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“Disappointing. Not luxury and over priced”

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KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin
Ranked #1 of 1 Sossusvlei B&B and Inns
Bury St Edmunds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
321 reviews
115 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 207 helpful votes
“Disappointing. Not luxury and over priced”
Reviewed 11 October 2013 via mobile

We were so looking forward to our 2 night stay but it was a bit underwhelming. It is not luxury. Hot at night and no insect screens on main windows so not able to cool down. Not even any cushions for outdoor seats. Old tin table and fairly basic cooking facilities. The BBQ pack was good. There was no lighting on the eating area which they could not fix which made bbq difficult. There is limited lighting inside and no bedside lights (there are candles). The electricity went off completely on the first night and there is no torch so difficult to get outside for the toilet in the middle of the night. We had breakfast at Barchan Dunes which was good. We also had one evening meal there which was just ok (bit disappointing really) but did include drinks. Views pretty good but we would not return as too expensive for what it is. We would try elsewhere instead.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank 1plato23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
O L, Propriétaire at KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin, responded to this review, 14 October 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review our property. We truly value the opinions of our customers and we apologize that we did not meet your expectations.
Our feeling is that this kind of accommodation is not the one you were looking for. Kuangukuangu is not a lodge, nor a hotel; this is a unique cabin in the middle of the desert. Nature and scenic countryside is the luxury we tried to emphasize when we imagined this place.

We had a look at the batteries and they work perfectly well - might be you didn't realise that you used too much power for the place? May be you tried to use a hair dryer, or any "high power" device? The outside table is new and has been replaced 4 months ago.

Nevertheless, we hope that you enjoyed your stay in Namibia.
All the best.
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33 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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English first
Paris, France
Level Contributor
12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 May 2013

A cabin in the middle of nowhere, lost at the very end of a nice and green valley, on the ground of a nice guesthouse held by very nice people.

The silence, only the sound of nature, the kudus and zebras giving you a visit before sunset.

In this magnificent and very exclusive context, a very comfortable cabin, with hot water, outside shower and loo, and a kitchenette.

One should definitely order the braii pack. Delicious meat and salad, as well as wood and charcoal to make and enjoy your very own barbecue.

Also, a quick visit to the main guesthouse, located a mile away, will give you the opportunity to say hello to the pet suricate hanging around the premises.

We had a nice bottle of bubbly for our honeymoon.

A real must do!!!!

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank winzouze
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Namibia
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 December 2012

We stayed at Kuangu Kuangu in November. Loved the isolation from the world and the peace and tranquility. A truly unique destination with outdoor kitchen area and shower with a view to the incredible night skies built amongst the boulders. Would definitely consider a return visit but not in Summer - just TOO hot - and we're Namibians and used to the heat!

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank SavetheRhinoTrust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
O L, Propriétaire at KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin, responded to this review, 1 January 2013
Thank you for your comments. We are happy you enjoyed the place. You are right about the heat, which can be aproblem in summer if there is no wind to cool. We plan to build a second roof, that will protect the inside of the cabin from the heat in summer. All the best in 2013!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
21 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 November 2012

My husband and I stayed in June, 2012 for three nights and we both highly recommend this romantic retreat. The cabin is lovely, Willem's gin and tonics are sublime, Hannetje's food is superb, the game is plentiful, and the company is delightful. Make sure you have at least one dinner at Barchan Dune, though Hannetje's brai packs are delicious, too.

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank GammyJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
72 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 October 2012

We loved KuanguKuangu and would/will stay there again in a heart beat! The bungalow is located near Barchan Dune Retreat, and you have the choice to bring your own food and cook it on the gas stove or over the fire, or to go to Barchan Dune Lodge for your breakfast and/or dinner.

The shower and toilet are open to the sky and it is breathtaking at night to shower under the stars.

We lit a fire and sat enjoying the peace and our bottle of wine. There had been a bush fire the week before so we were asked to be cautious and attentive. We doused the embers with water when the wind started picking up, to be on the safe side.

