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“Bad Service, feeling of being unwelcome”

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BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Vereeniging
Johannesburg, South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Bad Service, feeling of being unwelcome”
Reviewed 6 March 2014

On the 22nd of February 2014 I booked a table for 25 guests to have lunch on the Terrace. Upon our arrival it started raining so we have been moved inside. We had a choice of ordering from the menu or the buffet, and was sort of forced to go with the buffet option at R160 pp due to the size of our party, which was not a problem for us. Most guests arrived around 14:30 only, and after dishing up starters, the staff started packing away the food from the buffet area. After inquiring about it we have been told that Buffet closes at 15:00. After complaining the manager then took additional orders for food, but it was so rushed as if they just wanted to get rid of us. This was for a birthday party and overall just a bad experience for us all. None of us will ever return to this venue. 1 person did indeed order from the menu and when asked for a doggy bag we got frowned upon and the food was brought to us in a piece of foil. Unacceptable for a 4 star venue!

Room Tip: we did not sleep over
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank SuperBarney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rivieraonvaal, Operations Manager at BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal, responded to this review, 7 March 2014
I do regret our oversight in respect of your guests who had arrived later than the initial group, and who had not yet finished eating. In an attempt to rectify this we took orders for those guests who had been overlooked. We were concerned about these guests being kept waiting, as well as the majority of the group who had already had their main meal. We apologise for this action being experienced as unwelcoming or rushed
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247 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
Date | Rating
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English first
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 5 March 2014

This was our hotel of choice as a stop over on our Kruger Park trips from Cape Town.
We've stayed here on two occasions so far and both were a disaster as far as service around the deck and pool area were concerned.
The last stay, and it will be the last, was a complete joke. After driving the long journey up from Cape Town all I wanted to do was jump in the pool. The last 4 hours of the trip I was visualising myself beside the pool with a cold beer in hand.
We finally made it to the reception desk and checked in, asked the clerk the rhetorical question how the pool was, she said it was gorgeous. We went up to to our room and I pulled the curtains open and stared down at a neon green pool. So the swim was out the question. We then tried to at least get a cold beer on the deck. After about 40 mins and 3 waiters later I gave up on that too.
They ripped us around R1500 for the night's stay. If they gave a refund or discount I may have let them off, but to this date nothing has happened.
From now on we'll be staying in a local B&B...R1500 is way too much for that place.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Guy121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rivieraonvaal, General Manager at BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal, responded to this review, 7 March 2014
I thank you for choosing Riviera on Vaal for your stop over between Cape Town and Kruger Park. I regret that upon your visit our pool was not the sparkling blue as per previous visits.
The failure of our pool system certainly did prove to be most embarrassing for us. The delayed service is inexplicable and I am most troubled that this occurred in the first instance, and that we did not set it right on the day. These do blemish the reputation of our normally beautiful Riviera on Vaal pool experience.
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Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 6 Contributor
98 reviews
60 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 February 2014 via mobile

Hotel has a lovely setting right on the Vaal, which makes for spectacular views and serene sounds. The staff are friendly albeit slightly slow.

Rooms are large but very old. Bathrooms require some work especially the bath tubs and shower area.

Stayed February 2014, travelled on business
Helpful?
1 Thank Riaz P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rivieraonvaal, General Manager at BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal, responded to this review, 3 March 2014
Dear Mr. Ali, I would like to thank you for your valuable feedback with regards to your recent stay at our hotel. Your points have been noted. We look forward to welcoming you back to the Riviera on Vaal Hotel & Country Club in the near future’
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Istanbul Province, Turkey
Level 6 Contributor
562 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 146 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 February 2014

