Reviews of Kholle House
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
The triumph of style over substance
Looked good, beautiful building but it didn't really work.Read more about the whole trip
Stone Town hotel
The hotel was friendly and quirky because of its history. We were only in Stone Town for one night so this suited us fine.
Good location near the sea front and a short walk to the main attractions.
Kholle House city centre
Kholle House was a perfect location for us - towards the edge of the old town, rather than in the midst of the warren of streets/alleyways, meant that w could always find it without getting stressed out, even late at night. The swimming pool also provided welcome relief from the heat and meant we could relax even during the urban part of our holiday.
Our room (number 24) was at the top of the building which gave us access to cooler breezes, and easy access to both roof terraces. The last set of steps up to the third floor were particularly steep and I think guests should be warned of that in advance (witnessed an older couple really struggling to climb the stairs).
Our main disappointment was that even though we had booked their honeymoon package the fact that we were on our honeymoon was never once mentioned nor acknowledged. Having said that, the staff were helpful when we needed to find a pharmacy. Overall I would say staff were 'helpful' rather than 'attentive'.
Quaint Kholle House
This was a small, cozy hotel located right in Stone Town which is a converted old residence of a sultan's daughter. I loved the old touches such as the old tiles.
Thank god they had a/c in our room as the weather was quite hot and humid in February. Zanzibar provides an interesting history of the influence of various European countries over time and the sad look at it's role in the slave trade. Shopping can be fun at the little shops but the narrow streets are stiflingly hot.
I would go to Memories of Zanzibar and Zanzibar Gallery on Kenyatta Road for a nice selection and good prices. Drinks at sunset at the Serena was magnificent with the Dhows in the foreground. You'll impress your friends with amazing photos of that scene!
Good stay at Kholle House
We stayed at Kholle House for one night (bed & breakfast) which completed our holiday to Tanzania. We did this so that we could spend some time in Stonetown. Although we were not overly impressed with Stonetown itself, we feel happy to have experienced a stay here and Kholle House was centrally situated for this.
The room accomodated all our needs, however we did not have the "best" nights sleep. We were kept awake by loud music coming from a local italian restaurant until 2.30am. Although understandable and unavoidable, we were also awoken by sounds from a cockerel and the local mosque.
For our final day, we had arranged 2 trips out & around Stonetown. As check out was at 10.30am, the hotel did kindly keep our bags locked away and also let us use a room to freshen up before leaving for the airport later that day.
This was a quirky hotel!
Breakfast seemed quite disorganised in that service was slow and we were brought coffee but had no cups or milk and had to ask for them to be brought. A cooked breakfast was ordered and brought to the table and the waiter said the baked beans would come soon. The beans were so slow in arriving the breakfast was Eaten by the time the waiter brought them to our table. He was apologetic but it did seem rather odd. We think that the restaurant needed. 2 people waiting on at breakfast time.
A hair drier in the room and tea and coffee making facilities would have been a good improvement to our stay- especially when we had to wait so long for the coffee at breakfast time.
The staff were warm and welcoming, and very accommodating to our late afternoon departure.
Unusual Kholle House
very different hotel - very convenient location for walking into town. Great choice of hotel - staff very friendly.Read more about the whole trip
Kholle House review
Kholle House is a lovely, small hotel situated at the top end of Stone Town. It has been sympathetically restored and our room was lovely and had a small balcony overlooking the pool and restaurant area. The (small) pool was a godsend after a day spent walking around Stone Town in intense heat and humidity.
Management and staff were friendly, welcoming and very helpful. They pointed us in the right direction to explore Stone Town on foot.
The location is not perfect: it is quite a walk to reach the middle of Stone Town and it is very close to the Docks where (noisy)work loading ships goes on for most of the night. The Call to Prayer wasn't a problem: we are in an Arab town, after all, and this is a part of life there!
On our second night there, because we had an early (5 a.m) start, we opted to have dinner in the hotel and this was not brilliant, although served in the very nice garden adjacent to the pool. The so-called fillet steak turned out to be a very tough piece of stewing steak, inadequately cooked and fairly unpalatable. Having enjoyed some really delicious fillet in other parts of Africa, we were underwhelmed by this. We wished we had gone to the nearby Mercury (overlooking the harbour) which would have been much more fun and probably cheaper.
But, again, lovely friendly staff and a great blessing to be in an air-conditioned room so we could sleep properly.
Kholle House review
Good location in Stone Town, just right for access to the sights, restaurants and shops.
Quiet, small hotel, friendly and efficient staff. Great swimming pool. The restaurant was not available while we were there so we had to go out for dinner each evening.
Kholle House review
Kholle house shows that in concept it was a valiant effort to restore a house with some historical pedigree as a luxury destination, but in execution it has succeeded only in restoring the house. The staff are not trained in hospitality, so don't expect service here. Attitude is somewhat sullen too, for Africans - who by in large are friendly and accommodating people in the tourism industry. It would appear that Expert Africa's arrangement with Kholle House provides what little trade it receives.
The place, while not that large was largely empty during our stay. It is located between two mosques, while makes early morning prayer quite easy for the traveler. Since it is not located particularly near to any of the tourist destinations (except Mercury's restaurant (over-priced, but OK menu), it has a certain non-tourist attractiveness, but this is overshadowed by the sterility of the accommodation and lousy service. "You're cooking my corn flakes?"
Recommending this booking is my only complaint with the arrangements made for me by Expert Africa.
Expert Africa comments
We were sorry that these guests didn't enjoy Kholle House as much as we had hoped. We most recently stayed at here in February 2012 and really enjoyed our stay, so we were surprised to hear this negative feedback. We sent the feedback onto the owner who was upset to read it, and immediately looked into how they could improve. We will continue to monitor Kholle House, however it is worth bearing in mind that it is one of the least costly options in Stone Town, and so for those on a tight budget it may still be a good option.