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“Great time, but customer service is lacking.”

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Kalahari Resorts & Conventions
Ranked #3 of 35 Hotels in Sandusky
Certificate of Excellence
Columbus,OH
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Great time, but customer service is lacking.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 13, 2008

We just returned from our stay at the Kalahari, Jan. 11-13. Stayed in a combination suite which was huge, very clean, and had lots of room for the kids (ages 2, 3 & 6) to run around in. Had a full size kitchen, so we brought food and drink for breakfast, lunch and snacks. So glad we did because the food was pricey! The waterpark area was AMAZING!- so much for the kids to do, especially for young children. We ordered room service from Kahuanaville and ate in the restaurant the next night. The food received mixed reviews from our party- some great, some awful. Drinks were good, but weak. No need to carry around cash - we charged almost everything to our room (very convenient!). It seemed like the crowd was heaviest in the afternoons and evenings. We went to the waterpark first thing in the morning and stayed until 1ish, then spent the afternoons napping, putt-putting, gaming and just lounging around. There was so much to do, you need at least 2 nights to enjoy it all. Only issue was with customer service at the front desk. Front desk clerk would not give members of the party keys even though it was arranged ahead of time. We were told that the keys might be at the other customer service desk, but no move was made to call the other desk until we requested the clerk to do so. We also arrived to find our room open with our belongings inside (and unsecured). Thankfully, nothing was stolen. We were told that either maintenance or the cleaning staff left the room open, but promises to review security footage were never followed up on. We were also promised a follow-up call from management that we never received. We had to go to the desk again the next day to settle the issue in person. Despite the customer service issues, everyone had a very fun time and we plan to go again next year.

  • Liked — waterpark
  • Disliked — customer service
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
10 Thank lovetog0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,574 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (843)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
In Switz
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 12, 2008

If you are coming to Kalahari for the waterpark I suggest you buy a daily pass for $34.00 a day and stay at cleaner hotel down the road. (There are several new hotels within a mile of Kalahari with much better rates!) You'll have easy access parking, a cleaner, quieter room, and probably better service. Our experience is as follows:

We arrived to the Kalahari on the 22nd of December for 2 nights. Upon arrival in our car we had to wait until the bellman could find an open spot for our car. We were able to check-in rather quickly. We found our room to be very dirty with crumbs all over the carpet and the bathroom floor covered with hair. The bathroom sink was clogged as well. The front desk was very quick to set us up in a new room. The hotel was VERY crowded. One of the staff members mentioned to us the hotel had never been this full.

As we were leaving our room the next morning, we were asked by 3 different house keeping personnel if we would be out of the room so they could clean. We returned to the hotel at 3:00 pm to find our room unmade. We left again for the evening, making a call to house keeping to request a cleaning. When we returned at 11:00 pm, we found our room just as we left it. Tired, we called down to the front desk and the excuse given to us was they could not keep up with the amount of guests staying in the hotel. She then said, daily room cleaning was not offered. Obviously they could not handle the numbers they had staying in the hotel.

A full hotel also meant a full parking lot. We had a long walk from the lot to the hotel in very cold and windy temperatures.

The waterpark was very full every day. Kalahari sells daily passes for $34, which made for even longer lines at each slide. The waterpark staff, however, was very friendly.

The resort rates, which include the waterpark, are not cheep! When I pay higher rates I expect to be taken care of, which includes a clean room with fresh towels each day. Afterall, I'm on vacation!

  • Liked — Good for the kids
  • Disliked — Couldn't handle the number of hotel guests, which sould be priority.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank GNaper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
adrian, MI
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2008

My family and I just returned from a 3 day stay at the Kalahari. The hotel in general was huge and very nice, we stayed in a Village Suite and had plenty of space for 3 or 4 more couples to stay comfortably in the room.
It was an overall pleasant experience, the waterpark was big and nice and the expansion that opened in Dec 07 made it even better with plenty of waterslides and things to do. My 4 year old daughter really enjoyed the wave pool and huge kids play area with 2 big kid slides she could go down by herself. The waterpark was also quite warm and comfortable inside and the water temperature a little chilly but not to bad. We rented a cabanna and really loved having a nice comfy place to sit and have a snack or just relax, a little pricey but definitely a must have for next time we visit. There was a baby lion in the lobby every morning and my daughter really liked checking it out, pictures with the lion were 25 dollars so we decided to skip, although overall we found the resturants and shops to be very reasonably priced.
A couple of disapointments for me were that the waterpark really wasn't very clean (this is to be slightly expected since the place is really huge and tons of people running around) and the floors are quite slippery. Also the lifeguards on duty seemed very young and didn't watch the kids comming down the slides very well so you had to make sure your child was pulled immediatly from the slide as to not get plowed into by the next kid comming down (my husband saw a 4 or 5 year old girl get hit at literally full speed by a full grown man comming down the slide due to the fact that the life guard wasn't watching properly). I ordered a candy basket to have waiting in the room when we first arrived and it wasn't there, after calling the front desk it was brought up quite promptly. Also the coffee machine in the room was junk, good thing there is a great little coffee shop down by the waterpark. The room and hotel was clean as far as I could tell, although the maids left a dirty towel and washcloth hanging behind one of the doors in one of the bathrooms in our room.. they also never came in to change the beds or tidy up the rooms. None of this really mattered to much, as we all had a great time and definitely plan on returning sometime in the future. The best tip I could give would be to not spend a ton of money on a huge room and instead go for the more modest room and rent a cabana (cabana, not the creepy, dungon like "bays" for 99$) inside the waterpark for 150$, it is well worth it and has a TV and refridgerator and several comfortable areas to sit, lay and relax.. you DEFINITELY get wore out from all the walking, swimming and stair climbing!

