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“Fantastic Stay”
Review of Ibis River Retreat

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Ibis River Retreat
Reviewed 3 July 2014

We stayed here in May 2014 and we cannot wait to return.

Fantastic service from very friendly owners, the cottage was clean and inviting and the hot tub and the log fire were the icing on the cake! The complimentary food basket and bubbly were a lovely surprise

We really did not want to return to reality after a thoroughly relaxing weekend away!

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank WillowD_08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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17 - 23 of 23 reviews

Reviewed 11 March 2014

My wife and I booked a cottage at Ibis River Retreat (7 to 10 March 2014). Due to heavy rains we could not cross the bridge over the Jukskei River. Ms Klemm send her husband to take us across the river in his 4x4 after arranging for our vehicle to be parked at the neighbouring farm. On Monday 10 March when we were supposed to go home we were informed by the owner (Ms Klemm) that as a result of heavy rains it is not possible to cross the river. We were accommodated for the night (free of charge) and Ms Klemm even gave us some freshly baked roles. The next morning Mr Klemm drove us back to our vehicle via a alternative route through the mountains accessible only by 4x4 vehicle. He also made sure that we reached the tar road safely. Thank you very much for the good service and going the extra mile to ensure we have an enjoyable stay and also ensuring our save return during the heavy rains. We appreciate it and will definitely be visiting Ibis River Retreat again.

Room Tip: Book long in advance to ensure availability when planning a visit to Ibis River Retreat for a specia...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Jaco-Victor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 January 2014

I booked two cottages for a surprise birthday party in December 2013. Money was paid in full prior to arrival. Prior to booking, I enquired about accessibility of the property and was advised that with the exception of a dirt road, Ibis was accessible by car. However, this is a lie! There is an access bridge to the property that is occasionally flooded (and there is a sign at the bridge indicating that it is occasionally flooded). This is not advertised on Ibis website and was not declared by Ibis despite being asked a direct question.

On Day 1 of our vacation, I received a call from Ibis indicating that the property was not accessible due to flooding of an access bridge. I was asked to wait and see and after many discussions about unpredictable weather and storm water drainage issues in the area, the owner’s husband eventually agreed to a refund for Day 1. We also agreed that Ibis would let me know by 10am on Day 2 if the property was accessible. However, there was no call at 10am, leading me to suspect that Ibis was inaccessible. After lunch time, Ibis informed me that there was some water on the bridge but it was accessible. I arrived for check-in to find that the bridge was flooded with fast flowing water and I waited outside the bridge with a resident of the area who was also not willing to drive across.

The owner drove out to meet me at the bridge. I requested a reschedule at an off-peak time and was told that it was not possible, because Ibis would be losing money. The owner insisted that the bridge would be accessible after our planned supper in Harties (expected us to continue with the ‘wait and see’ game). At this point, I requested the keys to allow us to access Ibis after our planned supper at 10pm, which was when the owner insisted the bridge would be accessible. I was denied the key indicating that it was a risk. After arguing about the inconvenience and lack of consideration for our group’s needs, the owner offered me a refund which I accepted before returning home.

However, when I emailed my bank details for the refund, I received a reply from Ibis that my request for a reschedule was granted and I should reschedule within the next 3 months. This was not what the owner promised and what we agreed. I replied to Ibis that I would be seeking legal advice on the matter. I was promptly contacted by the daughter of the owners and received a partial refund on 6th Jan 2014, with no mention of when the rest of the refund would be made.

The owners of Ibis are an elderly couple and this is the only reason for my patience and polite response to date. However, their inconsiderate, inflexible and deceitful behaviour is unacceptable. This saga continues and we have sought legal assistance.

Room Tip: If you choose to book here, please ensure that you have a 4x4 vehicle.
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
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4  Thank RS2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2011

I have just returned from my second stay at Ibus River Retreat and as much as I would like to keep the venue a secret to others ( as I would like to stay so exclusive!) I must leave a comliment! From the moment you meet Ilse and her staff, to the accomodation where you have complimentary delicious pate and biscuits and champagne waiting in the fridge, plus other essentials like coffee, tea, sugar,milk, to the breathtaking views, african sunsets, jacuzzu's and so much more! All the accomodation is seperate from the rest and you have total privacy...awsomely amazing and we will be back soon!!

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Hendrine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2011

Our stay at Ibis river retreat was truly wonderful - it is a bit out of the way and the drive on the sand road is a bit harrowing if you do not have a 4x4 but when you get there it is all worth it.
Our host Ilse was very accommodating and overall we had a lovely romantic week end away. I would recommend to anyone who needs a weekend away from the bustle of everyday life.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank katejager
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2011

I rarely leave negative reviews but having stayed in many locations in Africa, Ibis river retreat have left us with the most bitter taste in our mouths. We were treated very badly by the staff and the manager when staying to attend a wedding at a neighbouring estate. When we enquired about a taxi to return from the wedding they even suggested that since there are no checkpoints in that part of the countryside that if we had our own transport, a taxi would not be necessary, even after festivities! We were not impressed!

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank jon o
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 March 2009

Ibis River Retreat consists of five stunning cottages set in the heart of the beautiful Rhenosterspruit Nature Reserve near Magaliesburg. It is only about 40 minutes drive from Johannesburg. We have stayed here four times and cannot resist going back again and again.
Each cottage has a very private feel to it and is beautifully decorated with exquisute attention to detail. These cottages are self-catering and contain every amenity you could think of- from caftiere, to candles and gas-lamps to mosquito repellent to African soaps and hand cream. Cleanliness is superb and the cottages and outside area are thoroughly cleaned daily. The decor in the cottage we stay in is very African- from the pictures to the cotton bed sheets embriodered with African design.
The private outside areas are simply amazing, with views of the river and hills. The gardens are large and mature, with full braai (BBQ) facilities, large outdoor eating areas and your own private jacuzzi. We spent every night braaing under the stars, listening to the sounds of the river and wildlife- birds, frogs and insects all in chorus. We even saw several wildebeest coming to the river to drink on a few occasions.
If you would rather not self-cater, there is the option to request food brought to your cottage from a very good menu- the food is superb. There is also an excellent spa, offreing a wide range of treatments. The river is a few minutes away and has picnic areas on the path, perfect for having a glass of wine while the sun sets- that is, if you can drag yourself away from your own jacuzzi and terrace.
The hosts (Mr and Mrs Klemm) are a lovely couple who have thought of everything to make your stay as relaxing as possible. They are so considerate, friendly and truly concerned to ensure that you are happy and well looked after. Nothing is too much trouble for them, and they have clearly worked hard to set up and maintain this beautiful retreat.
So, if you wish to escape the humdrum of life, chill-out, and refresh you soul by being in the heart of nature and yet with luxury and all that you could wish for in a holiday home- this is it. A truly stunning place to stay that is excellent value for money, we will go back again and again.

  • Stayed: March 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank doclecocq
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ibis River Retreat

Address: 16 Vlakfontein, Magaliesburg, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Gauteng > Greater Johannesburg > Magaliesburg
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 29 Speciality Lodging in Magaliesburg
Price Range: £83 - £106 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 6
Also Known As:
Ibis River Retreat Hotel Magaliesburg

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