Reviews of Shooting Star Lodge
Wildlife sightings and reviews
30 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Shooting Star Lodge and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Shooting Star Lodge review"
I was welcomed on arrival and shown the facilities and my room.
My Sea View room was large, spacious and comfortable. The air conditioning was much appreciated after six days in the bush without it. If I could, I would have returned home with my beautiful Zanzibari bed! It was great to have a private verandah with a great view of the sea and a comfortable sofa in the shade on which to relax.
The bar area was very pleasant, with comfortable seating with lots of cushions, ideal for relaxing both during the day and with a drink in the evening. The dining area was also lovely. The swimming pool is beautiful. The sunbed space around the pool is limited, but the hotel was not particularly busy so this was generally not a problem. The beach bar is also a great place to relax in the shade.
Food and catering
It was great to have tea delivered to the verandah outside each morning and for me this was the ideal way to start the day. The food was excellent with good choices - always a fish, meat and vegetarian option each evening. Lunch was also good, but I would have preferred some lighter options such as sandwiches at lunch time, when I didn't feel like eating so much. There was also afternoon tea and cakes laid out wich was a lovely touch.
I had not realised when I booked that there was a spa, so that was a really great surprise. I had a back massage, facial and Indian head massage during my stay. The therapist was excellent and gave great treatments, and the location of the spa, by the beach was lovely.
There were a large number of honeymoon couples at the resort, who were unsderstandly wrapped up in themselves. This made it a not particularly friendly atmosphere for the single traveller, so while the hotel was beautiful and idyllic, the atmosphere was not not particularly friendly. Having said this, the staff were all friendly and chatty." See all these reviews: 6n in Tanzania; 5n in Zanzibar
"chill out at Shooting Star Lodge"
The cottages are cool, clean and very comfortable with plenty of room to relax in. The patio area looking into the garden was interesting as the Bush Babies liked our tree, so we where entertained every evening. I liked the idea of the basket and sarongs for the beach and plenty of towels.
The staff are all very friendly and made you feel most welcome, even though the management where having one or two teething problems with them it didn't spoil our stay.
Eli, and Charlie are aware of the problems and are in trying to sort them out and where very apologetic when things didn't go according to plan.
The food is excellent, with a good variety of local produce. With a varied and interesting menus.
Charlie was very helpful in arranging trips for us so that we could see more of the life on the island, the taxi driver, even though his English was a little sparse did his utmost to take us where we wanted to go and get any information we wanted. The other guide to the Spice Farm was excellent. We really enjoyed ourselves on both trips." See all these reviews: 10n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star Lodge review"
Beautiful beach and pool area. Watch out for the sea urchins though as I'm still picking bits out of my feet, a memento!" See all these reviews: 6n in Tanzania; 6n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star Lodge review"
The food here was also great, with a different menu everyday - no mean feat as were there 8 days! We'd strongly recommend the private lobster BBQ dinner on the beach was we'll never forget... The rooms are also lovely, with enormous beds and good facilities. We did feel the rooms could have done with a bit of TLC however - even just a fresh lick of paint!
There were a couple of things that in hindsight we'd have looked out for when booking; the area around Shooting Star is fairly quiet, so there isn't really an option to go somewhere different for lunch, or for a drink in the evenings. The lodge itself isn't lacking in this respect in any way, but it would have good to have the option - so this is more of a location thing than anything else!
Also, although the beach was very picturesque, the high and low tides are extreme so at low tide the sea is a very long way out. This means the reef is exposed so at low tide it's not possible to swim at all which wasn't something we'd anticipated, and with two tides a day the chances of it being low tide during the day are very high. Luckily the infinity pool at the lodge is gorgeous and so refreshing, so again this is a location thing. We heard the beaches at the north of the island were better but we'd be interested to know if this is the case as it may have just been one of the locals trying to sell us a trip!
