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“Close to perfect”
Review of Pongwe Beach Hotel

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Pongwe Beach Hotel
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pongwe
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 14 January 2018

We stayed here for just over a week around the Christmas period. We had just come from a week or so on Safari (plus two nights in Stone Town) so we were after a change of pace, and some nice relaxing beach time. Pongwe Beach Hotel delivered exactly that.

The setting is gorgeous - postcard-perfect - and the beach area is really well designed to ensure you that you feel you have a relatively large amount of privacy from the other guests. The view over the Indian Ocean from the pool is beautiful.

The rooms are spacious, clean and, as with the beach, feel relatively private and secluded from the other rooms. One little touch which we found fantastic was that PBH provides all manner of things you might ‘need’ for a relaxing day at the beach - towels (obviously), but also a little wicker basket, sun hats and sarongs etc. It seems like a little thing, but it just helps mitigate one more of the petty stresses that can crop up on vacations.

As others have mentioned, as it’s a private beach you are free from any hassle from the touts etc. While you will encounter some if you wander up or down the shoreline away from the hotel, we found them to be relatively pleasant and not too persistent. A very small thing, we noticed at one point that a small group (with some very loud children), seemingly from another hotel along the coast came to the beach and were using the hammocks etc, which was a bit annoying given the point of PBH is to maximize your relaxation time, but it didn’t happen again (maybe someone said something, I don’t know) and didn’t really effect us materially.

Otherwise, the food was great and the drinks were wonderful. The staff are incredibly helpful and eager to please. PBH appears to have ‘trainee’ staff along with a more established team so, while occasionally something minor might get lost in translation, the service in general is fantastic, and relentlessly positive - every second phrase is ‘karibu’ or ‘hakuna matata’.

The team that run PBH clearly know what they are doing. It is an astoundingly beautiful location, and a brilliant place to relax for a few days (or more). The staff couldn’t have been any more pleasant and, other than the one afternoon of rain and some strong onshore breezes on a handful of occasions, we wouldn’t have changed a thing about our stay there. A wonderful place to visit, and hopefully we’ll get to return at some point soon.

Room Tip: Get a room with a beach view (which are most of them, I believe)
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Stayed: December 2017, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Gareth_Carter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We are thrilled to know that you enjoyed your stay!! And would love to have you back with us in the future! Warmest wishes from all of us here at Pongwe.

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17 - 23 of 958 reviews

Reviewed 14 January 2018

If you are looking for simple Luxury and some cool place . Pongwee Beach is the place to go .
not a hype place , rather a family one .
The beach is beautiful, the management and staff professional and friendly , the restaurant offers great food and a nice service . Could be more glamourous though

  • Stayed: January 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Laurence M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We are very pleased that you enjoyed your time with us! Warm wishes from all at Pongwe.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2018

We had the chance to stay at Pongwe Beach Hotel between Christmas and New Years and was a relaxing week of the noises on town. Our daughter didn't want to get out the beautiful pool but to go find shells at the splendid private beach.

The rooms are big and confortable and the food is good. Service has to improve but is a common task to do in Zanzibar, not all is to push your chair or carry your drink from the bar to the restaurant. Orders must not be lost between the table and the kitchen.

Over all we did enjoy the stay and appreciate the chats with Heidi and for sure the smiles of everyone.

The Seafood Platter..... Just Amazing.

Thanks for the relaxing week and hope to see you soon again.

Best regards,

Javier

Room Tip: I guess the suites at the pool side should be bigger but haven't got the chance to see them, jus...
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  • Stayed: December 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Javier Ramos S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 9 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We appreciate your feedback and will do our utmost to try and improve upon our service standards. We are so pleased that you had an enjoyable relaxing break with us and we look forward to having you back soon! Warmest wishes from all at Pongwe.

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Reviewed 7 January 2018

We stayed at this hotel 7 years ago and really enjoyed it, so when an opportunity arose to return we decided to go for it - we were not disappointed. We stayed for 5 nights in December and had a great time.

During our stay we had a couple of chats with Heidi, the manager who is really friendly and was keen to hear how we were finding our stay compared to 7 years ago. We told her that over the 7 years Pongwe has got even better. The beach is just as lovely, but the bathrooms have been upgraded and the food and restaurant service has definitely gone up a notch (or 2!!). The bar has also been extended giving the whole place a more spacious feel. The staff are also really friendly and are always around offering to do anything they can for you. We loved it so much we didnt leave the hotel during our 5 nights there. We left feeling truly relaxed and pampered.

