The Residence Zanzibar

Zanzibar, Tanzania

The hotel

The Residence Zanzibar is a wonderful retreat for couples as well as families, all the ingredients are here for the most perfect of holidays, including water sports galore and a world-class spa. Each guest is allotted their own bicycle and really, there’s no better way to explore the island. Alternatively, you can join a local excursion, taking in such wonders as the Jozani National Forest Reserve and the ruins of Persian baths and Omani palaces. The village of Kizimkazi is also close by (about 15-20 minutes) and famous for its dolphin safaris. At night, dine under the stars in the privacy of your own villa or enjoy delicious cuisine with a hint of spice at the Ngalawa Restaurant.

Amenities

  • Bar
  • Spa
  • Swimming Pool
  • Kids Club
  • Babysitting service
  • Room Service
  • Safety Deposit Box
  • Fitness Centre/Gym
  • Laundry Service
  • Internet Access
  • Beachfront location
  • Tennis

Where is it

On Zanzibar's southwest coast overlooking a mile-long stretch of beach and just 1 hour from Stone Town. Transfer time from Zanzibar Airport: 55 minutes.

Hotel information

66 villas. All with private swimming pool, furnished sun deck with wicker chairs and day beds, air-conditioning, ceiling fans, satellite TV, CD/DVD player, telephone, WiFi, mini-bar*, bottled water, tea/coffee maker, hairdryer, iron and board. Luxury Garden Pool Villa with large living room and separate bedroom with 1 king-size bed and sofa bed, sleeping maximum 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

All Inclusive option: includes buffet breakfast, à la carte lunch (credit per person applies) and buffet or set menu dinner at The Dining Room Restaurant. Dinner can also be taken at Pavilion Restaurant. Selection of local beers, spirits, house wines, soft drinks and local still and sparkling water in all bars and restaurants. Mini-bar is included.

Half Board includes: breakfast and buffet or set menu dinner at The Dining Room Restaurant. All beverages including water excluded.

Full Board option: includes breakfast, à la carte lunch (credit per person applies) and buffet or set menu dinner. All beverages including water excluded.

Luxury Ocean Front Pool Villa have large living room and separate bedroom with 1 king-size bed and sofa bed, sleeping maximum 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

Prestige Ocean Front Pool Villa set directly on the water’s edge and with views of the ocean from every window with large living room and separate bedroom with 1 king-size bed and sofa bed, sleeping maximum 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

Frangipani Garden Pool Villa with large living room, master en-suite bedroom with 1 king-size bed, additional twin bedroom and sofa bed, sleeping maximum 4 adults and 2 children.

Frangipani Ocean Front Pool Villa with large living room, master en-suite bedroom with 1 king-size bed, additional twin bedroom and sofa bed, sleeping maximum 4 adults and 2 children.

2-Bedroom Presidential Villa steps from the ocean with large living room, dining room, bedroom with 1 king-size bed and sofa beds, sleeping maximum 4 adults and 2 children.

Ngalawa Restaurant (International cuisine), The Pavillion Restaurant (Middle Eastern/Mediterranean cuisine), The Dining Room Bar. Beachfront swimming pool. Spa*. Fitness centre. Floodlit tennis courts. Non-motorised water sports including kayaks, pedal boats, Hobie Cat sailing and snorkelling. Weekly yoga class. Bicycles. Excursions on request. Kids' club (3-12 years). Laundry/dry-cleaning service*. 24-hour concierge. Babysitting service* (on request). 24-hour room service*. Complimentary WiFi available across the resort.

4 nights between 20 Dec-6 Jan.

* Denotes local charge.

