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“Cheap(ish) and dirty”
Review of Amali Guest Houses

Amali Guest Houses
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Amali Guest Houses
Ranked #11 of 14 Cradock B&B and Inns
Reviewed 10 July 2017

We booked last minute after our accommodation at another lodge fell through. We called the number for Amali and asked if they had a room. The woman on the phone said that there was only one room left with a toilet, a bath and a double bed. That sounded the same as other rooms I have occupied and enjoyed. No problem.

I did not suspect that the toilet and bath, our only toilet and bath, were in fact in the actual bedroom. Sharing the same wooden floor. At least they had a TV with satellite in the room. After turning on the TV, we discovered that the satellite subscription had not been paid and so there were literally no channels on the TV. The bedding was old and left bits of fluff on our clothes and hair the following morning. The bed itself sagged in the middle and creaked violently with the slightest shift in weight. All in all it seemed the room had not been opened for years until moments before we arrived, when two after-dinner mints were placed on the bed.

We asked the guest house's manager whether we could use the kitchen to cook dinner for ourselves and she obliged. After returning from the nearby Spar with groceries, we entered the kitchen. All the dishes were dirty despite being packed away in cupboards. All the surfaces were greasy or sticky. We guessed that not many guests make use of the self-catering kitchen during their stay and that the kitchen had not been used or cleaned in a while.

Imagine our surprise when we stumbled into the kitchen the next morning where guest house staff were cooking the guest breakfast using the same dirty appliances and cutlery and crockery that we had seen the night before. And I'm not just talking watermarks on the knives and a little bit of greasiness on the counter tops. This was serious grime.

We thanked our lucky stars that it was only a one-night stay and left the guest house in the morning, opting out of our complimentary breakfast; instead stopping at a filling station for a Shamrock pie and to make use of the loo.

The manager was a lovely person and there is secure parking but other than that, this was not a pleasant stay.

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Jake N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AmaliGH, General Manager at Amali Guest Houses, responded to this reviewResponded 11 July 2017

Dear Jake N,

I am very sorry that you feel you had a unpleasant stay at Amali! This is not the kind of business that I manage... We try our utmost best to give our guests the BEST stay in Cradock.

I spoke to Lenette that was on duty that weekend... She showed you the self-catering units at College Rd but you asked for cheaper accommodation. The room you stayed in is our cheapest room.. and you are right we do not use that room often, but that room is cleaned with the other rooms frequently even if not used.

You saw the room before you checked in and saw the bathroom was part of the bedroom and on the same wooden floor, but still took the room. If you book one room I do not understand why you complain of having an "only toilet and bath"?

Why if you had Lennette's number on the file next to the bed, the same number you phoned to make a booking did you not ask her to please come sort out the TV. As we have 22 TVs on one account of DSTV they are all paid via debit order per month. Not one other guest complained about their tv channels not working, it must have been a fault on your decoder, which we would have sorted out immediately if you told us. Even would have moved you to another room at the same cheap price if you told us the TV did not work because we know that you pay for the luxury of a TV in the room.

I went into the room now and checked the bedding there is white "summer" sheets on that bed with a white duvet and the beige blanket is brand new...I do not know where the fluff could have come from. I am sorry the bed creaked that will be checked and sorted.

I am sorry that you also did not immediately brought it under our attention that all 20 plates in the cupboard was dirty.. that is unacceptable! I went to check on that now as well and they are all clean.

The only appliances in the kitchen is the stove, microwave and kettle... all checked now.. I would have liked you to have shown Lenette that they were dirty the next morning while the people that is supposed to do the cleaning were there so they could also have seen they are not doing their jobs properly, cause now they only say it is not so and I do not have proven.

We are normally very strict on cleanliness and hygiene. So a kitchen being down right greasy and grimed is not our style. Most of the guests that stay in that house during weekdays for a week long use that kitchen and we have never had any complaints. I am really sorry that it was not up to standard when you used it.

We did not offer you a complimentary breakfast so I do not understand that sentence what did you opt out of...?

Please feel free to walk in to Amali at any time you pass through Cradock again and check on all the faults you now brought under our attention after your stay, as we would really have liked to walk through all the problems with you while you experienced it, so we could make sure it does not happen to any guest or especially you again.

