Ratings based on 15 Verified Reviews

4.3 out of 5
91% of guests recommend
4.9 Room cleanliness
4.7 Service & staff
4.4 Room comfort
4.5 Hotel condition
Expedia Verified Reviews
5 out of 5
for Everyone
by Harold from Beijing China

Great place to get away and yet see it all.

Posted Feb 19, 2013
Pros: The staff who were very professional and caring.
Cons: Nothing!!!
Location: East side of Zanzibar Island looking out toward the Indian Ocean.
From the time I arrived to the time I left I felt like I was being looked after by professional and caring people. The staff were wonderful to talk to and very helpful with ideas and suggestions for trips and sightseeing. The food was always prepared and presented in top fashion with a great menu that was different from day to day.
5 out of 5
by A verified traveler

Just a bit remote - not necessarily a bad thing

Posted Jul 30, 2012 on Hotels
The resort was a bit far from anything, and that made doing any touring expensive as the car hire they used charged $70/hr - and everything was going to be at least two hours hire. Great place to just hang out though, good shell collecting on the beach and the food was fantastic.
5 out of 5
for Everyone
by Goose from Nairobi Kenya

Highly recommended

Posted Mar 7, 2012
Pros: Everything
Cons: Nothing
Location: Right on the beach at Chwaka Bay
Run by a Canadian lady and her husband, the Ngalawa Beach is fantastic value. The owners are also the managers and live on site. Very friendly, extremely helpful, nothing was too much trouble. All rates are full board and as close to all inclusive as one can get minus all alcohol! The food is a set menu (no choice but to eat or not eat), but it was haute cuisine of the highest order and no meal was repeated during the 5 days we stayed. All rooms have balconies and are very well appointed (thankfully no televisions!). The site is right on the beach, has a wonderful pool and is immaculately clean. Overall, faultless! Thanks Joanna for a fabulous stay!
5 out of 5
for Couples
by Michal from Poland

My review

Posted Mar 5, 2012
Excellent standard of the intimate complex and service: comfortable room, ambient restaurant and pier-like Lily's bar, the fantastic chef and his delicious meals, tender care of animal residents and continuous but descreet presence of the remarkable and generous owners with individual approach to their guests - thank You for sweetening our stay in Zanzibar :o) (M&M from Poland)
2 out of 5
by A verified traveler from Muscat

very poor value for your money

Posted Jul 27, 2011
I like a quiet location but being the only guests in the place it felt like we were intruding. Probably things would have been different if there had been other guests but we saw the bar staff being told off for not completing the paperwork properly; kitchen staff for working too slowly and waiters for speaking english with a foreign accent. I know staff have to be trained but at these prices and with the rest of the resort empty ........
4 out of 5
for Couples
by A verified traveler from Wilmington, DE

a balanced review of likes and dislikes

Posted Feb 15, 2011
Cleanliness - The resort is small and very clean. Service - The service was top notch. The staff for the most part was very nice however you could see they were struggling with English. Location - The resort is about an hour from Stone Town (main attraction city) and to leave the resort cost us $140 USD for any excursion. Meals - The meals we had were way above my expectations. I would say 4 of 5 stars most of the time, perhaps I should say 5 stars given that the food is all local and not imported. The presentation of the meals was artful and visually pleasant. Beach - The beach is totally unusable period. The difference between high and low tides is so vast that it rushes in and rushes out; in the evening it is nice because it is high tide and you have a beautiful view, but you are also not swimming. When the tide is returning in late afternoon it is bringing with it tons of sea grass and it is sandy because it is rushing in, you would not want to swim in it. In the morning it is low tide and you would have to walk more than a hundred yards through sinking mudd-like sand and crabs to get to the water while stepping on coral and cutting your feet as my wife did when we tried. Rooms - Our room was beautiful with a beautiful view on the balcony. One complaint - air conditioner worked but was inadequate for the size of the room and for the temperature in Zanzibar. Internet access - I was told it is throughout the complex but I could not get a signal anywhere.
2 out of 5
by A verified traveler from San Jose,CA

Ngawala Beach Resort

Posted Jan 3, 2011 on Hotels
Definitely not the right place, if you are looking for a hotel right next to a beach where you can bathe. The hotel sits in a bay which devoids it of any fresh water coming in from the ocean and hence there are no blue beaches. The beach is not useable from the period of low tide to high tide (12 noon to 6PM) since there is no water and the beach is more like a marsh land. Located in a quite neighborhood with not many activities around the place. Each ride to the town would cost around fifty dollars one way. One can spend the time in the pool and the deck sipping beers and playing with the pet animals of the owner (cats, goats etc.)
5 out of 5
for Couples
by A verified traveler from Cheshire UK

Fantastic food , welcoming & peaceful !

Posted Dec 6, 2010
Ngalawa was brilliant if you want quiet , clean , beautiful settings , excellent rooms & the best food in the world .... & i've travelled . Joanne & Sadru are lovely people & make you feel very welcome . They really try to make your stay as good as possible , only too keen to sort out little local trips etc . The one slight disappointment was the beach . It's on a large bay & the tide goes out for miles [ well a klm !] Although the tide does come right up to the bar its still very shallow & some sea grass at all times . However you can get a local boat across the bay to "Paradise beach" ..... & it is ! Red Colombus monkeys visit the hotel gardens & all in all it's a great place . Very clean large pool . Chefs excellent , staff very friendly & good .
5 out of 5
for Other
by A verified traveler from London

Amazing resort

Posted Sep 1, 2010
As we drove down the long drive way off the main road, we wondered what we had got ourselves into. But then we get to these gates and as they open up we walk into a beautiful resort. Not only is it clean but peaceful just what we needed after 10 days of safari and camping. The food is amazing and the chef happy to accommodate all your needs. The canadian couple that own the resort were amazing people, so friendly, approachable and were always around to make your stay as comfortable and as pleasant as possible. This along with the staff that would bend over backwards to help you with anything and everything. A totally wonderful resort which i would recommend to anyone that wants a nice pleasant and peaceful get away.
5 out of 5
for Families
by A verified traveler from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Great food and a quiet time.

Posted Jul 19, 2010
In Zanzibar they want payment in US$? What the and who are they kidding? No Visa or credit charge facilities at the lodge. They have to invest in a larger TV when the sporting events are on - World Cup on a 20 inch screen is not a stimulating event. Otherwise the owners are lovely and the food and ambience is great for a quiet holiday. If you want company and nightlife you will have to go Nungwi side of the island.