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- Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
- Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
- Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
- Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
- Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
Over Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
- rust en natuur
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Badkamer en privé-veranda.
Mountain View Suite
Badkamer en privé-veranda, met bergzicht.
Gelegen in het hart van het Namib natuurreservaat, op 70 km afstand van Sossusvlei.
- 2 Eetkamers
De beroemde Sossusvlei bevindt zich in het Namib Naukluft Park. De openingstijden zijn vanaf zonsopgang tot een uur na zonsondergang. De Sossusvlei is de plek waar een smalle, over het algemeen droge rivierbedding in tijden van flinke regenval de zanderige vlakte omtovert in een klein meer. De meeste accommodaties in dit gebied bevinden zich in de omgeving van de plaatsen Solitaire en Sesriem, op 30-60 kilometer afstand van de Sossusvlei.
"Very special location but management of lodge disappoints"
Wolwedans has been on our bucket list for years, since we stayed in their self-catering former farmhouse (Family hideout) a few years ago. We knew the landscape would be breathtaking and that you visit for the experience of being in such a unique environment. Wolwedans Dunes lodge did not disappoint ito its location. But from their website (and high rates) we expected the lodge to be on par with other luxury safari lodges we've visited in Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and South Africa over the years. Unfortunately this was not the case. If you've been to a Wilderness Safaris or &beyond lodge or any lodge in Sabi Sands (SA) you'll know what to expect at a luxury safari lodge at these rates - top notch service, excellent food, attentive staff, interesting activities, accommodation of the highest standard, lodges managed in such a way that guests are not exposed to the operation of the lodge etc. On 24 Dec 2016 I wrote the below email to Wolwedans in an effort to give the management constructive feedback as to how to improve a few small things to bring the lodge up to standard. I haven't had a response from them. Good morning Wolwedans team We checked out of Wolwedans Dunes Lodge on Thursday and was not given a feedback form (or similar) to rate our experience and give feedback, hence this email. Please view this email as constructive criticism, aimed at helping to make the lodge worldclass. The good: Lodge is beautiful and I particularly liked the layout (except for two things mentioned below) and the various intimate seating areas. Simply stunning. Location is perfect, view is stunning. Managers Helene and Jorina were a treat, so incredibly friendly and helpful. Rooms were comfortable. The pool was a 'life-saver'. Appreciated the wifi. Ice tea was delicious. The chefs made an effort to accommodate our dietary requirements. Areas to consider for improvement: We have visited various luxury lodges in Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and South Africa over the years, which charge similar rates to Wolwedans, and these lodges are my reference for the below feedback. I am comparing luxury lodge with luxury lodge. It must also be noted that we are not fussy travellers, having camped without any facilities (and loving it). We've also stayed at your Family hideout before and loved it. 1. Activities: The lodge is one of the world's most beautiful locations (in my view), yet I was a bit bored. I did not come for game viewing but for experiencing the desert. Wolwedans needs a unique/signature experience (instead of only daily drives). With so much space and beautiful landscape the options are endless eg mobile 'safari'/sleepout in the desert (can be done with quads), train a staff member in photography and take guests on a mini photography safari etc etc. You don't have game to view (as other lodges have as their big drawcard) but you have this landscape and my suggestion is to think creatively about how you utilise it and give your guests a memorable experience. At Wilderness Safaris' Hoanib lodge they have the Skeleton coast visit as their signature activity. Also consider dinner or breakfast away from the lodge (in the dunes). We were only offered morning (starting at 8:30/9:00) and sunset drives as well as massages and scenic flights. We had to ask about a sunrise/early morning drive (since a 9:00 drive is too late for good photography and too hot) and whether walks are possible. The walk with the two guides was a highlight but not offered as an option. It should really be promoted! Ballooning is mentioned on your website but was not offered. Drives starting at 8:30/9:00 in summer is far from ideal. Change your programme with the seasons and rather have an early morning drive followed by a late breakfast. None of the lodges I have ever visited offered such a late drive as its standard activity and in the hot months I think would be welcomed if you change this. I would have loved to visit the quivertree forest or petrified dunes but apparently drives that way were not possible. 2. Guest comfort Although not a necessity, gowns in the room (to go with the slippers) would have been nice. Also facecloths in the room (all lodges I have stayed in had facecloths) and a cool facecloth at the end of a dusty drive (all lodges do). Extra dustbin in the room. Regularly Empty ashtrays. Air freshner in bathroom (especially since one room and not seperate toilet) Extra shade at the pool - on Tripadvisor I see other guests have also suggested such. Two shaded areas insufficient. I asked for an empty spray/mist bottel to fill with water. It would be such a nice and inexpensive gesture for guests to given spray bottles with cold water and would help with the heat. English books and more recent magazines. Your website says the most pleasant weather is till December. We are South African and use to hot conditions but this was not pleasant weather. A German cardiologist that was at the lodge at the same time said the hot weather and absence of areas that are cool could be quite dangerous to people, especially those that are older or have medical conditions. I think you need to warn guests of the extreme heat and offer more space/facilities/tools (eg spray bottle) to cool us down. During the day it was very uncomfortable (except in the pool). Better house wine. At Hoanib (my last reference of a luxury lodge - visited prior to Wolwedans), the wines on offer were of a significantly better quality and included more options (chardonnay, chenin blanc and sauvignon blanc for whites). Tea/coffee making facilities in room and mini bar in room (Hoanib also operates on solar power and offers both these). The manager did offer us a coolerbox but despite asking, the ice was never replaced and the coolerbox remained in our room for three days (with warm drinks and melted ice). 