Hotel La Gemma dell'Est

Zanzibar, Tanzania

The hotel

This European-style hotel is extremely chic and modern with some stunning features, including a very large swimming pool with a sunken bar and a jetty that stretches 100 metres out into the ocean - the perfect place for evening cocktails and sundowners. Hotel La Gemma dell'Est also occupies a magnificent beach location, with soft white sand and clear turquoise water, arguably one of the best on Zanzibar.

Amenities

  • Bar
  • Spa
  • Swimming Pool
  • Wedding
  • Honeymoon
  • Safety Deposit Box
  • Fitness Centre/Gym
  • Laundry Service
  • Internet Access
  • Beachfront location
  • Tennis
  • Restaurant

Where is it

On the northwest coast of Zanzibar, with some of the best sunsets on the island. Transfer time from Zanzibar Airport: 45 minutes.

Hotel information

149 rooms. All with air-conditioning, balcony or terrace, satellite TV, WiFi access, tea/coffee-making facilities, stocked mini-bar, safe and hairdryer. Double Rooms have views of the gardens and single beds, sleeping maximum 2 adults. 

All Inclusive of: buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner, served at the Pavilion Restaurant. Soft drinks, juices, beer, house wine, tea/coffee and selected spirits are served during meals and from the bars. Daily evening entertainment programme.

Junior Suites have a lounge area with sofa bed and 2 single beds, sleeping maximum 2 adults. Some suites have sea views. 

Suites are larger with a lounge area and sofa bed, dressing room and 1 double bed, sleeping maximum 2 adults. Some suites have sea views. 

Villas with private pools are also available. 

  • 2020 Honeymooners: couples receive a fruit basket, flowers and bottle of wine in their room on arrival and 20% discount at the Mvua African Rain Spa. Marriage certificate required. Offers are may not be combinable.

6 restaurants; Pavilion (serving buffet Mediterranean and local cuisine with live cooking stations), Terra e Mare (Italian restaurant, open for dinner: reservation only), The Beach Grill* (seafood – available at extra cost), Sea Breeze* (à la carte – available at extra cost), Wasabi* (Asian dishes, open for dinner: reservation only - available at extra cost), Tropicana pool and snack bar. 4 bars including; Lobby Bar, Rock Bar at the Pavilion Restaurant, Beach Bar and the Sunset Bar on the jetty. Salt water swimming pool with kids' section. Spa*. Gym. Water sports centre*. PADI dive centre*. Tennis court. Daytime entertainment programme for children (4-12 years). Live music (several times a week). Complimentary WiFi in all public areas and rooms. 24-hour reception. Large boutique and gift shop. Laundry service*.

3 nights between 23 Dec-7 Jan.

* Denotes local charge. 

Please note: this property may not suitable for people with walking difficulties due to its hillside location.

Rating summary

  • Location Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Sleep Quality Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Rooms Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Service Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Value Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Cleanliness Image of the Tripadvisor rating

Traveller rating

  • Excellent (1137)
  • Very good (390)
  • Average (119)
  • Poor (43)
  • Terrible (34)
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Dissapointment !

Jan 14, 2020 kamer86 Istanbul, Turkey

To Whom It May Concern; On January 2019; we visited “ Diaminds Le Gemma” and we really had great time enjoying the sunset and drinking our wonderfull drinks. On January 2020; we will be in Zanzibar again that’s why I send an e mail to the reception to book both a table for dinner and for the sunset which begins at 17:00 oclock. But the way the … Read more
To Whom It May Concern; On January 2019; we visited “ Diaminds Le Gemma” and we really had great time enjoying the sunset and drinking our wonderfull drinks. On January 2020; we will be in Zanzibar again that’s why I send an e mail to the reception to book both a table for dinner and for the sunset which begins at 17:00 oclock. But the way the receptions e -mailed me was not kind toward me. At first she informed me ; saying that the rate for private dinner is 85 euro. And the next mail was ; she can’t accept any reservation for outside guests. ( You can see the conservations below ).I really couldn’t get the point why. If she couldn’t accept any guests from outside , then why wouldn’t she had informed me in our first e mail ? This is not our first visit to Zanzibar. We had been nearly in all 5 stars hotels and had a chance to have lunch/ dinner or even massage including Zuri Zanzibar & Gold Zanzibar Hotel and other 5 stars hotel around Kendwa & Nungwi. And No such services. I am not quite sure if you aren’t accepting any guest from outside or is there any misunderstanding ? As we visited “ Diamonds Le Gemma” last year and no such problems happened before. We are 2 couples ; we just had to visit your hotel for the second time for the sunset and if we had chance for dinner. It shouldn’t have been this much problem I think. As last year the reception just welcomed us warmly and kindly then gave a bracelet so that we can walk around the hotel. I would be very satisfied if you understand my problem. If you need any prove to show you that we had been in “ Diamonds Le Gemma” for several times ; I can also send a pictures to you. Hoping to enjoy at “Diamonds Le Gemma” once again. Waiting to hear from you. Best Regards İren Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating 3 Days conference

