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“Cold”

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The Phantom Forest Eco-Reserve
Ranked #10 of 30 Hotels in Knysna
Certificate of Excellence
Antwerp, Belgium
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Cold”
Reviewed September 26, 2013

If we would choose one word for this stay, we choose “cold”. There was not one moment where we felt like they were happy to have guests. Not at the arrival desk, in the bar, in the restaurant. It was a very cold atmosphere. In the restaurant, they even brought our umbrella’s to us at 9PM, it was clear we had to leave. The only warm and kind person we’ve met there was the therapist at the wellness. It was nice to meet her.

Then the temperature also was cold the whole stay. The first night we didn’t sleep well because it was so cold and in the morning we had cold water. When we went to the reception to ask for warm water they asked us if we had recharged our cellphones. Because then it can be normal that the water was cold?? It was cold in the room, the restaurant, the bar, we never putted our jacked off. Luckily the next morning the water was warm. No idea what went wrong. When we left and got in the car, it was so nice to have warm again.

It is sooooo regrettable because it is an amazing place! It really is a stunning accommodation and the food really is amazing! Breakfast and dinner are unforgettable. I constantly choose to forget about the service and the people there and I really enjoyed this amazing place on earth. It is built beautifully with so many stunning details.

We were glad to leave and that is really sad for such a beautiful place.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank BoCaro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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350 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (49)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Enschede, The Netherlands
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed September 24, 2013

Excellent breakfast and dinner with a different menu every day.
Very nice location with view of Knysna.
Luxurious stay in the middle of a forest. Lots of birds to see and hear.
Excellent service and full of nice surprises.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank Koen D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stevenage, UK
Level 6 Contributor
142 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2013 via mobile

Unlike the last unlucky reviewer we had two nights here in the Upper Tree Camp and were completely satisfied. The accommodation was superbly comfortable and staff attentive giving the impression of doing their utmost to make our stay happy. The food was some of the best we have ever had in S Africa. Yes, it is expensive but we felt we had real value for our money. The views were fantastic and sitting in the sunshine drinking gorgeous Pinotage looking out over the lagoon was a high spot of our all too brief stay. We stayed here at the recommendation of friends and like them can thoroughly recommend a stay here as a real treat.

Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank JandB39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Somerset West, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 20, 2013

We only stayed here one night, definitely something different.
Beautiful settings, surrounded by the trees. Drivers are all very professional. Check in was okay and you are shown the main guest areas. Dinner is a 6 course meal and was excellently done.
Disappointed that the staff did not go the extra mile when my boyfriend tried to arrange something for a special occasion. Working in hospitality myself it seemed the arrangements they made seemed a bit ordinary for the extra price they charged; and for a 5 star property this should have come complimentary as the rate per night is not cheap.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lale-Burg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2013

I recently booked a night at the Treehouse Lodge with my boyfriend. We were really excited because all the reviews we had read and the pictures we saw were absolutely amazing.
My boyfriend is still a student and such an accommodation is typically out of our budget but we decided to have this special night which we imagined would be the highlight of our trip.

Our room was also very nice so in that we were quite pleased... but although you are up there in the trees with a great deck, there isn't much to look at but a tangle of dense vines and there appeared to be no wildlife whatsoever.

Then we decide to go to the lounge to smoke some shisha, which is one of the things I looked forward to the most, but again… “Unfortunately we don't have any coals, somebody would need to go into town to buy them… You could use the coals from the fireplace but other guests have said they do not taste good." Sorry but this is no excuse… He’s telling us the problem has been longstanding but no one went in town to buy new ones? You can not advertise something you cannot provide… not very high-class..

Okay.. this time I was totally disappointed and thought what did I spend all this money for? So we went to the lounge to have a drink… We were sitting outside and no one came… So we had to go to the bar and search for somebody to fetch a couple drinks. When we found the bartender, he appeared to be bothered and put out by our request. Self-service? We were the only customers around… it was a literally a ghostown. Again, far from satisfying! Then they offer cheap Smirnoff Vodka (not even the original one) Now it was time to fully accept and settle into disappointment.

Although it was still nice I might also mention that the hot tub was more like a luke warm tub that felt kind of slimy at the bottom.

The one thing I can fully say we were satisfied with, was the food. Our dinner and breakfast was excellent. The massage the next morning was very good, so we tipped the lady quite well, we got the feeling the staff member saw this and was a little angry because we didn’t tip the lodge itself… how could we? And at the end we had to get our luggage out of the car on our own.

Not worth it.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Stjarna15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed May 7, 2013

This place is simply perfect.

Upon arrival, we were collected by a driver who escorted us high into the lush, green mountain, where the lodge is based. Our bags miraculously found their way to our room, while we were welcomed at the reception area.

Every member of staff was extremely professional and attentive and our tree-house room surprised us with its spaciousness and luxury! Upon returning to our room after dinner, we found a scroll on our bed with a Zulu story (which had thankfully been translated into English for us). This kind of detail typifies the standard of hospitality which these guys have clearly worked so hard to perfect.

The 6-course dinner was incredible - and the breakfast in the trees was brilliant, especially the coffee!

10 of 10.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jonothan2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed May 2, 2013

We stayed here for 2 night on our honeymoon in one of the upper tree houses, it was an amazing experience, the food was exceptional and the rooms were wonderfully decorated, i would go back in a heartbeat

Room Tip: The upper tree houses are worth it!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Jason C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Phantom Forest Eco-Reserve

Property: The Phantom Forest Eco-Reserve
Address: 27 Phantom River Street, Knysna 6570, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Knysna
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Knysna
#7 Romantic Hotel in Knysna
#9 Luxury Hotel in Knysna
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — The Phantom Forest Eco-Reserve 4*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The award winning Phantom Forest lodge and boma restaurant is situated in a private reserve on the Knysna River estuary, a magnificent setting of indigenous forest, fynbos and estuarine wetland. Designed to create only the lightest footprint , Phantom Forest offers superb luxury in complete harmony with nature. Accommodation consists of fourteen evocative "tree suites", perfectly integrated into the forest. Nature lovers can explore the reserve via forest and fynbos trails or canoe trips along the river. The Boma restaurant offers international cuisine served in the classic style while the body boma wellness spa provides a range of natural treatments. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Phantom Forest Eco-Reserve Hotel Knysna
Phantom Forest Eco Reserve Knysna

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