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“Perfection!”

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Esiweni Luxury Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Perfection!”
Reviewed January 2, 2014

I was treated to a surprise evening at esiweni as part of my fiance's romantic proposal. I can say without a doubt it was the perfect location!

On arriving ewert was so
welcoming. Esiweni had the most incredible views of the Sunday River and the rooms are all beautiful.

We were treated to fantastic game drives with ewert. He went out of his way on our morning drive to surprise us to a viewing of three male lions on a fresh kill. Ewert went out his way to ensure our engagement weekend was incredible. All the other staff were also so friendly and welcoming. Nothing was too much to ask.

The food at esiweni is
Also without fault. Everything was absolutely delicious. My fiance also treated me to a dinner in the private wine Cellar which was romantic and beautiful.

I cannot wait to celebrate many anniversaries at this very special lodge

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank ClaudiaDAShaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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190 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Key Largo, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
149 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2013

All I can say is that we spent a wonderful week at Esiweni over the Christmas holidays. The lodge is fantastic, the chalets very nice, the views spectacular. The small venue (10 guests max) keeps everything private and cozy. The food, well, it's incredible. Nonni, the chef, outdoes herself each time. I had asked for special low-carb menu options, which was provided to perfection. You can also either have your meals at your own table or if you wish to eat with other guests that you have met, they will also arrange that. No request too big, no request too small, just ask. The entire staff is very welcoming.

In the summer, your wake up call is 0500, game drive starts at 0530. When you return at 0830, you can relax before breakfast is served at 0900. Then you have the rest of the morning onto the afternoon to relax, enjoy the views and the infinity pool, read in the comfortable main lodge or do nothing at all. You can also ask about going to the Kwa Cheetah breeding project, also on Nambiti. Lunch is served at 1400, afternoon game drive starts at 1530. You return around 3 hours later or so, drinks/socializing in the main lodge at 1900, dinner at 2000. Fabulous schedule, giving you time to relax (and catch up on your rest!) as well as stay active with all the lodge activities.

Ewert is now the full-time lodge manager, but will also take you on game drives when Leonie is away. Leonie is the new full-time ranger and is fantastic! We were fortunate to have both of them take us out, showing us not only all the wonderful wildlife (excellent sightings of 4 of the Big 5, including our first sighting of a black rhino), but also the small things that we enjoy seeing and learning about in the bush. Nambiti is a stunning reserve with such a great diversity of habitat and animals. We saw many things there for the first time.

I will say this, nothing you will ever see in a photograph will do Esiweni justice or do the Nambiti Reserve justice. I can also say, in my opinion, that the lodge has the best view in Nambiti overlooking the Sundays river. There is a beautiful waterfall very close as well.

So just go. You won't regret it.

Room Tip: We were in the family unit, closest to the lodge. These are two identical units connected with a f...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank DLady69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 8, 2013

Just could not fault the experience. Very quite, peaceful. Food was outstanding. Recommended by work colleagues while on a business trip to Africa, My wife would have loved the place, Could have been romantic. Game drive was fantastic, Spend two hours with the lions... Scary, but simply amazing, Felt extremely lucky.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
1 Thank Greg K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed November 19, 2013

We found this hotel by pure chance, and now I am determined to go back. Every detail was perfect - except maybe the weather! The rooms were gorgeous, the people so friendly and helpful; our guide Ewert was incredibly knowledgeable about the animals, and was patient with all our questions! Every detail was wonderful - hot towels on arrival along with a hot drink, a carefully thought-out snack for the safari (the day before we were told it had been gin and tonics, but this day we got coffee and hot chocolate with marshmallows because it was so cold!), a lovely fire in the living room in the evening to help us enjoy a cocktail before dinner, and truly delicious and well planned meals - both dinner and a very abundant breakfast. The young lady who was the chef said she had not been trained professionally, and yet the food was excellent - and I am a chef! I would recommend this with all my heart. We were only there for two days, but we will certainly go back with all the family. Thank you to all of you at Eisweni Lodge.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Frances B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2013

We loved the park and its animals and birds. We had an expert and helpful guide, Ewart. Nothing was too much trouble for him. The staff were most attentive and always smiling. The food was excellent.

Unfortunately I think I left my black velvet suit there and perhaps you could ask them if anyone has found it. I have already sent an e-mail to them so the matter may already be receiving attention.Many thanks.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
1 Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed October 18, 2013

This was the second time there and the quality of the lodge is still the same. Can only accommodate 10 guests. The entire lodge is just built at the edge of a cliff, overlooking the river and part of the game reserve.
Rooms are big, well furnished with large bed, bathtub and outside shower as well, huge balcony to enjoy the gorgeous view.
Food is excellent and for each meal the chef is coming with couple of suggestions to make sure you will enjoy it.
Welcome is certainly the most appreciable part of this place, Magda and Natie are perfect guests, always ready to assist and make everything possible to make your stay the best possible. Same for game drives which are really nice. Nambiti is a not so big game reserve but we take the time to go everywhere and see everything.
Really a place to go for few days.
Last point there is no network there so you can't even be bothered by phone calls or emails.

Room Tip: All rooms have tremendous view on the river, but Honey Moon suite is certainly the best as further a...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank XavierCh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed September 9, 2013

We had a brilliant two days at the lodge, Natie and Magda were great hosts, very cozy rooms with comfortable electric blankets for the cold nights, Nonni was a great chef spoilt us with some lovely food. The safari rides were great we saw the big 5 and Natie's talent in spotting them was extraordinary so was his intense knowledge about the terrain and wildlife. All in all an exciting couple of days, DO NOT MISS the Chetah project a must see and must do event. Will surely return the stay was more than worth every Rand.

Cheers

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank pravinamin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Esiweni Luxury Safari Lodge

Property: Esiweni Luxury Safari Lodge
Address: Nambiti Private Game Reserve | Elandslaagte, Ladysmith 3371, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Ladysmith
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 17 Specialty Lodging in Ladysmith
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Esiweni Lodge offers five, luxurious, individual suites. Each has an indoor shower, magnificent views from the bath and a private, outdoor shower. Two of the suites are interconnected for use as a family unit. Each suite has underfloor heating for cold winter nights and overhead fans for warm, summer evenings. Our honeymoon suite has a private, outdoor bath with stunning views across the valley.Fully retracting patio doors open onto private decks where you can enjoy the majestic views of the Sundays River, waterfall and valley below. The decor of the main lodge is elegant depicting a colonial safari theme. Large, stone hearths warm the lounge and dining areas on cold, winter nights. During good weather, outdoor dining overlooking the valley is served on the vast, wooden deck. An intercom system is in place to connect each suite to the lodge staff in case of emergencies. Safes are also provided. ... more   less 
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