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“dirty with flea ridden animals, Don't Go!”

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Paradise Beach Bungalows
Ranked #13 of 28 Specialty Lodging in Paje
Reviewed October 29, 2008

We had read great reviews on the web, incl Tripadvisor, but when we arrived the place was grubby, looked neglected, and there was a dog in the bar/dining area which had hardly any fur left and was scratching madly, a cat too, just as bad. No one greeted us and we just sat around waiting for some attention. Eventually we were shown our room, the bathroom was just concrete and looked dirty.
We had not paid, just booked, and so had a very nice Spanish couple who had just arrive an hour before. They knew Zanzibar well and were surprised at the condition of the place, the lack of staff and the flea ridden animals, so suggested we walk up the beach and find another place. We ended up at the Cristal resort and this was clean, professional and excellent, what a relief.
No idea what is happening at this place, but in the UK they would be prosecuted for cruelty to animals, not to mentiion environmental health having a close look at the cleanliness of the place! We met someone who was staying there and said the japanese owner eventually turned up and made good food, but I'm glad we moved on.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled with friends
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1  Thank lynxy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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33 - 39 of 66 reviews

Reviewed October 15, 2008

An overall judgement on this small, cute village is quite positive. Its location in particular makes the main part of it. The piece of the coast between Bwejuu and Paje is a realy paradise, clean, huge, marvellous.

Positive: the Japaniese lady running the village is really nice, polite and alsways available in satisfying her guests. All the swahili staff is very nice and take care of you. Pole Pole, but the do! You can ask them whatever you need and they will meet your requirements, maybe a little slowly as their way of living. Food is very nice, though I would say a little expensive if compared to other places on the same coast. I only refer to meat dishes, cause I do not like fish. But the cusine is nice. Sometimes they may run out of drinks, but they reassort stocks fast.

Negative: rooms might be cleaner. Beds are really small and short. Mattress seem to be quite old and worn. Mosquiitos nets are small, tight and not very clean... this aspect could be highly improved.
Especially as far as bandas are concerned, no electricity is acceptable, no bathroom is acceptable, but you have to sleep on the floor on really not very clean sheets and mattress... Mosquito net is dirty and dead mosqiutos lie on it, while alive ones pass through its holes and feast at night!! I did not like this experience in banda.
Another aspect is that water is running very slow, when running.. and often you have to wait for tank refilling. In any case a shower is not possible, you have to use basins to wash ans store water.
I paid 60 $ a day for a double room (bungalow) and 40 $ for a banda. Maybe the banda might be cheaper.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled with friends
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2  Thank poa1968
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2008

My wife and I stayed at Paradise for one week in the middle of October, 2008 which was perfect in terms of climate... Hot but not unbearable during the day, cool breeze at night so you don't even really need the fan, let alone the non-existent air-con.

Overall, we had such a wonderful time here-- delicious food, wonderful, attentive, easy-going staff, gorgeous location, activities, and views-- that I would like to give it five stars simply based on atmosphere and value for money. However, a few minor points let the place down so I'm giving it only four-- and even feeling a bit bad about doing so because we had such a brilliant visit.

First, the positives:

Located about a kilometer north of the village "center" of Paje on a wide stretch of white-sand beach where swimming is possible during high tide. Occasional hassle from papasi (beach vendors and touts) when you stray from the hotel property but never anything oppressive. Women harvest seaweed right offshore but the barrier reef is over a kilometer away so snorkelling is not really an option under your own steam. We went out on Paradise's wooden dhow one morning but overfishing and rough seas made it difficult for us to see much. Better (more expensive at $35 pp) snorkelling is to be had with Arabian Nights, a dive operator a kilometer south of Paradise who can take you further afield in their motorboats... even still, the snorkelling is average at best and not as good as on the West Coast. Sorry to put the snorkel report first but hey-- everybody's got priorities.

Stayed in an en-suite, detatched thatch-roof bungalow with a lovely roof-terrace, (slowly) running water and usually electricity to power the fan (and the vital mosquito repellent diffuser!). Very simple but adequate concrete room though the bed was barely long enough for my wife and I who are only 5'8". There are also smaller rooms located directly on the beachfront but not sure if these have electricity. Besides, the wife was keen on the roof terrace which provided the perfect surface for her afternoon yoga.

