Pongwe is set about 10 kms south of the busy Kiwenga beach area. The approach to the hotel is much more attractive than many hotels, through a Cashurina tree plantation. The pool at Pongwe has to win the hotly contested prize for the most idyllic pool in Zanzibar.
The hotel is family owned by UK resident, Val Preston and his Zanzibar business partner Ali. It opened in 2003 and is a modestly sized hotel with sixteen traditional beach side cottages and an intimate atmosphere. Situated on a secluded bay - one of the most beautiful on the island - on the east coast of Zanzibar, the Pongwe Beach Hotel is a true paradise.
The sea view cottages have traditional lime wash walls, and thatched roofs made from woven palm leaves. Each cottage has two en suite rooms each with a private sea view terrace. Rooms are simple with traditional Zanzibari style beds. Bathroom have walk in Moroccan style showers, but no baths. The hotel will take children but doesn’t encourage them, so they are rarely there.
Pongwe is a perfect retreat style hotel where relaxation is the order of the day. There are no watersports on site but they can be booked with the nearby Fairmont Hotel and a taxi can be booked to take you to and from the watersports centre.
If you would like take a trip around the island, or to Stone Town — the historic, bustling, cultural core of Zanzibar the hotel can arrange a car. Alternately, if you prefer a bit more freedom, you could hire a 4×4 jeep, or a motorbike. Or you may prefer to take to the ocean, and go out for a day cruising on the long boat, and combine it with some big game fishing and snorkeling.