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“Nice, not great”
Review of Echo Beach Hotel

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Echo Beach Hotel
Ranked #4 of 10 Hotels in Bwejuu
Certificate of Excellence
middle east
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Nice, not great”
Reviewed November 9, 2008

We stayed at Echo Beach for 5 days and our overall impression was that it was good, but not great.
The accommodation was wonderful- the cabins are lovely and very comfortable (we loved room 9). The staff was helpful and the owners are hands on- which is really great!

However, the location is far from Stone Town- which means that if you wish to visit the town, it is easily an hour's drive and through guard posts and at times some hassle. It is not inexpensive either- we payed $50 USD to get there and back. We had booked a pick up from the airport through the hotel when we arrived, but no one came, so we took a taxi instead which was $60 USD.

Reserving here was difficult as we had to chase after them to respond to our emails- the phone never seemed to work.

Once there, the setting is lovely, however, unless you are looking for a place to rest and rest only, there is not much to do. Swimming in the ocean is not great - low tide makes it impossible and you need plastic shoes(crocs, ex) to protect your feet.

The food is passable, but not the gastronomic experience the website had us believe.

Overall the price is very reasonable- the staff are nice and if you are going for a rest- its lovely.

  • Stayed September 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank ME_traveller_8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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237 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (36)
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Oxford
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2008

We were looking for relaxation after our safari and found a little bit of paradise.

We expected good food, a comfortable room, sandy beaches and a beautiful sea and we were not disappointed.

Echo beach has rooms for about 20 guests in detached rooms (most single storey) that look out over the Indian ocean and set in small but beautiful surroundings. The atmostphere is very friendly and nothing was too much trouble. It was clear that some of the staff are fairly new to working in hotels and there were some communication difficulties but this was more than made up for by their charm and the desire to please.

The meals were wonderful and surpassed our expectations. The room was beautifully decorated, very comfortable with a great walk in shower. I would not hesitate to recommend a stay at Echo Beach - we had a wonderful time.

  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank DebsBB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed October 25, 2008

Beautiful bungalows, attention to detail is amazing - it's like the East meets Laura Ashley.
Food is fantastic (the main reason we chose this place).
Very friendly staff.
Exactly what you want from a Zanzibar beach break - PERFECT.

  • Liked — Beautiful rooms, view, food
  • Disliked — massage services were not available (I'm sure they'll resolve this)
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank wanderchik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Switzerland
1 review
Reviewed October 23, 2008

Echobeach Hotel is a lovely quiet place on the East coast of Zanzibar. Sue and Andrew are very nice and very helpful should you need anything. There is room for just over 20 people and that makes it a lovable place. Almost all individual houses. The sea is great at high tide, and the pool at low tide. Not much going on at night. Just remember US$ is what you should bring but no bills older than the year 2000. And Visa will cost you 50$ (100$ for Americans)
I recommend this place for a good relax.

  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank bootshoe48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
1 review
Reviewed October 16, 2008

Echo Beach is in a beautiful setting and is run by a lovely English couple Sue and Andrew. It is the ideal place to go to relax, it is quite small with around 10 rooms so feels more personal than a big hotel. The food was brilliant which is really important when the vast majority of hotels are half board. There are also not many other places to go out to eat as this area is still quite quiet and unspoilt so the food needed to be good. The evening meal is a proper 3 course meal chosen from a menu rather than a buffet (except the Swahili buffet once a week which was really nice and good to try some local dishes). There is a good range of food on the menu all of which was excellent - the lamb we had was particularly lovely. Also the lunches were good and very reasonably priced so were the drinks so you don't need worry about being ripped off on the bits you have to pay for.
The owners are very nice and were very accommodating - they were happy to pick up some sun cream for us when we ran out when they were in town. You just need to ask if there is anything you need.
The only down side I would say is that it is hard to go for walks along the beach without be accosted by a local trying to sell you something. The sea goes out a long way in the morning so even a walk down across the sands toward the sea can mean you are pounced on by a local. Having said that, they are all fairly friendly but my husband did get a bit sick of telling them which football team he supported! I expect it's probably like that on most beaches though.
All in all, it's a fab place and I would definitely recommend it to couples wanting a place to relax.

  • Liked — Beautiful setting and the food
  • Disliked — The locals on the beach trying to get you to buy something
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ManchesterPussycat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pontypridd, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
554 reviews
228 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 436 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2008

Firstly I'll start by saying - check your booking with this hotel. I had a confirmation of my booking for three months only to be told after travelling 5000 miles that they had no rooms. I had to produce the documentation and argue for half an hour before they accepted being stranded in Zanzibar was not a good thing and they made whatever necessary rearrangements were needed to accommodate me. Good for making the efforrt, poor for the initial [-] up. I'm the third reviewer to mention booking errors and how many people do not comment on these forums, so best to check. Most of there booking errors seem to have occurred in June 2008 so lets hope its a thing of the past.