  • Liked — alot of great rides/slides in the indoor waterpark.. Also a very nice Spa
  • Disliked — a little dirty... also young, uninterested lifeguards
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank riesaneed
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ohio
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2008

The waterpark is freezing cold! Kids lips turned purple! Maybe because of expansion? Had to sit in hot tub to get warm whiched caused water to feel even colder upon re enter.
Also-staff seem stressed or just flat out rude! We will be going else where from now on. This was our 3rd and last trip!

  • Liked — Nothing!
  • Disliked — Everything! Cold water and rude staff! Not what worth the price!
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
8 Thank shart1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wheeling, WV
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 31, 2007

Just returned from our trip to Kalahari a few hours ago (New Years Eve) This place was incredible. After the first night of riding, my husband and I actually had slight motion sickness because we were able to ride so many fun tubes. This was a last minute trip and we weren't sure if there would be enough rides to keep our two children, 12 and 14, amused. But we were definitely glad that we had booked the 2nd night--we needed the sleep before our 4 hour ride home. We have been to Disney, FL several times and this park was definitely better. Not nearly the lines or walking between rides. Seemed to me there were actually way more rides than Disney. The atmosphere was not as hyper as Disney and more like the Portofino Bay Resort at Universal. Resort was great and the meals were really good at reasonable prices. LOVED IT!!!

Only drawback--injured my foot by stepping on something and had to have it removed--believe it or not--waterpark without waterproof bandages. Can I hear a duh?

  • Liked — Resort atmosphere--didn't have to leave until checkout.
  • Disliked — Prices in swimwear shop seemed steep--2007 merchandise should be on sale by now.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank beachriders
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WINDSOR
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 31, 2007

Wavepool was great. We wanted to see the newly expansion part of the waterpark. No signs where to line up on the water slides. People were either cutting in line or ended up leaving their tubes along the stairs and moving on to the next water slides. There were kids feces along the stairs believe it or not and people actually ended up stepping on them. Some people just have no respect for others. The next day they were still there and smered along the way up of the stairs. No one bothered to cleaned them. Our bedroom blanket was covered with fried rice between the sheets from the people who stayed there before us. I guess they don't change their sheets. More like recycling dirty sheets. Seems like the housekeeping don't care about their job. How could someone actually miss something like this. Floor was another thing also. Looks like they only vaccum where you walk on and pushed the other garbage on the side walls. Sink was backing up and we had to wait till the water clears until we used the water again. It was dirty to begin with. Check in was at 4 but didn't get our room till 5:30. As mentioned by other people, there are very long line ups and when we came back later we still had to wait. Front desk isn't as happy as they used to be. You need more people person up there. These guys should be working in a drive through. I had great stays with them before but this time was a different story.

  • Liked — Wavepool
  • Disliked — Cleanliness and overpriced food.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank JPJJRAMZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ejwatts
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2007

My husband,myself and our two children stayed her for one night.. ONE NIGHT and it was the longest night of our lives. First of all, we checked in at noon. We did know that check in was not until four but we wanted our water park passes early. We waited in a LONG line to check in at noon. We played at the overcrowded extremely humid water park, then went at 4:00 to check in for our key. We had to wait in a HUGE line---again just to get our key. The front desk didn't really seem to care at all. Then we were give the wrong directions to our room. After walking for fifteen minutes with an 8 year old and a 2 year old--both tired and wet and cold from the waterpark, we were angry to say the least. We stumbled in to a "manager" in the hallway. We asked for directions and she looked and said "you guys are way on the wrong end of the property!".. she did walk us over there, it took 20 minutes... then we get to our room and no crib. I requested a crib and low and behold it wasn't there. She told me "keep in mind, we are sold out". She did eventually get me one, but not without a fight. So this time it's almost 6:30pm. What torture. Then there is the light--yes the light. Outside of all of the rooms there is a large bright light for safety reasons. Well, it lights up the entire room. This outside light is brighter than any lamp in the room. And there is no way to block it out. Needless to say, none of us could sleep. It was like sleeping under a sun lamp. I called downstairs and was told "yes maam, we get this complaint EVERY NIGHT"... when I asked why? why? why? He gave me some blah, blah, blah answer. We got NO SLEEP. I will never go to this place again. Overpriced, rude and disorganized. Please take my warning and save yourself 400.00.

  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank ejwatts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kalahari Resorts & Conventions

Property: Kalahari Resorts & Conventions
Address: 7000 Kalahari Drive, Sandusky, OH 44870-8628
Location: United States > Ohio > Sandusky
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Sandusky
#2 Family Hotel in Sandusky
#2 Romantic Hotel in Sandusky
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Kalahari Resorts & Conventions 3.5*
Number of rooms: 884
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kalahari Resorts Sandusky provides water parks, Safari Outdoor Adventure Park, indoor/outdoor water park, catering/wedding facilities, spa, salon, fitness training in fitness center, dining options, and more.Over 850 beautifully appointed authentic African-themed guest rooms and suites offer coffeemaker, vacation sized refrigerator, microwave, free high speed Internet access, voice mail, TV, iron/ironing board, in-room safe, pay per view movies, and much more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kalahari Waterpark Resort
Kalahari Hotel Ohio
Kalahari Waterpark Sandusky
Kalahari Resort Sandusky Oh
Kalahari Waterpark Hotel Sandusky
Kalahari Water Park
Kalahari Resorts & Conventions Sandusky, Ohio

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