Jan 8, 2020 eliudwasike Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Had a three day Conference at Hotel La Gemma which was memorable. The staff are friendly and professional.The room was comfortable,queit and relaxing. The beach was clean and well managed . The hotel had variety of meals.
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Simply Paradise

Jan 7, 2020 Harrisala

There is absolutely nothing bad I can say about our stay here. After a 9 day safari, we arrived at the gates of our Riu resort in Zanzibar only to find it was closed due to new owners and renovations. We were automatically transferred to La Gemma Dell'Est. Which turned out to be a "gem" for us. The staff at reception were quick to accommodate us… Read more
There is absolutely nothing bad I can say about our stay here. After a 9 day safari, we arrived at the gates of our Riu resort in Zanzibar only to find it was closed due to new owners and renovations. We were automatically transferred to La Gemma Dell'Est. Which turned out to be a "gem" for us. The staff at reception were quick to accommodate us with a room equivalent to the one we had paid for. We stayed in the Presidential Suites with a beautiful room and a private pool (shared between 4 suites). The manager was very attentive and provided a complimentary dinner for our group (4) at the seafood restaurant for my husband's birthday. The food in the buffet was exceptional with an amazing new selection every day. The dining staff were very attentive and provided excellent service. The white sandy beach provided opportunity for long walks in the morning. The landscaping was stunning and well maintained. The only feedback is that the lining of the main pool requires repair and Remember to wear your bug spray at night. A true beautiful paradise. As an aside, on your way from the airport to your resort, you will see the living conditions outside of the resort, even in the city, are very meager and heart wrenching (especially after rain) so please remember how blessed you are and the life outside the gates when you are served by the lovely and attentive employees of the hotel. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Beautiful gateaway

Jan 1, 2020 aleksandras625 Trier, Germany

We stayed in the hotel beginning of September. The hotel: Great hotel with beautiful gardens and cosy rooms cleaned very thoroughly every day. Our room had a beautiful terrace with a great sea view. The staff is very friendly and helpful. They are very proactive and always ready to help. There is also quite a lot of staff for the number of… Read more
We stayed in the hotel beginning of September. The hotel: Great hotel with beautiful gardens and cosy rooms cleaned very thoroughly every day. Our room had a beautiful terrace with a great sea view. The staff is very friendly and helpful. They are very proactive and always ready to help. There is also quite a lot of staff for the number of guests. I also really like the sunset bar on the water. Food: The food is very good and there is a great variety. There is a choice between 2 restaurants in all inclusive: Pavillion with buffet and Italian one a la cart. Pavillion was much better in my opinion. The atmosphere is also very good and it's not crowded at all. The staff is very nice and makes you feel comfortable. The kindness is also not conditioned by the tips which I really value. Once a week there is an African evening with delicious local specialities. The cocktails are also very nice. Best mojito ever. Beach: Beautiful beach with the most blue water and white sand and if you are lucky you can see some starfish and beautiful shells. There are also always some sunbeds available and for free. The place looks like a paradise, except for the sales men. I have never seen such a harassment technique like here. From around 10 am they gather at the beach straight in front of the sun beds and they wait there the whole day and stare at the hotel guests. It is impossible to go for a swim in peace because 10 of them will ask you to buy something. Even when you want to admire the beautiful water from the sun beds they think you want to make an eye contact with them and wave at you. It felt like we were at the zoo sometimes. On average there were 25 sales guys concentrated on 50 meter of the beach. They stay till the sun goes down. I could understand if they pass from time to time and announce themselves but this is too much. However, we heard from people staying in other hotels and parts of Zanzibar that it was the same. So it's not only a disadvantage of this particular hotel, but of the whole island. The beach bar is very nice though and there are some activities during the day as volleyball, fitness and football if weather allows. There is also 1 kayak and 2 paddle boards for free which provide lots of fun. I wish though there was more service at the beach, because on the first day there was a person taking orders directly at the beach, but since then it was not done anymore. Animations There is a party every evening with a nice DJ and good music at the sunset bar at the beach, but there could be more shows. There are 3 live shows per week such as live band, capoeira and a dance group. I think they should organize such show every evening as not many people dance to the music, but many people always come to the live shows. Spa We took a treatment at the spa and it was a very pleasant experience. We really enjoyed it. Overall the place is great with awesome, most helpful and kind staff at the amazing beach, but the sales men ruin it sometimes. The real bummer happened to us on the last day as according to the instructions from the reception on the departure day we called them to pick up our luggages and take us to do the check out, as our plane was late in the evening. They were supposed to store our luggages in a luggage room. While checking out we even reminded them again about our suitcases that were standing outside and we were assured that they will be taken to the storage room immediately. They also instructed us to come to them 1 hour before the departure to the airport, so that we could use the "shower room". After the whole day at the beach it turned out that our luggages were standing outside of the reception building the whole day. It is unbelieveable that they left our valuables just like this. Also none of the employees wondered why are the luggage standing outside? Even though they were totally visible through the glass wall for the employees of the reception and had the appropriate tags. I find it so unbelieveable and there is no reasonable explanation for me why my belongings were so mistreated and left unattended the whole day. Furthermore, the shower room turned out to be the outside shower of the spa area without any shower gel or anything, so we had to take our luggages there. After we called somebody to pick us up we were waiting around 40 minutes, so you can imagine we were lucky that we came to the reception much earlier than it was suggested to us. I would totally recommend the hotel, but the last day experience really disappointed me and left an unpleasant overall feeling. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating What I had wish I’d known before booking...