3. Operations Every luxury lodge I've been to hides its operations from guests - you are only exposed to the guest areas and how the lodge operates is hidden from guests. Unfortunately at dunes lodge the lodge operation is in full view of the guests. A simple solution would be to screen off the kitchen and staff accommodation as well as the vehicle parking area. At luxury lodges guests should never be exposed to these. The staff in the kitchen is extremely noisy. Their conversations were louder than the guests! Not suitable behaviour for a luxury lodge. Every afternoon / sunset drive (3) we either had to go collect our snacks at the main area (reception/curio shop area) or wait for it to be delivered. The other guests on our vehicle also commented that we seem to be 'chasing' our snacks every day.This creates the perception of being unorganised. The solar panels are in an unfortunate position and is unsightly and spoils the view. Again, not possible to screen them off? There are lots of things/rubbish lying around the lodge - danger tape, pipes, empty bottles. I can send pictures if you don't believe me. Not what one would expect at a luxury lodge. During the day when lying at the pool the two-way radio was so loud that we could clearly hear the conversations. Not what we would expect in such a remote and serene environment. Rooms were not dusted. I know it is windy and the red sand gets in everywhere but once a day the rooms can get a quick dust to make it appear as if someone has made an effort. Klipdrift branded glasses for G&T? Not luxury lodge standard. Every day there were maintenance workers at the lodge and pool. I accept that things need to be done but not in sight of guests who are trying to enjoy the landscape and tranquility. It is heartbreaking for guests to see the Oryx starving. I know it is nature but many of the guests commented that putting out some feed during the drought should be considered. This could be a worldclass lodge if the management pays attention to detail and the small things seasoned luxury lodge travellers will notice. I call it safari finesse and suggest that you visit other luxury lodges (eg Wilderness Safaris and &beyond) to see how they ensure safari finesse. Your prices are on par with theirs but Wolwedans lacks the exceptional service, the extraordinary experiences and the attention to the small things one expects. It comes across as a bit amateurish compared to the professional operations at other lodges. If that is what you are going for then it must be noted that your website conveys a message of top notch luxury lodge. Make no mistake, we enjoyed our visit and the location is very special. But it could have been so much better if attention was given to the small things and if the activities were more special. After staying at Hideout we added Wolwedans to our bucketlist. Would I recommend it - probably not at these prices and with the issues listed above. I would much rather recommend family hideout (and have done so numerous times). As mentioned at the start of my email - please see this as constructive criticism. And please don't be defensive as I've seen you do for less than perfect Tripadvisor reviews. My feedback comes from a good place, to help you. I am giving you such detailed feedback to make the lodge better for future guests and to ensure they leave satisfied and give you rave reviews. I think many/all my suggestions can be implemented at minimum cost but the impact will be huge. Kind regards So, in summary - if you don't mind the little things (lack of attention to detail, slack management) or this is your first experience of a luxury safari lodge in Africa, you'll be fine (except for the lack of interesting and special activities). But if you've travelled to other luxury lodges in Africa, be warned that you will notice the difference and may be disappointed. This is a lodge with so much potential but management needs to up their game to make this a professionally run lodge.
"Great place we missed the action"
Very nice lodge in a weird surroundings. More landscape beauty than Wildlife, wlthough if you like Oryx you must go here. The staff tries but doesn;t get to the level you would hope for. Theu offer far too little activities to spend your time here accordingly well. We went for a bushmen walk, but despite 2 beetles and 1 spider we didn;t see a lot.... The sundowner was spectacular. At dinner you sit together with the other guests, we had a whole lot of fun making jokes with the Belgian snobbish family from Kortrijk and the German trio!! Frankly we suggest you don't go here but stay closer to Sossusvlei, better quality!
Very beautiful lodge in a wonderful landscape. Selma is the perfect hostess, highly professional,attentionatel, fun to be with and all the team is great. Our guide, Mervin, and the bushman, Paulus, gave us the most interesting tours in this magnificent desert. Don't visit Namibia without staying in this exceptional lodge ! Hope to come back one day. Merry XMas and Happy New Year to everyone. Sophie G.
"Paradise on earth"
Wolwedans will remain the highlight of our 3'000 km tour in Namibia. It is located in a very remote place, at 20 km from the dust road. I fell in love with the place : the desert and its colors, the silence and the wind, the most welcoming and professional team, its exquisite food, the spacious tents and huge bathrooms, being able to watch the sunrise from our bed..... the whole atmosphere of Wolwedans. One has to experience it to understand the beauty from it all and I am glad that we have friends who will visit Wolwedans in January. We regretted not being able to stay longer than two nights.... but surely we will be back ! Thank you Selma and the team !
"Superb accomodation in the desert"
We stayed in the Mountain View Suite as part of our honeymoon and can only recommend Wolwedans. The â€œtent-style houseâ€ was of great quality, spacious and we were amazed by the open nature views and the quiet. The staff was friendly and helpful yet giving us enough privacy. The food was simply amazing and can be compared to any top notch restaurant in Namibia. You will be surrounded by Oryx which adds to the remote feeling. Besides the (desert-type)-nature there is not much to do but the guides try their best to make the drives and sundowner expeditions as interesting as possible. It is one of the largest private nature reserves in Africa and also puts great emphasis on sustainability and little light pollution. Especially the latter ensures unforgettable night skies with stunning views on the stars. We recommend getting up early to see the sunrise, it was quite impressive. It is surely not the cheapest accommodation but we think the money is well spent.
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