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“Our dog's favourite holiday destination” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Franshoek Mountain Lodge

Franshoek Mountain Lodge
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Franshoek Mountain Lodge
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Our dog's favourite holiday destination”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 17, 2011

We visited Franshoek mountain lodge on the back of write ups in the pet friendly accommodation book. We, and more specifically our dog, were certainly not disappointed! We arrived to be greeted by around 10 other dogs and barely saw her again for the rest of the day. The setting is fantastic, right up in the mountains and without a hint of noise. There is a very comfy bar area where dogs are encouraged to make themselves at home as much as their owners.
On one day we went for a walk in to the hills accompanied by the resident dog, Bindi, and an Anatolian shephard dog called Simba who lives next door (looks terrifying, but the biggest softy ever!). We finished the day with a go in the African steam hut, an experience not to be missed!
If you have a dog this is a must, they will never visit anywhere else where they are made so welcome. Our dog sulked for 3 days when we got her home because she had such fun!

Room Tip: There are some with stable doors which looked verd
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Poppys_dad101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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17 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    9
    2
    3
    1
    2
See reviews for
7
6
Solo
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Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Any
English first
johannesburg
Level Contributor
89 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 16, 2010

A friend and I stayed here over a Saturday and Sunday night in Novemebr 2010. We had two rooms, numbers 8 and 9, at a rate of R580 per room, dinner, bed and breakfast. Ros, the owner, was away and Frankie and Japie were in charge. They were extremely warm, welcoming, trusting and hospitable, like finding and staying with old friends. The setting of the lodge is very beautiful amongst the Free State foothills of the Malutis, and the absence of telephones, television and cellphone reception is a great advantage. It is a great place for a weekend's break: the lodge is totally unpretentious and relaxed, no dressing up or locking of doors necessary. Meals are all taken at one big table so one can't be too anti-social at such times.

That said, the place has a rather quirky, off-beat, even makeshift, kind of flavour. As Frankie herself said: "Either you like it or you don't". So what's not to like? Even though the rate is on the low side (and I readily accept that one is not getting luxury for that price), the rooms and especially the bathrooms are not all of the same quality. Our bathroom was functional enough, but rather on the shabby side. It was rather dusty, in some placed encrusted with old dirt. The cistern lid didn't fit. There was no bathmat. The paint on the toilet seat was peeling. (The bathroom was not cleaned during our stay either.) The bedrooms looked cute, but urgently need a decent coat of paint, the ceilings and doors especially. The matresses were so tightly sprung that it was not easy to get comfortable. My undersheet had extensive brown stains, although the duvet cover was clearly new.

My biggest gripe is that the furniture throughout the lodge, inside and outside (except for the dining table chairs and the couch below-mentioned) was at best uncomfotable or at worst broken, lopsided, missing an arm, or covered with worn out, holey and rather smelly old "throws". The lounge suite in the main building really needs to be thrown away - I mean destroyed utterly - together with all the one-armed wroght iron chairs in the garden which, cushionless, leaves one with absolutely nowhere conmfortable to sit outside, at all, let alone snuggle up with a book.

So, I am afraid to say that the place seems rather arbitrarily thrown together as if it from a sub-standard junk sale. The ONLY piece of furniture which I saw which seemed suited for a lazy weekend in the mountains was a black leather couch which seemed comlpletely out of place but at least looked comfortable in room number 5, the bathroom of which was freshly tiled and painted and much, much cleaner than ours.)

The food was healthy and delicious but not adventurous. I believe that Thai food is on the menu ordinarily when Ros is around: this time it was a braai on the one evening (the quality of the steak was truly excellent but soya veggie burger patties straight out of the freezer via the microwave had to suffice for my vegetarian friend). On the plus side, there was a delicious green salad from the extensive vegetable garden on the property. More fresh produce on the table would have been a great idea - and perhaps something with cherries, since it was the weekend before the Cherry Festival, or asparagus, for both of which the area is famous. The next evening was roast chicken which had been proudly cooked by Frankie in a solar-oven and was very good. Breakfasts were ok to good, but not at all memorable.

The swimming pool is another problem. The pool itself is lovely, perfectly round and newly marbelited and paved. The off-green colour of the water did not worry me particularly, but blue would have been nice. What did worry me was that there is no comoftable spot to lie around: the ground is on a slope and there is a single bamboo lounger which is rather difficult to adjust. There are two canvass hammocks which don;t allow for prolonged comfort and a rattan sofa and armchair which are so badly degenerated by moisture and dirt that it is dangerous to sit on them. I promise I am not exaggerating: one basically falls through the bottom of them!

With just one or two careful additions/alterations (chiefly proper cleaning and painting, replacement of old indoor and outdoor furniture, old linen and some overstrung matresses and fixtures) this place would be a paradise, simple, unpretentious and delightful. Judging by the quality of the clientele we met there, I am sure no one would mind paying another R50 or R100 per night so that the cost of the upgrade could be recouped. It really is a lovely place, loved and run by lovely people, but it also really needs basic attention to make it workable and acceptable for guests.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jsn_chiaro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maseru, Lesotho
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 5, 2010

We felt really spoilt. Frankie took care of our every need, the food was superb and the setting was stunning.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank debs4000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gedser
Level Contributor
23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 15, 2010

If you want to get away from stress and noise, this is the place.
Roz Evans and her team make you really feel at home.
Highly recommended!

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank joareh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
U.K
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 31, 2008

Cosy lodge on grounds of working farm and polo stud. Extremely relaxed and welcoming, very family friendly and community feel with large log fire and cosy sofas in main lodge. Fantastic food, mixture of European and Thai food at communal dinner, cooked to order English style breakfast. Great day-hikes in surrounding mountains ( lodge dogs bindi and black puppy will lead the way) also horse-riding along Lesotho border. Road to access is quite rough but OK for a family saloon if you take it slow. 30 minute drive to Clarens or Golden Gate National Park.

  • Stayed April 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Emma F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Franshoek Mountain Lodge

Property: Franshoek Mountain Lodge
Address: PO Box 154, Ficksburg 9730, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Free State > Ficksburg
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 8 Specialty Lodging in Ficksburg
Number of rooms: 17

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