOTHING is too much trouble. But the great thing is that this extends to ALL of the staff. I have never been treated with such friendliness so consistently in every interaction. You only have to walk past a staff member for them to inquire if you are enjoying your stay. It is clear that hospitality is a core value of this property.
The food in the restaurant is amazing - the executive chef makes incredible, fresh meals. As other reviewers have said - if you are hungry here it is not from a lack of selection.
The spa is beautiful with skilled and friendly professionals. The massages were perhaps some of the best we have ever had - including in New York. My girlfriend and I are going back for second treatments today and feel so good after our first.
While we have not used them, they also make snorkeling equipment, kayaks etc available at no charge and have a full water sports center including an affiliated scuba company. There are plenty of trip options in you want them.
Finally, they also have a green, ethical approach including supporting local village community projects, buying local supplies and ensuring there is minimal impact on the beautiful Zanzibar environment.
My only regret is that we are not staying longer. Would definitely come back again and would recommend to my closest friend.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Vibrant yet relaxed Matemwe, one of the first lodges in Zanzibar, has perfected the tropical island experience. Perched on an outcrop overlooking a shallow coral fringed lagoon on the quieter northeast coast of Zanzibar, Matemwe’s peaceful location and famed relaxed atmosphere, makes it the ideal place to unwind. Guests quickly ease into the laid-back rhythm of island life, planning their day around the tides and their mood. The relaxed daily routines of Matemwe’s guests include enjoying fresh seafood, poolside cocktails, massages or simply hanging out in a hammock. The lodge has plenty on offer for the more active with superb diving and snorkeling off the renowned Mnembe Atoll; a highlight for many. Built from local materials and surrounded by beautiful lush gardens, each of the 12 spacious suites has a private veranda with a hammock and sofa and expansive views of the Indian Ocean with its constantly changing hues of blue. Here you can watch the fishermen head out every morning at dawn or listen to the songs of the village women as they harvest seaweed. The large bathrooms have both a deep bathtub and walk-in shower and all beds are enclosed by mosquito nets. The open-air restaurant sits just above the sea and has a tranquil lounge area with beautiful views of the palm fringed beach and gently rocking dhows. Seafood is the specialty of the house, with all produce bought daily from the local markets. Lunch is a buffet offering a delicious mix of African and European flavours. Dinner offers a choice of main courses with fish, meat and vegetarian options. Matemwe has a multi-level swimming pool surrounded with lounge chairs overlooking the ocean. Freshly mixed cocktails are served at the poolside bar. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Matemwe Main Lodge, Asilia Africa Hotel Matemwe
- Matemwe Bungalows
- Matemwe Lodge, Asilia Africa Zanzibar Island