Sprayview Hotel

Sprayview Hotel: Our full report

Rooms
65 rooms
Traveller's rating
Good (77%) From 15 reviews
Children
Best for 13+
Open
All year

About 2km from the Victoria Falls, Sprayview is the first hotel visitors come to when arriving from Victoria Falls Airport, which is about a 20-minute drive away. Although it’s been around in one guise or another since the late 1960s, the property is now managed by the large southern African hotel chain Cresta, and underwent an extensive refurbishment in 2013.

With a location on the outskirts of Victoria Falls Town, the hotel is within easy reach of the Falls themselves: on foot in about 30–45 minutes, by a short taxi ride (easily arranged by reception for about US$5 one way), or by the hotel’s free shuttle bus which departs at 10.00am, noon, 2.00pm and 4.00pm every day.

Sprayview has 65 en-suite rooms, of which 60 are 'standard', three are family rooms and a further two are classed as suites. On our last visit in December 2016 we were pleased with the accommodation. Few would consider the standard room the height of luxury, but the furnishings are comfortable, and the rooms spotlessly clean. They make a good base for exploring the town and the Falls.

All of the rooms at Sprayview are set back behind the main area in three rows of semi-detached, terraced blocks facing down the slope in the direction of the Victoria Falls. These aren't particularly imaginative or indeed attractive structures, perhaps reflecting the era in which they were constructed, but the rather drab and dull exterior is in quite stark contrast to the newly refurbished interiors.

White floor tiles and clean lines mark out the modern bedrooms, whose centrepiece is a very comfortable double bed. Wall-mounted bedside lamps each have a reading spotlight extension (a useful touch), and there's a direct-dial telephone next to the bed. Close by is a modern, remote- controlled air-conditioning unit, while for a more natural air-flow, there are large patio doors that open onto a seating area. You'll struggle to find any 'spray view' from here but it was nice to be able to take a seat outside.

Back inside, you’ll find a small coffee table and chairs as well as a dressing table with a large vanity mirror and a hairdryer, plus a wall-mounted flat-screen television with a limited number of satellite channels. Rather more dated is the wardrobe, which is set into the wall. The large, heavy wooden doors of our wardrobe didn't close flush but it did house a lot of storage space as well as an electronic safe. Alongside a tea and coffee station, bottled water is provided, and we appreciated the fruit platter that awaited our arrival.

The white tiles and clean-lined theme continue into the functional en-suite bathrooms, which have a single sink with a large vanity mirror, a toilet and a shower with plenty of hot water and very good water pressure. In the family rooms there's both a shower and a bath.

Sprayview's main area is large and multi-functional. The reception is open plan, with an adjacent computer room with internet access. Those with smart phones, tablets and laptops will be happy to hear that the hotel has complimentary WiFi throughout, which we found to be fast and very reliable.

There are two bars at Sprayview. The Rainforest Bar is open to residents and non-residents alike and has a modern vibe with a large projector used to screen sport, or guests' DVDs of their white-water exploits. The more traditional Railway Bar and Lounge, exclusive to Sprayview's patrons, is adorned with old photos of Victoria Falls Town, taken at a variety of different periods over the last century.

The hotel’s terrace restaurant seats around 70 people and looks out onto a big rectangular swimming pool surrounded by deck chairs. Sprayview often accommodates large tour groups that are passing through Victoria Falls at the start or end of a safari, so the restaurant can get busy and noisy in the early evening.


Although Sprayview doesn't organise any activities, it does have an activities centre, where guests can arrange practically all activities that are on offer in and around Victoria Falls, for an additional cost. These range from helicopter and microlight flights over the Falls to adrenalin activities like bungee jumping, white-water rafting and abseiling, as well as cultural visits, game drives and river cruises.

Our view

While the Sprayview doesn’t offer the height of luxury, it is a comfortable, low-cost base from which to explore the Victoria Falls and the town named after them. While it is a large hotel by Zimbabwean standards, the rooms are well spread out over a wide area and, despite looking a little dated from the outside, are in great condition. There are accommodation options closer to the Falls but Sprayview is close enough to the area’s main attractions for easy and quick access.

Geographics

Location: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Ideal length of stay: We'd recommend a stay of around two nights at Sprayview Hotel, which will allow enough time to visit the Falls. For anyone looking to partake in a number of different activities, a stay of at least three nights would be preferable.

Directions: Guests arrive at Sprayview by road, taking either 20 minutes from Victoria Falls Airport, or 45 minutes from the Kazungula border crossing from Botswana.

Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer

Key personnel

Owner: Owned by Cresta Hotels

Food & drink

Usual board basis: B&B

Food quality: We didn’t get a chance to try the food on our most recent visit in December 2016, but on previous visits the food was of a variable quality, with a big contrast between the high quality of breakfast and a much more mediocre evening meal.

Breakfast was a buffet, with a good, wide selection of fruits, yoghurts and cereals, toast, muffins and spreads, and coffee, tea and juice. A chef was on standby to cook omelettes with a range of toppings, served with sausages, bacon, mushrooms and tomatoes from the hotplate next door. We thoroughly enjoyed it.

At dinner, we opted for a starter of fishcakes from the varied menu, followed by rump steak with roast potatoes and stir-fry vegetables along with a grilled tomato with melted cheese on top. Although the starter was very nice, the steak was very tough and the potatoes somewhat raw. Service was also slow due as a large group was staying in the hotel at the same time.

Dining style: Individual Tables

Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: £10-15

Drinks included: Aside from two complimentary bottles of water placed in guest rooms every day, no other beverages are included in the price at Sprayview.

Further dining info: Room service is available on request.

Children

Attitude towards children: Children of all ages are welcome at Sprayview.

Property’s age restrictions: All ages welcome

Special activities & services: Babysitters can be organised on request, although they are not professionally trained or qualified.

Equipment: None

Notes: Sprayview is gated and fenced around its entire perimeter, but it is situated next to a (relatively) busy road. The swimming pool is also very deep at one end. Children therefore need to be under constant supervision.

Infrastructure

Power supply: Mains Electricity

Power supply notes: There is a back-up generator which can be switched on in the event of a power failure. A multi adaptor in each room provides sockets suitable for South African, US and British appliances, as well as a USB socket.

Communications: Each room has a direct-dial phone. The whole lodge has WiFi and there is excellent cellphone reception.

TV & radio: Each room has a direct-dial phone. The whole hotel has complimentary WiFi and there is excellent cellphone reception.

Water supply: Mains

Water supply notes: All rooms have the same plumbing, with plumbed-in showers and flushing toilets.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Medical care: The nearest doctor is in Victoria Falls and there is a medical air rescue service capable of transporting patients to Jo’burg for treatment if necessary.

Dangerous animals: Low Risk

Security measures: Guards Patrol the site 24 hours a day and there is a guard at the main entrance too.

Fire safety: Fire extinguishers are found throughout the hotel, along with information about fire evacuation.

Extras

Disabled access: In Place

Laundry facilities: Laundry is an extra charge and usually takes around a day to complete. For cultural reasons underwear is not included, but the hotel will supply a small amount of washing powder to guests wishing to wash their own smalls by hand.

Money: There's an electronic safe in each room. The hotel does not offer foreign-exchange facilities.

Accepted payment on location: Both Visa and MasterCard are accepted at Sprayview without surcharge.

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