Dec 30, 2019 xxljexx London, United Kingdom

Like many other travellers, we came to this hotel following a safari trip as we wanted a relaxing break. I won’t repeat what previous reviewers have said about the basic standard of rooms but I will try to comment on what I wish we’d known before travelling here, most of which I would say was deceptive of the hotel management! Firstly, we… Read more
Like many other travellers, we came to this hotel following a safari trip as we wanted a relaxing break. I won’t repeat what previous reviewers have said about the basic standard of rooms but I will try to comment on what I wish we’d known before travelling here, most of which I would say was deceptive of the hotel management! Firstly, we arrived after 9 hours of travelling, at 12pm, just two hours before check-in. This is the first hotel we have EVER encountered which shockingly (especially for the “5 star” rating) did not have our room ready and allow a slightly early check-in. So we had to wait around uncomfortably in our travel outfits in the 30 degree heat for two hours. I later found out this is because the hotel’s check-out time is 12pm! Wasn’t a great first impression to be honest after a long travel! Secondly, the photo of those beautiful beach beds that they’ve used for this very tripadvisor page - that’s not even the Gemma Hotel!!! That’s the Diamonds Star of the East hotel beach. If you wish to book this hotel as a couple wanting a relaxing, QUIET resort don’t book this hotel. The hotel was swarmed with large groups of adults, predominantly Eastern European or Russian who were quite loud and would group all the sun beds together and change the atmosphere of what could be a romantic couples resort to a loud, group-dominated resort. The groups were quite inconsiderate and I even saw a polish flag outside one of the apartments which is quite disrespectful to the country and people of Tanzania in my opinion. One morning we also found smashed glass strewn across the apartment corridor from the previous night’s drinking. Also if you are a fan of overweight middle-aged men in speedos this resort is right up your street! Please note the following: There is no Asian restaurant anymore. There is no swim-up pool bar anymore. There are no pretty 4-poster sun beds as per trip advisor photos (they are a different hotel). The sun loungers in the hotel management photos are not as spread out anymore. There are a lot more crammed into the beach due to the number of guests. There are not TWO swimming pools. There is one. The “second” pool are only for the 5 guests booked into the “villas” who share that pool. The hotel shouldn’t even advertise that they have two when only one is accessible to all hotel guests. Deception is a common theme by the management. Other things that were not great: Blood smeared on the beach bar toilet door. The beach vendors do not just casually walk up and down the beach to look for business they stand on the spot for hours staring at you, waiting for you to walk into the sea. It was very uncomfortable to have the vendors waiting to pounce on you. Towel service didn’t open until 8.30. You have to give them a towel card to get your towel. There’s no hair conditioner in the room’s I would have packed some if I’d known! Our “vanity” pack in the bathroom had already been used by previous guests and was not replenished throughout our stay even though I made it obvious every morning. The beach bar blender was “broken” from our first day which meant smoothies and a few other drinks that I would have liked and effectively had paid for under all inclusive couldn’t be made. The staff couldn’t be bothered the entire week we were there to borrow one from the night bar or the main restaurant. Not a great attitude to have. What we found great about the resort: The staff spoke several languages which was impressive and admirable. This also extended to the children’s club staff who we saw were also great with the kids (we didn’t have any). The staff were very hardworking, the landscape was kept immaculate. The cleaning staff were friendly. The shop assistants were lovely. The restaurant staff were always great - Emma and Imaculatha in particular! The food - there was always a great variety every night. Compliments to the cooking team who must work very hard every day. We had a broken fridge door in our room which was fixed the next day without us even bringing it to hotel’s attention. Mosquito nets and spray are supplied in the rooms. Our room in general was very clean albeit not luxurious. The shower pressure was strong. We also really liked the Tanzania themed night where local artists were set up outside the restaurant. I think it would be great if the hotel management could come to an arrangement with the beach vendors to possibly promote their items and tours within the hotel for one night a week rather than every day on the beach. Read less