Park Hyatt Zanzibar – New Luxury for Tanzania

Park Hyatt Zanzibar

Zanzibar Island has gained a new luxury hotel to its exotic appeal.‭  ‬The Park Hyatt Zanzibar opened its doors on March‭ ‬8th,‭ ‬2015‭ ‬setting a new standard for luxury on Zanzibar.‭  ‬The Park Hyatt Zanzibar sits on beachfront‭ ‬in the historic UNESCO Heritage site of Stone Town and is the latest addition to the Hyatt portfolio as it expands its presence in Africa.‭  ‬The Park Hyatt Zanzibar reflects the elegance of the Park Hyatt brand while embracing the rich local culture,‭ ‬heritage and historical significance of Zanzibar.‭  ‬Ms.‭ ‬Marcela Herrendoerfer,‭ ‬General Manager of Park Hyatt Zanzibar commented,‭ “‬The Park Hyatt brand is committed to creating rare,‭ ‬intimate and unforgettable experiences,‭ ‬and we are thrilled to have our doors open and welcome guests from around the world to this very special location.‭”

Tanzania and Zanzibar have a solid reputation as leisure destinations,‭ ‬but are now gaining credibility as destinations for MICE and Business Travel.‭ ‬Stone Town,‭ ‬the main city of Zanzibar is UNESCO heritage listed and its African-Arabiac cultural influences are a rich blend dating back to when Zanzibar served the ancient spice trade and its darker history of slave trading.‭ ‬The quaint traders shops crammed into streets and markets are still a rich blend of colour,‭ ‬the smells of cooking,‭ ‬fish,‭ ‬spice and a vibrant culture.‭ ‬The people are welcoming and share a love of life.‭ ‬It is typical to see mornings and evenings,‭ ‬locals gathered on the beach for group physical fitness sessions followed by fun filled beach football.

MICExchange recently spoke to Ms.‭ ‬Marcela Herrendoerfer,‭ ‬General Manager of the Park Hyatt Zanzibar about the new addition to the Park Hyatt portfolio.‭  “‬We brought the Park Hyatt brand for the first time to Sub-Saharan Africa,‭ ‬and Stone Town on Zanzibar was chosen for many reasons‭ ‬-‭ ‬we believe there is a very diverse market we can bring to the island‭ ‬– and we are looking at both the leisure and the corporate MICE sector.‭”

“When looking at the corporate business sector,‭ ‬Dar es Salaam is a growing market and is becoming a very important hub for the meetings and incentives sector and there are a lot of possibilities to work together with Dar es Salaam.‭  ‬Whereas Dar es Salaam has the infrastructure to hold large meetings,‭ ‬now,‭ ‬just‭ ‬20‭ ‬minutes by plane across the channel,‭ ‬we have at the Park Hyatt Zanzibar the facilities for meetings in a high end environment.‭“

She continued,‭ “‬From the mainland‭ (‬Tanzania‭)‬,‭ ‬there is a lot of interest from leisure and the corporate sector‭ – [‬such as‭] ‬combining corporate sector meetings in Dar es Salaam with extensions to their stay by coming over to Zanzibar,‭ ‬and also for leisure guests who have been on safari‭ – ‬it is so combinable.‭”

“Tanzania has seen strong growth in the number of business and leisure travellers.‭ ‬Building a brand presence in Tanzania,‭ ‬Hyatt is able to offer more choices to guests as they travel within the country,‭” ‬Ms.‭ ‬Herrendoerfer went on to say,‭ “‬We are not restricting ourselves to a certain market as Zanzibar is so globally connected‭ – ‬We already have all countries coming to visit the mainland and the island,‭ ‬whether it’s on leisure or business.‭  ‬Looking at the GCC‭ [‬Gulf Cooperation Council‭] ‬market,‭ ‬there is a very strong connection historically with Oman‭ ‬-‭ ‬and there has not been a luxury hotel here in Stone Town until now.‭”

The hotel offers‭ ‬67‭ ‬rooms in a setting that is intimate with an emphasis on luxurious quality.‭ ‬Ms.‭ ‬Herrendoerfer commented,‭ “‬We are lucky enough to be in a building that has big historical significance here in Stone Town.‭  ‬We worked closely with UNESCO to restore this beautiful building,‭ ‬where our guests experience actually starts as they come into our lobby.‭” ‬She speaks of how the hotel fits into the rich island culture and authentic surroundings of Stone Town just a short walk to its myriad winding streets and alleyways,‭ ‬jostling traders and locals,‭ ‬where Zanzibar looses none of its authenticity.

