Great atmosphere - Bad morals. The first thing that caught our attention was its great ambience. The hotel is a living museum and it does take you back to the colonial days.
The second thing, however, was a note on the table of our room, "Thou Shalt Not Tempt" - that should have sent alarm bells ringing loudly and immediately. More on that later.
Anyway, my wife and I stayed there for 2 nights. Service was mixed - professional but tended to be always trying to sell you something. For a "leading hotel" and for the price, the quality of cuisine was somewhat disappointing (even after accepting the lack of produce available in such economic circumstances, the cuisine itself would not be what we considered "leading").
It offers a great view of the bridge. Having high tea on the terrace does bring you back to the colonial days.
Vic falls was amazing. You will not need a guided tour. Pay US$20 entrance fee and exploring it yourself will do just fine. Bring your own raincoat otherwise, you will be charged US$3 to hire one, and you will need it.
However, our experience quickly turned sour when we discovered that US$40 was stolen from our room. Here is how it happened:
We had our passports and money locked in the safe, which was working just fine on the first day. One the second day, after I opened it to get something out, I was not able to lock it again. Since we were just heading out to the terrace for dinner, I thought it would be ok to leave it opened for just a couple of hours.
Upon our return to the room, we found a nice hand written note saying that since the safe was unlocked, they were required by law to remove all the contents from the safe and keep them "safe" for us. They also left us a plate of nuts and chips that was not there the night before.
When we got our contents back, we found that two US$20 notes were missing from a stack of twenties (totalling $280). It was obvious that between reporting the unlocked safe and the money having being returned to us, someone had pocketed some money. We notified the management of the hotel. We were shocked by the manager's reaction. He showed no interest whatsoever to help us on the matter. He basically insisted that it was impossible that anyone could have taken the money. He pretty much told us that he trusted his staff more than he trusted us.
Yes. Thou Shalt Not Tempt. They mean business when they say it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- For more than a century, The Victoria Falls Hotel has been the address of choice for Royal Families, statesmen, celebrities and discerning travellers as it occupies a fine location from which to explore the magical wonders of untamed Africa. From the thundering Victoria Falls at its threshold, to the big 5 that roam freely less than 5kms away, the “Grande Dame” provides an experience like no other. Less than a ten minute walk away from the Victoria Falls Rainforest, this is one hotel that can truly claim to be unique.The Victoria Falls Hotel’s grand Edwardian architecture evokes the spirit of a bygone era. The courtyard and entrance completed in 1915, with flowering shrubs, palms and stately mango trees picturesquely reflected in the water lily ponds. The chic elegance of the marble floored reception area sets the tone for the style and sophistication synonymous with The Victoria Falls Hotel. Many a guest has marveled at the magnificent views seen from The Victoria Falls Hotel and the experience begins with the sun rising beneath the mist of one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Combining old-fashioned, traditional elegance with warm and welcoming decor, the main lounge provides a perfect backdrop for relaxing with friends, whilst the Bulawayo Room offers serenity and seclusion in surroundings of exceptional comfort and luxury. There’s a well-appointed curio shop specializing in colonial memorabilia. The Palm Lounge, bright and cool, is a quiet and secluded corner in which to relax, read or write. Throughout its many corridors and alcoves, the hotel’s long and fascinating history is depicted through photographs, posters and artistic impressions, reflecting the past glories of the empire. The quaint Chapel, built in 1929, has been the venue of many weddings and The Victoria Falls Hotel remains a favourite destination for honeymooners from around the world. Echoing its glorious past, The Victoria Falls Hotel’s traditional rooms and suites are truly a 5 star experience. Style and sophistication are trademarks of the hotel’s executive suites, which are luxuriously appointed with decor being warm, inviting and rich with tradition. Deluxe guest rooms are spacious, well-appointed and furnished in traditional Edwardian style with an "out of Africa" feel. All rooms are air-conditioned with every modern amenity including digital satellite television, direct dial telephone and a personal safe. Cast-iron, roll-top bath tubs in the stables wing rooms and suites turn the bathroom into a haven of sumptuous relaxation. All three restaurants have ideal locations, making dining around the hotel a memorable experience. Lavish buffets at the casual Jungle Junction restaurant are but one of the many choices for breakfast and dinner. Stanley’s Terrace is an excellent option for light meals throughout the day and is an absolute must for the infamous High Tea served every afternoon, with spectacular views of The Victoria Falls Bridge and the Falls themselves. Later, enjoy the hotel’s legendary cocktails or a gin and tonic in Stanley’s Bar while listening to the roar of the mighty Falls. Evening dining at the open-air jungle Junction restaurant offers an unforgettable experience with a fusion of flavours of Africa. Entertainment from ethnic groups epitomises the spirit of Africa; Jungle Junction is the ideal venue for incentive groups. Enjoy dinner and dancing in the elegant, Edwardian Livingstone Room, with classic a la carte and table d’hote menus. Whilst the Livingstone Room reflects the century old hotel’s style of grandeur and opulence, the dress code has been slightly relaxed for the convenience of the guest and it is no longer essential for gentlemen to wear jacket and tie for dinner. A fine selection of wines and liqueurs are available to complement the chef’s wonderfully innovative creations. Cool off and enjoy the splendour of the glorious colonial swimming pool set amongst the beautiful landscaped gardens, overlooking the famous Victoria Falls Bridge with the Batoka Gorge below. Massage treatments are available in the airy gazebos located around the poolside or in the tranquility of the hotel’s gardens. The Pullman Suite and the Centenary Room are well-appointed with exquisite antique furnishing, adding a new dimension of sophistication to conferencing. Suitable for meetings of between 8 and 40 people, conference packages (including spouses’ programs) are available. The Victoria Falls are approximately 1,690 metres wide with an estimated 550 million litres of water per minute cascading over a 111 metre chasm. It must be highlighted that Zimbabwe has 16 out of the 19 prime viewing spots and is where you will find the "untamed" Victoria Falls Rainforest with its many winding pathways and trails. In 1855 David Livingstone, arguably the first European to see the awesome Falls, remarked "scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight." The Victoria Falls have been declared a World Heritage Site and enjoy special conservation status. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Victoria Falls Hotel