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“Blissful return visit to Paradise!!”

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Pestana Bazaruto Lodge
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Bazaruto Island
Certificate of Excellence
Middelburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Blissful return visit to Paradise!!”
Reviewed 29 July 2014

We returned to Bazaruto lodge for our 35th wedding anniversary in mid-July 2014. We also visited previously in May 2013, and on the basis of that experience, we were "enticed" back.
We spent 7 nights on the island, and what a wonderful experience. The tranquility of the place is such that you cannot help but just to relax from the minute you step out of the airplane from Vilanculos.
The people were exceptional, always friendly, ever present and willing to help. This applies to all staff from Tony right through to the cleaning staff. The room I requested (nr 14) is the furthest north from the Bar/Restaurant area (about 200m), was tastefully finished off (like all the rooms), and kept very clean every day of our visit. But from what I could see, all rooms are the same, but the superior chalets facing the bay is a "must".
The food was excellent (and fresh), offered enough variation and options to cater for our dietary preferences. The seafood was in abundance, and the Sashimi fresh from the ocean (!!), thanks to the Tuna I caught and delivered to the kitchen on day 4 & 5 of our visit. The catering staff surpised us on the night of our anniversary with a special and private dinner setting which was very touching, and the size of the crayfish was amazing (we were unable to finish it!).
I was also privileged to have caught my first ever Billfish (Sailfish of about 2m, and 35kg), thanks to the able assistance of the skipper and deckhand (Adriano and Patricio). I would be amiss not to mention the legendary Vicky and her collegues in the bar area. They indicated to us that they are going to miss us, but if only they realised how much we miss them already! I would recommend the resort to anyone seeking peace and quiet and just want to relax and be spoilt. We are already planning a return trip for later this year with our kids and grand children.........

Room Tip: I prefer those north of the bar/restaurant are, nr 14 furthest from the bar, but any room from 1-14...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Kobus B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_VernonDriscoll, General Manager at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge, responded to this review, 20 August 2014
Dear Kobus B

Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences for all to see on Tripadvisor. Your comments are extremely valuable to us and greatly appreciated.
On behalf of all the management and staff we wish to thank you for all the kind words and look forward to welcoming you back to Pestana Bazaruto Lodge in the near future.

Best wishes and kind regards

Tony
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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144 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 (35)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2014

Bazaruto is simply gorgeous which is why we feel Pestana gets a rather bad wrap in this review.

The good stuff...
Food was decent and better than represented in reviews I have read. I asked the chef on one occasion for a slight change than what the menu offered and they had no problems with it at all. As part of our honeymoon the kitchen staff went out of their way to treat us especially on our last night so thanks to all involved for that.

Diving was good - equipment provided was in great condition and having gone out on a choppy windy day we managed to see a great deal.

Tony, the resort manager, was enthusiastic and approachable.

The not so good stuff...

For a beachside resort there are few free activities like snorkelling off the main beach as the tides prohibit this. The consequential charge for tractor/boat to a beach elsewhere which accommodates snorkelling is rather high (though you can get a transfer to another beach inclusive though we understood that there isn't snorkelling there).

Drinking Water...
On my first outing water was supplied by the resort - it was a bottle with the seal cracked on the lid. I brought this directly to the activities manager's attention and was supplied with more bottles in the same condition for my entire stay. Who knows where the water was coming from and no explanation was ever offered. My suggestion is that if the resort chooses to offer any form of filtered water make it known, and secondly provide a re-useable container for dispensing it.

Housekeeping ...
It is in need of a shake up. Having read previous reviews we can only agree and I spoke personally with the housekeeping manager who was in complete agreement which means they either have budget restrictions or simply just try and get away with it. Not good enough guys.
Examples: Ripped cushions, tractor like air conditioner, rattan torn beach chairs, broken taps etc. etc.

General state of the resort is very tired. Some might argue rustic but as a start the S in the Pestana was dangling from the sign on the wall at reception... and its a feature sign which makes it hard to ignore. I also walked along the beach during the early hours of the morning and found a great deal of litter around the rear end of the resort - over filled bins etc. This was taken care of the next day but there is no excuse in a wilderness area to have this level of litter anywhere.

There are some linguistic difficulties encountered with the staff particularly when ordering drinks at the bar and a varying degree of enthusiasm (uninterested to pleasant). The bar had a tendency to run out of staples e.g. tonic which is a little frustrating in an all-inclusive resort regardless of the remote location.

There was no internet for the duration of our stay and no clear plan to get the internet back online - it is advertised as being inclusive of wireless internet and there is no alternative computer room the only alternative is to use the manager's computer which is unideal if you need to check in for flights etc.

Overall the resort has a package feel to it which if you're looking for a practical holiday solution may suit you but the price tag certainly isn't reflected in what you get for your money. Did we have a good time? The condition of the resort certainly didn't impact my enjoyment of the trip but I wont be rushing back!

Room Tip: The beachside bungalows had a great view over the beach onto the water.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank SlyJok
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_VernonDriscoll, General Manager at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge, responded to this review, 20 August 2014
Dear Slyjok

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback on your recent stay at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge. Everyone's feedback is important to us be it good or the "not so good stuff" as you have mentioned.
We thank you for your comments on the "good stuff" and your concerns on the "not so good stuff" which have been noted and the appropriate action being implemented to rectify the problems.
I am pleased to advise that the refurbishment of the lodge is planned and some exciting changes will be taking place. The WiFi is in the process of being upgraded and the speed will definitely improve.
On behalf of the management and staff we would like to thank you once again for sharing your experience at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge.
With kind regards
Tony
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level Contributor
356 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 May 2014

Unique out of Africa experience. The hotel is on the upper North beach on the corner of the Island. The location is fantastic. What you getting is an AFRICAN Island experience. It's remote, and you get what nature left for you, how the location looked even hundreds of years ago.

