We have just returned from honeymoon at Breezes and it truly was a wonderful experience.
We spent two weeks at the resort and were treated very well throughout. The reception staff, maids and restaurant and bar staff were friendly and service was generally very good. As honeymooners, we received flowers in the room, a complimentary bottle of very decent sparkling wine and sun-downers and canapes at our room one evening. You do need to specify that you are on honeymoon when you book, though, which may explain why one or two contributors complained that they didn’t receive any special treatment.
We generally enjoyed the food throughout, though staying for two weeks means you experience the theme nights twice. On three occasions, my wife asked for a special meal without spices, which she doesn’t like. The executive chef came to discuss her preferences with her in person and two out of three times this worked well. (The first time was at the Sultan’s Table which I wanted to try – sadly my wife’s choices were spiced despite the special request, but this wasn’t charged for and the next night we were given a prime seat in the main restaurant to view the entertainment and an extra special meal for my wife to make up for it.)
Speaking of the entertainment, we enjoyed this in the main with the exception of the steel band who seemed to specialise in out of tune and barely recognisable versions of Abba and Doris Day hits!
The pool was clean and usually tranquil, though of course this may depend on the nature of the people staying. The beach was magnificent and virtually deserted apart from the occasional local fisherman cycling to and from his boat or a few local lads octopus hunting in the shallows. We had no problems acquiring sun loungers and varied between beach and pool during the day. The tide does go out a long way for part of the day, but this gives you time to explore the reef on foot, before the ocean returns by mid afternoon for swimming, kayaking, sailing, etc.
Also recommended are the spa treatments and the special lunch on the beach (charged extra but worth it).
Outside of the resort, Zanzibar is a full-on assault on all your senses. The village life and street scenes in Stone Town are fascinating and unforgettable and the mixture of African, Arab, Indian and English colonial architecture and culture is the definition of the word ‘exotic’. If you want a truly unique experience, try to have dinner at the rooftop restaurant at Emerson & Green’s in Stone Town. I can’t say the food was great but you won’t have had an experience like it. I won’t describe it as it is best experienced without prior knowledge. (Book in advance though.)
In terms of trips, we highly recommend Safari Blue which is a full day dolphin watching and snorkelling boat trip on Arab dhows based at Fumba, with a beach lunch on a tiny island. (We didn’t see dolphins – but we did have a close encounter with a humpback whale which more than made up for it!) Also the tours of Stone Town, the Jozani Forest (red colobus monkeys, native forest and mangrove swamps) and the spice plantations are all very worthwhile and quite cheap and easy to do.
The one trip we didn’t enjoy was a half-day dolphin trip from Kizimkaze. This was more of a dolphin ‘hunt’ than a responsible and ecologically sound expedition. Anything between 10 to 20 boats encircle the dolphins and encourage the hundred or more tourists to jump in the water and splash around noisily in an increasingly frenzied attempt to ‘swim’ with them. Needless to say, the dolphins are scared away and the whole thing descends into potentially dangerous chaos. Apparently the number of dolphin sightings off Kizimikaze is in decline, which is not at all surprising.
This one half day aside, this was a wonderful trip which we will always remember. We couldn’t have hoped for a better honeymoon.
Liked — The beach
Disliked — Perhaps slightly fewer ‘theme nights’ in the restaurant would be better
Tips/Secrets — Book any special meals, etc early in your stay or even in advance if possible.
Guest nationlaity: English
Reviewed September 27, 2006