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Emerson Spice

Zanzibar & the Coast

Rating: Mid-range    

Emerson Spice overview

Emerson Spice (previously known as Emerson and Green) has been restored to its former glory, when it was the residence of one of the richest men in the Swahili Empire. It is one of the oldest buildings in Stone Town and the second tallest after the House of Wonders.  

It offers quirky luxury, and all 12 rooms and suites have either double or twin beds with en suite bathrooms, some of which are partially open to the bedroom. There are 9 double rooms and 2 twins, all with en-suite bathrooms. The double rooms are large enough to take an extra bed for a child or cot for a baby. Rooms are cooled by ceiling fans.

The Tower Top Restaurant is on the rooftop. It has panoramic views of Stone Town and the Indian Ocean and is open for sunset cocktails and dinners every day except Monday. Dinner service begins promptly at 7pm. There is limited seating so reservations are necessary if you want to dine here. There are separate lounge areas for relaxing and a small garden.

The hotel is in the heart of the main shopping area being very close to some excellent craft shops and markets and just a few minutes walk from the waterfront with it's vibrant night market and there are lots of great restaurants in the area. 


Open: Emerson Spice is open all year.

Location: Emerson Spice is in the heart of Stone Town, the main port and capital of Zanzibar. The hotel is a short walk from shops, restaurants and the waterfront. It’s about 20 minutes’ drive from the airport.

Rooms: There are 12 rooms and suites, all vary in size and layout. These include 3 suites located in the Peace and Love wing of the hotel. Double rooms have antique Swahili beds an enclosed en-suite bathroom with bath and toilet plus a shower that is open or semi-open to the bedroom. A cot or child bed can be added if needed. There are 2 twin rooms and 1 single, both en-suite. The larger rooms have balconies. The suites have separate sitting areas. Rooms are cooled by ceiling fans and some also have air conditioning. All have TV and tea and coffee makers.

Activities: Exploring Stone Town’s shops, museums, restaurants and cafes. Staff at Emerson Spice can arrange a variety of excursions including trips to the coast, boat cruises to marine parks, sandbanks and islands, spice tours, cultural tours and city tours.

Facilities: A continental breakfast, with eggs cooked to order, and tea and coffee is served each morning. The Tower Top Restaurant is open for dinner and pre-dinner drinks every evening except Monday. If you want to dine here you need to make a reservation, as seating is very limited. Dinner service starts at 7pm and there is just one sitting. There are 2 lounges, a bar and a small garden.

Dining: Meals are taken at individual tables in the restaurant.

Children: Children of all ages are welcome. Some rooms can take extra beds for children.

Health: Zanzibar is a malarial area.

Communication: There is free Wi-Fi internet access in the lobby.

Map for Emerson Spice

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Tracy Edwards
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Dave Lock
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A room with heart
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customer rating

71% from
4 reviews











client reviews

Tracy Edwards

"I found this hotel was very authentic, beautifully decorated with a lovely location. Each of the rooms has its own character and the hotel feels charming and romantic. Emerson’s name is highly valued here and the hotel oozes this. "

Annette Lohr-Happe
"We immediatly felt at home on the roof top terrace and in our marvellous room. Fantastic building. Kind people around, very good service. Excellent food."
Tony Kempster
"We thought it was wonderful, but there's no doubt the climb up stairs would be beyond many folks and that probably ought to be made more clear."
Chris Pare
"Amusingly inept service but that sort of fitted with the atmosphere. Interesting rooms (tried to put us in the wrong one to start off with) although a little cluttered perhaps and could be considered shabby. Far more interesting than your average hotel though and view from the roof was great."

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