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“Excellent service”

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The Highlander Hotel
Ranked #3 of 14 Dullstroom B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 31, 2013

We stayed I one of the presidential rooms which was really fantastic. There was a fire in the room which I thought was for decoration but when we came back to our room after dinner they lit it for us. As there was lots of wood we had a lovely evening in front of the fire.

The whisky bar is very well stocked and was ideal for a relaxing drink before or after dinner. Staff couldn't have been more attentive.

Room Tip: If one of the presidential rooms is available ask for it when you book.
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Eddie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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104 - 110 of 140 reviews

Reviewed January 23, 2013

We came a family of seven. From we arrived Tyrsday afternoon until we left Sunday after everything was top. One of the member had her 60th birthday and they made so much extra for us. If you want to have a relaxing stay, go there.Walk around, go flyfishing, have a dring and eat good, you get it.

Room Tip: All rooms are large. With fireplace, sitting group, working desk. You can have a big party in the ro...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Jan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2013

The most spacious and tastefully furnished suites I have stayed in. Everywhere one looks is like a postcard. The staff are very friendly and very helpful. The bar and dinners provided were very well prepared and presentation was top notch.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled on business
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2  Thank Frank M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peebles-Dullstroom, Manager at The Highlander Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded January 12, 2013

Thank you for the Review,

We hope to Welcome you back to Peebles - The Country Retreat.

Yours in Hospitality
Greg Pearson
Duty Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 19, 2012

I would like to thank everyone at Peebles - The Country Retreat. The service, people, food , accommodation and atmosphere is something of the highest quality. This was a stay worth my while and will sure do it again. Keep up the great work......

Room Tip: Experience them all it will be worth your while
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Dominique K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2012

My newly-wed husband and I booked one night at Peebles on our way back from Hazyview and Sabie, where we had the pleasure of staying in two incredible places, one a privately owned lodge and the other a hotel. I made the bookings well in advanced and decided to book our last night in Dullstroom, as it is such a special place. Peebles appeared to be the perfect choice for our last night on honeymoon, but to our disappointment, it was nothing like we expected it to be. A five star rating, it definitely does not deserve.....On our arrival, the reception wasn't pleasant at all, and we weren't explained any of the activities available at the retreat, neither were we told where we could find the bar or who we should contact for any additional beverages, as the mini bar in the room was empty. The King-size bed had been fitted with (in my opinion) a queen-size duvet and the decor of the room left much to the imagination. For the price we paid, we definitely expected a much higher standard.....to say the least.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Annette L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2012

I would like to thank Chris, Sharon-Ann and their team for the fantastic weekend that we had at Peebles. From the moment we stopped there and you met us by the car till the moment we left and found that our car was washed, we felt at home. It was definitely a 5* weekend. We will certainly recommend you to everybody we know! See you soon.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank crossy297
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2012

What can I possible say positive about this place. I disliked almost everything about it, starting from our arrival, until the day we departed.

Let me explain.
I booked the Peebles Country Retreat as a halfway stop from Jo’burg to Hoedspruit. After looking at their website and reading all the nice inviting things on their website, I decided to give it a shot. After all, paying almost 250 euro per night for a "family suite" (2 adults + our 15 year old son), you could expect something nice?! I regret that I haven’t listened to the advices given by other accommodations, who advised me to stay at Walkersons and NOT to go to Peebles.

After a 3 hour drive from Jo’burg airport we arrived in Dullstroom around 6 pm. We were greeted by the (unfriendly) receptionist outside at the parking lot. (Note that it was freezing at that time and we just had driven for 3 hours!!). There she told us which room we stayed in and that our son had to sleep at the loft area in our room, but that he wouldn’t mind because it was lovely and cosy. The guy (I can’t remember his, or any of the other names) carried one of our suitcases (we had 4 in total) and should us to our room. (The rest of the suitcases we had to carry ourselves!!).
Once in our room (room 13) we were very disappointed, and actually a bit shocked as well. After our final booking (and also on their website) we received an itinerary that says that all rooms are equipped with a nice fireplace and are luxurious and spacious. The rooms are indeed spacious, but far from luxurious and also without a fireplace!
There was a small stairs to an attick (not a loft!!) and somewhere in the corner the placed a single bed with a small lamp. It was horrific. My son got really scared that he had to sleep there all by himself, so we reassured him that we would arrange something else.
Also, the guy told us that the television didn't work, because of some missing cables.
I end up getting more and more frustrated after founding out more and more flaws.
So I told my husband that I would go to the reception and ask for a different room.