All in all Shooting Star is a lovely place to stay, and if you're looking for peace and tranquility, rest and relaxation then it's the perfect place to be." See all these reviews: 10n in Zanzibar; 6n in Tanzania
If travellers want a ballanced view of day-trips, or other excursions, then we recommend at they call us - even if they're in Zanzibar at the time!
"Shooting Star Lodge review"
Don't miss the lobster dinner on the beach - its definitely worth it!
The only slight negative was that whilst all the Sea View Cottages are great some are better than others and there was quite a difference between our two cottages." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 6n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star Lodge review"
I think we were surprised by the weather too - it was very cloudy and not that warm.
Our room was lovely and we had everything we needed in it. Sadly I lost my camera on the first evening at dinner - it was dropped in the restaurant area and nobody handed it in which I was extremely upset about and quite disappointed that no staff members had seen it or found it?
The food was nice but not of the standard of Selous Impala Camp. There was not a great deal to do there either - we imagined there would be a local village or town or restaurants along the beach etc, but we felt very much confined to the Lodge. Fisherman Tours organised a few trips for us.
The Blue Safari day down to Fuma was fantastic! A wonderful trip - worth every penny and so well organised. However, the Spice Tour combined with Jozani Forest trip was very disappointing and not worth the money we paid for it.
Overall, I think if I returned to Zanzibar, I might consider an alternative area of the island? Overall, the experience was good but not fantastic and it hasn't really stayed with me since returning home." See all these reviews: 8n in Zanzibar; 4n in Tanzania
"On the beach at Shooting Star"
The rooms (cottages) were absolutely beautiful, with stunning views over the Indian Ocean (from large private terraces).
Trips were available and easy to book and were all great - we did the spice tour and Jozani Forest." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania; 7n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star makes paradise truly paradise!"
Our accommodations were attractive and spacious. We had plenty of hot water for showers as long as we remembered to turn on the water heater. We particularly enjoyed hanging out in the lounge area, the excellent beverages and good-natured staff at the bar, and the courteous and friendly Masaai.
We've already recommended Shooting Star to our friends!" See all these reviews: 9n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star review"
Quite a bit of wildlife to be seen around the lodge, sunbirds, lizards, the odd green tree snake and particularly bushbabies; it took me until the last day to work out that the loud cackling noises that we heard above the dining area each night were the local bushbabies.
There was a small collection of books to be borrowed next to the lounge area and the fish ID books came in particularly useful after dips in the sea with a snorkel. One minor negative point was that I would have liked there to have been more information in the chalets on the surrounding area and what the options were to see and do." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania; 5n in Zanzibar
"Shooting Star - Lodge - Average"
We arrived at about 6.00pm to find the hotel's electricity supply cut (not their fault), their back up generators not working and the air conditioning in the room not working. The air conditioning never did work the 3 days we were there, although we were given a 25% discount on our bill for the inconvenience.
The rooms were small and the bathrooms abit disappointing (showers did not work properly) but the hotel staff were very friendly.
We were abit disappointed with the location of the resort. It seemed to be a long way from anywhere and it would have been nice if there had been some activities to do. On the whole I would not recommend this resort." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 4n in Zanzibar
Availability was difficult: many places were full – including the Sea-View Cottages at Shooting Star, which we normally recommend. After discussions with these travellers about the alternatives, the relatively simple Garden View Cottages were decided upon. These rooms are not luxurious and they are rather small: we don’t generally recommend them.
That said, we are glad that the team at Shooting Star were friendly; offering a discount due to problems with the air-conditioning is typical of their good nature.
Travellers note that Shooting Star, like most of Zanzibar’s beach lodges, is quite ‘a long way from anywhere’ else. For many this isolation is a real attraction.
Activities can be arranged from here: you can be collected up by a local water-sports centre of snorkelling, diving and fishing – and spice tours can be arranged… but there are no activities organised at the lodge itself; it’s simply a place to relax. For more activities, travellers should consider resorts like Breezes, or a location near a busy town, like Mbweni Ruins, Ras Nungwi or the new Z Hotel.
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