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“Just dreamy... we want to return!”

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Emily Moon River Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 26, 2009

We spent three nights at Emily Moon and fell in love with the place. The rooms were perfect. The restaurant is the best in town. We ventured elsewhere one night and wished we were back there instead. Can't recommend it highly enough!

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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1  Thank Baldwingirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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409 - 415 of 450 reviews

Reviewed April 18, 2009

We only had 2 nights at Emily Moon River Lodge we would recommend at least 3 if touring South Africa. There is plenty to do in the Plettenberg Bay/Knysna Area and Emily Moon is the perfect base to do this and also to relax. The staff were all so friendly and helpful, and every morning the owners would come down to breakfast to help you organize your day if needed, they always had plenty of ideas and always considered your needs and the weather.
The rooms were beautifully furnished with an amazing view of the river and the wetland valley and if you feel like a little adventure you can take Emily Moons canoes out along the Bitou river. The food and wine were all of a very high standard with a candlelight ambience in the evenings. Nothing was too much trouble.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Barbados
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 3, 2009

Emily Moon River Lodge, managed by Simon and Diane Valentine on behalf of their son is as close to paradise you can get. The very warm and personal welcome that you receive from Adri the moment you arrive sets the scene and from there it only gets even better. The rooms are huge and beautifully furnished. We had lodge 3 which has a split level layout, with the most comfortable king-size bed being on the raised level whilst the lower level accommodated the lounge area which has a comfortable settee and satellite TV. In the lounge is a well-filled mini-bar, fridge, complimentary tea and coffee (both instant and filter types) home-made cookies and fresh fruit. The lounge also gives access, via large glass patio doors, to the very wide and totally private balcony
What made the lounge special was the open log fire which was freshly laid and prepared daily and which one only had to add a match to the firelighters before one could enjoy the cosiness that comes from sitting by a log fire at night ipping a final night cap after a delicious meal.
The balconies on all the lodges are constructed in such a way that they are totally private and cannot be overlooked. They run the full width of the lounge and bathroom and are equipped with easy chairs and table so one can sit watching the meandering Bitou river and the numerous birdlife that exists. The Bird Books and idenfying charts that are helpfully provided in the room assist one to identify the birds that are seen.
The bathroom was also spacious with large shower, separate bath, twin wash basins and fluffy soft towels and robes. The bathroom also gives additional access onto the private balcony and a further ‘outdoor’ shower.

Dining at the Emily Moon is also a a most enjoyable experience with excellent food and panoramic views. Although at times, with all the tables being occupied, it could be somewhat hectic but that added to the buzziness. . Emily’s Restaurant is one of the most popular in Plettenberg Bay with those who are not residing at Emily Moon sometimes having to make reservations weeks if not months in advance. Fortunately, anyone staying at Emily Moon is guaranteed a table at dinner should they so wish, although there are a number of good and interesting restaurants nearby in Plet Bay which Simon or Diane are happy to recommend. We ate at Emily’s both nights we were there and the menu and dishes were excellent. Some of the dishes we enjoyed inluded Ostrich Carpaccio, beef bearnaise, medallions of Kudu and the freshly caught line fish. All were served with the most delicious jus or sauce and well-cooked vegetable accompaniments. The desserts, especially the crème brulee and the home made trio of apple, pear and mango sorbets were an excellent finale to a delicious meal Emily’s also have a good and reasonably priced wine list but are also happy to allow you to bring your own for which you pay a very reasonable corkage charge.

The more leisurely breakfast is substantial with an extensive cold buffet of cereals, fresh fruit, juices, cheeses, meats, home made breads and the most delicious freshly baked cheese scones baked to the owner Diane’s special recipe. If one wishes, a freshly cooked breakfast is also offered. After such a sumptuous breakfast, lunch seemed totally unnecessary, although lunch at Emily’s appeared to extremely popular with most of the tables taken by locals and visitors to Plet Bay.

At breakfast Simon, armed with maps and pamphlets would very helpfully suggest and recommend a variety of activities or sights to enjoy. You could of course just decide to chill out on your balcony, in the swimming pool or take one of the canoes that are provided free of charge for a gentle paddle along the gently flowing Bitou River.

To top it all each day your car would be washed whilst you were breakfasting. The whole atmosphere of hospitality provided by Simon, Diane and the entire team at Emily Moon’s made one feel like a welcome and personal guest in a friend's country house.

We cannot wait to return to Emily Moon and this time we will be staying for longer than 3 days..

