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“Chilwero and then some...” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero

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Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero
4.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Bordering Chobe National Park, Chobe National Park, Botswana   |  
Hotel amenities
1 review
“Chilwero and then some...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 17, 2013 via mobile

What an awesome stay. (10-13 May 2013)
Rooms: spacious, comfortable, luxurious, private.
Food: Scrumptious, well thought-out menus, plentiful.
Staff: Always friendly, welcoming & hospitable.
Guide: Jonathan was very knowledgable and we thoroughly enjoyed our time spent with him.
Location: Coming from South Africa and having been to many game parks, we were not disappointed, Chobe was unique/special. The sunset boat trips were our highlight.
We would go again...

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, May 20, 2013
Dear Karen,

Thank you for taking the time to post this awesome review.

We are thrilled that you enjoyed you stay with us. We shared your comments with the rest of the team, they loved hosting you and are very happy that you appreciated their efforts.

Glad to hear that you will come back again and we do hope that day comes soon...

You can follow all the latest news from Sanctuary Retreats and Chobe Chilwero by liking us on Facebook. Just search for ‘Sanctuary Retreats’

Best wishes
Sanctuary Retreats
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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152 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (31)
Date | Rating
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English first
Auckland, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2013

It is a beautiful, luxury lodge, well-decorated, rooms spacious with lots of privacy and huge, gorgeous bathrooms! Overall the food was very good, but felt the vegetarian main for dinner could easily be improved.

The boat trip was a great experience, the guide was excellent and the drinks and nibbles enhanced a lovely evening. I would've liked to travel along the river banks a bit more, rather than spend so much time in the middle of the delta, but we did see quite a few animals.

We loved the singing and dancing group that come in to entertain us one evening! They have gorgeous voices and huge enthusiasm and it was good to see another side of Africa from the wild animals.

The manager, Henri, is great and the staff all very friendly and helpful. I would highly recommend this lodge.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, May 14, 2013
Dear Guest,

What a great review!!! Thank you much appreciated.

We are thrilled that overall you had a wonderful experience with us and would like to thank you for your kind comments about our staff they were happy to learn you appreciated their efforts.

We have also shared your comments regarding vegetarian main course with our chef, thank you for the feedback.

Thank you again for this great review as well as your recommendation, we look forward to welcoming you back one day soon.

You can follow all the latest news from Sanctuary Retreats and Chobe Chilwero by liking us on Facebook. Just search for ‘Sanctuary Retreats’

Best wishes
Sanctuary Retreats
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Phoenix, AZ
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
112 helpful votes 112 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2013

A few words about the lodge: it consisted of several bungalows, each serving as an individual unit. There was plenty of space between the bungalows, meaning that there was plenty of privacy. The entire compound is surrounded by electric fence and they have guards on duty around the clock. The electrified fence keeps the big ones on the other side but has no effect on monkeys and mongoose: one can go over the fence and the other one under. So there were plenty of baboons and mongooses roaming freely. As a matter of fact the personnel from the lodge would not let you go from the restaurant to your room unaccompanied in the night.

All bungalows are essentially similar – it is how far one is from the restaurant and reception. Our bungalow was located almost to the end of path requiring some walk but once we got there we forgot everything about walking.

The bungalow had in front an open gazebo with wood table and chairs. Behind, there was a courtyard with the privacy ensured by a high fence made of grass, almost like a thatch. The building was elevated about one meter and a half with steps in front of it. But the interior was what to write about. The main room had a huge king bed flanked by four posts serving as a covered for a white mosquito net making the entire bed look like an elegant tent inside the room. All the furniture was made of solid wood. There were a couple of niches built in the wall; each had three shelves. The niches were lit and each one had an African statuette. From the bedroom you accessed the back room via two sliding wood doors on each side of the bed. The backroom had two sinks, a really big bathtub, and a dresser. The shower was all glass and it formed part of the wall towards the backyard, meaning that from the backyard you could see inside the shower. This made the shower enclosure full of light and looking spacious. The glass wall extended in front of the bathtub and changed to bricks only for the toilet. There was a built in wardrobe also made of solid wood. The floor was a combination of tiles, painted cement and rugs. It was very elegant and in perfect harmony with the interior. The entire place was conducive to calm and relaxation – it was one of the most peaceful place in which I have ever stayed.

