Review by: Christina Scibelli

Overall Impressions

We had the trip of a lifetime and were especially blown away by the Safari at the Tengile River Lodge. While we had some specific issues with the Four Seasons (detailed below) the trip largely lived up to our expectations of being a once in a lifetime journey to the other side of the world.

Countries Visited

South Africa

South Africa is so different from where we live that we felt like we could have spent another two weeks exploring. Franschhoek and Stellenbosch were beautiful and provided great views of a valley leading back into Cape Town. If we could do it all again we would have loved more time to explore Cape Town proper, though the Safari leg of our journey was so far and away beyond any expectations we had upon arrival.

Seychelles

We didn't see much of the Seychelles outside of the resort, but the views, ocean and beautiful white sand beach were superb. We have some more feedback left for the actual resort below but it is a beautiful part of the world. It will be difficult for us to get back from where we live but the destination largely fit with what we were looking for. The weather was somewhat cooperative with us, though we never really had a 10/10 day.

Accommodation Visited

La Residence

The service level that we received at this hotel was beyond compare. The staff was exceptionally attentive without being overbearing and very knowledgeable about the area. It felt like the staff always knew where we were and grew to almost anticipate our needs. The food was excellent and the views were breathtaking. The room could stand to be modernized a touch but there is something to be said about the character of the decor. Amazing experience all in all and we would highly recommend this property.

Tengile River Lodge

Words can't possibly encapsulate how amazing our experience was at Tengile. From the moment we were picked up at the airport all the way through our final breakfast before leaving, we loved every moment of our stay. The staff put in a lot of extra effort to make our stay special, from everyone to the front of house staff to the rangers and guides. The accommodations were a 10/10, unmatched by anything we have ever seen and were a definite high point of our trip. We can't wait to go back!

The Four Seasons Seychelles

As we knew going in, two of the restaurants at the resort were closed during our stay. We were somewhat disappointed in the level of accommodation provided given the closure and while we were informed that both would be available during our visit, we found that to not necessarily be the case. In addition, the night we arrived, we were told the Steak Shack, which was one of the pop ups built to accommodate guests in the absence of Zez and Koi, hadnâ??t opened due to weather. Granted while we can't control weather, it felt overall like our dining options for the stay were severely restricted and fell below the standard that we had expected from the Four Seasons. We also felt that our villa was somewhat outdated and for the most part lacked some of the 'creature comforts' that we have become accustomed to seeing in other resorts. For example, Bluetooth speaker connectivity was not available, and while there was an AUX cord provided to connect through a DVD player, our iPhones haven't had headphone jacks since 2016. Further, the hot water in our villa went out one night, and while we acknowledge the resort's consideration towards being sustainable we would be remiss to not mention it affected our stay. The housekeeping was also quirky in the sense that it felt like we were constantly being interrupted in our room for cleaning. There was no real way to get in sync with these teams, as one day they arrived at 9:30am and the following at 3pm. We also ordered in-villa dining to our villa a few times for breakfast, and returned later in the afternoon to find that the plates and settings were still left on our outdoor dining table, picked clean by birds. We do want to also call out some of the positives of the resort however. The in-villa dining teams were excellent and provided a level of service commensurate with what we would expect. Cyril, the sommelier, was extraordinary and spent time with us describing some of the more special bottles of wine available on the list and helped us find some hidden gems. The resort did a great job of featuring some of the local culture, including creole cuisine and singing and dancing, during dinner at the Kannel Restaurant. And lastly we enjoyed many nights sitting at the Kannel Bar listening to the live music that was provided by local bands.

Staff Review

Stuart thanks so much for your help in putting this trip together. We truly couldn't have done it without you and we had the experience of a lifetime. All the best, Matt & Christina