The manager, Saori, is a very generous and welcoming Japanese woman who immediately puts your mind at ease with her polite and helpful manner. The restaurant serves delicious, simple food and Saori's sushi is some of the best I've ever eaten-- something I don't say lightly.

Seriously-- I'm serious about my sushi.

Meals have to be ordered in advance and this can be a disadvantage if you're not sure what you're doing on any given day. Lunch is best ordered after breakfast. Dinner, after lunch. Breakfast was basic, tasty and the same every day: Three large pieces of fruit (a combination of banana, papaya, grapefruit, pineapple or watermelon) eggs cooked how you like, decent coffee, fresh juice and warm bread with excellent local preserves, peanut butter and honey. Lunch is served at 1:30 and dinner can be had anytime you like as long as it's 7:30!

Delicious were the curries, the fried rice, chips, miso soup and anything remotely Japanese. The fish steaks and sometimes the calamari could be a bit dry but you could tell that Saori was picking out the best ingredients to be had on any given day and serving them fresh. My wife is vegetarian and every effort was made to give her a varied and interesting menu, most of which succeeded. But the sushi? Mwah!-- out of this world!

Easy to walk from Paradise to Jambiani or Bwejju-- nearby local villages with plenty of lunch options-- along the expansive beach during low to middle tide and also easy to catch a dala-dala (local taxi) to Jozani forest to check out the Colobus monkeys. No need arrange these trips from the hotel as it's very simple to arrange them on your own. Paradise also runs the usual Zanzibar excursions-- dolphins, Stonetown, etc.-- but we organized these from other locations. Not much (read: nothing) in the way of nightlife here but this was not our goal and anyway you can walk to Paje-- specifically Paje by Night-- for more of a scene if you're so inclined (disco, live dj, good pizza, indifferent service, Italians)

Downsides:

Again, I hesitate to mention these because we had such a lovely time and the staff are so friendly and accomodating... plus, Saori does her level best to welcome you into the Paradise "family" (though never intrusively so)... The price is also more than reasonable. However, that being said, I feel duty-bound to report, extremely quickly:

the beds were too small, mossie nets constricting, the room was swept and tidy but not exactly clean (especially to the wife's demanding Northern English standards-- the whole place needed a good hose and scrub) the food service was patchy, courses arriving wily nily from the kitchen and seldom at the same time as your companion's, rice would sit getting cold for five minutes before your curry arrived, mangy cats running riot, towels laughably ragged and thin and the beach towels were apparently made of sandpaper...

but, you know, hakuna matata... bring your own towels and mossie net, have a sense of humor, keep your expectations three star, bloody well relax and you will, like us, have a wonderful, relaxing and enjoyable time at paradise which is a really a gem of a thatch-roof, beach-bungalow operation especially in this price bracket...

and did I mention the sushi?

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank octopusmessiah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2007

We got to Stone Town early December to stay with my sister's boyfriend's parents and they told us about Paradise Beach Bungalows in Nungwi. So we all decided to take a Daladala to Nungwi and stay there. the trip was a bit tight with 12 of my friends and me and about 10 other locals but we managed the 2 hour trip.

when we got there we were amazed at how beautiful the place was and Paradise Beach was right on the main beach in Nungwi. Its usually about $20 per night but we somehow got it to be $10 per night including breakfast!

The rooms were nothing special but for a usual $20 a night it was all that was needed. right next to the hotel is Cholos Beach Bar which is the most amazin beach bar i have ever been to! there were people from Norway, South Africa, America, Australia, England and Canada and of course the locals!

Staying there was definately the main highlight of my whole trip!
I highly recommend this place for young backpackers!

  • Stayed: December 2006, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Marek89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago
Google Translation

Stayed: December 2017
Thank duma2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2017
Google Translation

Room Tip: Bungalow face au lagon
See more room tips
  • Stayed: January 2017, traveled as a couple
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Thank ChristopheP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2017 via mobile
Google Translation

Stayed: August 2017, traveled with family
Thank jun158ski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Paradise Beach Bungalows

Address: Paje, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Paje
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 28 Specialty Lodging in Paje
Price Range: $67 - $79 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 10
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Also Known As:
Paradise Beach Bungalows Hotel Paje
Paradise Beach Bungalows Zanzibar Island/Paje

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