A welcoming beachfront hotel, arguably the nicest on Nosy Be. It has good facilities on site and is an excellent base for scuba diving, sailing and deep-sea fishing.
We recommend the Vanila for a few relaxing – or active – days at the end of a Madagascar tour; for people who want to do some diving from a comfortable base; or, for a very nice family beach holiday with a difference.
Vanila Hotel stands at the edge of the beach 3 km from Dzamandzar on the northwest coast of Nosy Be, opposite the island of Nosy Sakatia. It is 20 minutes’ drive from Hell-Ville, the capital of Nosy Be, and 40 minutes from Nosy Be airport.
The hotel has 41 comfortable rooms and suites, all equipped with overhead fan, optional air conditioning, TV, telephone, safe, hairdryer and mini bar. All the rooms have en suite bathrooms, with shower and separate wc, and a private terrace or balcony.
The 21 airy garden rooms are between 28m² and 36m² and look onto tropical gardens. We like the views from the 18 ocean rooms (32m² and 42m²), four of which intercommunicate. Two of these rooms are a bit special, for honeymoons and other romantic holidays.
The two 64m² prestige suites provide a fine sea view and a large private balcony with jacuzzi. They are also equipped with a second wc, a DVD player and a tea/coffee station.
The Vanila has two restaurants directed by a French chef, each beside one of the pools. The main restaurant serves breakfast and dinners based mainly on local fish, shellfish, Malagasy spices and tropical fruits and vegetables. You can select some of the wonderful dishes based on the vanilla and rum for which Nosy Be is famous; and the kitchen can accommodate children’s tastes. The smaller Grill du Sol stands between the pool and the sea and serves lunch – lighter fare, like salads and grills – and gastronomic evening meals.
There are four bars, two of which are attached to the pools – lovely places from which to watch the sun sink into the sea.
Vanila Hotel has two freshwater pools, each beside one of the restaurants and served by a pool bar. The pool beside the Grill du Sol is made up of three circular pools, one of which is suitable for small children. The hotel provides beach towels, and there is a solarium, table tennis, billiards and a video room. There is also a little playground for small children.
The hotel offers traditional massage in its dedicated massage room, internet access, money changing facilities, babysitting and an excellent boutique, which is stocked with well-priced and attractive local handicrafts. There is a variety of evening entertainment, and a children’s club and teen programme in the holidays.
The Vanila has a boathouse on the island of Nosy Sakatia, which is directly across the water from the hotel. Here you will find sea-kayaks, hobie cats and lasers, snorkelling and water-skiing.
The hotel is an excellent base for scuba diving and also, whale watching (July to October) and seeing whale sharks (September to December). We can prebook these activities for you with an excellent, reputable excursion operator. We can also arrange for you to go turtle-watching (green turtles and hawksbill turtles).
Mountain bikes, 4WDs and motorbikes can be hired. The hotel has a full programme of excursions, including bivouacs on the nearby islands, and will be pleased to organise any that you wish to book on the spur of the moment.
Rooms can accommodate an extra bed and some rooms can accommodate two additional beds for families. There are also four interconnecting rooms.
The hotel has a pool suitable for younger children and a small playground. It runs activity programmes for children and teenagers during the (French) school holidays.
The kitchen is responsive to children’s tastes.