We are proud of Amali and our business and I do not want to be in a position were I have to defend anything on out premises.

For you and other guests reading this please make your complaints and suggestions while you are checked in at the guest house it is very difficult to sort out a problem 9 days later and to pick up why there was a problem on that specific day!

Please feel free to contact me anytime at Amali Guest Houses.
Rika Langenhoven Dry
048 881 4895

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Write a ReviewReviews (9)
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1 - 5 of 9 reviews

Reviewed 17 April 2017

We were not originally booked into Amali, but we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of service. It was 5 star service. We stayed 1 night. As the town was full of guests for a rugby tournament, the owner offered to make reservations for us at a local restaurant. The kinds loved the free wifi. The fridge had cooldrink and biltong and chips, which was great and you only have to leave the necessary amount on the fridge. I would suggest that a few rusks (to buy) would also be nice for the coffee or tea. As it was Easter the owner came by and gave us each an Easter egg. We did not stay for breakfast but I would recommend Amali for anyone who would like to visit Cradock.

Stayed: April 2017
Thank oceandancer007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 May 2016

We visited Amali Guesthouse over the weekend, while we attended a wedding in The Fish River. From the moment we arrived, we were given 5 star service. I asked for a few additional things for the room (A third blanket for the cold etc.) - none of my requests were too big and within minutes they had brought them to the room. We loved our room, it was nice and warm during the cold nights in Cradok! We experienced such, helpful friendly service throughout our stay. The most amazing part was, I by mistake left one of my belonging in the room. I only realized after we had already departed for Cape Town. The Amali Staff were only too happy to help look for it and send it back to Cape Town for me. On the same weekend, we had such bad service through our car rental company, so it was very refreshing to experience such helpful service from our Guesthouse. I would definitely stay there again!

  • Stayed: May 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank CapeTownSamantha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AmaliGH, Owner at Amali Guest Houses, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2016

Such a pleasure to accommodate you, Samantha! Looking forward to your next stay.


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Reviewed 17 December 2015

On arrival I was told to wait in the parking lot after driving for 10 hours! I was then showed my room and that's it. None of the facilities available etc. Breakfast was promised as really good as I was in two minds of eating breakfast at Amali (for R70.00!) or at a restaurant. At the breakfast I was rudely shown to my table by the cleaner and met with irritation when I asked if I can sit at another table. There was a miscommunication about the coffee which I ignored. When my breakfast arrived it was two very hard eggs (I specifically asked for soft eggs), Koo Tamato relish and two very thin and very dry strips of bacon. When I queried the hard eggs the host started screaming at me and accusing me of a bad attitude etc. I got up and left. At the butchery, which recommended Amali, they asked about my stay. I replied it was terrible. I then received a call a week later from the owner asking about payment and accusing me of bad mouthing her guesthouse. When I replied I have a right to say my visit was terrible she started getting sarcastic and even more accusational. Avoid this place and Karoo Manor at all cost!

  • Stayed: December 2015, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
4  Thank Jurgens_Nel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 December 2015

The reception was warm and friendly.
The room was spacious with a modern bathroom.
A problem with the TV was attended to immediately and fixed.
The jack-of-all-trades Tendai is brilliant, and a good advert for the guesthouse and Cradock.
The prices are very reasonable, and this is the only place I will stay when in Cradock again.

Room Tip: Room 11 was modern, spacious and private, with ample off-street parking.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: December 2015, travelled on business
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Thomas G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Amali Guest Houses

Address: 6 College Street, Cradock 5880, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Cradock
Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 14 B&Bs / Inns in Cradock
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Amali Guest Houses opened in 2006. The name comes from the owner Marlize and her two daughters Amé and Lize. Amali offers Karoo friendly reception to all travellers and pride ourselves to our motto "Be our Guest." We care. Amali has available rooms and self catering chalets. Each guest are serviced to their individual need and most of them return as friends. We are situated in the historical town of Cradock that offers ample activities and site seeing ventures... Do make your next visit to Cradock a visit to Amali Guest Houses! ... more   less 

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