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Reviewed 29 August 2017

Company 10th anniversary experience of 20 pax (adults/parents and kids) - 25 to 27 August 2017. Warm welcome by management on arrival, all booked into tent accommodation no hassle. Excellent game drive late afternoon followed by a private braai (barbecue) the evening in the bush- decor was exceptional, relaxing and program well presented, food was fine but could improve, too many starches?. Service was fine. Great relaxing evening with fellow colleagues. Saturday the group interacted with cheetahs and white lions followed by game drive the afternoon. In 2 days viewed 95% of animals on site. Thanks to Mel and Remember who excelled in their role as guides thus seeing so many animal species and being knowledgeable on the same. The group visited ''Adventure with Elephants'' next to Mabula and had an awesome and very inspiring interaction with elephants - an event everyone should participate in. On the side, highly recommend improving the food variety ensuring balance, quality and presentation. A return visit is imminent.

Room Tip: All rooms are perfect, spacious and fairly distant from one another
  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Roy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 May 2017

Lovely tented rooms. Friendly staff. BUT. no hospitality training across the board. Meals shambolic at best. No system, no choices, guests often treated as an inconvenience if you want something a bit different. Obvious bits missing. No wine list, go to the cellar to chose (nice) - but no process and staff don't know them. ...just clueless.

Also (my suspicion) the real reason for the place is rare animal breeding, buying and possibly hunting. So the reserve feels like a zoo...(big - but still a zoo!).

I'd go somewhere else!

  • Stayed: April 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank LQM1507
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Online_Hospitality, Online Marketing Agency at Thandeka Lodge and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2017

Hi LQY1507

Many thanks for your review about your stay at Thandeka Lodge and Spa, however, we are disappointed that we did not meet your expectations. We have looked at your review and will take it up with the relevant departments to ensure that this does not happen again. With regards to your hunting statement please note that we do not support any hunting on our property. We do have some breeding projects which we then release the animals onto our property or sell to other game reserves but do not sell to any hunting farms/organisations.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2017

We booked online the day prior to arrival & were chased for pre-payment before receiving confirmation, the booking site said only "one room available" so we thought it would be busy but we were happy to go ahead.... little did we know.
We followed the instructions on the confirmation & called ahead to advise of our impending arrival - the call went to voicemail but we were still 30 minutes out so thought nothing of it. When we arrived at Thendeka the gates were locked & there was nobody about, calls to the number given were still going to voicemail, we called the head office to be told to call the mobile no. again. Eventually we called the booking agent who managed to chase someone up to come & unlock the gates - after an hour's wait we were eventually let into the farm.
It soon became evident that we were the only ones there & the Lodge staff had not been informed of our arrival, there was a lot of scrambling about to get the staff together & cobble together some sort of program. The game drive that evening - which we had to insist on - was short with a promise of a longer drive in the morning (this was not forthcoming), there were no drinks or snack on board despite them being supposedly included in the package - nor were there any refreshments on any of the subsequent drives. No tea/coffee/water, nothing.
The lodgings were comfortable but on closer inspection there are a number of maintenance issues that need addressing - holes in the tents, water leaking into the tent form the outdoor shower, decking around the pool needing attention along with all of the sun-loungers.
The food & service too were basic with us training the team how to serve wines & make coffee - the service staff were exceptionally friendly & enjoyed the opportunity to learn.
With them being caught off guard on our arrival there was a lot of apologising which became a little grating in the end, would have been better focusing that energy on training & development of the team & fixing the maintenance issues.
On the plus side....
* The team were very friendly & welcoming & eager to learn
* The main lodge & dining room are spectacular & very comfortable
* The wine cellar is jaw dropping with a huge & varied selection of wines
* The Timbivati White Lions are simply stunning, so beautiful
* The Walking with Cheetah experience - offered free due to our challenges - is very special
* A lodge to ourselves made it a special time for us to catch our breaths in a beautiful African Bush environment... much needed after the stresses of the previous weeks.
We wish the team all the best for the future & hope that the plans for maintenance are put in place soon, we would also encourage the training & development of the service staff, the rewards will be beneficial to all.

Stayed: January 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank Simon B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Online_Hospitality, Online Marketing Representative at Thandeka Lodge and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 27 March 2017

Hi Simon B,

We would like to thank you for your review about your recent stay with us. We are truly sorry for the issues you experienced with your arrival and the other aspects mentioned in your review and we will ensure that each point is looked at carefully ensuring that it does not happen again. We pride ourselves on ensuring our guests have an unforgettable experience from the moment they arrive leaving them wanting more when they depart. We are delighted that you had amazing wildlife encounters and that you managed to catch your breath. Thank you for your wonderful wishes and we hope to host you again in the near future.

Kind Regards Thandeka Lodge and Spa Team.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 November 2016 via mobile

I booked a luxury tent for our weekend away. I notified the lodge that we have a 9 month old baby and was told this is not a problem! In fact this was the best thing ever. The staff were amazing, they looked after our bub so well and showed her so much love that we were able to go out on multiple 2 hour private game drives, to have intimate dinners and to enjoy being ourselves! My only gripe is that we were not there for longer!

I want to say a special thank you to Catharine for looking after our baby, to Peter who was very knowledgeable as our guide and to all the staff that provided us with an unforgettable weekend away!! Oh, the Chef, we can't forget the Chef, truly fabulous food!!

I would recommended Thandeka Lodge to everyone!
Down to earth and just good people with a great vibe!!

Stayed: November 2016, travelled with family
Thank stevetonkin83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Online_Hospitality, Online Marketing Representative at Thandeka Lodge and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 31 January 2017

Hi Stevetonkin83,

Many thanks for your wonderful review about your stay with us. We are delighted to hear that the team went out their way to ensure you had a wonderful stay and we will be sure to let them all know.

We hope to see you again soon.

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Reviewed 27 October 2016 via mobile

Wonderfull lodge with friendly staff. The tents are very nice ,the views good and the sundown wonderfull
The gamedrives are good organised and nice. Have seen cheeta's, white lions, rhino's bocks etc. Very nice!

Stayed: October 2016, travelled with friends
Thank PetraSuzan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Online_Hospitality, Online Marketing Representative at Thandeka Lodge and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 31 January 2017

Hi PetraSuzan,

Thank you for your lovely review of your stay at Thandeka Lodge and Spa. We are delighted to read that you had a wonderful stay and seeing some amazing wildlife with us and we hope you do come visit us again soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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