I thought that Baraza Resort & Spa might be too ‘over the top”. It actually isn’t, though there is certainly some glitz and glamour. Indeed there’s an argument to say that its rejuvenating to stay at places which are completely different from home. If you have a bit of cash to splurge, this hotel would be hard to beat – see plus points below. The beach is stunning and the water never leaves the lagoon so it is always attractive, even at low tide.
The style is very Arabic set in lush tropical gardens. Yet the gardens are open and spacious which is a rarity in Zanzibar. The decor in the public areas is white and moroccan in style, with gold as the contrasting colour. The pictures give the impression of gold everywhere but this is deceptive. The overwhelming impression is of spaciousness, white walls and shade curtains swaying in the breeze, expanses of green lawn and a magnificent turquoise swimming pool. It looks truly amazing at night all lit up – very magical and straight out of Arabian nights…
Yes the gold trim was not completely to my taste but overall it worked. (Though I found the formal restaurant a little overpowering.)
Baraza is very romantic. But it is also child-friendly. It manages this by trying to keep the two groups apart! Each one bedroom suite has its own designated beach lounger on one side of the beach. (No marching out at 7am to claim the best lounger here!). The family chalets have some shaded sun loungers on the other side of the beach, which is a neat way of subtly dividing couples from families.
There are two room configurations – one bedroom villa and two bedroom villa. The one bedroom villas are extremely spacious all with private terrace, garden and plunge pool. There’s a bedroom, sitting room complete with day bed, dressing room and palatial bathroom. Personally we think it’s worth paying a little extra for the Ocean Front villas to get that full-on sea view.
The two bedroom villas are designed for families (not two couples) as there is a master bedroom and a second twin bedded room with smaller shower room is for the kids.
The Presidential Villa was a little too under-stated for me and felt rather dark and heavy to me. But there’s no denying the setting.
All in all, if you have deep pockets and want to treat yourself, Baraza is the perfect place!
- Amazing setting
- Superb pool and gardens
- Very friendly and service orientated staff
- Good range of activities on offer
- Excellent food – best we had!
Very little! Coffee/tea offering in room does not match up to the rest of the hotel eg. instant coffee and only one type of tea! But apparently that is changing…
Kate’s Room Tip
If you are a couple, I DO think its worth paying extra for the Ocean Front villas.Personally I don’t think its really worth paying extra for the Sultan’s Villas (family). All you are gaining is a slightly shorter walk – there is no improvement in view.