Tanzania Hotels


The Zanzibar Serena Inn

At a Glance


  • gorgeous location
  • superb historical ambience
  • exclusivity


  • lots of stairs
  • often fully booked
  • onsite beach not great

The Zanzibar Serena Inn Review

On one side of Shangani Square, on the fringe of Stone Town, this breathtakingly beautiful hotel is the result of the exquisite restoration of two of Zanzibar's historic buildings: the old Telekoms building, an original colonial-era building, and the Chinese doctors' residence, where several local Chinese doctors practiced their traditional medicine. The Serena is as good as it gets. As you step through the front doors, polished stone floors with inlaid tiles, carved arches, fountains, antique furniture, and high ceilings will take you back to a time when gracious living was the norm. Your sea-facing room looks out over a small beach or a huge palm-filled courtyard with an inviting pool. Be sure to watch the sun setting over the Indian Ocean as romantic white-sailed dhows drift by in the golden light; it will be an unforgettable memory. Spacious rooms with en-suite bathroom feature hand-carved four-poster beds, hand-carved doors and window frames, walls thick enough to repel any sultan's army, cool stone floors, hand-carved furniture, and a balcony you won't want to leave. Don't miss a sumptuous seafood dinner at the Terrace Restaurant or a snack by the pool looking out to far horizons. At night, local musicians play authentic Zanzibari music. If you want sun and sand, visit the hotel's private beach at Mangapwani, just 25 minutes from the hotel. Enjoy a beautiful beach and excellent seafood served by the attentive staff. It's worth paying an extra US$50 per night to get a prime room with a huge balcony directly overlooking the beach.

    Hotel Details

  • 51 rooms
  • Rate includes breakfast.
  • Credit cards accepted.
Updated: 09-26-2012

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