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Pestana Kruger Lodge
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Malelane
Reviewed January 23, 2014

This is not my first review for the hotel, however, due to a recent stay I think it is relevant for me to review it again.
To be fair I’ve been going to this hotel since I was 14 (now I’m 23) and I’ve been a guest with my family and also alone. Although I had good memories it is hard to erase the last (2) stays I had there in 2012 and last week (2014). The hotel is definitely worn out, needs maitenance urgently. Don’t get me wrong, the Pestana group is one of my favourites and I definitely enjoy their chain when I’m in Europe and South America (establishments tend to be newer and looked after) but its not the case for the Pestana Kruger and its a shame given that its location and surroundings are definitly worth 5 stars.
The positives are definitely the location, the landscape (views of the river and if u’re lucky enough you can do animal spotting through the balcony), the welcoming staff and I can probably say the spa (good treatments).
The negatives that I encounter in my last say (as you can see from the photos I uploaded) are cleanliness (which was a huge issue for me) and general maintenance. My parents always told me that “ If you are going on a holiday it needs to be better than home” and quite frankly and solely based on my last two experiences I would pass an invite (free) to this hotel.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled solo
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Thank 15theos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marco B, Gerente at Pestana Kruger Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded February 4, 2014

Taking in consideration the expectations of clients on the modern days it is bit disappointing for the client as it is true that the lodge doesn't have plasma TV, fridge in the rooms and all the modern facilities for a hotel in town.

The public areas of the hotel are nit and tidy. However the floor is old. In general I would say is not a modern hotel.
With regards to the package sold being different with the reality there is correspondence going on between the Agent and our Sales office in Johannesburg.

We apologise the inconvenience caused by the way the expectation of the clients weren't meet.

Kind Regards

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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168 - 174 of 396 reviews

Reviewed January 22, 2014

We stayed at Pestana for 2 nights. The rooms were beautiful. The restaurant had seats overlooking the river and you could see wild animals in the vicinity. It is located very close to the Malelane gate of Kruger park making entry to the park very convenient and fast. The staff was mostly friendly. Dinner is served at the lodge and the food was good for the most part. On our second night there, they apparently ran out of vegetables in their kitchen and the vegetable dish was over at 7.15pm. My mom being a vegetarian had nothing left to eat there. The chef was kind enough to cook a stir fried mushroom, tomato dish for her but the poor management of resources was quite bad. They also lack staff as there were only 3 waiters for over a 100 guests and the service was slow at the buffet. They also ran out of dishes and soup bowls for a while. The AC in my parents' room was leaking water and the flush in my room was leaking continuously. This was brought to their attention but it wasnt resolved. I guess mostly it is due to lack of staff. Apart from this, it was a great experience. The packed breakfast on the day of our day-long safari was terrific as well. I presume they might have more staff and resources during busy seasons.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with family
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Thank Ajit9988
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2014

We were 3 couples, the rooms were nice, clean and well positioned, right by the pool. We found that the Europeans that visit, get towels from reception to reserve the sunbeds whilst they go to the Kruger Park for the day, then come back and expect to have "their" sunbeds (reminds me of my trips to Spain many years ago). The hotel should prohibit this, as we, on two occasions removed the towels and stayed around the pool for 2 hours, we swam and sunbathed, to be told that it was their Position on their return from a trip to the Kruger :-(
The aircon in the room was faulty, did not work properly the whole time and left an ugly dirty stain on the wall. The telephone never worked the entire time. The Cocktails were packet R50 a drink and dreadful YUK!!
Apart from that, we had a great time, food good, nice staff.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Alison S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2013

My husband and I stayed at the Pestana for two nights and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The establishment is neat and clean and we had the best room in the lodge (Lion room 110). Our room was on the perimeter of the lodge and we watched the elephants grazing from our patio (what an experience). My only suggestion for the rooms is to install insect screens on the opening doors and windows, as it would have been nice to sleep with the windows open and hear the bush sounds. The main lodge is very welcoming and the staff were friendly but the restaurant was a bit of disappointment. Overall a good experience and a nice start for a trip into the Kruger National Park!

Room Tip: The Lion Rooms on the perimeter that overlook the crocodile river. The top floors are also best.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Toni G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2013 via mobile

Stayed in the Hotel for 3 nights. Wonderful location on the edge of the Krugar Park. You can sit and have your breakfast while looking out over the animals in the Krugar Park. Breakfast was very good and the buffet dinner at night time was nice and reasonably priced. Only downfall is the only place you can access the Internet is in the lobby.

Stayed: November 2013, traveled on business
1  Thank CoddGolf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2013

Not sure how this lodge rates itself with four stars....but having said that my wife and I had a very nice five day stay.We often visit the Kruger Park and have always stayed in the Park but have got fed up with the dismal accommodation and service...... the Pestana Lodge proved to be much better. It is situated just outside the Melalani Gate and close to probably the best viewing in the whole park....we saw the big five on two days.
The accomodation is separate units within extensive lawned grounds. We treated ourselves to the super suite which was really good value, roomy and clean with its own little enclosed garden.
The food was OK....nothing special with .a buffet only on busy nights
The staff were attentive and very friendly.
You can stay in much more expensive luxury safari lodges, but if you want good value then this is the place for you.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank richardandjeannette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 19, 2013

I went to Pestana Kruger Lodge with my grand father to visit the Kruger National Park for one night only.

When we arrived at the hotel we went straight away to the night drive game at the Kruger and it was an amazing experience.
The driver was very friendly and knew everything about the animals we saw and gave us some good tips about the Kruger National Park. I even lost my cell phone in the middle of the drive and just realized it when I was already back at the hotel but we went back in the car and we drove back in the Kruger and found the phone!

After that we had diner in the restaurant of the hotel. The staff was very friendly and the food was nothing special but it was good (buffet).

Then we went to the room which was very clean, modern and comfortable! The bathroom was also very clean which is for me very important.
We left the next day after having a good breakfast (buffet).

I truly recommend the Pestana Kruger Lodge to anyone who wants to have a relaxing stay at the Kruger Park.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Nicolas L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pestana Kruger Lodge

Address: R570 Riverside Road | 150 meters from Malelane Gate, Kruger National Park, Malelane 1320, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Mpumalanga > Malelane
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Malelane
Price Range: $120 - $189 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Pestana Kruger Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pestana Kruger is a 4 star hotel, situated in South Africa just 70m from the Southern entrance to Kruger National Park and only 150m from Malelane Gate, one of the most important access point to the park. Is surrounded by marvelous gardens and offers a fantastic view of the Crocodile River, where hippos and several wildlife species can be seen. The hotel has many special facilities that includes two outdoor pools and one indoor pool, a restaurant and two bars and one SPA that offers a range of body treatments and a Turkish bath. The rooms have views over the river and gardens, decorated with African motifs. They all have balconies and internet Wi-Fi. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pestana Kruger Hotel Malelane

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