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All reviews hillside house blyde river canyon one night loft room luxury cottage views of the mountains panorama route shower head beautiful trees lovely room boat trip baby zebra hot breakfast minute drive roam freely nice stay main bedroom
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Reviewed 22 December 2017 via mobile

I found the lodge through trip adviser and was blown away by the pics and the descriptions. Initially I had only booked one night but then added on a second as the more time I spent on the lodge website the more I felt I would be losing out by having such a short stay.

I was the one that lost out.

I booked the luxury queen room at R2000 a night..it was far from luxurious. I’ve stayed at 2 star hotels that had far bigger rooms and bathrooms with much better furnishings. The shower was so small and the shower head so low that my boyfriend literally had to bend down to be able to shower. And he is not abnormally tall.
Everything seemed so old and not worth the rate that was being charged. There was a distinct bad smell coming out the toilet. Also the curtains are so dark and heavy that it feels like you have to squint in the room to see anything. The curtains cannot be opened to let any natural light in because if anyone walks past your room they would see directly in should you be changing.

In addition to the R2000 daily rate we had to pay an extra R50 for WiFi. This is the only hotel type set up where I have had to pay for WiFi. For R2000 one would think it would be included. Especially since phone signal is so bad in the area. We were literally cut off from communicating with anyone else once at the lodge unless you stood in a certain position and tilted your phone in just the right way in the room. To pay for WiFi that doesn’t work seems rediculous.

Breakfast is only served from 8am. This is very late considering how much there is to see and do in the area and that the sightseeing spots open up at 7. Surely doing a 6/6:30 makes more sense as it then gives your guests a chance to maximize their time. We were only leaving the lodge then by 9/9:15. The breakfast is wonderful with lots of choices. The freshly baked bread was amazingly good!but should just be made available earlier.

The website advertises that zebra come up to the lodge at breakfast time. This is not true and I see some reviews where people were disappointed to not see the animals. I saw the zebra and buck but at 4:30-5am.I am a very early riser and was going to run and catch the sunrise and was blown away by having zebra right outside the room. animals will generally be grazing early to avoid the heat so you should indicate this to your guests else they will wait for the animals in vain at 8am.

There is no info brochures in the room to tell you about things to do in the area. Because we had no cellphone signal and the WiFi was poor is was very difficult to try and google things. I had researched what I wanted to do before we came and printed it out but could not in the evening at the lodge check for any additional things.

We visited the dam just a short drive from the lodge...this is a must do, views are amazing and it’s so peaceful. We saw boats on the dam and realized we could probably do a cruise. We asked the security guy at swadini about it and he explained where it departs from. What he didn’t tell us is that you need to book this trip in advance. There are only 3 slots for the day and they fill up fast. By pure chance we found this out ourselves and did our booking, but this is something the lodge can make you aware of before hand. When we were doing our check out (the same day of our boat cruise) the manager (first time we saw her in our almost 3 days at the lodge) overheard us telling one of the other ladies that we were doing the cruise and then said in a sarcastic tone “I hope you have a booking”. If she was aware of it why not inform the guests.

While we were doing our checkout, the manager was talking to someone on the phone and did not bother to soften her voice or maybe hang up the call to engage with her guests. Find out how their stay was, was there any problems. It’s like we didn’t exist. The staff member doing the checkout was nice but surely the manager should be more aware of her guests.

There was a video on the lodge’s website where the owner was interviewed, I loved the video,and from that I expected something of a homely experience where the staff check up on you, manager is visible and all your needs are seen to before you even know you needed it. That was far from my experience. The staff are very stiff. And they only actually talk to you at breakfast when they ask if you want tea or coffee or the hot breakfast.

The setting the lodge is in is fantastic. It’s so peaceful and so relaxing. I really enjoyed Being surrounded by the mountains and the bush. And it was a nice drive through the mountains to get to the panorama route.

But the lodge is advertised as 4 Star. And It is far from that. The rates are very high for what you actually get in terms of service and comforts. If it weren’t for the amazing experience of almost touching the zebra I may have actually given this review 2 stars as I believe there’s a degree of false advertising happening on the website.

Stayed: December 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank Instash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 November 2017

The Blyde River Canyon Lodge is a very nice Lodge.
Everything is very clean. The location is great and really quiet.
The staff is friendly and the food was really good. Also breakfast is great, however you would like your hot breakfast to be cooked, you can get it that way.
Would`ve loved to see the Zebras walking around, but I guess they are wild and show up, whenever they please. But instead we`ve got to see a little buck, which comes in every morning and gets his bottle of milk. Very cute!
The Blyde River Canyon Lodge is definitely a very quiet place. so pretty much the perfect place to wind down and relax.
The room is cozy and the bed very comfy.
Great location to do day trips as well.

However the atmosphere did feel a little sterile and stiff. But that is just my personal opinion.

  • Stayed: November 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Tinkerbell111
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 October 2017

We stayed here for one night and wished we could have had far longer. The charming thatched building was quiet and welcoming. It felt very luxurious in a wild Africa kind of way. We stayed in the palatial loft room which was big enough to live in but the open wood stairs could have given the less able a little trouble. However there were plenty of other rooms downstairs we didn't see. Sadly we arrived in the dark with no time to explore and were told not to follow the lighted path in the dark as the hippos roamed at night.The charming building has a small pool and lounging area with views over the gorgeous grounds. At breakfast we watched nesting birds flitting about in the trees and an orphan impala come for his morning 2 bottles. A wonderful place, great food and friendly staff. If only we could have stayed longer!

Room Tip: The loft room is lovely but there are steep stairs.
  • Stayed: October 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank amazonflash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 September 2017

We stayed here for one night. Originally our travel agency booked a night here because we had a hot air balloon ride scheduled. Due to the weather we were not able to go. When we arrived we were welcomed with drinks. They showed us the house that we were staying in. The house was very large. It had a kitchen, living room, smaller bedroom, and master suite. It was clean and very quaint. We took a walk on the trail that they suggested. It was very relaxing. Unfortunately, we didn't see any animals on our walk. What was super nice was all the Zebras that were on the property. They were not even phased by us. We had a very nice dinner (lamb). This was not included in the price. The next morning we had breakfast. Since they knew our hot air balloon ride was cancelled they suggested that we go and check out Moholoholo. They helped set up transportation for us. We had a good time for the amount of time we were there and headed over to our safari lodge about 40 minute away. Overall very friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed: September 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank joselynhuynh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2017

Though this house is about 2 km from the main lodge, it was terrific accommodation for the family!! Beautifully decorated, 5 bedrooms and at least as many baths, a full and well equipped kitchen, comfortable lounge areas, a beautiful garden with pool (too cold to swim!) and a huge braai. It was a secure and comfortable place to stay. We were well looked after by Elizabeth and her husband Axel who maintain the place in terrific condition and are welcoming and friendly. The pictures do not do this house justice! A short 20 minutes had you in Hoedspruit for provisions and the setting is stunning with the backdrop of the Drakenburg Mountains. Day trips to a cultural village, the Moholoholo rescue and rehabilitation center, and a relaxing and informative ride on the canyon dam lake were all very close and well done.

Room Tip: All of the rooms in this stand alone house are delightful ... take your pick!
  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank celticantique
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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