Hotel check: The Coach house

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 What’s it like:

The Coach House has established itself as a premier destination for travellers to the Lowveld. Unfortunately, it falls short of its claim of offering ‘world-class hospitality in luxurious comfort’. The glorious surroundings are regrettably offset by mediocre service and rooms that are decidedly tired-looking. How disappointing when one is compelled to use a cell phone to call the front desk to request service at the hotel pool.  Also, waiters would do well to apologise for misplaced orders instead of shifting the blame onto colleagues in the kitchen. 

Where is it?

Located in the Letaba district in Limpopo Province, the Coach House is situated overlooking the Letsitele valley with spectacular views of rolling hills and plantations against the backdrop of the Drakensberg.  It is a four-hour drive from Johannesburg but can also be reached through Phalaborwa airport, and Polokwane airport.  Hotel-airport transfers are offered.

How many rooms? 

The hotel has 30 rooms, comprising:

  • 9 suites.
  • 14 premier twins.
  • 7 premier doubles.

Room facilities:

All rooms have private verandas offering spectacular mountain views.  Room facilities include electronic safes, heated towel rails and adequately stocked mini bars. The Hotel has opted for a limited offering of DStv channels. You will not find dedicated business channels such as Summit Television and CNBC Africa. Rooms are stocked with mineral water, fresh fruit and homemade biscuits.  Not provided are facilities to make tea and coffee which necessitates a twenty-minute wait if ordered through room service. 

Restaurants and bars:

The hotel’s John Buchan Bar, adorned with prints and memorabilia giving insight to the hotel’s history, provides a pleasant ambience for pre-dinner drinks.  The hotel’s dining room does not disappoint.  It has a deserved reputation as one of the best eateries in the area.  Well-prepared food, generous portions and a carefully chosen wine list make for a pleasurable experience.  It is pleasing to see the Head Chef discretely calling on tables to enquire if guests are enjoying their meals.

Meeting and business facilities:

The Coach House is oriented towards leisure travellers and therefore has limited business facilities.  Internet access is available through an ADSL line in the hotel’s lounge. The Coach House has an adjoining conference centre which offers rooms for meetings and functions.   

Verdict

Travellers seeking tranquility in a country setting will find the Coach House a suitable destination.  Unfortunately, the hotel’s shortcomings cannot be hidden behind old world charm and unhurried service.  Recommended is the Agatha Spa which offers a full range of treatments as well as a hydro-jet heated pool and steam rooms.     

Contact

On the Old Coach Road at Agatha, near Tzaneen, Limpopo Province, PO Box 544, Tzaneen, 0850, South Africa

Tel:            +27 (0)15 306 8000, coachhouse.co.za

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