I looked at the bar in the room and there was no beer. Rather surprised I call the reception and ask about the beers. The answer was, “What kind of beer you want? -we’ll send someone to bring you the beer”. “I have not seen any price list in the room – how much is a beer?” “You don’t have to pay anything.” Initially, I did not fully believe them but the next day I found out that the drinks were indeed included. The dinner was very well prepared. We had a table for two on the terrace with a beautiful view of the river. We were in Africa, though: occasionally a huge flying beetle would fall “from the sky” and could land directly on your neck – it did on mine.

We were tired enough and after the dinner to go directly to our bungalow. The curtain was pulled around the bed and it the entire place looked like in a movie set. I cannot finish the description of our visit to Chilwero before I give my utmost consideration to the personnel at the lodge. Not only that their service was superb but they were taking an extra care to excel in all the aspects. We were not even allowed to leave without completing a detailed questionnaire rating every aspect of the service with food, safari, driving, punctuality and whatnot. We were quite impressed.

  • Stayed March 2013, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, May 8, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank so much for this detailed and delightful review, absolutely loved reading it.

Glad that you thoroughly enjoyed Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero and all its amenities.Our staff is our greatest asset, and it is wonderful to hear your kind words.. We shared your feedback with them, they were thrilled that you appreciated their efforts.

It was an absolute pleasure hosting you and we do hope to welcome you back one day soon.

You can follow all the latest news from Sanctuary Retreats and Chobe Chilwero by liking us on Facebook. Just search for ‘Sanctuary Retreats’

Best wishes
Sanctuary Retreats
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SUNSHINE COAST AUSTRALIA
Top Contributor
128 reviews 128 reviews
95 hotel reviews
Reviews in 89 cities Reviews in 89 cities
146 helpful votes 146 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2013

We stayed at 4 Sanctuary Lodges on our trip to Africa - Baines, Chiefs, Chobe-Chilwero and Sussi&Chuma. We really enjoyed Chobe. The rooms are great, big bathroom, with a bath and two showers (one outdoors). Comfortable bed. The main area with the dining room, Lounge/bar, and shop area. Meals were good, staff were excellent, manager Henri very friendly. We had a very enjoyable stay, highly recommended. But the best animal viewing is at Chiefs.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, May 8, 2013
Dear Guest,

Another great review from you thank you so much!

We are happy to hear that you had an enjoyable stay with us at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero and for your reommendation, much appreciated! We shared your feedback with Henri and the rest of the team, they were delighted with your comments.

Thank you once again and we do hope to have the priviledge of welcoming you back in the not too distant future...

You can follow all the latest news from Sanctuary Retreats by liking us on Facebook. Just search for ‘Sanctuary Retreats’

Best wishes
Sanctuary Retreats
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San Francisco, Calif
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2013

I spent four nights at Chobe Chilwero in early January 2013. Not the best time to visit as it is just after the rainy season and the vegetation is overgrown, making it difficult to see a lot of wildlife. Also, as a state park, game drives cannot go "off-road" so you have to view the game from a distance, often far away. The resort cabins were very well-furnished, although I found the air-conditioning unit sometimes too loud (actually had to move because the first room's unit didnt work at all) and the fan didnt help much. Food was very disappointing - along the lines of what you would get in a Denny's sometimes, eg spaghetti with meat sauce, and scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert, for lunch. Also very difficult to eat on the patio at dinner because of huge numbers of flying insects (including dung beetles) landing on your food and into your drink. Staff service is excellent though and did their best to cope with the insects at dinner. Overall I've had far better experiences at Kruger National Park for half the price.

Room Tip: The farther you stay from the resort center the longer the walk at night to and from dinner which ca...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, April 24, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to post this review on Tripadvisor.

