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“Fabulous people and place”

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Nkomazi Game Reserve
Certificate of Excellence
Somerset West
Level Contributor
172 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
“Fabulous people and place”
Reviewed 25 October 2011

We recently stayed for three nights in the Royal Suite Tent in the Komati Tented Lodge.

After receiving the confirmation of the reservation it is stated clearly that you have to be at the premises in time as you will be picked up at 13:00 hrs. So no one even dares to arrive late. The relaxed drive from OR Tambo International in Johannesburg took us exactly 3 hours, and we were well in time. After entering the secured gate you are directed to a parking area with a small 'bus stop' structure, a few seats and a bathroom. Since nobody is welcoming you here, and you simply have to wait to be collected, a nice gesture would be a small fridge with some cold drinks. Maybe something to be organized? Well on time staff with game viewing Range Rovers as well as a pick up truck came to collect the waiting guests and their luggage, and from there on the fun begins.

The drive to the tented camp is already a great start of what you are about to expect in this reserve, as numerous animals can already be spotted in the approx. 30 minutes drive to the camp. Here you are greeted by a group of singing staff members, wet towels and a welcome drink. Staff by the way is one of the big assets here. From the managers couple to kitchen staff, always time for a chat, greet and smile. Next you are 'escorted' to your tent while your luggage is being delivered. The beautiful and large tents are placed on wooded decks. Our accommodation consisted of two tents. One being the bedroom with an inside shower and outside bath. The other one with a lounge and flat screen TV (no satellite)with DVD player (which we didn't use), toilet and outside shower. Furthermore, there is a lower deck with a splash pool and two sunbeds: beautiful! Further on the premises you will find two big tents for catering purposes, a shop and an excellent spa. My wife loved her treatment and I went back a second time for a nice back and neck massage.

At around three o clock you are expected in one of the two catering tents for an afternoon tea. Coffee, tea but also cold and alcoholic drinks are served together with several choices of snacks and sweet stuff, which changes daily. Really nice. Then it's off for the afternoon game drive. Our game ranger Heinrich is a fantastic guy. Friendly, knowledgeable and with a vision you don't find often with human beings: he spotted lions from a distance so far that we couldn't find them using binoculars. During the five drives we made we saw plenty of buck species, Giraffes, Zebra's, Rhino's, Elephants and Lions, to name but a few. They have four out of the Big Five. No Buffalo's are currently present, but plans are in the making to reintroduce them. We also didn't see Leopard and Cheetah, but had some other beautiful encounters such as the Martial Eagle, Fish Eagle, Jackals (one with cubs) and a large brown Hyena. During the last game drive we had a fantastic close encounter with the lions, on top of a rock. In between the drives, Heinrich took us to some very nice spots for a sundowner in the wild: all in all stunning times.

Then it was back to the camp for a drink followed by dinner. Most of the time four course meals but conceptually changing daily. The first night we had a set menu, the second night a small buffet with amongst others a delicious chicken and prawn curry. Our third night we had an outside dinner with big camp fires and a great atmosphere. Food to my opinion was a bit hit and miss. Excellent main courses, amongst others also a perfectly cooked beef fillet, were followed by desserts that didn't deserve that title. One night the announced home made ice cream was drowned and killed in condensed milk, while another night the chocolate mousse appeared to be an instant product with a huge overdose of sugar. Oops, really bad! However, we didn't mind skipping the desserts after all the nice food you are offered during the day. Early mornings at 06:00 hrs delicious warm muffins are served with coffee and tea before setting off for the morning drive. After returning to the camp there is the 09:00 hrs breakfast, which offers a daily changing choice of nice dishes.

N'komazi Game Reserve is great. It's not really big in hectares in comparison to other Game Reserves we have visited in the past, but it offers Nature in full force. The Komati Tented Camp is stunningly located alongside the Komati River and very well appointed. I believe the reintroduction of Buffalo will be an asset to make the game drives even more spectacular, but there is plenty to see. As said, staff here is a true asset. We will gladly return to this place to hopefully enjoy the same hospitality and perhaps even more animals to spot.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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2 Thank LaurentPerrier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 October 2011

What a fantastic place. All the staff from Ulrich the manager down were very friendly and helpful. The game drives were fascinating, Henrick the ranger was very interesting and knowledgeable. The Tents were very comfortable and the food was superb. I cannot recommend this place more. If it was not such a distance from the UK we would be back in a flash.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank mrychelt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 August 2011

We stayed here July 2009, I just now realized we never posted our review. This was our first game reserve for our honeymoon and it was amazing. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and the manager was very personable and paid attention to every detail. We were fortunate to have multiple private game drives, bike rides, and treks as many of the other visitors chose to enjoy the facilities instead. The rooms were beautiful and very comfortable and had it been warmer we would have enjoyed the private pool. I highly recommend taking an outside bath. When we return to South Africa we will definitely come back to the Nkomazi Game Reserve.

