Though it was not an issue for us, the old style train ride with frequent rocking and noise made getting around and sleeping difficult for some. Storage was a minor challenge; we hardly had any space in the bathroom and little space in the closet. Though there was a large space for luggage overhead, to reach it you had to be tall or standing on a chair. The food service was uneven; sometimes delightful and at times not quite as good. We were disappointed with the train manager’s aloof attitude and an information omission in our printed itinerary that caused us to miss one of only two excursions. We wished non English speaking guests had been provided information and instructions in their language. Some of the guests were discourteous and inconsiderate of the rest of the group.
Handicapped Access No
Length Of Stay : Two nights
Owned-Managed Rohan Vos
Size A 20-carriage classic train for up to 72 passengers in 32 deluxe and four royal suites
Year Opened-Renovated 1989
The sink had separate hot and cold faucets; it was necessary to press and hold down each valve for the water to flow. This meant we could only wash one hand at a time. There was a blow dryer on the wall. Flushing the toilet was frustrating. Often times it required several back to back flushes.
Room : Our 11 m 2 (110 square feet) Deluxe Suite was spacious enough to spend time in. It included air conditioning/heating; a double bed, two chairs, a mini refrigerator/table; small closet including a small electronic safe. There was a wall phone to contact fellow passengers and staff. There were four windows and shutters in the suite and one in the bathroom. When we opened them the dark suite brightened and we were sometimes able enjoy a lovely view. Though it was a slight chore, anytime we were away from our suite we had to close the windows and shutters for security reasons.
Breakfast was a combination buffet and menu service. We enjoyed the buffet’s cereal/yogurt, fresh fruit and cold meat options. The light lunch was in keeping with the higher day time temperatures and opportunity for excursions.
Dinner was the most uneven of the meals. The first courses including, for example a cauliflower soup and a stuffed salmon appetizer, were delicious. The main courses we tried were overcooked. A replacement main course, though it arrived after everyone had finished dining, was an improvement. Although we enjoyed the milk tart, overall the desserts were disappointing.
Facilities Two dining cars, one observation car at the rear and one lounge car near the front with a small souvenir corner to purchase Rovos teddy bears, clothing and golf supplies.
Route Pretoria to Cape Town
Date Of Review May 2004 2012
Ease Of Reserving A Room Though we inquired months in advance, our first choice of dates was unavailable. As a result, it was necessary for us to rearrange our entire flight schedule and hotel reservations. Advance planning advisable to secure desired dates.
Michaela at Blue Travel http://www.blue-travel.net provided us with information and facilitated our reservation process. She was helpful, quick in responding by email, accommodating and always pleasant.
Would You Ride It Again? Yes
One morning we broke a lamp cover. Unable to reach Tania right away we went to breakfast. By the time we returned, our room had been made; the laundry had been collected; the broken shards had been removed; and the lamp cover had been replaced!
The room was serviced multiple times during the day. The staff went beyond the usual garbage pick up and bed making. For example, one cold morning we left the heater on when we went out on an excursion. By the time we returned, the temperature had increased significantly. We approached the room with trepidation anticipating the oven we would encounter. To our surprise, Tania had tidied our room and lowered the temperature.