Zanzibar Serena Inn
Stone Town, Zanzibar and the coast, Tanzania
per person for 7 nights based on 2 people sharing in a deluxe garden view room on a bed and breakfast basis, includes transfers.
At a Glance
Sit by the pool and watch the dhows sail past
Walking distance from central Stone Town
Great rooftop restaurant
Th only international standard hotel in Stone Town
Lovely decks outside the rooms to sit with a drink at watch the sunset
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
Situated only 6° south of the equator, Zanzibar enjoys ideal vacation weather. Temperatures average between 24°C and 27°C throughout the year with 7-9 hours of sunshine per day.
There are 2 rainy seasons: Acute, brief showers, lasting about an hour in the morning occur for a couple of weeks during November. The rains last slightly longer in April and May, but even then it does not rain every day. These rains replenish the Island and are often referred to as the “Green Season”.
To start planning your vacation to Zanzibar Serena Inn
Idyllically situated on the sea-front of ancient Stone Town, the Zanzibar Serena Inn has 51 rooms and suites offering a cool retreat from the tropical heat and bustle of one of Africa's most ancient and enchanting towns.
The Zanzibar Serena Inn is flanked by an exotic mix of sultan's palaces, Portuguese forts, ancient dhow harbors, and bright bazaars. It is a haven of tranquillity and opulence amongst the bustle of one of Africa's most ancient and most enchanting towns. A member of the prestigious Small Luxury Hotels of the World, the inn has been styled to represent the epitome of Swahili style, ethnic elegance and Arabic opulence.
The Serena is the only hotel in Stone Town offering the level of facilities expected of an international hotel. The hotel comprises two historic seafront buildings which house the 51 individually styled air-conditioned rooms and suites. Rooms have a strong Arabian influence and have balconies with stunning views of the sea. The restaurant overlooks the waterfront and the spacious bar terrace is an ideal place from which to watch the sun set.
Stone Town itself has a strong Arabic influence which adds to the town’s exoticism and it is well worth spending a day wandering its narrow, winding side streets during a stay on Zanzibar.
The Serena Inn has a great pool overlooking the sea. It is a perfect for plunging into after a hot walk around Stone Town. You can sit and watch the local Dhow sailing boats sail past right in front of the hotel from your deck chair!
There are a range of rooms; 41 standard rooms, six prime rooms and four suites. Four-poster, net draped beds dominate, offset by delicate side tables, vanity units and louver doors giving onto balconies, some of which feature massive free-standing hammocks. Each room is adorned with arched niches, antique plates and brass lamps; and featuring traditionally carved furniture with basket weave and ceramic inlay.
Whilst there are no specific child care facilities, children are most welcome at The Zanzibar Serena Inn. Food and meal times can easily be adjusted to suit the younger guests. There are a wide range of family-friendly room options; children's dining; baby-sitting, and plenty of adventure, sports and educational entertainment for children of all ages.
The Zanzibar Serena Inn offers diversity and professionalism with full conference and business facilities. The Serena group also pride themselves in a fantastic wedding planning facility. They can arrange everything from the wedding to the honeymoon whether it be on a white sand beach beside the Indian Ocean or traditional safari style under canvas in the wilderness.
The Zanzibar Serena Inn offers a wide selection of rooms and suites: all with AC, satellite TV and WiFi.
There are a variety of places to eat or drink; All-day Baharia Restaurant, Mdele Coffee Shop, Masahani Bar and Terrace Seafood Restaurant. The hotel has a lovely swimming pool and pool deck, plus treatment rooms and there is a business center, travel desk, taxi service, gift Shop, news-stand and travel requisites kiosk.
With immediate access to Stone Town, Zanzibar Serena Inn can offer spice tours and visits to the Sultan’s baths, slave caves and slave market. It is also possible to arrange diving on one of the world’s most renowned dive sites and guests can also arrange Dhow trips and idyllic island escapes as well as
Dolphin, turtle and humpback whale watching. Another highlight of staying here are the Swahili feasts with Taarab music.
Anna Hearn (Staff)
The only five-star hotel in Stone Town, the Serena occupies a commanding spot a little out of town on the peninsular overlooking the sea.
Its beautifully designed, and as expected of the Serena group, the welcome and hospitality is exceptional. We dropped in for breakfast, our hotel in the center of town having lost power, and were warmly welcomed. The dining room overlooks the beach and further out, Prison Island, and the breakfast was exceptional.
