Thanda was mostly a great experience. Unfortunately, one the top management staff was getting married shortly after our time there. The staff were mainly focused on wedding preparations and wedding guests. We were not able to do some of the activities (hands on with elephants and lions) because the staff were being utilized for wedding activities. Our "tent" was comfortable with the exception of our shower which filled up with enough water to cover your ankles. We asked for a second chair for the deck of the tent and were brought a straight dining room chair-not very comfortable for lounging. We wanted to see the lodge and were told we couldn't. Food was excellent and plentiful. We had two bonfire dinners. The second one had all the wedding guests. It felt a bit strange but I guess they didn't know what else to do with those of us who were not part of wedding. Etienne and Nowady (?sp) were our driver and tracker. They were very good and knowledgable. Etienne is a photographer which was an advantage and disadvantage. He was eager to get photos so we would get to places quickly to see lion cubs, etc. The problem was that he would position the jeep for his best shot, often leaving you with bushes in front of your lens. He would eventually reposition the jeep but often the opportunity for a great shot was gone. We went on a Groupon deal as did another couple. We bought the same deal but they were told by Thanda that they were entititled to extras-a massage for two for free-a romantic dinner (which they couldn't have because we had to go to the second bonfire dinner). There were a lot of inconsistencies relative to service and rooms. I think it may have been a fluke due to the wedding so I would not tell people not to go.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Thanda Private Game Reserve is situated 23km north of Hluhluwe in northern Zululand, South Africa, and is set on a 14 000-hectare Big Five private game reserve. Thanda, meaning 'love' in Zulu, unites romance and exclusivity with Zulu culture and wildlife. The nine luxury bush suites at Thanda Safari Lodge have private infinity pools, viewing decks, private salas, lounges, fireplaces and full bathrooms with both indoor and outdoor showers. The individual bomas at each suite offer guests dining privacy. The public facilities at Thanda Safari Lodge include a lounge, library, dining room, boma, dining deck, wine cellar, cigar bar, fully equipped business centre and viewing decks. Villa iZulu can accommodate 10 people, offering accommodation as a unit of five separate suites. Each suite is individually decorated and very private, with own viewing deck. Public facilities at Villa iZulu include a boma, library, cellar, business area, heated pool and a magnificent deck overlooking a waterhole. Thanda Tented Camp is built in colonial safari style, offering an authentic bush experience in 15 tents. The tents have viewing decks and en-suite canvass bathrooms. Public facilities at Thanda Tented Camp include a dining tent, a boma area, and a sala consisting of an 'open-air' lounge and a 10x5m rim-flow pool. The Jabula Tent, located within Thanda Tented Camp, offers a sophisticated mix of romance, privacy and refined comfort in the heart of the African bush. It features a king-sized bed in a spacious bedroom, and a comfortable separate lounge area for relaxation. A highlight of Jabula Tent is the outdoor shower and splash pool which has spectacular panoramic views of the 14000-hectare reserve. Thanda's award-winning spa offers treatments such as aromatherapy and massages using African essential oils in a base of shea butter and the 'Instinctive by Nature' and 'Dermalogica' ranges. Safaris in open game viewing vehicles are conducted exclusively for Thanda guests on the low-risk malaria reserve. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Thanda Private Game Reserve Hotel Hluhluwe