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“Loved this hotel”
Review of Melia Zanzibar

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Melia Zanzibar
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Kiwengwa
Certificate of Excellence
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
74 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Loved this hotel”
Reviewed October 26, 2013

I came here on holiday with a friend of mine and we had an amazing time with this hotel. The food was always good and the staff very nice. It is unfortunate that the beach is a golf cart away but you could easily stay at the infinity pool and hear the waves crashing. I would definitely come back again. The outdoor shower was a cool feature as well!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Eric D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Guest

Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel. We appreciate your sincere comments and patronage, we are very glad that we met your expectations during your stay.
Hoping to see you back soon!

Kindest Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (170)
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English first
Level Contributor
27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2013

Stayed there for business purposes. Location is is great with tremendous view on the see. I was in a standard room, really large room with a very large bath room including also an outside shower. Always very clean rooms.
Food was also really good, excellent breakfast and buffet for lunch and dinner.
The bar on the jetty is fantastic, just be careful as the wind starts blowing at night and having dinner there could be a bit chilly.
The beach is also really ice but a bit far away from the hotel, you can't swim in front of the hotel because of the coral plateau, but electric shuttles are taking you there and you can still enjoy a nice restaurant with good seafood there so no need to come back to the hotel.
Great experience.

Room Tip: Romance pavillon or Two bed villas are excellent as you have private view on the see as well as priv...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank XavierCh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Valued Guest

Thank you for being a loyal Melia Zanzibar Ambassador. We truly appreciate your feedback posted on Trip Advisor about your recent stay with us. You truly serve as a consultant to help us improve the quality of our services. I'm extremely pleased you liked the hotel, facilities, meal plans, and personnel around; as well the location was convenient for you. I have taken the liberty to share your fantastic comments with my team, everyone is happy for the recognition.

We are eagerly waiting to welcome you again soon.

Best Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cork, Ireland
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2013

We stayed at the Melia Zanzibar for 6 nights after our Safari on the mainland. A taxi to/from the airport/Stone Town should cost you around $40-50, maybe more expensive if you haven't organised it in advance or you haven't haggled with the driver. Make sure you agree a price before you head off, as they don't run on meters.

We arrived around noon when check-in wasn't until 3pm and the all-inclusive package we had pre-booked also started from 3pm. However, we were welcomed by a friendly girl at check-in, were able to dump our bags and were given a welcome drink to enjoy while they got our room ready. We didn't have to wait long which we really appreciated.

We had booked a garden room, and couldn't have been happier with what we got. The rooms are beautifully appointed, the bathroom as big (if not bigger!) as the bedroom, and it all looked new, fresh and clean. Each day, they left fresh flowers and "towel art" on our bed which was a nice extra touch. It isn't a huge resort like you might get elsewhere, so everything is easily reached on foot. The only possible "down side" is that the beach is a little further away (which we knew when we booked anyway) and although you can walk there, taking the golf-cart shuttle is much easier and very efficient. It leaves from outside the main building at regular intervals, and when we were ready to come back from Gabi Beach, the security man called a cart down for us. Very efficient.

We opted to spend more time at the pool rather than at the beach due to the extreme tides which makes swimming less suitable at the beach. The pool was lovely and the resort fairly quiet when we stayed (September '13). I would say that some of the pool-bar staff could be a bit more efficient in bringing drinks/food to you at your sun lounger, or checking if you wanted anything else. I've had better experiences at other all-inclusive resorts. But, you could always walk up to the bar to order as well.

The food at the pool-bar was ok, the burger was probably the best choice on the menu. The drinks are good and they certainly aren't shy with the alcohol in the cocktails!! We also enjoyed the food at the beach-bar, which had slightly different options (the steak looked great!)
For dinner, there were really only 2 choices unless you opted for the more expensive all-inclusive package. The buffet was fine, although it did tend to get a bit repetitive. If you're not a big fan of seafood, the options drastically decrease. We enjoyed dinner at the Jetty which had a more relaxing/romantic atmosphere. The tapas option there is great as well either for a light dinner, or a pre-dinner snack with a drink. It's a shame the Jetty isn't open during the day when you can really enjoy the views!

The staff were a bit hit-or-miss. Some very attentive while others more or less ignored you or seemed incapable of filling your water up when asked, or bringing you coffee in the morning at the buffet restaurant. It's a shame as there were plenty of staff, and it wasn't particularly busy so no real reason why they shouldn't be more efficient. It seemed like each person had a specific task, e.g. filling up your water glass, or collecting plates, or pouring coffee. If you asked the water girl for coffee, things seemed to get very confusing for them…

If your intention is to stay at the resort to relax, swim and sunbathe, I would strongly recommend that you do go for the all-inclusive package as there are no other options for eating anywhere nearby. You do need to wear a bracelet, and also sign each time you eat/drink something which seemed a bit excessive. Although it's an all-inclusive resort, there are a lot of options on the menu which aren't included, in either level which seems odd. I guess it's a way of potentially making more money but we personally didn't feel a need to go for the non-included options during our stay.