After explaining our issues with the person in charge (who was actually just watching over the retreat, since the real owner was away for a couple of days). He showed us 2 other rooms.
The first one was next to ours, and a connecting room. But this room was not clean and had housekeeping had to do a lot of work to clean up all the mess that was in there.
When I asked him about a room with a fireplace, he told me that only the suites have a fireplace, but we actually booked a Family Suite!!
He told us that the suites cannot accommodate 3 persons, what I really didn't understand, since these rooms are more spacious than the once we were placed in. When I told him to just relocated the single bed on the addict to the suite, he finally agreed.
He advised us to go to the lounge area (which is in the same building as the restaurant and bar) and wait for our room to be ready. We could enjoy our diner in the meantime.

Well, tell me about what happened next.
Once in the lounge area (which had a nice big fireplace, that was actually way too big for such a small area) we sat down on the couch to have a drink. There was no one around to help us, so we ended up waiting over 15 minutes for a water and 2 cokes.
The whole lounge area (and also the reception and breakfast area) were decorated with Christmas items (they even had a big Christmas tree). We didn't understand that, since in our country we celebrate Christmas in December and nobody informed us about it from the resort.
My husband got a bit bored after a while waiting for the waiter and started to look for something to read. After opening the drawers at the coffee table, we found a number of guy magazines. Also my 15 year old son found some in a pile of magazines.

Diner was bad as well. It took over one hour to get one course (this was also the case at breakfast, where we had to wait for over one hour to get our small portion of greasy scrambled eggs). What also amazed us was that all staff multi tasked. The same guy that carried our one suitcase, was also our waiter (in the evening and during breakfast), head chef, etc.
The house dog was walking around in the dining area and was begging for food at almost every table. The quality of the food was very bad and there wasn't much to choose from. Several people had sent back their food, because it was not well cooked or cold.

After diner we were guided to our room (room 6). The single bed was nicely placed in the room.
But after looking carefully at the room, we found once again all flaws. There were dead flies in the bath tub, hairs and other dirt on the carpet, hairs in our bed, dirt on the table etc. We didn't feel like complaining again, since we were so tired after a long day, so we just cleaned up a bit and made the best of it.
There are indeed some marshmallows in a small tin on the fireplace, but they were old and hard. We didn't trust to eat them.
We had to use the fireplace, since it was freezing outside and there is no other heating in the rooms, but there wasn't enough wood for the whole night! So we end up being cold any way.

My son wanted to Skype his friends, but there is only Wifi at the main reception. But when he wanted to go there, he found out that all doors where closed and nobody was there anymore. It seems that they just close down the place around 7 pm and guests can only call a number when anything is wrong. My son had to stand outside in the freezing cold to Skype!

Unfortunately we already fully prepaid the accommodation. Other wise we would have checked out straight away.

I really don't understand why this accommodation is rated as a five star establishment! I spend a lot of time traveling all over the world and normally always stay in five star hotels/resorts. I would rate this as a 2 star hotel maximum.
Maybe 15 years ago this was a nice place and rated 5 stars, but I guess no one ever re-checked the place. And that is a bad thing.

Either they really renovate the whole place, or lower their prices with at least 70%.

I cannot blame the staff members for anything. I just think it is a lack of management and guidance. They should train their staff better in order for them to do their work better.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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5  Thank samjonk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Highlander Hotel

Address: 2 Bosman Street, Dullstroom 1100, South Africa (Formerly The Highlander Country Retreat & Spa)
Location: South Africa > Mpumalanga > Dullstroom
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 14 B&Bs / Inns in Dullstroom
Price Range: $115 - $191 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Highlander Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Highlander was named after the Scottish Highlands, which the area around the hotel resembles. The hotel, which was formerly known as the Peebles Country Lodge, was voted the ‘Most Romantic Hotel‘ during the International Luxury Hotel of the year awards. The retreat has become popular as a stopover accommodation option for visitors traveling to and from the Kruger National Park. This welcoming country retreat in Mpumalanga caters to both the corporate and leisure guest. To keep with the romantic setting of the hotel, the rooms feature log fireplaces, and marshmallows are freely available for toasting. The bar at the hotel is every whiskey lover’s dream, offering over 200 single malt whiskeys to choose from. The hotel is closely located to all the main shopping areas and guests can easily walk from the hotel to the shops and spend a day browsing. The hotel features a bar, a restaurant, and a gym. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Peebles Country Retreat Hotel Dullstroom

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