Shooting Star Lodge is a simple hotel set on a coral cliff overlooking Kiwengwa beach. It is run in a relaxed fashion by Elly, a charming Tanzanian, and his family, and is much favoured by travellers looking for somewhere small and authentic.
The 16 rooms and cottages are set in lush tropical gardens and have private verandahs. The three garden view rooms are all secluded in the lush gardens. The eleven newer, spacious sea view cottages enjoy stunning views over Kiwengwa beach.
They are airy, with high beamed ceilings, large windows and air-conditioning; and furnished in traditional Zanzibari style, with carved four-poster beds, colourful dyed mosquito nets and silk cushions.
Four of these sea view cottages have an upstairs twin-bedded room for children. The two Monsoon villas are set apart from the other rooms. Set on three floors with two en-suite bedrooms, a roof terrace with day bed, bath tub and private plunge pool. All rooms are air-conditioned.
There is a fine new infinity pool overlooking the beach, with a sundeck. There are two restaurants, one under thatch and one under the palms. The centre of Shooting Star is the open air bar, which is always lively in the evenings. This is a social place and, if you are there for the full moon, you will enjoy the barbecue party on the beach.
The restaurant serves a variety of well prepared African and international dishes. Lobster, grilled meat and smoked fish feature on the menu.
Excursions and activities
Local attractions include Kiwengwa village, a limestone cave, and the dramatic reef. Bicycles can be hired, and scuba diving, PADI courses, snorkelling, fishing, windsurfing and boat trips can be arranged.