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“Pass on the River Chalets!”

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Hippo Hollow Country Estate
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Hazyview
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Pass on the River Chalets!”
Reviewed September 6, 2012

We spent one night here after driving through the Panorama Route, staying in one of the river chalets. After reading the positive reviews on Hippo Hollow, I'm thinking our negative experience may be isolated, but I wanted to share. First, the chalet had not central A/C and the windows needed to be kept shut to keep mosquitos out. This resulted in an uncomfortable, musty sleeping environment. In addition, there was a strong smell of raw sewage so sitting on the back porch wasn't pleasant . . . .even though we would have enjoyed watching the hippos from there. The next day as we were waiting for our transport, we opened the windows to let in some fresh air, but with the fresh air also came monkeys into our chalet. :)

There were the remains of bugs in our bed, the linens were scratchy and the mattresses uncomfortable. The food in the restaurant was ok, but not really good. The staff was very pleasant and helpful, and allowed us a late checkout as we waited for our transfer (much appreciated). Of all the places we stayed in South Africa and Zimbabwe, this was the only miss.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank adas773
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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969 reviews from our community

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johannesburg
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed August 27, 2012

We stayed at Hippo Hollow this last weekend. The property is really nice for a short stay; room was adequate although the pillows could be improved on (1 very hard one and 1 very soft one, found it difficult to get comfortable). The bar and restaurant service lacked completely though – the bar attendant took over 15min's to go and find a bottle of gin so I could have a G&T at sunset (most popular sunset drink). At dinner we were seated in the restaurant for 15min's with no staff attending and eventually I got up to go and look for a waiter. Our drinks order took another 10min's even though there were only 2 tables to tend to at that time. Our dinner was set-menu...we ordered the minestrone soup and our waiter promptly brought us tomato soup...the chef came out after we queried it and said they didn't make minestrone soup so it's tomato instead. There was a general lack in on-site management with a trainee staff member left in charge to manage everything from A-Z – not his fault but he didn’t have the experience needed. A bit of a disappointment as the property has a lot going for it but I'd rather avoid the service issue next time and stay elsewhere.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank riaan-ha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chesterfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed August 18, 2012

What a wonderful place!! We travelled as a couple with 2 friends and we had river chalets No. 11/12 for 13 nights (a bit unheard of a most people only stay for a few days) but we found lots to do Panorama Route/Endangered Species and 3 full day and 1 half day safari plus an eve.ning safari to Sabi Sands all booked through the brilliant Ann & John Evans at Regent Safaris they really went the extra mile to make sure all out trips went smoothly we would recommend them most highly. We booked through Virgin Holidays and the rep Michelle was very very helpful, altogether a fabulous trip. We did also see the resident Hippo quite a few times as well as crocodiles, monitor lizards, fish eagles, monkeys and many other species of birds.

Room Tip: Go for the river chalets they are fabulous....
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Rebecca W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 18, 2012 via mobile

We have recently returned from a 2week stay at Hippo Hollow and I can honestly say it was high on my list of favourite places to stay. Because we stayed for two weeks, we were treated like we were really special, nothing was too much trouble for the very friendly staff and management. My sister is disabled and the rep even went that extra mile to find us a wheelchair for her to use during our stay. Within a few hours of being in our prime positioned river chalet we had seen crocodile, fish eagles, elephant, and hippo all from the comfort of our verahnda. The chalets are very in keeping with the surrounding area but are a little chilly on a winters night, although plenty of very snuggly blankets were provided. Because people rarely stay for longer than a few days, the menu in the restaurant is the same every day, this didn't worry us though because the chef was very accommodating and would cook anything we asked for within reason. The thing that made our stay even more exciting was the fact that, in my opinion, we chose the best providers of game drives in the area, Regent Safaris, which is run by ex pats John and Ann, they make you feel very special and their guide Gavin must be one of the best in the area. When we left we felt as if we were leaving family behind. Thank you to everyone for making our holiday a once in a lifetime experience.

Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Margaret B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shropshire
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed August 17, 2012

Though I didn't actually see one. I'd gone to bed. They tend to visit after dark.

There are also crocodiles - and I did see one of those. Luckily it was a) small and b) asleep.

Lovely, big rooms - a bit chilly in August, but there are very warm extra blankets provided for wimps like me. And if you are a smoker, you can smoke in the rooms. Well, you could in mine.

As others have said, the service is excellent. Warm and friendly. The food is good and is fresh and tasty. The buffet dinner is very good value at just over £10 for 3 courses.

I wouldn't recommend the Shangaan Cultural Evening one bit, though. Money I wish I hadn't spent, but that is my only reservation and it's completely optional.

Some brave souls used the pool. Though the days were hot, the pool definitely wasn't!

Those who visited The Elephant Sanctuary thoroughly enjoyed the experience, but it seemed a bit 'circus' to me, so I didn't go.

Kruger may well have been the best day of my (longish) life to date. Be warned - if you start when the park opens and it isn't summer, wrap up well. At least 3 layers more than you think you'll need but also make sure the final layer is a vest top. And malaria pills are not necessary in winter. Don't waste your money on them.

Room Tip: The chalets look lovely, but I had a standard room which was huge. All the upper rooms have balconie...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Beth L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Essex, UK
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed August 7, 2012

We stayed at Hippo Hollow for a week earlier this month for our honeymoon and absolutely loved it! we had a river chalet lodge, which was fantastic, over looking the river, we didn't see the resident hippos as the river water level was very low, but we did often see the elephants come down on the other side of the bank. It was a great location about 15 minutes drive to Kruger National Park and a 2 minute walk to a few local shops and restaurants. We booked all our trips through Angie at Seasons in Africa (Thomsons) who was fantastic and we did some brilliant trips, a morning bush walk, highly recommend this to those that would feel comfortable walking around the bush with men with rifles, we did full day safari and early morning safari in Kruger and night safari in Sabi Sands - very different from Kruger. We did a Panorama day trip where we saw the Blyde River Canyon and the three Rondavels (most amazing view!!) The Potholes, Lisbon Waterfalls (Beautiful) Pilgrims Rest (very odd place but good to look at) and few other places. We were also going to do hot air balloon ride but did not have the right weather conditions on 3 days to do this, but the booking agent (Angie) was great in giving us more than one chance to do this, although we loved that it meant we got to fit in an extra safari at last minute which was great! Basically we loved it, and is a great holiday!!

Room Tip: Take some medicines, you will pick up a tummy bug along the way!
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Simone_Traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2012

My partner and i stayed at Hippo Hollow for 8 nights in June. The hotel is clean, tidy in beautiful surroundings. The staff are very friendly and helpful. There is not a great deal to do in the area. must really hire a car and look into the area before you go. Good for a relaxing break. We had a good day out at Elephant Whispers which is a five minute walk from Hotel. We also ate at the small shopping centre Perrys Bridge which is also a short walk from hotel. We booked with Virgin and found Michelle the virgin rep really helpful and friendly. Looking back i would still go to Hippo Hollow but not for 8 nights.

Room Tip: River rooms have good view, can sometimes see the elephants from Elephant Whispers at the other side...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank shelle09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hippo Hollow Country Estate

Property: Hippo Hollow Country Estate
Address: Po Box 2304, Hazyview, | Mpumalanga Kruger Area, Hazyview 1242, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Mpumalanga > Hazyview
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Hazyview
#3 Family Hotel in Hazyview
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Hippo Hollow Country Estate 3*
Number of rooms: 91
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Also Known As:
Hippo Hollow Country Estate Hotel Hazyview
Hippo Hollow Country Estate Hazyview, South Africa - Mpumalanga

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