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank DBtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 9, 2009

Stayed here for 2 nights, our room was stunning (I have since found out it was the Honeymoon Suite). Great views from the deck. Had lunch in the restaurant and it was excellent. However, the restaurant was quite hectic in the evenings and we didn't have the greatest service - on the first night, our starters arrived whilst we were still having cocktails on the deck - we had even got around to ordering our wine and were not offered water either. Food was great though. Second night we ordered our food and it didn't turn up after 40 mins - turned out the waiter had forgotten to submit the order. By this time we had drunk our wine so I asked for a bottle on the house and they willingly obliged. Again, food was great when it arrived - think they needed more staff as it was the weekend.

Simon the owner was very helpful with suggestions for our full day here and also where to eat for lunch.

Had no trouble with mossies - there was Tabard spray and lotion provided in the room.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Helen007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 3, 2009

Adri greeted us warmly and it was no problem at all that we arrived very early in order to drop off our bags and get changed before we set off for a walk.

We were very happy with our spacious detached room and with our private deck with a lovely view,

We ate in the restaurant in the evening and it was very lively with friendly service and good food.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank sportsfanHerts_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 30, 2009

Emily Moon River Lodge is without any doubt my favorite holiday destination in South Africa.

I arrived at the lodge late evening on the 16th of December, to be met by Adri (receptionist) who had stayed on late to personally check me in after a fairly long drive from Cape Town. She efficiently checked me into my room - No 1. To call it a room would be inaccurate... it is a vary large bedroom with an open plan lounge area leading onto a generous balcony with the most spectacular views. The clever design is such that each room has it's own view so you are not over-looked or looking over the adjacent rooms. The bathroom is also spacious with lovely fluffy towels, underfloor heating and a great view from the bath.

I ate alone in the restaurant on the first night as my friends were only arriving the following day. I can highly recommend having a "sundowner" on the deck (off the restaurant) which has amazing views of the Bitou river. There seemed to be a migration of birds going by as I sipped on my delicious cocktail made by Lucky the Barman. I could have ordered everything off the dinner menu, but settled for the Crab Cakes as my starter, Fillet Bearnaise for my main course and finally the Creme Brulee for pudding! All the courses were absolutely delightful. Larry the Chef is quite the charming, and delights his patrons with the occasional blast of operatic chorus from the kitchen every now and then.

The following morning I enjoyed coffee and scrumptious home made biscuits on my deck before going down to the restaurant for breakfast. There is a large buffet table set out with fresh fruit, fruit salad, yoghurts, flap jacks, pancakes, cereals, cheeses, cold meats, scones, muffins, jams and fresh fruit juices... then comes the cooked breakfast... porkies, bacon, eggs, toast, mushrooms... who needs lunch after all that? Simon and Di (the hosts) were most helpful with advice on places to go and things to see in the area and the lodge will assist with all your bookings.

The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, and lodge guests are given priority on table bookings.

The most striking thing for me about Emily Moon River Lodge was that although I was having a Sea Side holiday and going to the beach every day, each night as I was sitting on my deck admiring the view, I felt as though I was on a lovely Bush Break... the best of both worlds!

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled with friends
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1  Thank BrigSunnySA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2009

Stayed in room number 2 for 3 nights in December. The first morning I took a shower, put on my robe to find a bat inside inside it. My husband helped me get it outside. Explained to Simon, the owner, what had happened, who expressed surprise and apologised. The second night, just nodding off, heard something flying around the room, found 3 bats in the room. Got an apology and found a cheap bottle of plonk in the room when we came back from our day out. The third night we had 5 bats in our room. We got no compensation from Simon and Di. We paid our restaurant bill in full and continued on to Kanon Kop in Knysna, which was like hell to heaven. Two nights without sleep and worry had really taken it's toll and I needed another night to recover from it all. The restaurant is the focus at this place and they had little time for us. It took them 2 days to look at the tv in our room after asking several times. We really did feel like an inconvenience. The restaurant is good but could do with a good clean.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled with family
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5  Thank JaneIlkley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Emily Moon River Lodge

Address: P.O. Box 1936 | Rietvlei Road, Plettenberg Bay 6600, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Plettenberg Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 73 Specialty Lodging in Plettenberg Bay
Price Range: $146 - $316 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Emily Moon River Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Where luxury and peace are to be found in a sweeping river valley. Where the views encompass a wetland, winding river and distant mountains and where the call of the Fish Eagle will forever remind you of the vast skies of Africa. Embracing the southern bank of the Bitou River in Plettenberg Bay, Emily Moon River Lodge is a small, exclusive lodge. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Emily Moon River Hotel Plettenberg Bay

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