NOTE : Please be aware that there is still a departure tax at Zanzibar airport, which is NOT included in your ticket - make sure you leave some cash for this! If you are flying domestically (e.g. to Dar Es Salaam) the price was US$8 per person. If you are flying internationally (e.g. to Nairobi) the price was US$48 per person.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TavellingKiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 10, 2013
Dear Guest

On behalf of Melia Zanzibar, I was delighted to read that you had an overall memorable experience here at Melia Zanzibar, and would like to thank you for detailing your experience with us. Our mission and objectives are that, all our guests to experience quality, variety & value in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere.

I have shared with the team, how you found the staff to be very helpful during your stay and that you enjoyed most of our services. We will surely forward your compliments to all mentioned staff; I must thank you on behalf.

On the mentioned weak areas, I sincerely assure you that we have taken your comments seriously and corrective measures are already in place to avoid future occurrences.

Should you find yourself back in Zanzibar, please do not hesitate to contact Melia Zanzibar Team; we would look forward to welcoming you back soon.

Yours in Hospitality
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kirkland, Washington
Level Contributor
20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2013

4 of us recently stayed at the Melia on Zanzibar. We opted for the "bed and breakfast" plan and were so glad we had. The night we arrived there was nothing available but the buffet at Spices which was very picked over by then. Please rethink replenishing at intervals.
The Garden rooms were adequet but they need a bedside table on each side of the bed and 2 chairs by the little round table in the room. The safe in both of our rooms did not work and had to be reprogrammed the day after we arrived. The tile in the open air shower was broken around the drain and the drainage was terrible.
The setting on the Indian Ocean is lovely and dining at the Jetty was fine, much quieter then with the herd around the buffet and the food was divine. They do push the expensive bottles of wine on you since we were not on the "inclusive" plan but have nice house wine by the glass.
Gabi Beach was very nice when the tide was in but it's a long long walk into the water to get to where you can swim the rest of the time. The food at the beach restaurant was very very good and it was lovely to have cold juice drinks brought to our sun beds under the palms. The staff at the beach were the friendliest we encountered at the hotel.
The grounds are quite nice to walk through.
The large pool has a tile bottom which is very slippery and the short handrail on only 1 side of the pool steps is inadequet.
I think this is a fine spot for couples on a budget who are not too picky about food and happy with the less expensive booze on the inclusive plan. Sitting outside at Spices with duo blaring Abba tunes and the multi colored lights and fountains was a bit "Las Vegas" for us. But as I said, the Jetty is divine, too bad the desk in the lobby couldn't supply us with menus for either the Jetty or Aqua and reservations to dine at either of these have to be made by 3PM (when most people are at the beach). We felt the hotel was all about lumping everyone into to the "inclusive" plan, which, is obviously more cost effective for management.

Room Tip: Romance or cliffside pavillions are probably the best choice.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Beth B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Guest

Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your stay with us. We are delighted that you were inspired by the food at Gabi beach, the grounds and friendliness of personnel in Gabi beach. Your compliments will surely be shared with them. Our goal is to ensure that all our clients leave satisfied and we try our best to fulfil all their needs.

On a different note, I apologize for the shortfalls you encountered during your stay. We constantly strive to provide an environment of comfort and value to our guests; therefore, we are sincerely concerned when we fell short of your expectations. I have taken note of your valuable comments and will use these to monitor and improve the quality of services we offer to our guests. All details will be shared with the entire team to improve all necessary areas, and again I genuinely apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced and will take the appropriate steps to avoid a similar situation in the near future.

Again, thank you for staying with us and taking the time to give feedback.
Looking forward to your next return where we can make a difference.

Best Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
50 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed October 19, 2013

Spent three days at this hotel and we were somewhat disappointed by the experience. Our first impression was not great - at check in the receptionist kept wanting us to purchase add ons, such as the all inclusive package (we had booked the bed and breakfast rate because we were planning on going into Stone Town etc.) and other extras. It felt like dealing with a used car salesperson. While the rooms were nice and large, there were many things that were very odd, like only one side of the bed had a lamp and a bed side table. The other side had nothing. So I ended up having to put my glasses on the floor. There are two doors to the bathroom and the light switches are at the far door and not the door near the entrance. We did, however, really like the outdoor shower.

The beach for the hotel is about a five minute golf cart ride away. We never did have to wait long for the golf cart. Most of the staff were friendly but there were a few wait staff that were pretty grumpy. We enjoyed our two dinners at the jetty restaurant. Much nicer than the buffet that was offered in the main restaurant.

Bring lots of sunscreen because it costs US$30 for a regular sized bottle at the hotel gift shop.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BenDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Guest

I would like to thank you for giving us the opportunity to have had you as our guest. We appreciate so much for the feedback on your recent stay at Melia Zanzibar. I am delighted that you found the staff and accommodations to your satisfaction. I will pass your sincere feedback to our associates.

