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Riverlodge Backpackers
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Reviews (142)
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Reviewed 16 February 2014

This place looks great on the website and our choir leaders unknowingly chose it as our base in Capetown while we sang in concerts around the Capetown area. There was a lack of showers, one between several rooms, and they were only cleaned ossasionly.It is an ex-mental institution , and still has that feel. The doors clang and rattle at night (I nearly bought them some 3-in one oil to ease the squeaking) and it is hard to find any peace and quiet. The communal eating area is dominated by two enormous TVs, with a sign 'DO NOT TURN OFF', which are on 24/7 very loudly. Only one fridge worked which wasn't adequate for so many people. Some of our group found mice in their room. It's saving grace was that is close to Pineland station for easy access to Downtown Capetown, and there is a lovely community run swimming pool in the Eco village round the corner. I felt ripped off because you have to pay for a voucher for WIFI and they only had R 120 vouchers
left!
One night I was outside my room about 11.30pm and a drunk white man came in (he wasn't a guest) and approached me asking for alcohol. He was quite aggressive and very loud and if I had been completely on my own, I would have felt vulnerable.I did complain to reception the next morning. This place needs more security. They complained that the government, who own the building would not invest cash to refurbish it, but cleanliness does not need cash.

Room Tip: Avoid the double beside the reception. It's very noisy.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled on business
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2  Thank Helen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiverlodgeCapeTown, Manager at Riverlodge Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2014

Hi Helen P
Thank you for your comments. In the spirit of a constructive response I would like to assure you of the following:
- We have improved cleaning schedules to ensure that all ablutions, common areas and facilities are clean and tidy at all times, even with large groups such as yourselves.
- We are in the process of increasing our ablutions.
- We have a security guard on duty every evening and night, to ensure the safety of guests.
- At the time you wanted to purchase a WiFi voucher, we were experiencing a network problem which prevented us from supplying smaller vouchers.
Be assured of our continued commitment to ensuring a pleasurable stay for all our guests.
Warm regards
Louise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 February 2014

I stayed in River Lodge as a part of a bigger (around 50 persons) group. The common areas and the size of the hostel worked well for that big group and we become friends with a cool dude working there but those were the only positive things I can say about the place.

So what was wrong there? I was accommodated a shed in backyard with 9 other people. The walls were really thin and there was no lock and latch in room door so you couldn’t close the door making the accommodation insecure and cold. The showers next to the room in the hut had hot water 1/5 of times and only 1 of them was working. There wasn't 24/7 reception and no safety boxes in rooms so you either left your stuff at reception without being able to get them when you wanted or hid them in your room without possibility to close the door. Besides cold nights and cold showers perfumes, deodorants and food went missing during the last couple of nights (around 10 people lost something).

I wouldn't stay here again. You’ll find cheaper and better options in centre without all these problems. This hostel is located 9km away from centre.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank JiiBird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiverlodgeBackpacker, Manager at Riverlodge Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2018

Hello

I am the new manager at Riverlodge, and I have been going through our past reviews. I noticed that yours was left unanswered! Firstly I would like to apologize for that and then I would like to thank you for taking your time to leave us your review. Your feedback IS appreciated and very helpful.

The room that you were talking about is still in existence and is still being used. Our Wendy House, or Cabin, has since been fitted with a working lock for your security and comfort. Both showers work and have hot water and we will ensure that this remains the case. Unfortunately we still do not have 24 hour reception but do have a night watchman who relieves our reception and stays on duty until the reception re opens the next day. You would now have 24 hour access for most things in our safe keeping.

I am sorry to hear that your experience at Riverlodge was not a pleasant one and we wish that one day you may change your mind and allow us the chance to make this up to you.

All the best
Robert

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Reviewed 5 February 2014

I stayed at the hostel for 3 weeks and I really enjoyed the atmosphere there. The staff is young, helpful and very friendly. I felt safe the whole time around this area. Every evening there is a guardian who takes care about the safety in and around the hostel.
If you are alone or in a group and keen on meeting new people from all over the world than you have to stay there. I had luck and found new friends during my stay at the hostel. But you also have to be a person who can share the bath room and the kitchen with other people. If you have a problem with it I cannot recommend it. For me it was an experience and I will come back for sure.
Thank you for the pleasant time I had there!

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled on business
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank Carolin K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiverlodgeCapeTown, Manager at Riverlodge Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2014

Hi Carolin K
Thanks for your comments! Please come again
Regards
Louise

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Reviewed 19 January 2014

My booking was changed from a double room to a four bunk dorm when i got there. The service on arrival was pathetic! Natsha's response to the changed booking was that she had not heard from me and was uncertain of my arrival - this despite having paid a deposit!!!As for the flies - that in itself is another saga. will not recommend Riverlodge to anybody.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank fpatel22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiverlodgeBackpacker, Manager at Riverlodge Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2018

Hello

I am Robert, the new manager at Riverlodge. I have been going through our past reviews and noticed that yours was left unanswered! Firstly I would like to apologize for that and then I would like to thank you for taking your time to leave us your review. Your feedback IS important and helps us to improve our service.

I was sorry to hear that your confirmed booking was not correctly honored, I'm sure that must have been very frustrating. As I said, I am the new manager and can of course not know what happened in the back office 4 years ago but I would like to ensure you that while mistakes can happen to the best of us, it is currently our strict policy to ensure that every guest receives the exact product that they book and pay for.

As for the flies.... I'm sure that being situated on a farm with horses does not help the situation! Once again I would like to ensure you that we will take all measures necessary to keep that under control and maintain a pleasant environment, should this become a problem in this years summer months.

Many thanks and happy travels
Robert

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Reviewed 8 January 2014

i will not stay at riverlodge backbackers again i will make sure i book well in advance for a backbackers in long street . every other backbacker was fully booked so we never had a choice where to stay, the service was terrible your lady at the front desk Natasha was the rudest person iv ever come across at any backbacker iv stayed in throughout capetown .

you guys need to set aside a budget for maintenance because your building is falling apart just saying ..

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Stuart D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RiverlodgeBackpacker, Manager at Riverlodge Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2018

Hello Stuart

I am a new manager at Riverlodge. I have been going through our reviews and noticed that yours was left unanswered! Firstly I would like to apologize for that and then I would like to thank you for taking your time to leave us your review.

I would like to apologize for any unpleasant experience you may have had during your stay with us.

Like I said, I am new and can not know exactly what went on 4 years ago. I would like to ensure you that although our current reviews are not all always to our favor, the one thing that we usually score well on and receive positive comments on of late, is our friendly and helpful staff.

Maintaining the building is a tough one as unfortunately we do not own the almost 100 year old buildings which makes it very challenging. That said we have been employing a full time handyman for quite some time now and do try to maintain and improve wherever possible.

All the best
Robert

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