This is the second time I visited Riviera on the Vaal during my business trip to Vereeining in february. The hotel is getting old but the service is good although not perfect. Rooms were not so clean this time. The cleaning person forgot an old dust cloth and an old underwear in the bathroom behind the door. Although I warned the reception they didnot take care the first time. I had to warn them the second day and showed them myself. I had a standart room this time. It was normal as I expected. In the first try they gave me a room without the safe deposit box. Then they changed it against my complaint. The minibar was empty with only two complimentary water bottles. The TV´s are small and of all style. One of the worst things is the Internet. There is no free internet and they charge 195 Rands per day which is very high. They have a desktop computer that is open to everyone in the lobby. The internet on that computer is free.
I complained about this to the general manager and he said they are working on that. I will be back there in 6 months to check.
Breakfast is satisfying wíth the beautiful outside launge by the pool. It was not great but satisfactory. One day I had a guest and they charged me 155 Rand for the breakfast which was too high for the quality. 100 rands was the real worth price for me. Another point was the open buffet. They have open buffet breakfast when the hotel was full and a la carte breakfast when the hotel was empty. Then you cannot figure out the days when there is open buffet. I knew that the quality of the meals were not good so I didnot try this time. Although there are 2 restaurants listed at the hotel, the second one was closed. It was closed 6 months ago as well.
I was going to spend 9 days at this hotel but they said the weekend was full because of some conference. At the end they couldnot arrange a room and I had to go to Jo´burg to spend the weekend. The hotel has a great golf course and a beautiful view of the Vaal River, from the rooms. These are the only two attractive points of this hotel. It is difficult to make a massage arrangement at the spa especially thru the end of the week. Massage quality is good but they try to shorten it. When I arrived in the afternoon (4.00 pm) , I asked for a massage and they said it was too late to make an appointment. Then I pushed my request and they accepted me in. When I went there I saw that the spa and massage rooms were empty. I asked for an additional 30 minute massage and they refused in the beginning. Then pushing them again they admitted reluctantly.I entered to have a one hour fifteen minute massage and they finished after 40 minutes charging me for the full time. When you get out of the massage, you are relaxed and are not aware of the time. After I went out I realized that the massage was short and got back and complained. They said ok and gave me another massage. These acts were embarrasing. The pool´s blue color was almost green giving you a bad feeling. I told this to the person in charge and he said they will tell the management but nothing changed. It seems they listen to you, take your complaint, say that they will act but donot perform. I had a big problem which the Hotel Manager took control and solved it for me though. Overall this hotel is ok although alittle expensive for the worth.

Room Tip: Must take a room with the Vaal river View
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank nkohen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rivieraonvaal, General Manager at BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal, responded to this review, 24 February 2014
Dear Mr Kohen,

Thank you for your feedback. I have already taken action on some of your issues discussed with you prior to your departure. On your next stay to South Africa we will make sure that the minibar is stocked for you. {Minibars are only stocked on request}.

I have spoken to the spa manager who will make sure your next visit is memorable. It is our highest priority to provide our guests with an exceptional experience. We look forward to welcoming you to the Riviera on Vaal Hotel & Country Club’’
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Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2014

Our stay at the hotel was for two evenings, a Friday and Saturday. On arrival the staff at reception were efficient and friendly. Although the hotel is older the ambience with the Vaalrivier running right next to the hotel provides a very relaxing atmosphere. We had a luxury family room, however the room wasn't very luxurious. It had the basics, kettle with tea coffee ect. The minibar was empty, except for two water bottles. The bathroom was small, but practical and clean. Although we didn't take our two year old along the weekend, the room would have worked well with the separate lounge area with separate TV. A major disappointment was the small square 15" Tvs in the room. The restaurant area has a nice layout, with little tables overlooking the pool and outside area running out on the River. The food was average and the variety acceptable, although nothing wrong with the presentation of the food - I somehow expected more. We also visited the spa, which wasn't fully equipped with your typical spa facilities (pool and showers) - but the treatment were great and the therapists very professional. Overall the stay was pleasant with beautiful views of the river any time of day, I do think that this hotel is one of the few nice options in the area.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TravelPJLK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level 6 Contributor
126 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 January 2014

We decided last minute to get out of Johannesburg for the weekend. Booking was made with ease. Arrived security was on the ball and you felt secure on the premises. Setting is as good as you can get. With the rain of the past few months the Vaal River was full, lush green banks and plenty of water activity taking place. We stayed in room 405, corner unit with a separate bed room and lounge. Ample space. Bathrooms are well appointed but smallish as this is an refurbished hotel. Found staff to be helpful and service quick. Buffet for dinner and breakfast was good with plenty of choices. Dinner roasts were out of this world. Tried to book the Spa buy could not get a booking due to our time constraints. Will have to come back for this experience.