Rating summary

  • Sleep Quality Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Location 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 (1891)
  • Very good (198)
  • Average (74)
  • Poor (20)
  • Terrible (11)
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Exclusive deluxe beach villa resort

Sep 30, 2020 Nikac Novi Sad, Serbia

We had prestige beachfront villa, very huge 195 sq m with private big plunge-pool. The king-size bad is absolutely heaven. Bathroom his also huge with separate rainy shower, bathtub and WC. There is also external rainy shower with cold water only. Very clean. Bed linen change every day ( on your request) otherwise every second day. There is no… Read more
We had prestige beachfront villa, very huge 195 sq m with private big plunge-pool. The king-size bad is absolutely heaven. Bathroom his also huge with separate rainy shower, bathtub and WC. There is also external rainy shower with cold water only. Very clean. Bed linen change every day ( on your request) otherwise every second day. There is no evening turn down service. First two day the breakfast and dinner was with many station like salad bar, fish, prawns, lamb and fish stew, pork and lamb rips....south African white and red wine on a glass ( house wine) ..The management change it to set-menu because of very few guest. Generally the hotel was almost empty due to COVID-19....so you could not see any on the beach the whole day. Warning: extreme high tide and low tides so you maybe do not have possibilities to swim during the day which was big disappointed for us... Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating extraordinary birthday celebration

Sep 23, 2020 maritesonaval Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

the excellent location, a beach front property a good views both sunrise and sunset. room so spacious and upmarket amenities with own blue sparkling pool. good value for the money and highly recommended.
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Lovely hotel but is getting old

Aug 25, 2020 LauraLDNLT London, United Kingdom

We arrived to this hotel after spending a few days in Park Hyatt Stone Town and also Zuri Zanzibar. Overall, we stayed 5 nights: POSITIVES: 1. Lovely staff , especially at the restaurant, they go above and beyond for you 2. Beautiful territory - very green, you feel like you have this all for yourself as territory is massive 3. We had villa… Read more
We arrived to this hotel after spending a few days in Park Hyatt Stone Town and also Zuri Zanzibar. Overall, we stayed 5 nights: POSITIVES: 1. Lovely staff , especially at the restaurant, they go above and beyond for you 2. Beautiful territory - very green, you feel like you have this all for yourself as territory is massive 3. We had villa with beach view and it is massive , very spacious! 4. We got some amazing upgrades such as a very relaxing massage, romantic dinner and swim with dalphins. NEGATIVES 1. FOOD - it is very very poor standards and definintely not 5*... i was so dissapointed that they had zero healthy options for breakfasts and so limited vegan options. Only two options for toast, managed one time to get avocado , next time they said it is not available. Lunch menu is horrible - burger, salad and pasta ?! And salad... i can make much fancier myself. Just a few african options which include very greasy curries. After spending time in Park Hyatt and Zuri Zanzibar , it was so dissapointing to see how poor it was in food quality. Dinner as well, was tasting menu but nothing brought excitment (apart lovely staff). 2. The hotel itself is old and needs a bit upgrading - especially the main restaurant area just felt old and missing some charm 3. It is not a hotel for a beach holidays - because of tides beach gets so dirty you cannot go swim and enjoy sea. We spend a lot of time at the villa and never once went for a swim. Overall, the highlight was staff but in general I was dissapointed and would reccomend this to a friend. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Wonderful Stay!

Aug 21, 2020 LuSchenider The Hague, The Netherlands

The hotel is modern and quite luxurious, with well decorated rooms, good size bedroom and clean and spacious bathrooms. We really like the good offered here, and optional activities. Its a perfect way to wind up your safari or climb.
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Delightful stay in beautiful and tranquil setting

