January 2014: The Protea Hospitality Group has entered the beautiful tropical spice island paradise of Zanzibar, bringing the exclusive Mbweni Ruins Hotel into the Protea Hotels portfolio.
Protea Hotel Mbweni Ruins is situated on the breathtaking tropical coastline of Zanzibar, only 7km from Stone Town and 5km from the airport, which makes it an easily accessible destination.
This tranquil slice of paradise has secreted away among the trees a 13-room hotel with a restaurant, a deck, a pool, beach bar and beach chairs at the ocean’s edge, just a few feet away, ideal for lazing around in the tropical sun.
The Spa at Mbweni is in two beautiful rooms in the old ruins.
A peaceful and relaxing setting for you so that the healing therapies can work their magic on you.
Protea Hospitality Group CEO Arthur Gillis says Zanzibar is one of Africa’s most popular leisure travel destinations visited by approximately 170 000 foreign tourists in 2012, which makes it a very attractive proposition from a hospitality point of view.
“And Protea Hotel Mbweni Ruins is the perfect property with which to enter this amazing and historic travel market. It is a beautiful and exclusive hotel with just 13 gorgeous suites furnished island style with elegant canopied beds and carved timber furniture.
“The beachside location is perfect for quiet relaxation, but it is close enough to the historic Stone Town to be extremely convenient so it’s ideally located for our purposes.
“As Protea Hotels has said time and time again, Africa is the future of hospitality and there is room for companies with trusted, recognised brands to expand rapidly.”
Gillis says Protea Hotels will be entering two new markets, Ghana and Rwanda, in 2014, but the company is also currently exploring opportunities in several other African states.
Boat cruises and excursions to Chumbe Island are available directly from the hotels’ jetty.
The hotel also offers an in-house tour desk service to arrange excursions such as swimming with dolphins, deep-sea fishing, diving, spice tours and Jozani National forest.
For those travellers wanting to stay a little closer to home, there are gorgeous hiking trails around the hotel and the property contains 120 different species of palm trees and more than 30 exotic species of indigenous plants. It is also an ideal bird-watching location.
What are now the Mbweni ruins were built in 1871 and completed in 1877. The chapel at the ruins is currently used for functions and weddings.
From the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro and the bustling city of Dar es Salaam to the white sands of Zanzibar island, Protea Hotels now offer diverse, unique and excellent choices in Tanzania for discerning travellers.