We have a few photos on our website, we didn't finish loading them all.
http://joegorm.com/new_page_21.htm

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank alicai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2011

We had a business/family getaway for a company. Arline and Ulrich Schutte bent over backwards to accomodate our special "boardroom" requirements. The service we recieved from all staff from Daniel our waiter to Kirsten the event manager to the chefs and game ranger, Hugo, was outstanding. We were forunate enough to view lion feeding on a very recent (20 minutes) Wildebees kill. We saw lion, rhino, giraffe, plenty buck (Hartbees, Blesbok, Wildebees, Kudu to name a few), plenty birds, secretary bird, black backed jackal, brown hyena. The food cooked by Valencia and Mama Grace was superb and fit for a king. The spa treatments we got from Michelle and Arline were also top class. I have nothing bad at all to say about this venue and the staff. I would highly recomend Komati Tented Lodge to anyone, be it business or pleasure.

Room Tip: Book room 1 or Room 11 :) best view, room 3 has the sound of the rapids if you like that
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  • Stayed July 2011, travelled on business
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Thank IldikoHegyi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2011

We were not sure what to expect when we decided to visit Komati Tented Lodge in April 2011 but our 4 day experience exceeded any expections we may have had. The service, accomodation, game viewing, food and hospitality deserves a breath-taking 10/10. I would certainly recommend this beautiful gem to anybody looking to experience a luxury African safari in its natural beauty. To Arline, Hugo, Michelle, Ulrich and the rest of the team - thank you so very much for a truly amazing experience.

Family Vidjak

Room Tip: Call the lodge directly
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  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Vidjak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
2 reviews
Reviewed 11 April 2011

We visited for our wedding anniversary and loved every bit of it!

The LODGE

Most importantly to us, the lodge is a 3 1/2 hr easy drive from Joburg. The tents with private deck and plunge pool are the ultimate in luxury! They are decorated in African colonial style, with the most comfortable feather bed, an indoor shower, outdoor shower and an outdoor bath. The high tea before game driving was divine, and we returned to a candlelit bubble bath and dinner served in our room - wow! The food and wine were outstanding, as was the service. I didn't have time to try the spa - I would love to have.

The GAME VIEWING

We were incredibly lucky to see a lioness killing a young kudu and thereafter the lion eating. What really sets this reserve apart is that there are only ever two or three vehicles driving, so one is able to peacefully enjoy a sighting for as long as you wish, without being disturbed by the endless radio communication one hears in other reserves. This reserve isn't all about the big five though - it's not the "canned" big five experience - although we did see lion, rhino, elephant - they have many antelope and plains game, incl gemsbok, waterbuck, springbok, kudu, blesbok, impala, zebra, giraffe, nyala etc. The scenery is beautiful and peaceful. One small drawback are the electricity pylons which run through the reserve from years ago when the land was farms. The lodge manager said they are working with Eskom to try and get them moved. The lodge manager was also our game ranger and we thoroughly enjoyed his knowledge and professional and respectful manner with guests as well as the game.

Overall I highly recommend this lodge and I would love to return!

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank NikkiJeanE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
Reviewed 21 March 2011

All of africa in one reserve. Sublime!
SA`s secret garden.

  • Stayed March 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank hynekoosthuizen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Nkomazi Game Reserve

Property: Nkomazi Game Reserve
Address: R541, Badplaas 1190, South Africa (Formerly Komati Tented Lodge )
Region: South Africa > Mpumalanga > Badplaas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Speciality Lodging in Badplaas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Nkomazi Game Reserve 5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Known as "the place of water," Nkomazi Game Reserve is a destination of outstanding scenic beauty. It is an ecological Aladdin’s Cave of natural science, from its towering ancient mountains to its broad river valleys and impressive grasslands. Victorian military "Africa Campaign" styled tents blend into the landscape. Furniture creates a traditional "Out of Africa" feel with all the added comforts and luxuries of 5-star accommodation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Komati Tented Lodge - Nkomazi Game Reserve Hotel Badplaas

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