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“Outstanding family getaway” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Areena Riverside Resort

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Areena Riverside Resort
4.0 of 5 Cottage   |   Farm 694 Portion 7 | East Coast Resorts Road, East London 5259, South Africa   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
“Outstanding family getaway”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

We booked the chalets down at the rivers edge. The units were very well catered for, neat and very clean. Furnishing was of top quality. The large lawn space in front of the unit made it an excellent place to relax whilst the kids played freely and safely. I would definitely recommend this resort and will be visiting their again!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a stunning review! We are very pleased to hear about your wonderful stay with us, and we look forward to your next visit, hopefully soon!
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57 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    23
    24
    6
    4
    0
See reviews for
27
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

My family visited Areena for the first time in January 2013. We had a fantastic first night and day and decided to make this our local regular weekend away venue. The scenery is fantastic and there is plenty to do for the kids. The restuarant and bar served good food and had friendly staff. Unfortunately on the 2nd night of our stay, my 7 year old daughter was butted by an Nyala and had to be rushed to hospital where she had a plastic surgeon stitch up the 5cm gash on her forehead. In no way did she incite the animal to attach her, so I would like to warn future visitors to stay far away from the animals and watch your children AT ALL TIMES, as the animals roam freely around the resort.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
Thank you for your review! We were very sorry to hear about the unpleasant experience you had. We have a sign just outside the office to warn all guests that the wild animals roaming freely, are wild and should be kept clear off. We now also make a point of informing all who arrive at the resort that we have wild animals roaming freely. We hope you will have a pleasant experience with your next visit!
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Berlin, Germany
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

The star of the show at Areena was for me Abby, the semi-dometsticated giraffe who lives on their nature reserve. She is absolutely charming and she made the place special for me and my husband. We stayed here two nights. It's great to have also other beautiful animals roaming free in the camp. Canooing was totally worth the beautiful river view.
The restaurant served a very tasty burger and our waiter was great.
The room was ok, good value for money but not very clean. It had no air con and the ceiling fan didn't work so we couldn't sleep so well, it was way too hot. It could also do with a mosquito net over the bed. Kitchen is well equipped. The room was dark as the light is not very bright in the main room.
The reception staff were very helpful when we had a flat tyre. There's a good Spar supermarket just 10 mins drive.
So despite a few problems with the room we had a great stay.

Room Tip: Bring your own mosquito net and torch. Make sure the ceiling fan is working.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
Thank you for your review! You will be delighted to know that Abby is now a very proud daddy of two youngsters, the youngest being less than one month old! Yet Abby remains our big baby. We are very sorry to hear about the terrible experience you have had in the unit, please accept our apologies! We now have regular checks of the units to ensure all is in well working order. We hope you will visit us again soon, and can assure you this time it will be much more pleasant!
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Melbourne
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

Stayed at Areena as part of a tour group loved the look of the place and the accommodation was very comfortable. They have an fantastic bar with great staff and I even got to know their giraffe Abby. Only down side was there was no activities available to do but canoeing because there was only one guide available and he was busy with a group of school children who had already booked. Because we did not have any other transport we were stuck at the resort with not much to do. The Manager offered to make sure this did not happen next time we visited however I'm from Australia I may not be back. Was really looking forward to the quad biking.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
Thank you for your review. We are very sorry to hear about your unpleasant experience. Please accept our sincere apologies. You will be pleased to know that we now have at-least two guides on duty every weekend to ensure this does not happen again. We do hope that you will be visiting South Africa again in the future, and that you will pop past for an amazing quad bike experience!
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monza
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2012

We often visit Areena on our travels around South Africa and it is a stunning well kept secret. Their cabins are simple, very clean and ideally situated along the river. The wildlife, I was going to say around, but the real beauty of the place is that the wildlife is "in" the Areena resort - walk out your cottage and you can bump into Ostriches, Tortoises, Nyla, Peacocks, guinea fowl and a host of other "friendly" (remember they are "wild animals" so look but don't touch) animals. At Areena you can have either a tranquil peaceful time, lazing on the evening cruise along the river, eating great meals in the restaurant or you can get the full adrenalin pump, game viewing on Quad bikes - where if you are lucky Abby the Giraffe who thinks he is a human will come and say hi - really up close and personal - the staff will protect you from his over zealous advances don't worry), absailing down a fantastic kranz (cliff) or zipping along the ama zing zing - zip lines. Not enough space here to list all the other activities available. Hosts Karen and Ted are really special people who will give you a warm South African welcome. I love this place!!!

Room Tip: the cottages are all lovely - ask for one of the cabins furthest from the reception if you want to f...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
What a wonderful review, thank you so very much for the stunning words! We are very happy to hear how much you love and enjoy our resort, and your appreciation and love for the wild animals that roam freely is just wonderful! We hope you will be visiting us again soon in South Africa!
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Cape Town, South Africa
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2012

My partner and i had a spare night after a busy long weekend. Locals advised us to try Areena - and it was wonderful. Local birdlife was abundant, and by staying in the wooden cabins at the river, we felt like we had the river all to ourselves. We didnt even leave our cottage to sample all the adventure activities, but chose the sernity of our balcony and bottle of red wine instead.

Room Tip: Choose the cottages at the river.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
It is so delightful to hear about your wonderful experience staying with us! Thank you for taking the time to write this stunning review. We hope you will be back for a visit again in the near future, maybe this time you can enjoy some of the adventures we have on offer, or just relax with a pampering in our new spa!
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Johannesburg, South Africa
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2011

My Family and I have been going to Areena since I was 13 years old. Im now 29 and have been to many places. I must be honest never have I been to a place that even remotely comes close to Areena. The fact that a family with teenagers would relgiously go back year after year must give you a understanding about this place. Areena caters for all, to name a few- Hiking , swimming , game viewing , quad biking , fishing, canoeing , activities and many many more - but its the people who make this place unique. Those who have been to Areena find themselves coming back and friendships are made. If you want a place where you and the kids can let loose and enjoy , look no further .... I will be continuing to go back and so will my family.... Thx Areena and the wonderful Rathbones....

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AreenaResort, Public Relations Manager at Areena Riverside Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2013
Wow what a wonderful review to read, thank you so much! It is always such a pleasure to have you here! Over the years we have made some amazing friends with the families that visit us regularly. We pride our-self's on caring about all our guests, after all this is where good friends meet! We look forward to your next visit, soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Areena Riverside Resort

Address: Farm 694 Portion 7 | East Coast Resorts Road, East London 5259, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > East London
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 36 Specialty Lodging in East London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Areena Riverside Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated only 23 kilometers east of the East London city centre Areena Riverside Resort has become a sought after holiday and corporate destination.Nestled on the banks of the Kwelera tidal river, is the Eastern Cape's best kept secrect. Areena offers everything from well grassed camping sites, self-catering accommodation, adventure village and game reserve, conference facilities, to an upmarket family style restaurant and pub.Areena is the perfect place for fairy tale weddings, conferencing, corporate teambuilding and school and church camps.At Areena, there is always something for everyone! ... more   less 
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