Another Potential Honeymoon Schedule

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Apr 13th, 2003, 04:01 PM
  #21
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Clematis,

The Table Bay Hotel is actually connected to the Waterfront Mall, much the way that Las Vegas hotels are connected to each other. The hotel is not in the mall by any means, but it is connected and in my opinion, it is one of the top 3 hotels in Cape Town (with the Cape Grace and the Mount Nelson rounding out the list, in no particular order).
I will email you to answer whatever other questions you may have.
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Apr 13th, 2003, 05:46 PM
  #22
 
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Just to add my 2 cents I wouldn't dismiss Luxury Link too quickly. The deal is a very good one and you'll be staying at places, that as far as I know, are rarely so heavily discounted for foriegners. These are VERY high end hotels and resorts and perfect for a honeymoon. The current package goes through February 2004 so you would have to wait until they had a package covering your dates. You can check what the package sold for previously by clicking on the past auctions at the bottom of the main auctions pagepage.
Personally for the price/quality I would consider the LL package combined with several nights driving through the wine country.
On some other points I agree it can work well to delay the honeymoon. My husband and I didn't go away until just over a week after the wedding and we enjoyed hanging out with everyone who had come in from out of town etc. However, this only worked because we didn't have to go back to work in between.
On the flights it depends who you use. Because you don't have time to stop in Europe it makes most sense to fly SAA. SAA flies from NYC or Atlanta...it sounds to me that you would do best to fly in and out of NYC.
Also where ever you do make your bookings ensure that you tell them you are a honeymoon couple, we found it made a big difference. Also, if you make your own reservations rather than go through a travel agent make sure to do some of the things they would do for you...for example at alot of the camps they have a communal dinner and this isn't always what you're looking for on your honeymoon... so I suggest you ask how they serve dinner and if they can do a special dinner for you...often they will do a private dinner in front of your tent or in some other romantic/scenic/private spot. The thing it it's often crucial to ask before you go as they may limit how many of these they will do per night. I have never been charged extra for this type of thing.
In terms of the time of year I think there is a great advantage going when there are fewer tourists. You are much more likely to have a safari vehicle to yourself and to get more personal attention. Plus you'll probably meet fewer other Americans as they are often concerned with travelling at the "peak times".
Hope you have a great trip!
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Apr 13th, 2003, 07:20 PM
  #23
 
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Brit,

I agree that the Luxury Link package is an excellent one. Four nights at The Mount Nelson in a Junior Suite would likely cost around $2,200 USD alone.

Two nights at The Westcliff Hotel in a junior suite would probably be another $800 USD.

Four nights at The Orient Express lodges in Botswana would be a minimum of $2,500 - $3,000 USD.

The only reason why I ultimately told Matty to dismiss it from consideration was due to his budget of about $6,000 USD.

That Luxury Link package has been going for anywhere from $3,500 - $4,000 USD recently. Even if Matty were to get it for $3,500 USD, by the time you throw in the international flights from the U.S. and the flights in South Africa and to Botswana, the price of flights will likely be another $4,500 USD.

Additionally, Matty was looking for a couple more nights in Cape Town which would add a minimum of $350 USD at a decent place or if Matty wanted to chance it and try to get a heavily discounted last second booking at The Mount Nelson staying in the same room, it would still be an extra $750 USD.

In the end, for the itenerary that Matty wants, if the Luxury Link package was taken and 2 nights in Cape Town were added the final price is probably around $9,000 USD or $3,000 USD over the prescribed budget.

Otherwise, the Luxury Link package looks like an excellent deal.

I even bid on this package and won it for $3,300 USD. However, at the time there was a reserve price set on it and LL would not release it for less than $3,750 USD. I didn't want to pay that much when I wasn't sure about going to Botswana in early June and at places that I am not very familiar with. Instead I opted for a four night LL package at the Twelve Apostles Hotel in a luxury seafacing room that usually sells for $375+ USD per night. I got four nights for $555 USD. I added a five night safari at Kafunta in South Luangwa, Zambia, a couple nights in Joburg with another LL auction package and three nights at Djuma Vuyatela in the Sabi Sand.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 03:09 AM
  #24
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
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A great resource for planning is www.getawaytoafrica.com. It is sponsered by GETAWAY a superb travel magazine based in South Africa. They used to be really super when they only covered southern Africa, but now that they have expanded to cover the entire continent the server is much too slow. It's best to try it when the Europeans and Aficans have gone to sleep for the evening.
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Apr 15th, 2003, 05:27 AM
  #25
 