Aug 19, 2020 Footprints704922

We had a wonderful stay at The Residence for 9 nights. We had originally booked at a different hotel but at the last minute as we were departing for our trip, they cancelled our booking. They say fortune favours the brave and not wanting to cancel our trip we decided to call The Residence from the Airport. We got through and spoke to Honoratha… Read more
We had a wonderful stay at The Residence for 9 nights. We had originally booked at a different hotel but at the last minute as we were departing for our trip, they cancelled our booking. They say fortune favours the brave and not wanting to cancel our trip we decided to call The Residence from the Airport. We got through and spoke to Honoratha Thadei in the reservations team who was fabulous from the outset. She understood our situation and was reassuring, polite and calm and acted quickly to see how she could best help us. Due to immediacy of our position Honoratha worked quickly to get all our details and get our booking confirmed just as we were boarding our flight! On arrival we were immediately welcomed by all the staff who had been awaiting our arrival greeting us by our names, showing sympathy knowing about the stressful situation prior to arrival providing us with reassurance to make us feel comfortable and immediately at home. Pili Pili and Frank at the front desk gave us a warm welcome and knowing that we had just completed a 20hour journey did not delay us with cumbersome check-in procedures instead swiftly checked us into our room and acknowledged that our room was ready and waiting for us. We were given an ocean front pool villa and upon entering instantly knew that we would have a good stay at the resort. Our room had unrestricted views across the beachfront and the magnificent ocean. The villa has a separate lounge area with full height glass doors leading out onto the terrace and pool. The bedroom has a magnificent four poster bed in the middle with full height glass doors overlooking the beach and ocean. On our first night we witnessed the most beautiful sunset with magical pinks and dusky oranges filling the whole sky as the bright red-orange sun dipped into the sea on the horizon. The ocean view villas are definitely the right choice if you enjoy the sunset. The villa was extremely well presented, with all amenities provided as standard. The cleanliness of the villa was fantastic and really enabled us to relax and feel at home in the villa. Outside the villa is surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens with paths which meander through to the restaurants, tennis courts, spa and beachfront jetty. One thing I would highlight is that due to the lush vegetation and beautiful trees lighting could be improved on the paths to help improve visibility. There are low level lamp posts installed along the paths however due to the spacing of the lighting there are areas of darkness which could be improved. One of the best things which made our stay so thoroughly enjoyable and most memorable was the strong sense of community spirit that exists at the resort. All the staff are extremely friendly, not only pay attention to detail about you but take an active interest in what you are enjoying what you want to do and really make the effort to ensure that you have a trouble free and relaxing stay which ensures that you really get to know everyone like a family. This was especially true in the main restaurant where all the front of house staff (Boniface, Mwinyi, Ibrahim & Josephin) are so friendly, take the time to make good conversation and enjoy teaching Swahili to ensure you get the most out of your stay at the resort and the island. All four of them were fabulous at looking after our needs with a smile and always well-presented. A special mention for Josephin who decorated our room beautifully in place of being able to have a dinner on the beach. Similarly, the kitchen staff headed by Christopher were all amazing especially Manje, Mwantumu, and Zacharia. Christopher was always on hand to ensure we had everything to our liking and looked after us when we were going on excursion and needed to leave before breakfast was served. Please note that our stay was during the global Covid pandemic so whilst we may not have had the full buffet offering that would typically be on offer, I can assure you that there was plenty to choose from. Each dish was beautifully cooked with its own distinct favours using locally sourced spices and ingredients adding to the authentic taste especially for the local cuisine. I have been to many buffets in other hotels where many of the dishes are mass cooked in the same sauce with variation on ingredients, but this was not the case here. The fresh BBQ & grilled fish and meats were cooked to perfection so succulent and juicy which always tempted you to keep going back for more. The resort also has some water sports activities on offer by the jetty. We had a great time with Captain Abdul who was a wonderful host on his catamaran which was extremely enjoyable and provided beautiful views across the island and opportunity to make the most of the sea breeze and get a different perspective of the resort. Bikes are provided which are a great way to explore the resort and the lovely grounds. We enjoyed visiting the organic garden which is filled with fresh herbs, fruits and spices. We didn’t get a chance to visit the bird sanctuary unfortunately however within the grounds of the resort you are able to see much of the local wildlife. We were fortunate enough to see the elephant shew which is a rare animal to sight and were frequently visited by the local monkeys that live in the surrounding forest. They do like sugar and mangoes so be aware if you are eating, they’re not shy to take them from you! The spa has a lovely pool with jacuzzi which is quite private being enclosed by beautiful trees and shrubs creating a very tranquil setting - a great way to relax after using the onsite gym facilities. We had a couples relaxing massage which although enjoyable felt slightly rushed and detracted from the experience somewhat. Nevertheless, the blend of local ingredients used for the massage oil was wonderful for moisturising the skin and wonderfully fragrant Often when we travel, we have a wonderful time and are happy to return home refreshed and relaxed. On this occasion however, hand on heart I can honestly say that the experience of staying at this resort has really left us feeling sad boarding our flight home and left us wanting to return and enjoy the experience all over again! Read less