Thank you Heidi and all the staff at Pongwe, for a great stay. Hopefully it wont be another 7 years before we return,

  • Stayed: December 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank ShepofBristol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2018

We are absolutely thrilled that we were able to improve upon your last stay and that you enjoyed your holiday with us!! Thank you for your comments and we do hope to see you again in the not too distant future. Warmest wishes from all of the Pongwe Team.

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Reviewed 6 January 2018

Our five night stay at the end of a gruelling safari schedule was supposed to be an affordable chill out before our return to work in the UK. Our experience staying here far outweighed our expectations.
We stayed in room 19, a spacious suite with a small plunge pool, overlooking the Indian Ocean. Comfortable, clean with a wonderful sea breeze to cool us at night.
Service here is truely wonderful. All the staff are super friendly, always a big smile & they all address you by name, which is always a nice touch.
The white sand beach for residents only is immaculately clean & stunning. There is also a very nice pool overlooking the Ocean.
Food here is very good. Breakfast changes daily, lunches are freshly prepared to order & the evening meals are also excellent. Try the seafood platter for a treat. A mountain of well cooked treats from the sea outside, but go hungry!
What's special about this place other than the staff, is the little unnecessary touches that take this place to the next level. Fresh coffee delivered to your verandah before breakfast, fresh fruit delivered in the afternoons & even a little gift to remember the place on check out.
As you can see from my many reviews, I am very well travelled. This is my 203rd hotel review in the last 5 years. Yes, I've stayed at more luxurious hotels with the price to match.

Stayed: January 2018, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Leedsaway67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We are so pleased that we were able to give you the relaxing holiday you were looking for!! Warmest wishes from everyone here at Pongwe.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 January 2018 via mobile

This place is amazing. It’s like your own piece of paradise!!!

It exceeded all our expectations and more. There seriously was not one thing we could comment on, aside from the fact that they provide too much butter at breakfast so it goes to waste haha :)

The beach is literally yours and the rest of the guests at the resort and is beautiful with the ground keeper continuously
Cleaning away any seaweed or debri (if any). Like someone else said in a review, you can pay 5 star and stay at the resort next door, but it doesn’t have a beach.

The lack of air-conditioning is not a problem at all- although this was a worry of us. The sea breeze keeps things really cool and the rooms have wonderful ventilation and big fans!

The best thing about this place is the management and staff- nothing is too hard! The staff are attentive and helpful and provide great service Africa standards.

I am Coeliac also and cannot eat gluten and they catered considerably for me.

I suggest trying the seafood platter dinner for two one night. There is enough seafood (lobster, crab, prawns etc) to feed an army! Certainly value for money.

Also the little touches are lovely (I want say what these are to spoil it for you) but all the little things they do, are wonderful.

Also the cocktails are delish!!

We certainly did not want to leave the resort- it was a perfect place of relaxation!

We will certainly return should we ever get back to Africa.

Stayed: January 2018, travelled as a couple
Thank Michwood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We are thrilled to know that you enjoyed your stay with us!! Best wishes from everyone here at Pongwe!

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Reviewed 5 January 2018

Very nice place.
We enjoyed a lot the environment, beach, room, ocean, food and especially the kindness of the staff.
We‘re looking forward to come back again in 2018 and we hope that at this time we can stay some days longer.
All the best for the whole pongwe team.
Asanteni na kwaherini
Tutaonana

  • Stayed: December 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank giryes2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PONGWE, Manager at Pongwe Beach Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 January 2018

Thank you very much for your comments. We are so pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us and look forward to seeing you again this year!! Warmest regards from everyone at Pongwe.

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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 Pongwe Beach Hotel

Address: PO Box 297, Pongwe, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Region: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar Island > Pongwe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pongwe
Price Range: C$163 - C$279 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Pongwe Beach Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on what could perhaps be described as the best beach in Zanzibar, Pongwe Beach Hotel is a tranquil place where one can escape the hustle and bustle of modern day life. It is modestly sized, with 4 Sea View Suites, 13 traditional Beach Villas as well as 3 Garden Rooms and has an intimate, personal atmosphere. Set within a secluded bay on the east coast of Zanzibar, Pongwe Beach is a true paradise retreat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pongwe Beach Hotel Zanzibar Island

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