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Onsea House

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Onsea House

Arusha, Tanzania

Onsea House is a charming boutique hotel set in a peaceful, leafy suburb and overlooking Arusha. Built along the hillside, the property offers spectacular views across the valley. The original farmhouse, Onsea, is set to the side and offers plenty of character, housing two bedrooms that open out onto a pretty terrace and central swimming pool. Next door, the more modern Machweo (meaning 'sunset') section of the property offers several honeymoon suites and a number of cottage rooms spread out across the hillside. The highlight of the property is the beautiful dining room and terrace, which overlooks a second swimming pool and offers wonderful views of Arusha below and across to Mount Meru. This is the place to enjoy a relaxing glass of wine as the sun sinks below the horizon. For those with time to spare, the pretty gardens set on the sloping hillside offer a tranquil place to unwind with a book or to simply enjoy the view.

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Rooms

The rooms in both the Onsea and Machweo sections are all beautifully decorated in a colonial style with creamy whitewashed walls and dark wooden furniture. Those on the Machweo side, being newer, are marginally more polished, but all boast well designed en suite bathrooms, a good range of modern amenities and wonderful views.

Location

Located about an hour’s drive from Kilimanjaro Airport, the property makes a peaceful base for relaxing before or after your international flights while avoiding the hustle and bustle of Arusha, which is the main safari staging town for a northern Tanzanian safari.

Food and Drink

The food here is a particular highlight. Axel, the chef, is well known as one of the best in Arusha and the dinners here are justifiably popular. Evening meals are paired with wines from the property's well-stocked selection, while breakfasts are a hearty affair with plenty of choice to set you up for the day.

Families

For small groups or families, it's possible to book the entirety of the Onsea section, which consists of two bedrooms with a shared terrace. This will allow you to have your own garden and swimming pool area, granting you additional space and privacy.

Facilities and Activities

Guests have access to the property's wellness centre, which features a sauna, steam room and Jacuzzi, as well as offering massages and spa treatments if booked in advance. In the main house there's a small bar and games room, complete with pool table.

Our opinion

An oasis of calm on the edge of Arusha, Onsea House is perfectly located for an overnight stop before or after your flight. Offering an intimate and friendly atmosphere, along with excellent food, we think this is easily one of the best options in the Arusha area.

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    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.