In the morning we awoke to the light slowly pealing back the night over the most spectacular vista. We watched the sun rise through the large glass doors that span the front of the bungalow, while we lounged in bed. It is the most romantic place!

I can highly recommend this place!!!! The hosts, Willem and Hannetje, are fabulous as well!!! It's worth going for a meal at the main lodge.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank globaltraveller62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
glasgow
Level Contributor
399 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 453 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 October 2012

We loved this very comfortable,charming chalet.It - and the nearby farmhouse - are invisible from the road,3km away - not that there's much traffic about anyway but we loved the safe isolation.
At first glance it does look a bit odd but it's a great ,well thought out set up.Comfy chairs beside the little outdoor fire; dining table with nice tablecloth and candles...lots of stone, big glass windows and attractive furnishings.And a simply beautiful view over the dun-coloured grass to rocky mountains and desert.The owners run a game farm and the drive was well worth it to see his prized (and wild) oryx and springbok and mountain zebra.In fact the braai pack featured springbok steaks and kudu sausages - incredibly tasty!Game farms seem to be quite a thing in the area combined with these farms getting more involved in general tourism.
The outside toilet and shower I was a bit dubious about at first given the insects which seemed to be about but in fact we had no problems at all - in the cool of the morning and evening, the (few) flies and wasps disappear and it's all very comfortable.I'm sure there are also scorpions and snakes about but we didn't go looking for them and never saw any.The farm itself 9a little oasis of flowers and greenery) doesn't have these because it has a resident meerkat(surecat).We joined the owners for a drink one evening and Hannejie called for him to appear -and he did!Up close they are so small but so human in their movements - so cute(but with incredibly sharp teeth).
The drive to Sesriem, the gateway to the dunes took us 1hour 40 mins. (Then another 60k to Sossulvlei itself).The owner said he could do it in an hour because he knows the road and the various bumps and bad bits.It's a rough ride (despite the 'great' gravel roads - I found them not so great and tedious to have to drive on for hours at a time).He reckoned 90 mins would be visitors normal time to the gate.But the scenery is so spectacular,we stopped quite a bit en route so it took longer.Birdlife is excellent too.
The only problem with the location is that unless you are prepared to drive in the dark(and it is not recommended) you won't make sunrise at the dunes from this location.We weren't bothered but it might be a factor for some.
Solitaire itself is about 30mins away.It's a 'one hoss town' of a petrol station, cafe, repair garage ,grim little shop,and excellent bakery that does carryout coffee and tea from a machine.
I have to say, the apple pie (more like a crumble) was first class! I noticed someone said it was bland but no way!Maybe the baker was off that week. I bake a lot at home and it was in my view excellent.Sweet,buttery,lots of apples.The chocolate brownie was not bad either - quite dry,more like a cake, but tasting really strongly of good chocolate,so I was sold on that too.

