Zanzibar Palace Hotel

Zanzibar Palace Hotel: Our full report

9 rooms
Traveller's rating
Excellent (90%) From 48 reviews
May 1st to 31st March

Opened in July 2006, the Zanzibar Palace has quickly gained a reputation as one of the best boutique hotels in Stone Town. Zanzibar Palace Hotel is independently owned and the Italian management team pride themselves on great service and personal attention to guests. The hotel has been renovated with a lot of care and attention to detail. The result is a lovely friendly boutique hotel, which is highly original and has bags of character.

The entire hotel has a strong Zanzibarian flavour and handcrafted furniture is used throughout. All of the furniture has been sourced locally, and years were spent finding the perfect pieces for each little nook and cranny. The furniture is of a very high quality, and each piece is unique - giving the Zanzibar Palace Hotel a wonderfully traditional feel.

Each of the bedrooms is Zanzibari in style, though all have their own unique interior décor. There are nine rooms altogether, two of which are relatively small Luxury Rooms, and the remaning seven are the larger and more opulent Suites.

There are two particularly amazing suites at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel – the Palace Suite Sherali and Palace Suite Dunia ; both are on the top floor of the hotel, with fantastic views – and both are amongst the best and most original rooms in Stone Town!

The style continues in the communal areas. You enter the hotel through grand Zanzibari doors, where the small reception (with beautiful carved desk), lounge and dining area are all in one open-plan room. A second lounge area, set up on a step, is an inviting place to play a board game or two, while adjacent is a long, thin dining area.

Zanzibar Palace Hotel has a small in-house spa, a wonderful way to unwind after a busy day out exploring Stone Town. There are two massage tables and a pedicure chair as well as showers and a bathroom. There are a variety of treatments available including couples massages, so please enquire at reception if this is something that interests you.

Our view

The Zanzibar Palace Hotel tries hard to make a good impression – the rooms are beautiful and the service is excellent. One thing that sticks in our minds is the quality of the furniture in the rooms; it definitely made a good impression on us!

However the hotel has already become a very popular choice. With only nine rooms, it might be difficult to get space here during the peak months of July and August unless you book quite far in advance.


Location: Stone Town, Zanzibar

Ideal length of stay: One or two nights to explore this fascinating town full of culture.

Directions: It takes around 35 minutes to fly to Zanzibar from Dar es Salaam, and then it is a further 10 minutes to Stone Town and the Zanzibar Palace Hotel.

Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer

Key personnel

Owner: Owner: Frans

Staff: Director: Daniela Brenco (new in 2019)

Food & drink

Usual board basis: Bed & Breakfast

Food quality: On our last visit we didn't eat here. However the food at the Zanzibar Palace on previous visits has been of high quality. The breakfast reflects the owners European heritage, so there are plenty of cheeses, meats, breads and cakes on offer. This is certainly different from the more cursory fruit and bacon & eggs which most other hotels provide. It’s a very welcome change.

For dinner we had an enjoyable and tasty meal, combining local herbs, spices and produce. For starters, there was a choice of shrimp platter or leek and potato soup with warm spices. The main course was pork chops with a selection of side vegetables, or fragrant grilled sea bream fillet. The dessert was pancakes filled with ice-cream covered with chocolate sauce.

As the kitchen normally caters for low numbers, and is not open to outside guests, the hotel requests that you indicate you will be taking dinner by 4pm on the day. There will always be a choice of meat or fish for the main course, and a vegetarian option if requested.

Dining style: Individual Tables

Dining locations: Indoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £20-25

Drinks included: Drinks are not included.

Further dining info: Yes, the Zanzibar Palace Hotel offers room service free of charge and there is also a 24 hour bar.

Special interests

Honeymoons: This is a fantastic hotel for your honeymoon to Zanzibar. It is luxurious, small and personal, and the suites are spectacular. The service is excellent and you’ll be made to feel very special! It’s a romantic hotel with a central Stone Town location.

See more ideas for Honeymoons in Zanzibar

Cultural experiences: Zanzibar Palace Hotel is a characterful property with beautiful rooms and antique furniture. It is located in the heart of Sone Town from where you can easily go on a guided tour to explore the old town and discover Zanzibar's history and culture.

See more ideas for Cultural experiences in Zanzibar


Attitude towards children: Children are welcome at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel.

Property’s age restrictions: When we were last there, there were no age restrictions at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel.

Special activities & services: No

Equipment: There is one cot available on request. There is also a games corner in reception, where children will find a few board games to play with.

Notes: Though this hotel is not particularly geared towards children, they are welcome at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel and the Shaba Suite can easily be made into a triple or a quadruple.


Power supply: Mains Electricity

Power supply notes: There is 24 hour electricity.

Communications: There is free access to WiFi throughout the hotel, and people are also welcome to use the hotels’ own laptop in the lounge.

TV & radio: There is a TV with satellite channels and a DVD player in all of the rooms, as well as a large flat-screen television in a lounge area on the second floor.

Water supply notes: Water is filtered 3 times before it comes out of the taps but we would still recommend drinking the bottled water that is provided.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Medical care: There is a private clinic next door to the Zanzibar Palace Hotel, where guests can see a doctor.

Dangerous animals: Low Risk

Security measures: There are security guards at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel and a night receptionist and a well locked door.

Fire safety: There are fire-extinguishers, smoke detectors and fire escapes in every room.


Disabled access: Not Possible

Laundry facilities: The laundry is an extra charge, though when we were last there it was only $1.00 per item.

Money: The Zanzibar Palace Hotel are not able to offer any currency exchange, though there are lots of nearby bureaus and the staff will be happy to show you where.

Accepted payment on location: You can pay for any extras at the Zanzibar Palace Hotel in cash only. They accept US dollars, euro, and Tanzanian shillings. Credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, Diners and Amex) are accepted with a 5% surcharge.

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