All in all a good experience and we will go back. Affordable weekend away !

Room Tip: 405 and other corner units. Well appointed and ample space with great river views.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Safari M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 January 2014

My husband and I recently chose to go away for my 50th to the Riviera on the Vaal for 2 nights.

Well it was a disaster from start to finish. We were excited about going away on our own as we rarely get an opportunity as we have a son of 8. The first room we were given was dark and gloomy and the bathroom was pitiful in that it was tiny and there was no separate shower so my husband had to shower in the bath. This was an upgraded room that a friend had organised secretly from Canada for my 50th. How can this be offered at a four-star hotel?

The service was appalling in that we had to get up and call for someone to attend to us. The first night's buffet was an assortment of warmed up food from the day before as it did not look or taste fresh. In fact, I struggled to find something to eat from the buffet and on calling the chef to complain I was told that there weren't many people eating at the restaurant that night so they couldn't make a lot of new things as they would have gone to waste. So on the eve of my 50th I simply had a few pieces of dried out chicken and that was that. I told him he should not have the buffet on such evenings when there will not be enough people eating from it. I was then told that we could have ordered a la carte which I was shocked to hear as in the afternoon on asking a waitress outside what the options were if we didn't want the buffet for dinner, her answer was that there was only the terrace menu to order from (which consists of light snacks). So clearly staff are not aware of what is or is not available at the hotel. And this is a four star hotel? What a joke.

Then the following day it was raining so we decided to have afternoon tea in the lounge. We waited endlessly for someone to serve us and when asking for scones, cake etc we were told that there was nothing available and that there would only be eats available after 5pm as they were busy preparing them for a conference later that day. I have never heard of such a thing in a hotel - let alone a 4-star hotel. Clearly they are only interested in putting effort into large groups like conferences and do not really care about privates who visit the hotel.

I then called the manager who apologised profusely and then scurried off to the kitchen only to return 10 mins later with 2 pieces of cheesecake - but sadly it was the most awful tasting cheesecake I have ever had. It had a margarine taste and was quite vile. We couldn't eat it. We then settled for the small biscuits that are put in the rooms with the tea and coffee.

The breakfasts too were very ordinary and the fresh fruit or pastries didn't look or taste very fresh. All in all a disastrous experience and a sad way to spend a 50th birthday. I could not wait to leave the hotel and feel it was the biggest waste of a few thousand rand. Quite frankly, we should be refunded for the disaster that it was. I will make sure that I tell everyone never to go to this hotel.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Elana R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rivieraonvaal, General Manager at BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal, responded to this review, 10 January 2014
Dear Elana R

We do value your time taken to provide feedback on your stay at Riviera on Vaal. We will set to work on improving and eradicating the aspects of your stay which you mentioned. We depend on your feedback, and do apologies for any discomfort experienced.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal

Property: BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal
Address: 10 Mario Milani Road | Three Rivers, Vereeniging 1939, South Africa (Formerly Riviera on Vaal Hotel & Country Club)
Phone Number:
Region: South Africa > Gauteng > Vereeniging
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Vereeniging
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal 3*
Number of rooms: 91
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A 45-minute drive from Johannesburg, our luxurious hotel caters to the corporate and conference markets, as well as families and leisure travellers who are looking for a resort that has it all. BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal is one of few child-friendly Vaal River resorts that have struck a perfect balance in offering family enjoyment whilst also fulfilling the business travel market needs. Steeped in history this 91-room hotel, a converted farmhouse from the 1800s, is situated on a bend of the scenic Vaal River. Ideal for company conferences and events, the hotel offers 4 multi-purpose venues and a range of exciting team building activities, with flexibility to suit your needs. BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal has a reputation as one of the best wedding venues in Gauteng; choose from a variety of wedding packages to ensure a memorable day. If you are looking for a relaxing breakaway, why not pamper yourself at the Zorgvliet Spa or play a round of golf at the Country Club. Should that sound too energetic, pop down to the water's edge and float along the Vaal River on one of our boat cruises. BON Hotel Riviera on Vaal also offers a variety of water sports, a gym, picnics spots and kids' entertainment programs. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riviera On Vaal Hotel And Country Club

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