The Palms: Our full report
The Palms is an intimate sister property to Breezes Beach Club, and Baraza, which it sits between geographically.However with only seven villas The Palms is much more exclusive.
Each of the luxurious villas at The Palms is spread out over two storeys, with two large en-suite bedrooms, a lounge with mod-cons (including a TV) and a private outdoor plunge pool. This means that the villas work well for two couples travelling together. Each villa also has the exclusive use of a private beach banda. Situated on the beachfront overlooking the sea and furnished with a pair of comfortable loungers – this is a great place to relax.
In the centre of the complex, in front of the villas, is a blue-tiled swimming pool for the use of all residents. Adjacent to the pool is the Pool Bar & Restaurant which serves a choice of daily specials for lunch. Opposite is the Plantation House where you will find the main bar/lounge and dining area. This is a beautiful colonnaded thatched building with French-windows all around, lovely wooden floors and dark, carved furniture.
The central areas at Palms have tried to capture a feeling of 'understated elegance' and when we were last there they had undoubtedly achieved this. The main area where you find the bar/lounge, dining room and library has been furnished using dark wood, antique furniture and natural fabrics all under thatch. The result is an elegant colonial feel that is made complete by little touches such as the use of old-fashioned ceiling fans, polished wooden floors and tea served on the deck outside.
The blue-tiled swimming pool sits back from the beach slightly and though the pool is a little on the small side, there is still a reasonable amount of space and plenty of loungers for snoozing and relaxing. Just adjacent is the informal pool bar which sits on decking under some shady thatch. It is open on all sides which welcomes the sea breeze and serves lunch from the daily specials board.
The Palms has a tiny spa with a sea view where you can get a variety of relaxation treatments. Oil treatments take place inside the spa and Thai massages are given on a comfortable bed on the outside terrace. Most guests, however, usually head over to the enormous and impressive Frangipani spa at Breezes Beach Club. Breezes and Baraza guests are not permitted into Palms, whereas Palms guests may pop over to Breezes and Baraza to use all their facilities and organise any water-sport activities.
Palms also has a small gift shop, with local curios and souvenirs.
The gardens at The Palms are beautiful, with, as you might guess, no shortage of palm trees, plus bougainvillea and manicured lawns setting off the makuti-thatch villas.
The Palms is beautifully designed, and little personal touches like daily sundowners with the other guests make for a pleasant and relaxing atmosphere. So if you are looking for a tranquil and very smart resort, then The Palms could suit you well. However be aware that the public areas of Palms are quite small considering the price.
- Michamvi Peninsula, Zanzibar
- Ideal length of stay
- Stay 3 to 4 days or more to totally relax and take advantage of all the great facilities here.
- It takes around 35 minutes to fly to Zanzibar from Dar es Salaam, and then it's a further one hour by car to The Palms. See our Google map, and note that The Palms is the relatively small complex to the north of the beachfront. You can clearly see the six villas in a curve (top-left to bottom) around the central area.
- Accessible by
Food & drink
- Usual board basis
- Full Board
- Food quality
- Breakfast is usually served from 7.30 – 10.00 and consists of plenty of fresh fruit, pastries, a variety of cereals as well as a full English breakfast.
Lunch is an informal affair served in the pool bar where you can choose from the daily specials served between 12.30 – 2.pm. On our last visit we enjoyed a Greek salad, followed by octopus skewers and curried rice.
Dinner at Palms is usually a 5-course set menu and is a much more formal affair. When we last visited we had an incredible dinner - the highlight was a seafood platter that included red snapper, prawns and lobster Thermidor. Although the flavors were uncomplicated, the ingredients were top quality and, it was certainly some of the best food that we have had anywhere on the whole island.
- Dining style
- Individual Tables
- Dining locations
- Indoor and Outdoor Dining
- Further dining info, including room service
- Drinks included
- Most drinks are included, except for champagne and specially imported wines and spirits.
- Enjoy the luxury and exclusivity of The Palms, and access to the facilities of its neighbouring sister resort. Each villa is opulent, with a private plunge pool and you’ll have your own banda on the beach. A relaxing Zanzibar honeymoon destination!
- See ideas for Honeymoons
- The rooms at The Palms each have their own private outdoor plunge pool as well as the Sanctuary Spa which offers a variety of massages and treatments. For a broader range of therapies head over to the enormous spa at Breezes Beach Club.
- See ideas for Wellbeing
- Attitude towards children
- Palms will welcome older teenage children.
- Property’s age restrictions
- Children have to be 16 years or older to stay at Palms.
- Special activities & services
- There are no special activities here for children
- There is no special equipment here for children, although an extra bed or two can be put in the rooms
- Generally recommended for children
- Younger children are not permitted to stay at Palms and children older than 16 years might find that they head over to Breezes fairly often, where there is a more buzzing and social atmosphere.
- Power supply notes
- 24 hour electricity.
- All of the rooms have phones with an outside line; there is a charge for calling outside the hotel. There is free Wifi throughout the hotel. You will also find intermittent mobile reception around Palms.
- TV & radio
- There is a TV and DVD player in all of the villas and a selection of over 700 DVDs available to borrow in Reception.
Health & safety
- Malarial protection recommended
- Medical care
- There is an on-site nurse who can treat minor illnesses and injuries - for more serious cases there is a nearby doctor who can be called as well as a hospital in Stone Town (about an hour away).
- Dangerous animals
- Low Risk
- Security measures
- The front gate is always closed and manned by security – getting in there feels like quite a mission even when you're a legitimate visitor! There are also discrete guards dotted around the property.
- Fire safety
- There are extinguishers in all of the rooms and main areas.
- Disabled access
- On Request
- Laundry facilities
- Laundry is an extra charge – when we were last there it was about $3 – 7 depending on the item.
- The Palms will exchange Dollars, Pounds, Euros.
- Accepted payment on location
- The Palms accept payment for any extras in Euros, Sterling or Dollars cash and Visa & Mastercard & Amex (with no extra charge).
Room types at The Palms
The villas at Palms' are very luxurious – each is a private bungalow under thatch with a curved shaded balcony on which sits private plunge pool and day bed. Behind large French doors is a spacious lounge area with a flat-screen TV with an array of satellite channels and a DVD player (DVDs available to borrow from Reception), as well as a mini bar! The bungalows also delightfully cool, thanks to the five air-conditioning units in each one!
Past the lounge, the beautifully spacious master bedroom sits behind picture windows. Through another door from the lounge is a second bedroom with a single bed and a small en-suite toilet – a perfect additional room for a third person.
The rooms are beautifully decorated in a traditional Arabic and Swahili style with brass lanterns, sumptuous fabrics and lots of carved furniture. The centre-piece is the beautiful four-poster bed with mosquito net. The Zanzibari furniture is made onsite by local craftsmen and it has to be said that they have done a fantastic job - even the headboard of the bed is carved with the finest detail. The rooms at Palms have maintained a traditional character, whilst incorporating style and elegance.
The main en-suite to the master bedrooms is a large and stylish bathroom - with a walk-in hot-and-cold shower, flush toilet bidet and a huge bath. Complimentary toiletries, hair-dryer and shaving mirror illustrate the attention to detail. Cream stone walls and floors and a minimalist design result in a simple yet spacious and beautiful room.
Other lodges in Michamvi Peninsula
Alternative places to stay in this same area.