I would recommend booking onto the Cheetah drive at neighbouring Solitaire Game Farm.There is a rehabilitation programme going on and you are taken out to actually walk up to three different cheetahs in the semi- wild,for the very reasonable price of about £25 for 90 mins -2 hours.Fascinating to gain an insight into what the programme is all about and see these animals a few feet away and very exposed to them.
However, our hosts at KuanguKuangu did mention that some cheetahs let loose had later killed some farm livestock and I sensed there might be a tension growing about what seemed a very worthwhile project.Always two sides I suppose.
We travelled by Nissan Double Cab, perfect for the roads there and the Spreetshoogte Pass.I was a bit worried about this 4km of snaking,steep,bumpy gravel road twisting down the mountainside but it was fine in the car we had.I can't imagine anyone doing it however in an ordinary car.We travelled back up the pass 3 days later and the car was just so secure and took it no problem.Don't listen to anyone who suggests an ordinary car is fine because the roads are so good.They are not, they are still gravel,it's all relative.Yes you can go 80km an hour some of the time,but not always - plenty dips and bumps and bouldery bits and just sheer awful bits,to slow you down .In a normal car, it would be absolute hell (if it made it at all).Locals easily do 100-120km though.
Travelling time to the cabin from Windhoek was 3.5 hours with brief photo stops.You HAVE to stop at the top of the pass because, certainly in good light conditions, you finally see the wild landscape you dreamed about in Namibia - inselberg mountains rising out of flat dun-coloured grassland as far as the eye can see and just complete and utter silence.Magnificent.I think I liked the general desert landscape better than the dunes themselves.
One other comment - we noticed the lodges and campsite at Sesriem itself(and also Solitaire) but can't say any of it looked very attractive.Sesriem has a decent cafe/petrol station and shop but it seemed pointless to visit the desert but then be surrounded by so many other people and not very attractive buildings,cars going back and forwards, constant dust etc.For that reason also, we were relieved to escape back to our quiet,safe little haven.
A last remark - Sesriem Canyon wasn't really worth the minor detour.Not very attractive or spectacular in any way.
The dunes were great to see - really, a low level mountain range of sand.It is the colours that are the thing.I would almost say Sossusvlei dune itself is pretty much like all the others you see driving in,except you get closer.Dead Vlei would probably suffice for a visit if time is short.That's where the shuttle bus drops you first.We had no wish to climb them - no fun climbing sand - and I thought the thing was really the contrast with the white desert floor and occasional animals posing very nicely in front of a dune background.They are so photogenic - bring them up on the zoom lens and they become more than what you are actually seeing in front of you.
One word of warning we got re Windhoek - the car rental company (Thrifty) warned us not to leave anything in the car if we parked in the city or we'd come back to a smashed window.We couldn't find any of the guidebook's promised 'security-manned' carparks at the shopping centre so only one of us could shop and (with difficulty) bring the supplies back as we hadn't planned any time in the city apart from stocking up.No problem if you've dumped your luggage somewhere first but turned out to be a real hassle given they way we'd planned things and the exposed rear storage of the cab.
Oh..and there are some beautiful Himba women on the road down from Christus Kirche - Fidel Castro street at the car park.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Scotlandmac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montrose
Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 September 2012

We stayed at Kuangu for 2 nights at the beginning of our trip to Namibia. We booked the cabin on the strength of the TripAdvisor reviews. We were not disappointed! This place is not for everyone, but it was perfect for us and by far our favourite accommodation for the whole trip. When you arrive the cabin looks slightly like a garage, but when the doors are opened up you can truly appreciate just how fabulous this place is. Although the main lodge is within easy walking distance, you have the impression that you are totally on your own. The owners were really welcoming and set us up with some cold beers upon arrival. We sat out on the small terrace and enjoyed the amazing views. The cabin is beautifully designed with careful attention to detail everywhere. The outdoor shower/toilet area is built around a large boulder and it was fabulous being able to brush your teeth under the stars. The bed was enormous and one of the most comfortable I have ever slept in. We opted for dinner at the main lodge, which was excellent with a nice selection of wine. Next time I think we would definitely try the 'Braai', as the little seating area outside the cabin was so lovely. Don't expect instant hot water - you need to light a stove for the hot water, which we loved. And forget about hairdryers. Electricity is on a solar battery, so limited. But again one of the charms of the place. We were very sad to have to leave and would love to go back. This place feels both wild, remote and simple - a bit like camping - but also very luxurious and beautifully designed. They get the balance just right. It's unique!

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank AMcScotland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin

Property: KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin
Address: Solitaire Naukluft, Sossusvlei, Namib-Naukluft Park na, Namibia
Region: Namibia > Khomas Region > Namib-Naukluft Park > Sossusvlei
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Sossusvlei
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 1
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Your private lodge near NamibRand, Naukluft mountains and Sossusvlei. Your unshared accommodation in Namibia. The ideal place for those who prefer absolute isolation, privacy and exclusivity in Namibia.Situated in the peaceful solitude of an idyllic valley, in the heart of the desert, KuanguKuangu is the ideal place for travellers who seek tranquillity and intimacy. Nestled in a dune, KuanguKuangu makes it possible for its occupants to live in harmony with nature, at the same time offering them comfort, luxury, adventure and relaxation. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
KUANGUKUANGU - Luxury Cabin Namibia/Sossusvlei

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