The hotel is the only one in Stone Town to have a pool with sun loungers dotted around this makes a wonderful break from Stone Towns humidity. Each room is air conditioned, and we personally recommend the prime rooms, each set on a corner of the hotel and with a balcony stretching along two sides of the room.
The rooms themselves are decorated with Zanzibari furniture and the bathrooms, though small, are well organized and functional. For those wishing to explore Stone Town but still stay in luxury and comfort, the Serena ticks all the boxes.
In the legendary Stone Town of Zanzibar, the island whose very name evokes East Africa's exotic past, stands Zanzibar Serena Inn. It has joined the ranks of the world's finest resorts as a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. This stunning property is set in two historic seafront buildings that have been masterfully restored to their previous grandeur, when Zanzibar was a crossroads visited by travelers and merchants from all corners of the globe.
Interiors echo Zanzibar's rich Arabic influence - or ustaarabu - as well as the island's indigenous East African roots. Each of the 51 en-suite Ivory Class rooms is elegant and romantic, overlooking the azure waters of the Indian Ocean. An extensive selection of recreation and watersport activities are available to guests. Visits to Stone Town's historical landmarks and excursions to neighboring islands and wildlife reserves are made daily.
Accommodations are extremely welcoming and comfortable. Each guest room is appointed with details and artwork that reflect Zanzibar's heritage. All of our 51 rooms are air-conditioned and overlook the azure waters of the Indian Ocean. Zanzibar's brilliant white beaches lapped by the warm turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean provide the perfect place to relax, soak up the sun and take a break from some busy sightseeing.
The beaches in Zanzibar are a paradise, interspersed with picturesque fishing villages, where the people live a simple way of life, unchanged over the years. There are more than 25 fantastic beaches in Zanzibar, and some are so peaceful and remote that the only noise breaking the silence is likely to be the ocean.
Louisa Verney (Staff)
Its a shame to go to Zanzibar and miss Stone Town and we were very glad we stopped off for the night. After a guided tour of the town we enjoyed drinks on the terrace while watching the fishing dhows sail back into harbor, a gorgeous sight. Then it was time for dinner on the roof terrace, excellent fresh seafood and a great setting. Having stayed at other hotels in Stone Town I can safely say that The Serena Inn is the best choice for a more international style hotel with a good pool and restaurant and lovely seafront setting. The rooms are well-appointed and comfortable. Dont expect anything very fancy, just a good hotel in a good location.
A dhow trip on the coast of Zanzibar
Sailing in a dhow, the traditional sailing boat used in Zanzibar, is the best way to view the island's coastline. Sailing in the late evening to watch the sun set is the best time of day and is wonderfully romantic.
A historic walk through Stone Town
Visit Zanzibar Towns old quarter, Stone Town on the west coast of Zanzibar. Here you will find beautiful architecture and historic buildings dating back to the 19th century, revealing the complex history of Zanzibar and its links with the slave trade.
Diving in Zanzibar
Located off the eastern coast of Africa, in the warm and clear Indian Ocean, Zanzibar is home to some great diving locations. Head to the tiny atolls off the north coast of Zanzibar, or take a trip to its neighboring island of Pemba.
Explore Jozani Forest
Escape the beach for an afternoon by visiting Jozani Forest in the center of Zanzibar, home to the endemic and rare Kirk's colobus monkeys.
Shopping in Stone Town
Stone Town, Zanzibar Town's old quarter, has an abundance of local shops selling a wide variety of antiques, textiles, and jewelry. Spend a whole day wondering through the narrow streets and pick up some truly unique finds.
With the Spice Islands named as they are you cannot visit this particular part of the world and not delve into its history by taking a Spice Tour on the island.
The roof top restaurant at The Swahili House, Stone Town
Eating freshly caught seafood in the rooftop restaurant at The Swahili House Zanzibar is a perfect way to spend the evening. Located in Stone Town on the west coast of Zanzibar, dine here in the evening to watch the sunset over this unique historic town.
Location & directions
Stone Town, Zanzibar and the coast, Tanzania
The resort is in Stone Town, which is in the ‘Old Town' of Zanzibar City, which lies on the western side of the island. Idyllically situated on the sea-front, and flanked by an exotic mix of sultan's palaces, Portuguese forts, ancient dhow harbors, and bright bazaars.
How to get there
8.5 hour international flight to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi and then a short flight to Stonetown Airport in Zanzibar. Zanzibar's International airport is 7km south of Zanzibar Town and the journey takes 15 minutes by taxi from the hotel. Airport transfers available upon request from the hotel.