We had a similar experience as Sammy who was robbed. This time it was at another cottage owned by ABALONE HOUSE, Oppiedraai
We arrived during a power failure - no electricity, no alarm. We were greeted, and immediately asked to sign an indemnity form, from which the ABALONE HOUSE had no responsibility for any loss due to theft, break-in's etc.
Like Sammy, we were cleaned out during the evening. Subsequent to the break-in, we leaned from people in Paternoster that crime (especially house break-in's) is rife. Even the police (who came to investigate) said that most guest houses explicitly warn guests, even have signs up in the rooms to state that crime is rife. There was no such warning from ABALONE HOUSE. What made this even more inexcusable was that our alarm did not work due to the power failure, and they showed us the room during the power failure, knowing that the alarm was not working.
It seems that once they had their indemnity they did not care much about that happened to their guests. Like Sammy, we have not heard from management. They have not apologised at all. A romantic weekend away ruined.
Besides the break-in, the house itself was terrible. The front door broke within half an hour of our arrival, and did not close properly. Water leaked from all the windows. The bath had a leak, which made it impossible to have a hot bath, as the hot water from the geyser would run out. The kitchen utensils were disgusting - I would not use the chopping board it was so dirty. The place was dusty (amazing since it had just been cleaned, making our check in at 2pm only). The braai griddle had not been cleaned, and was utterly disgusting.
BESIDES BEING KNOWINGLY LED TO A PLACE OF CRIME, THE PLACE WAS DISGUSTING, THE STAFF WERE RUDE, AND I ADVISE PEOPLE TO STAY AWAY FROM OPPIEDRAAI, SEASIDE COTTAGES, ALL OF WHICH ARE RUN BY ABALONE HOUSE!
STAY AWAY!!!! All rooms are dangerous, and ABALONE HOUSE do not care, once they have their indemnity...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dear Howard, thank you for your feedback. Allow us the opportunity to answer your above mentioned comments. The power failure upon your arrival was due to severe weather conditions that affected the whole of Paternoster, which was out of our control. Most of the West Coast was without power for two consecutive days. Our accommodatin staff purchased not only a kettle for coffee, but also hot chocolate and foil for you to use when braaiing your fish. Our standard check in time is 2pm. Your early arrival was the cause of the unit not being ready, as the previous guests had not yet checked out.
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All keys to the Paternoster Seaside Cottages are collected at Abalone House, where you were offered to wait at in the interim due to the unpleasant weather conditions. The gale-force winds damaged several of the houses in the area, including roofs blown off and furniture ending up in the street. The front door was damaged in this process as well as the windows. The power failure in turn caused that the geyser was switched off, thus the lack of hot water upon your entry. You were offered a room at Abalone House in stead, where we explained there would be hot water available.
The General Manager presented you with the indemnity form, and advised that you could sign it at your convenience. This is basic practice, and disclaimers are well within the rights of the company. This also brings the severity of the situation under the attention of the guest, as it is a point by point explanation of the history of crimes in Paternoster. All of our units have documentation about crime in the area. As we have explained in our letters to you and per telephonic conversation, the delay in our response to your questions was caused due to our internal correspondence. You were however in contact with management from the day of the burglary and we have apologized in person. We have since then, made contact with the relevant parties, including the police and our broker, to ensure that we can provide you with the correct information in our response, as we have advised in writing.
At all times our staff were professional and treated you with the greatest empathy and respect. Paternoster Seaside Cottages, including Oppidraai, are owned and managed by South of Africa, and not Abalone House. We do understand your frustration and unhappiness that led from the break in, to which we once again apologize profusely.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.