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AVANI Victoria Falls Resort
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Reviews (1,883)
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Reviewed 27 April 2008

Best breakfast buffet I've ever encountered - lots of tasty choices. My kids were delighted to have waffles and icecream for brekkie. Room service added a 10% service charge which was a bit steep for what was provided. I don't like not having a window to open at night - only sliding doors in the rooms. Aircon was a welcome perk. Floors in bathrooms and passages are VERY slippery - take care. Pillows and beds very comfy and clean. Monkeys on the grounds are a real hazard and can be threatening if you carry small items in your hands. They are even able to enter the room sections and will try to open doors to rooms! I was disappointed with the décor, which looked Mexican (apparently the same architect was used for the Mexican hotel too) rather than African. Pool area is stunning and spacious with pool bar. We did not eat dinner there - Rhapsody's in Livingstone is a nice option. Walk to falls is short and the view is amazing - free raincoats at reception. Helicopter flip over the falls is a must if you can afford it. African Queen sunset cruise is also a wonderful option.

  • Stayed: April 2008
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1  Thank Lindores
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2008

The Zambezi Sun does not deserve to be deemed a 4 star hotel. While the lobby, pool area and restaurant were nice, our room was dirty and more like a hostle than an expensive hotel room. The small loveseat in the room was stained, so much so that we would't sit on it. The sheets were paper thin and the comforter was old. Also, the air conditioner broke and there was no screens on the door (odd since its malaria country) so we roasted for a night.

We also found the staff to be hit or miss. Some were very nice, but others seemed to look at you like a dollar sign. Also, the food was expensive and if you paid in American dollars, which they prefer if you use cash, they would never have the proper change for you. Therefore, they would pay you in Rand or just give you a few dollars shy of what you should be getting.

The only reason you stay at this hotel is because it is so close to the Falls. The Falls are amazing. Also, seeing the monkeys and zebra on the property is very cool.

If I had to do it over, I would pay a bit more and stay at the Royal Livingston, which from my walk over to the property and my discussions with guests, seemed so much nicer.

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Dreaming_of_Vacation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2008

The ZAMBEZI SUN is no doubt the place to stay (do not go to the zimbabwe side) :it is 5 minutes walking to the falls,so very ,very convenient...the Royal Livingstone is of course more luxurous, more expensive(if you can aford it,do not hesitate)but a bit further from the falls.It is the same management ,so do not miss the royal livingstone 'bar (just magnificient)!

The rooms are not a 4 stars hotel (the first we had was smelling horrible,with a stained arm chair,)they are not super clean (lots of dust under the bed)and I got 2 mosquitoes in mine the second night and was bitten, althought I never opened the window.

The breakfast is excellent ,with a great buffet with huge choice...
Very clean and very good service. Their great problem is that the monkeys are very crafty and manage to pick up an apple or a biscuit on your breakfast table...It's very funny ,I enjoyed it....(the restaurant manager immediately comes to appology!)..
Do not leave your room window opened : you 'll find them in the room stealing the sugar on the tray on the table....you never know ,they can rob any other thing!
The zebras and giraff are just near but won't come into your room!
The restaurant is quite expensive at night (30 dollars the buffet with no drinks included),we went to the "a la carte "restaurant ,had a big piece of good meat and wine + mineral water for 30 dollars per person .Of course coming from south Africa where the food and wine are delicious and so cheap ,it's something like a surprise............
The surroundings ,and swimming pool are very pleasant and I would definitively recommend this hotel for parents with children.
Have to know that you have to pay when entering the country in Livingstone airport ,according to your nationality(from 50 dollars to 160 dollars) it has to be in dollars; going to the Zambezi or the Livingstone hotels,you do not need a multiple entry which is more expensive.
You still can come out of the hotel, go walking through the boarder on the bridge to see the bungi jumpers (it is spectacular!)or jump yourself !

  • Stayed: March 2008
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1  Thank Pierre55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2008

March 2008

I have just returned from a 15 day trip to S. Africa that included a two night stay at the Zambezi Sun. Our group of 33 loved the hotel. For us, as part of the total package, it was all inclusive. We took the beautiful sunset cruise on the African Queen (snacks and drinks inlcuded) and the 5 minute walk to see the wonderous falls. Fantastic!

The rooms were roomy and clean--no dead or alive bugs. I enjoyed our visit to the sister 5-star hotel which is truly gorgeous, yet somewhat reminiscent of the colonial times. Had a delicious lunch at the Royal Livingstone and had high tea there. Both were excellent and not outrageously pricey. The food at the Sun was quite good and very fresh.

The staff at both hotels is wonderfully trained and very attentive to the needs of guests.

My only complaint was the entry visa fee of $130 USD which, of course, the hotel had no control over. Being American, it was a pleasure to spend my remaining US dollars there or the left over Rand.

The vendors at the craft market outside of the property were quite rude. The poverty of the area outside of the resort was staggering so perhaps this accounts for the level of desperation of the vendors.

  • Stayed: March 2008
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Thank csimmonsmd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2008

This is an excellent four star hotel which, together with its neighbouring five star sister hotel, the Royal Livingstone, has an unparalleled location just five minutes walk from the falls (the town of Livinstone itself is 15 minutes drive away). However, we were left with a very unfavourable impression because of their greed in over-charging and we shall not go back. On arrival we wanted a snack but were informed that it was the buffet or room service, no other options. We were charged almost US$7 for two 500ml bottles of water (beer was cheaper). The buffet was an eye-watering $33 each and, when I checked out, I found that they had added a compulsory 10% service charge to all food and drink (a service charge on a BUFFET and on a bottle of water!) which, when I objected, they refused to remove, arguing that it was mentioned on the bills I signed. We appreciate that this and its sister hotel are the only possible choices because of the proximity to the falls – and it is apparent that they know this, too.

One is met on arrival by two 'Zulu warriors' (see photo). There are zebras and giraffe in the grounds together with a wonderful colony of weaver birds (bring your camera and a good lens for some stunning shots); their are small crocodiles in the lake. One is warned not to leave windows open because of the monkeys which are to be seen running into the dining room at breakfast and stealing anything that looks edible (the staff are armed with catapaults as a deterrent).

Europeans we met in Botswana had been to the falls in Zimbabwe which we gather has a better view of the falls plus a lesser visa fee than is now charged in Zambia.

  • Stayed: February 2008
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2  Thank Roger.pauline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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