Zanzibar Hotels

Dhow Palace Hotel


The Dhow Palace Hotel is located in the heart of Stone Town, just a short walk from the sights and local amenities and the beach. This is a very busy city beach however, and though one can bathe here, it is a far cry from many of Zanzibar’s idyllic, more remote, seaside resorts.


Accommodation at Dhow Palace Hotel


The Hotel is large with 30 rooms. It is housed in a renovated wealthy merchant’s old lodgings. The hotel is tastefully decorated with traditional Swahili antiques. It boasts a pleasant courtyard pool and a pool-side snack bar restaurant. The Hotel is not licensed and if you are looking for somewhere with a bar it is unsuitable.


Service at Dhow Palace Hotel


The Hotel has a friendly, family-run feel. Staff members are known to be very obliging. This is a bonus as the size and quality of rooms does tend to vary. If you ask for a room change reception will certainly help if they can. Helpful staff are also needed as the hotel has a lot of stairs and no elevator. Thankfully porters are happy to carry your bags to your room for you. The hotel is generally clean and well cared for. Beds are properly turned out and treated each day and the rooms are swept. However, deeper cleaning has been an issue, and though hygienic the hotel is not pristine.


Accommodation at Dhow Palace Hotel


Rooms are well equipped with air-con and fans, telephone, fridge, satellite TV and wireless internet connection. There are also computers provided for guest-use in the lobby. Internet is normally switched off at 2200, but you can ask staff to extend this. Bathrooms are clean and quirky with old-style tubs, working showers and good hot water (though as in many places in Zanzibar, water pressure for showering is not ideal).


Breakfast is a standard buffet, and though not exceptional is good considering the hotel’s price tag. The hotel snack bar is not highly recommended, yet it is a convenient and friendly place to grab food when you do not wish to go out.


How to get to the Dhow Palace Hotel


The Dhow Palace benefits from its coastal roadside location at the centre of Stone Town. Though this increases the chance of traffic noise, it does mean that arrival at the hotel and subsequently locating it is not difficult. Taxi/transfer will take you to the door of the hotel from the airport or port of arrival (this is not so with hotels which are more hidden away in pedestrian areas).


Stone Town itself lies approximately 7 km from Zanzibar airport. The taxi takes approximately 15 minutes to reach the town. Ferry routes link Stone Town with Dar es Salaam daily and with Pemba less frequently. Passengers are warned to beware ticket touts when buying ferry tickets and advised to take the faster, more expensive ferry as travellers have raised safety concerns with the older slower stock of boats.



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