The Botswana government is very clear in their operational standards when it comes to operating within the countries National Parks, the main “rule” is no off-road driving is permitted within the National Park under any circumstances. The reason being that due to the fact that Chobe is a National park and open to the general public to enjoy the park in their own vehicles, they need to put certain restrictions in place from a conservation point of view to protect their Natural Heritage.

We are in process of resolving the issues we are currently experiencing with our air-conditioning. We apologise that the food was below your expectation, we have highlighted this to management as well as the chef. As January is still rainy season for Botswana, game viewing can be more challenging and unfortunately a lot of bugs are to be expected, we have a few measures in place such as the covers for the glasses and coasters, but this however continues to be a struggle for us. We are very happy to hear that our staff did their best to cope with the insects.

We do appreciate hearing from you, your feedback is vital for use to continue improving our standards.

Best wishes
Sanctuary Retreats
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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

I found this place very hard to rate using the standard criteria. Coming from Baines Camp [which I rated 5-star], Chilwero was like a resort. The view overlooking the Chobe is stunning. The rooms are immense and very attractive with backliit artwork, indoor and outdoor showers, secluded courtyard in back, in short, very attractive. But the high wall-mounted a/c unit was dripping water into the room, drowning the phone and dresser. The a/c remote was missing and two staff members crawled all over my room. After they were convinced it was missing they got another and throttled back the a/c to stop the dripping. The bathroom sink stopper was broken and it took over a day to get it fixed. The evening escort guy arrived 20 minutes late. OK, these were not tragedies but we weren't paying Ed's Beds rates either.

I have special dietary requirements and had to tell at least three people before they got it right. Once they did, they took very good care of me in this regard. The food was generally excellent as it was at the other two Sanctuary properties we visited.

When we were introduced to our guide, he said, "Call me Ishmael." How can you not love an opener like that? Ishmael was fantastic as a guide, as a proud citizen of his country, and as a person. He had a wise patience that I didn't see in other guides in the area, which resulted in some very special game viewing experiences for us. He educated us on the history of Botswana and told us of the bad [HIV etc] as well as the good [improved literacy, health etc.]. He was really the star of the Chilwero experience for us. Just call him Ishmael.

Room Tip: All the rooms are spectacular.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Dear Guests,

Thank you so much for taking the time to post this review on Tripadvisor.

We are very pleased about your positive remarks regarding the rooms, food and especially Ishmael he was so humbled by your comments. However we would like to address those aspects of your stay that were less than perfect and highlighted in your feedback. We have addressed the maintenance issues and thank you for bringing this to our attention.

We apologise that the escort was delayed by 20 mins and that you had to keep advising staff about your special dietary requirements. We conducted a very comprehensive staff service training last year and as a result of your feedback decided to repeat this exercise to ensure that our staff are attentive and professional at all times.

Thank you once again for your feedback and we do hope to welcome you back to Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero in the future.

Warm regards
Sanctuary Retreats
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Halifax, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We stayed in Chobe Chilewara in February,2013. We cannot praise the property and staff enough. The individual chalets are luxurious and appropriate to the environment. Above all the professionalism of the staff and in particular the guides was nothing short of amazing.
You cannot do better . Our only regret is that we only spent two nights at the Lodge. I assure next trip we will stay longer

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 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.
SanctuaryRetreats_2, Manager at Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Dear Shulamith,

Thank you so much! What a great review - we really appreciate it.

We shared your comments with the rest of the team who were thrilled to learn you had such a great time with us.

We look forward to welcoming you back for a longer stay in the not too distant future.

We would love for you to share your experience on Facebook, just search for Sanctuary Retreats.

Warm regards
Sanctuary Retreats
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero

Address: Bordering Chobe National Park, Chobe National Park, Botswana
Location: Botswana > North-West District > Chobe National Park
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 20 Specialty Lodging in Chobe National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero 4*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This lodge is located on the edge of Chobe National Park, home to the largest remaining population of elephants in the world. With just 15 thatched cottages, Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero boasts the first full-service tree-house spa on the Botswana safari circuit. Each cottage has an indoor and outdoor shower, as well as a private garden where a candlelit dinner can be served under the African sky. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sanctuary Chobe Chilwero Hotel Chobe National Park

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