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mattyA,
i did my honeymoon in sa last summer - july - and i wanted to offer a few quick suggestions if you don't mind! first, i really think that you will definitely want a night or two on the waterfront in cape town. we stayed at the cape grace, and i was completely impressed, but honestly i have been told there are SO many other waterfront hotels that aren't so pricey. in fact, the radisson is supposed to be quite nice and less than $200 per night. if you have three nights in cape town before seeing the winelands, i would recommend two nights on the waterfront and then one at the bay hotel in camps bay (previously mentioned by many). you'll just love being away from the city, yet still easily being able to get there...and it's perfect honeymoon material and the staff is very, very involved in the details of the stay. i had stayed there with my parents years ago and i always remember it as top notch.
here is a thought - if you and your fiancee don't mind...when you fly into JHB, if you are coming from JFK (which i would recommend, definitely. it's the most pleasant flight and you don't have to deal with the stop in atlanta. SAA now does a non-stop from JFK. about 14 hours or so if i remember correctly), you're flight will arrive around 3pm in JHB. you'll be tired, but you really won't want to spend more than one night in JHB. while there are wonderful shows, etc, to see there, you won't feel comfortable walking around at night, strolling the city streets, for the first night of your honeymoon. i would recommend to leave first thing in the morning and head out to your first destination.
also, krueger by car is about 5-8 hours, depending on where you want to go.
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Apr 15th, 2003, 04:19 PM
  #26
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wow...did anyone see the winning bid for a 4 night stay at the Ngala game reserve at luxurylink for only $1250. Sounds like a damn good deal...so everyone keep quiet and dont tell your friends. they might outbid me.

Do they have reserves on their auction packages? or if no one bids, then you automatically get trip if you are the highest bidder?? Maybe luxlink employees automatically bid up the trip to the reserve, so no one can win at a crazy low price. But, 1250 for ngala sounds pretty crazy for 4 nights for 2 PEOPLE!!!

Am I Wrong???

By the way...what is the time difference from New York to S. Africa?
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Apr 15th, 2003, 04:50 PM
  #27
 
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Matty,

I saw it at $1,200 USD when it was about an hour away from closing and I thought of you and wished that I had time to contact you before it closed!

It is an incredible deal considering that Ngala is about $750 USD per night.

I bid as much as $1450 for that package in the past but since my heart has really been set on Vuyatela, I was willing to pay $600 more for Vuyatela and be sure that I had a date that was available for my already booked airfare.

However, for someone that is planning well in advance, as you are, it is a great opportunity. It is a lot cheaper to fly to Hoedspruit than it is to Maun, Botswana and between camps, as you would have to do in their 10 night package.

If you can get this package anywhere under $1,500, it is a steal. $1,250 is an INCREDIBLE steal.

Good luck.
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Apr 15th, 2003, 06:16 PM
  #28
 
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Matty,
they do have reserves on some auctions but not on very many of them and I think they mark it "reserve not met". I don't think they drive up the price. Things do go for amazing deals. For example I got 7 nights plus lots of extras, including upgrades, at the Haciendas in Mexico the first time it came up for $700 (As a package it normally goes for over $2,300). In fact I got it for very little more than the the opening price...now they've raised the opening price and it's going for $1200 and up. When we went to one of the properties we spoke to the manager and she said our rate was less than she could authorize for her own family! Incredible!
You've just got to watch it because sometimes it goes up and then back down again.
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Apr 15th, 2003, 06:44 PM
  #29
 
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Brit,

How did you like your stay at The Haciendas???

I have looked at this property and it looks very nice.

Last year I went to Guadalajara and stayed at La Quinta Real hotel, a great hotel in Guadalajara.

Mexico is very convenient for me (being that I live in Los Angeles) for a four or five day little getaway and I have looked at a few places.

What activities did you do during your seven night stay to keep you busy??? How was the food??? How was the area surrounding the hotel???

Thanks.
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