We spent six nights here on our honeymoon. It is a bit hard to write a review of Hilltop Lodge as our experience was a bit ambivalent. First the positives: the location is out of this world. Jaw droppingly beautiful. The house is secluded, perched on a cliff above Victoria bay. You can see the rolling Atlantic breakers from your bed, watch the sun set on the mountains, admire the beatuiful gardens during a delicious breakfast on the terrace... and generally the quality of the rooms and fittings is very high (though noise insulation was a problem - noisy pipes). We received champagne on arrival to celebrate our honeymoon too. The Garden route activities are all within easy reach and Wilderness is full of lovely restaurants.
On the downside, we just felt that compared to other similar priced lodges in the area, the level of service was pretty poor. There was never anyone on reception and when you called for service, either there was nobody there or made to feel the owner/manager was doing you a big favour. Given that there are no phones in the rooms and the place is pretty out of the way, you need assistance to book taxis, activities and restuarants (which must be pre-booked). You are left to your own devices! We also asked to leave a night early to break up our journey back to Capetown as it is quite long. This request was met by inflexibility (technically this was within the owner's rights, but other hotels are generally flexible in non-peak times) and we had to pay all nights. In the end we stayed all six nights, but it did leave us with a bit of an awkward feeling towards the place.
Overall, I would think twice about booking this place again given the other options in the area - I'd consider staying right in Victoria Bay or in one of the new boutique hotels in Wilderness. I'm sad to say that, as I loved the location and I think Hilltop could be absolutely amazing if only the owner and staff really knew how to provide the kind of personalised service that such a stunning location deserves.
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- Also Known As:
- Hilltop Country Hotel