OK IGNORING THEIR BOOKING MISTAKE WHAT IS IT LIKE?
Good but not great would have to be the verdict. Rooms are nice size, perfect views over a stunning pool and beach and everything in the rooms is clean and works which is unusual in Africa. The option of eating breakfast or dinner on the veranda of your room is a very nice touch. The food is sometimes good occassionally very good but not what i'd been expecting given other glowing comments. Drinks very reasonably priced, even some decent wines well priced. Service is a bit hit and miss, I don't think either my partner or I had the breakfast we ordered on any day but once we pointed out what was missing the staff were always polite and helpful. This may improve with experience.
I've stayed on Zanzibar a number of times and people come for the beach. And it is stunning. When the tide goes out it does go 800 metres or more for half a day but thats where a pool is essential. And the beach is empty unlike lots of places in the world and undoubtably this is a major attraction. You are one of 20 or so guests and you do have a very quiet idyllic beach.

If I was comparing it with other places on Zanzibar it would be very good but in a world market for accommodation of this standard and price you can find better accommodation at a more competetive price in Asia and the Caribbean. If Zanzibar is your choosen destination though this is a good choice.

  • Liked — beach location
  • Disliked — booking error
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank KS&HC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, England
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed September 28, 2008

We spent 6 wonderful nights at Echo Beach and found it to be amazing. First off, the setting is unbelievable- we have travelled the world and we think that this is the best beach that we have ever seen. The sand is white, the water is turquoise and the beach is lined with palm trees- the best thing is that apart from a few local fishermen, the beach is deserted.

Andrew and Sue, the owners have done a wonderful job in creating this haven of tranquility. Nothing was too much for them- when we enquired about purchasing some Tanzanian jam that we had tried on safari (safari mix), the promtly went out and bought us some and refused to take any money for it. When we asked, at the last minute, about having dinner on the beach, they actually built us a cabana! They lent us a hairdryer, an adapter and even some jelly shoes for walking out to the reef.

The food is very good and they have an excellent selection of drinks (reasonably priced). My wife is a vegetarian and she felt very well looked after. You can eat in the restaurant, on the beach or on your own veranda. The staff are very friendly and gave us exceptional customer service. They even do your laundry free of charge!

The villa was beautiful, spotlessly clean with a huge bathroom and walk in shower which would have accomodated an entire rugby team! We particularly liked the huge, private veranda as well as the comfortable four poster bed.

My wife had a massage in the spa and declared it to be the best massage she has ever had. I did an introduction to scuba diving which was excellent and we hear they are in the process of setting up a dive shop on site. They can also arrange various excursions and transfers.

Everyone we met on safari and in Stonetown had heard of Echo Beach- it obviously has an excellent reputation. We were very sorry to have to leave and will definitely return. It is the most relaxed we have ever been and if you can get in here, you are very lucky!

  • Liked — Everything
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David Finch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Echo Beach Hotel

Property: Echo Beach Hotel
Address: Bwejuu | East Coast, Bwejuu 3109, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Bwejuu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Bwejuu
#4 Spa Hotel in Bwejuu
#5 Family Hotel in Bwejuu
#5 Romantic Hotel in Bwejuu
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Slice of ParadiseThe new Echo Beach Hotel resort offers visitors a slice of paradise on the dreamy tropical island of Zanzibar. The very name Zanzibar evokes a sense of mystique and adventure.Sue and Andrew Page, the owners of Echo Beach bought a 5 acre stretch of unspoilt beach to create a unique boutique hotel. There are now 10 individual villas combining unpretentious African architecture with state of the art technology, interior design, fixtures and fittings.Beach Villasin Unspoilt SurroundingsThe individually designed Bandas are constructed from local stone, capped with Makuti roofs .Each dwelling boasts exquisitely hand carved balconies and verandas where guests can enjoy a drink in the shade. The Bandas are completely private and not overlooked, allowing visitors to relish the unspoilt surroundings and uninterrupted views of the beautiful Indian Ocean.Beachside diningDining in the beachside restaurant, decorated with designers guild fabric, in the white and turquoise of the seashore is a highly pleasurable experience, with discreet and efficient service.With a refreshing breeze blowing in from the sea, guests can unwind and relax with a decadent cocktail in the stylish bar area, where designer fabrics are teamed with Zanzibar carved furnishings. Or wander down to the unique bar on the beach, and enjoy refreshments by the sea shore.Local Dishes & International FavouritesFor those who want to get the true taste of Zanzibar there is a wealth of fresh local food on the menu, not to mention some carefully selected International favourites.The ultimate in fresh fare, produce is purchased daily, including lobster, crab, prawns and squid straight from local fisherman who come to the beach.Relax at the Beauty SpaZanzibar is the perfect place for a complete break from the hectic life most people live nowadays. If you want professional, unobtrusive service, peace and privacy to relax, then why not try our professional beauty spa and treat yourself to a complete pampering.Tours and TransfersEcho Beach is happy to arrange transfers to and from the hotel.Whilst on your holiday why not let us arrange for you to explore the magical island taking in the legendary Spice Tour. While spices no longer dominate Zanzibar's economy as they once did, there are still numerous spice plantations in the centre of the island, which make an interesting visit.Friendly and informed guides will escort you on a walking tour of the spice farms, picking bunches of leaves, fruit and twigs from bushes and trees, inviting you to smell or taste them to guess what they are.Swimming with Dolphins is also a magical experience that will not be forgotten and can easily be arranged. The Jozani Forest Tour with the colobus monkeys that are unique to Zanzibar. These are just some of the adventures you can enjoy as well as diving, fishing and snorkelling in one of the most unspoilt areas of the world. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Echo Beach Bwejuu
Hotel Echo Beach
Echo Beach Hotel Zanzibar Island/Bwejuu

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