Beyt Al Salaam, formerly known as Beyt Al Chai, is a charming small boutique guest house located by the ancient trees in Stone Town's famous Kelele Square. Built by a wealthy Arab merchant as a private home, it became a popular gathering place for Zanzibar's nobility to enjoy spiced tea on the rooftop while watching the sun set. The three-storey house has been beautifully restored, and opened as a hotel in 2004.
Each of the ten luxurious en-suite bedrooms and suites is unique, but all feature sumptuous fabrics, traditional antique furniture, full air-conditioning and high-quality bathrooms. There are also ceiling fans, for whose who prefer to turn off the air-con, open the window and enjoy the late night call of the muezzin. The thick stone walls and proximity to the sea ensure that the house is cool, and the top floor bedrooms have glorious views of the Indian Ocean.
The reception and lounge/bar areas also feature antique furniture and African art. The spacious lounge is furnished with huge sofas and armchairs, and is the ideal place to settle with a book after breakfast, or to enjoy an evening drink and watch the sunset (there is an honesty bar). Enjoying a relaxing breakfast in the beautiful courtyard under the shade of the palm trees is an idyllic way to start the day. Local fruit, coconut juice and fresh breads are all on offer -or, if you prefer, a full English breakfast can be prepared. The restraurant, named Beyt Al Chai, aims to provide 'fine dining', with fresh seafood being a dominant feature of the menu.
Activities: Beyt Al Salaam is an ideal base from which to explore the winding cobbled alleys, bazaars, shops and ancient buildings of Stone Town. It is also just a few minutes walk from the sea front.
"We really enjoyed our stay here. It is an atmospheric little hotel we very obliging staff and a good restaurant."