Park Hyatt ZanzibarThe Park Hyatt Zanzibar makes an impressive statement as it faces the ocean with spectacular,‭ ‬picturesque sea-views of nearby islands and the dhow harbour.‭  ‬Dating,‭ ‬from‭ ‬1847,‭ ‬the original building Mambo Msiige,‭ ‬forms the heart of the new Park Hyatt Zanzibar and is a building rich in cultural and historical significance.‭ ‬One enters through the arches of an Omani residence into the elegant enclosed courtyard lobby entrance,‭ ‬complete with a fountain,‭ ‬views of the azure ocean beyond and refreshing sea breezes wafting into the space.‭

The tastefully renovated mansion looses none of its charm,‭ ‬and a typical warm Zanzibari welcome complements the Hyatt concept.‭  ‬Ms.‭ ‬Herrendoerfer said,‭ “‬We felt it was very important to us to grow young talents here in Zanzibar‭ ‬-‭ ‬a large number of our staff is from Zanzibar‭ ‬-‭ ‬our aim is to give a career path to our team.‭”

The new purpose built Zamani Residence which forms the hotel proper is attached to Mambo Msiige and has been carefully constructed to complement the local style and original building‭ ‬retains the luxury and elegance expected of the Hyatt brand.‭  ‬It blends contemporary design,‭ ‬while embracing a blend of Arabic,‭ ‬Eastern and European influence.‭  ‬In a recent comment by Peter Norman,‭ ‬Senior Vice-President,‭ ‬Real Estate and Development for Hyatt Hotels‭ & ‬Resorts in Europe,‭ ‬Africa and the Middle East,‭ “‬We are delighted to be bringing the Park Hyatt brand to the culturally and historically rich island of Zanzibar.‭”

The Park Hyatt Zanzibar is an elegant retreat from the bustle of Stone Town.‭  ‬The hotel promenade terrace provides calm sea views for dining,‭ ‬relaxing or watching graceful dhows passing by.‭  ‬The Zamani Residence section of the hotel includes a Library-Bar that extends onto the veranda terrace to enjoy the evening breeze over cocktails.‭  ‬The Dining Room offers fine dining over authentic cuisines reflecting Zanzibari seafood and cuisine.‭ 

The Park Hyatt experience continues with a fully-equipped fitness centre,‭ ‬the tranquil Anantara Spa and the exclusive outdoor infinity pool.‭  ‬Flexible and stylish meeting and event facilities can accommodate various meeting requirements.‭  ‬The Park Hyatt meeting spaces of more than‭ ‬160‭ ‬square meters cater for elegant receptions,‭ ‬weddings,‭ ‬large meetings,‭ ‬state functions and offers alternatives for board meetings or small intimate social occasions.‭  ‬All meeting‭ & ‬events venues combine luxurious decor with modern,‭ ‬state-of-the-art facilities.‭

The hotel goes a step further by offering guests extraordinary experiences of the Indian Ocean and Zanzibar,‭ ‬such as fishing and snorkelling excursions to small islands or sandbars just off the coast,‭ ‬complete with a hotel chef to grill your freshly caught fish,‭ ‬so you can dine surrounded by crystal blue waters.‭

The fortunate guests that experienced the Park Hyatt Zanzibar opening were greeted by keen welcoming staff and a hotel with facilities and rooms of understated quality.‭ ‬Ms.‭ ‬Herrendoerfer explained that the hotel owners took a personal interest by choosing decor and artwork from personal collections to emphasise the high standards expected.‭  ‬When asked about the experience of seeing the hotel come to life and open for business,‭ ‬she was enthusiastic‭ ‬-‭ “‬Amazing‭ ‬-‭ ‬they started restoring Mambo Msiige in March‭ ‬2013‭ ‬-‭ ‬to see it now all made up and decorated‭ – ‬it’s very exciting and emotional‭ ‬-‭ ‬there is so much history in this building,‭ ‬it’s nice to see it come alive.‭”
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