This is not designed as a posh grand experience. If you require that, you'll be a bit disappointed. Rather what you get is the natural beauty of the environment of the african island, and you can still have a warm outside secluded hot shower at the end of the day after snorking, diving, boating, swimming with the dolphins etc. And when exhausted from your wonderings you can watch the sunset from your bed in your room (quality top bedding etc).

You can then go for dinner. As the island is remote and only accessible by boat or a charter flight, best is to eat the fresh foods. Next to the Hotel, you will see the fisherman and the crayfish, calamari and prawns are all caught that morning. Is the best and freshest you'll ever taste. The calamari and crabs were the best I have ever had!

If you wonder off this fresh list, then of course you'll be eating the not so fresh frozen "them trying their best" foods. I thought the other food provided such as fresh fruit etc complimented all well, so this then was fine.

The hotel manager Tony always available, the hospitality was warm.

This is for the traveller seeking an unpretentious visit off the main tourist track whilst still being cared for, a hotel where you can go for breakfast barefeet or sandals if you wish and not be out of place.

Room Tip: Ask for a beach front room
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Stanley466
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_VernonDriscoll, General Manager at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge, responded to this review, 26 May 2014
Dear Stanley 466

Thank you for taking the time to share your kind and positive feedback about your recent stay at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge.
We try to offer the "home from home" experience but still endeavour in achieving and exceeding our guest expectations.
On behalf of all the management and staff I would like to thank you for your valued comments and we look forward to welcoming you and your family back in the near future.

kind regards

Tony
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Harare, Zimbabwe
Level Contributor
28 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 May 2014

We have made several trips to Bazaruto Lodge and the reason we keep going back is simple- the setting and the warm welcome by the staff.
The family chalets are spacious and comfortable and our children love digging in the sand first thing in the morning while we sip our first coffee of the day, the sea lapping only a few metres away.
The beaches are unspoilt and the sand is white and squeaky clean, and there is hardly anyone in sight.
When the tide goes out, the lodge takes you to an equally unspoilt beach to snorkle or swim, with an umbrella and cooler box. These trips are included in the accommodation rate.
The snorkling at light house bay is one of the best places I have experienced, and is well worth the extra cost, especially if Zaca is your guide. Try the diving or deep sea fishing for a great experience.
The food is pleasant and has a local flavour. The beach barbeques are very enjoyable.
The staff cooked an early supper for our children and the restaurant staff are pleasant and helpful. The restaurant and bar are a step away from the beach.
We hope to return to the wonderful and unspoilt piece of paradise to make more wonderful memories.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Rosanne B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tony_VernonDriscoll, General Manager at Pestana Bazaruto Lodge, responded to this review, 26 May 2014
Dear Rosanne B

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience during your recent visit to Pestana Bazaruto Lodge. You and your family have become part of the Pestana Bazaruto Lodge family and we look forward to your next visit in the near future.
On behalf of the management and all the staff we thank you once again for your positive feedback.

kind regards
Tony
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg
Level Contributor
58 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2014

As a Christmas Vacation destination to relax it was fantastic. Short flight to the Island in an old propeller plane and 'tractored' to the hotel from the airstrip - felt exotic! Chalets are first class, comfortable and right by the water, though when the tide goes out you're left wit a large expanse of muddy beach. When the tide is in it's a safe place for kids on provided paddle boats though. Meals were good, with a warm pool nearby so you could just relax all day. Visited the old lighthouse on the Island, scuba diving was a little rough and murky. You have to enjoy the heat though and felt it overpriced. Overall its a great place to unwind and do little, in comfort.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank WRS W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester
Level Contributor
58 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 April 2014

The flight to the island is an experience in its own right, set right on the beach but be aware the water is so shallow at the hotel you cannot swim. The hotel will drive you to dolphins bay which is an absolutely beautiful beach nearby and I would recommend a visit. The hotel will fill up a cooler full of drinks and you can just relax. There were six of us and the hotel only had about 14 guests when we stayed, so unless you like your own company I would not go as a couple as there is not a lot to do. The food was unfortunately always luke warm except when they did a la carte which they did often as it made more sense with only a few guests. The bar staff were very friendly and the drinks flowed as much as you wanted. One word of advice our flight back was at 12:45 with the connection at 13:25. This is not enough, if it was not for the other members of our party arguing with the pilot at the connection he would have taken off without us. You will be approached by locals trying to sell you stuff, they cannot come up to the bedrooms unless you invite them so do not. If I were to improve anything it would be the buffet food especially dessert and breakfast.

Room Tip: Some rooms are a long walk in the dark, ask for one closer to the main building
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank woodyManchester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 April 2014

We have been going to Bazaruto Lodge since 1996. And the experience just keeps getting better. From snorkelling to deep sea fishing. Good quality family time underneath the Bungalow Umbrellas - to sun downers at the bar. I would recommend this resort to anyone who like's to get out of the city to where there is no cars and malls and people. Just relaxing in nature. What a privilege.

Room Tip: Older bungalows closest to the water are very comfortable as it is only a short distance to all ente...
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Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
3 Thank CRobbertse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pestana Bazaruto Lodge

Property: Pestana Bazaruto Lodge
Address: Bazaruto Archipelago | Bazaruto Island, Inhambane Province 4376, Mozambique
Region: Mozambique > Inhambane Province > Bazaruto Archipelago > Bazaruto Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Bazaruto Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Pestana Bazaruto Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 26
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Pestana Bazaruto Hotel Bazaruto Island
Pestana Bazaruto Island Hotel
Pestana Hotel Bazaruto Island

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