- Kids Club
- Views of Indian Ocean
- Jetty dining experience
- Gorgeous accommodation
Nestled in a natural cove on the northeast coast of Zanzibar, Essque Zalu provides an all-round beach experience. Complete with a famous wharf that stretches out into the Indian Ocean, this is a great place for couples, friends, and families that like to have fun and wind-down in and around the waters.
Accommodation consists of 40 suites and eight spacious villas facing the Indian Ocean. These are comprised of 17 one-bedroom garden suites, 13 one-bedroom superior garden view suites, five one-bedroom ocean-view suites, and five one-bedroom seafront suites, all suitable for three adults and one child; and three garden-view villas with a pool, suitable for six adults and three children, three ocean-view villas with pools, and two seafront villas, with private plunge pool and terrace, both suitable for eight adults and four children. All the villas have private pools and spas, and there is a communal infinity pool.
Guests can choose to dine either in-room, which is a 24/7 service that allows guests to eat in the comfort and privacy of their own suite, or ‘Destination Dining’, which involves a culinary experience on the jetty, over the ocean, accompanied by live music. Cocktails are also commonplace beverages along the jetty. If guests want to be closer to the water, they can head over to the pool bar to enjoy a cold beer and a dip in the heat.
As with most Zanzibar resorts, Essque Zalu offers guests a range of activities centred on the island’s cultural history. Spice plantation tours, excursions to the nearby Stone Town, and walks along the beach are suitable for all ages. With an added world-class spa service, guests are sure to relax in whatever they do. Uniquely, guests can also explore the two marine turtle sanctuaries beside the hotel or take a scuba diving journey beneath the depths of the fish-filled Indian Ocean waters.
Whilst their parents stroll through the local towns, the children can join the Tinga Club, which provides complimentary innovative and creative fun activities for those between the ages of 4 and 12 years. The club holds three special events every day throughout the day, so there is never a moment when the kids are not having a great time. This makes Essque Zalu a fantastic place for families with young children to get away from busy lifestyles, and for children a chance to explore a new world away from their parents. Families with children of all ages are welcome, and there are babysitting services available.
Everything was fab, I especially loved Tuningi such a special place and my son got to see his favourite animal the cheetah (after a bit of time hunting about on foot!). Mauritius is lovely we saw quite a bit of the island in the end.
Laura L reviewing South Africa Safari and Mauritius on 12 December 2018
We had a wonderful trip to Morocco. What a fascinating country. Thank you so much for all of your help making things smooth and less stressful!
Here are a few things we wanted to pass on:
Dar Housnia was absolutely delightful. It was like an entire wing of a house to ourselves with perfect Moroccan decor. The private area where we ate was so cute, the riad staff so accommodating. I loved waking in the cozy space with our family and hearing both call to prayer as well as roosters. Just perfect.
I was a little unclear how to ask what time we were being picked up etc, but your office promptly replied to my emails - even on weekends- when we had these questions about transport times. Once, we met our guide in Imlil these details we not problematic as our guide “Abraham” totally took care of us. Abraham was awesome. You should definitely request him again in the future. He was young (29)and energetic. He had a ton of hiking experience in Imlil as he was from there. He also seemed to know everything else about morocco, the desert, the culture, etc, etc. He was approachable, kind, patient, great with our kids and answered SO MANY of our questions.
The hike was lovely - after rain the day prior in Marrakech - there was snow in the mountains. It was gorgeous. We may have been up for a longer hike up Mt Taboukel if I had known this was a realistic option for families ( I thought from reading that it was too technical for us). Yet not sure we had enough days for all these things always since getting in the desert was a priority.
The mountain house, Dar adar, was just as described… very basic. The wifi was broken (which was a nice break when you have pre-teens addicted to phones, plus my husband called no wifi an amenity to not be available by email for his work!)). There was no heat and the fireplace helped a tad - but was so very cold in the rooms. My husband loved the rustic space, I may have gone up one step in niceness of mountain accommodation if I had to do it over again. Yet, meeting the other families in this Dar Adar (including another Tourdust family from England) made this house very memorable.
We were then joined by our driver for the next several days, Jamal. What a fun guy and a perfect driver. He could joke with my kids, he had a fun smile, and he had worked with Abraham before so they were a great team. The drive to desert was long as I knew it would be. It was nice to have the stop on way there near Ait Ben Haddu. The drive back from desert was long. It was more near 10 hours of driving (plus 1 hour at lunch = 11 hours) but I wouldn’t have made any different choices.
The luxury desert camp was far and away the highlight of our trip. The tents were adorable, I was sufficiently warm even at night inside the tent. We loved the camel riding, the ATV vehicles at a nearby camp, sunsets on the dunes, music around the camp fire, meals with others at the camp and more.
The last night was at Riad Jona. This was so very very lovely. The food was amazing - such a good idea to eat here after our long drive back to Marrakech. They had a small dining pool plus a hot tub which was delightful. It was almost more of a boutique hotel as it had several rooms.
Gwyneth R reviewing Luxury Family Desert Holiday on 11 December 2018
The trip was amazing everything was better than we could have imagined.
There was a moment climbing the mount Kenya where my wife accused me of tricking her into doing this (half kidding) as some of the nights got pretty cold, but we were dressed well and the sunrise at the peak was astonishing.
Safari was spectacular, Ben who was our main guide and driver was awesome! We saw everything excepts rhinos which were more of a hope than a reality. We also were able to watch a rock python eat a Thompson gazel live. It was one of the most interesting and unsettling things I have ever seen.
Just overall, so many moments that make you think wow or I can't believe I am here. Thank you for your help in getting everything set up. I don't believe I could have booked the trip without your help and guidance. It was an amazing way to start our marriage and truly the trip of a lifetime!
William K reviewing 11 Day Mount Kenya Trek and Masai Mara Safari Combined on 29 October 2018