10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Bed bugs at Dhow!
"After reading the many positive reviews we booked two nights at the Dhow Palace. First impressions were great as the hotel oozes charm and is in a good location. At first glance the room seemed nice with lovely antique furniture and a turkish bath. However, at a closer look the bath was a bit grimey and the bed head was dusty but we thought these may be minor oversights by the cleaning staff although the worst was yet to come . . . After we went to bed, we put the light back on and we were horrified to find two bed bugs next to our pillows! We wrapped them in tissue and showed them to the person at reception who offered us the presidential suite (but didn't even apologise). It was very late and the Serena Inn was fully booked so we inspected the suite and it seemed to be a lot cleaner so we stayed there. We checked out the next morning and went to a lovely CLEAN guesthouse opposite the Serena Inn called Beyt al Chai. Someone who we spoke to about our experience at the Dhow said that they were closed for a few months due to rennovations but they should not have re-opened if they didn't have time to clean up."
- Travel date: Sat 23rd of June 2007
"Undoubtedly a fantastic hotel with an abundance of character. However, beware, after checking in at an agreed arte, which i wrote down on the registration card etc setlled in rooms went to roof top bar they informed me that a mistake had been made and wanted to treble our rate. A big traveller not come across this before. Found this a very peculiar and odd practice and believed someone was trying to take advantage, they insisted we pay these increased rates so i checked out with other friends, Sour experience, so please beware their odd practices."
- Travel date: Fri 16th of March 2007
"The hotel was beautiful and a much better bet than the Emerson and Green. It is equally as atmospheric and attractive, and right in the city centre.
My suggestion is to stay here, but go to the Emerson and Green for a wonderful view over the city on their romantic rooftop. Actually, we attempted to do that, but it was fully booked - AND expensive. Hard to pay prices like the ones at Emerson and Green when you know full well that it is a tourist price you are paying! So, we decided against it and found another place (can't remember the name), but it's also in the city centre, and had a fantastic view as well.
So, just wonder around and ask the hotels if they have a rooftop - you're bound to come across a couple."
- Travel date: Sun 31st of December 2006
Great choice full of flavour
"Recommended in Lonely Planet. Not the cheapest place in town, 90 US off season for a room for two. You can negotiate the price off season. Included a good breakfast. We had a great room, Turkish bath, large comfy bed. Good choice for your stay in Stone Town. Loved the courtyard pool. Especially appreciated given the heat/humidity. Staff were friedly and helful. Good/cheap laundry service. Free safe. Free internet access. Good location for strolling the sites. Excellent choice, worth the extra money. Quiet & clean. Enjoy."
- Travel date: Tue 5th of December 2006
Fantastic Hotel in Stone Town
"We stayed at the Dhow Palace Hotel for the last two nights of our stay in Stone Town and thoroughly enjoyed it. Our balcony overlooked the pool in the indoor courtyard and was beautifully decorated. The pool was most useful to cool down after the heat and hectic shopping in the alleys of stone town. Service was excellent and breakfast served on the rooftop was adequate. The Tembo House hotel (the sister hotel) is better located on the beach, but we were able to use all the facilities there, so didn't miss out too much by staying at the Dhow Palace. Thoroughly recommend it for a stay in Stone Town."
- Travel date: Tue 29th of August 2006
"Stayed in a few hotels in Stone Town, this I think is the best value. Great location and atmospheric building.
I'd eat else where as other reviewers note but roof top breakfast is very pleasant.
Same for all hotels in the region, keep your valuables close by. Serena Hotel was no different we lost items there, just be careful and have a great stay."
- Travel date: Sun 20th of August 2006
Stay in style
"Good location (near Kenyata street), great furniture, colonial feel. Plus nice service, roof restaurant (tasty breakfasts) and pool â great to refresh!
Great value for money, highly recommended."
- Travel date: Sun 7th of May 2006
"Stayed at the Dhow for 2 nights on arriving in Stonetown. Plus points-great location especially for night time walking to and from restaurants, nice rooms, particularily those looking onto pool which has sun in morning and early afternoon, breakfast on roof terrace good. Minus points-leave nothing in room-I had my camera stolen (room 101-no doubt by staff with key) 20 mins before we checked out. My fault for leaving it, stupid I know, but didn't think it would walk over breakfast. Moral of the story-use the hotel safe or carry it with you at all times! Staff on reception unhelpful and surly. If you have a late departure make sure luggage is locked in storage room not casually left lying in reception. Front doors locked at 11pm although doorman appears eventually.(none too pleased!) Despite the minuses we stayed on last night as it was prebooked-Room 200 definately not secure with easy access from a street facing outside balcony and no locking veranda doors. Location good and not bad value at $90 double. But this is poor east coast Africa-guard your stuff!!"
- Travel date: Sun 26th of February 2006
A pleasant place
"Perfect located in the heart of Stone Town, and next to the main shopping streets, is certainly a better choice as the most famous Emerson and Green. We spend two days in each one. A typical atmosphere, a refreshing little pool and nice forniture are included in a small price. The restaurant is not famous, but well located for a good breakfast in the top terrace.
Only the conditioner was noisy."
- Travel date: Mon 20th of February 2006
Sultan of Swing
"Conveniently located smack in the center of town. It has a pool which is great to escape the heat & noise of this bustling place. Located next to many neat shops so leave all your tourist purchases till here. Watch out for the beds, some of the rooms including ours required a few steps up to the mattress. The air conditioning was heaven and made up for the no alcohol policy."
- Travel date: Sat 1st of January 2005