I apologize where we failed to meet your expectations; concern departments have been informed on the negative comments, which they have taken into consideration to ensure similar situation will not happen again.

We hope to see you again on your next visit.
Best Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Darwin, Australia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed September 19, 2013

Just spent 4 days at this amazing hotel with my girlfriend. The hotel is immaculately kept and the staff are very friendly. The only things you need to know are:

Get a Romance Pavilion - stunning views and very romantic
Get the all inclusive premium package - don't pay for anything while you're there (any food/drinks before and after your package starts is extra... which you can just pay at the end of your stay)
Walk to Gabi beach (it only takes 15-20 minutes, tide permitting) - you can take a golf cart which arrive every 15 minutes or so, but take the time and walk and enjoy the scenery
Spices restaurant has a different themed buffet every night - great selection of dishes, caters to everyone, and there's a live band some nights too.
Jetty Restaurant is great to chill out with some pre-dinner drinks and tapas
Gabi Beach is amazing - Cabanas are extra if you're not in the villas, but you can just spend the whole day here on a sun bed and your favourite cocktail.

The Melia looks even better than the pictures, so don't hesitate to make a booking. The staff make sure that you are well looked after and are all friendly. We will be back again for sure!

Be aware that airport transfers are extra. This can be organised before with the hotel.
Also there is a $48 departure tax at the airport, and get there early as they only had one x-ray machine working and was a bit chaotic.

Room Tip: Beachfront Romance Pavilion and the Premium All Inclusive package
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nat B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Dear Guest

It is a great pleasure for us to read the comments posted on Trip Advisor following your recent holiday at Melia Zanzibar. We are very proud and lucky to prove that not by chance we exceeded your expectations. It was the right place you chose, at the right time and good part of it is that we manage to make your holiday special and memorable. This has always been our culture for every guest coming to our hotel.

I am very sorry that you had to pay $48 tax at the airport, this is the new rule set by the government of which all travellers coming to Tanzania have to pay.
Our major mission is to deliver unique services to all our esteemed clients, that they feel “Home Away from Home.

We wish to welcome you again soon!
Best Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barcelona, Spain
Level Contributor
94 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed September 13, 2013

We spent 6 nights at this amazing hotel in August 2013 and we had a wonderful time! The hotel grounds are immaculate and the rooms are very confortable and modern! The food is exquisite and with a great variety, including the different night themes at Spice. We also had dinner at Jetty and lunch a couple of times at Gabi Beach and were equally pleased! Special mention and thanks to José Antonio, who handled our reservation from beginning to end, taking care of all our needs and requests, to the beach and pool guys, that were extremely kind to our 9 year old son, to John, for making sure our stay was unforgettable with all his recommendations and tour of the property, and of course to Cesar, a great host to each and everyone of Melia Zanzibar guests!

We definitely recommend this property and the island of Zanzibar to anyone willing to enjoy a beautiful tropical island with a very distinct personality!!!!

Room Tip: If you are celebrating a special occasion, the pavillions and villas are definitely worth it!!!!
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Asun P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
John E, Guest Relations Manager at Melia Zanzibar, responded to this review, September 16, 2013
Dear Guest

Wow! What an amazing feedback!

Thank you for sharing your feedback on Trip Advisor. Guest satisfaction is priority to us and we work hard to make sure all of our guests have a rewarding stay at Melia Zanzibar. In this regard, we are delighted you had a wonderful overall experience with us, especially the hotel grounds, food, facilities and high standard of our services. We truly appreciate your good ambassadorship.

On a further note, I am thrilled to know that Cesar, José Antonio and John were so accommodating to you and made your stay comfortable; I must also say that they are truly assets to us. I have shared your kind words with the entire team.

We are looking forward to your return!

Kindest Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Melia Zanzibar

Property: Melia Zanzibar
Address: Kiwengwa, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Kiwengwa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Kiwengwa
#1 Spa Hotel in Kiwengwa
#1 Family Hotel in Kiwengwa
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kiwengwa
#3 Romantic Hotel in Kiwengwa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Melia Zanzibar 5*
Number of rooms: 124
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Melia Hotel and Resort is Zanzibar's leading international resort, situated on the north-east coast of the island. Melia Zanzibar is built on a 40 acre estate with a beautiful beach of pearlescent white sand lapped by warm ocean waters, 300 meters long, situated at the very end of the property to procure the perfect combination with nature. The resort is ringed by a natural coral reef, making bathing a relaxing and safe experience. The hotel is the perfect destination for honeymoon or wedding vacations as well as meetings & incentives. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Melia Zanzibar Hotel Kiwengwa
Zamani Zanzibar Kempinski Kiwengwa
Melia Zanzibar Zanzibar Island/Kiwengwa

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