Ilala Lodge Hotel Victoria Falls: Magic only 900 steps away from The Smoke that Thunders

Min Read

Words by KingPhewa

Long considered the closest neighbour to the Victoria Falls, it was easy to see why guests come from all over the world to spend their time in the region, and at this magnificent hotel. A mere 900 odd steps from the falls, the echo of the water hitting the bottom of the gorge is vivid and quite frankly, alluring.

The main building centres around the award-winning Cassia Restaurant which features outstanding cuisine and a relaxed yet charming space that immediately welcomes all who arrive. The service from the moment we arrived, was homely and well thought out with a separate lounge area allowing for a comfortable check in process.

Making our way to our room, we encountered a well-stocked bar and an inviting pool area that featured a classy seating area that was begging for content.

The room itself, on the first floor, was a happy marriage of African and contemporary design. Spacious with a double volume thatched roof, generous four poster bed, protected from the elements by a massive mosquito net, built in storage area, a hot beverage station with a complementary mini bar, and of course an expansive bathroom, it was the ultimate in African luxury. The generous balcony with incredible views of the Victoria Falls National Park as well as the manicured lawns of the hotel, provided the proverbial cherry on top.

With dinner a highlight of the hotel, we donned our Sunday best as we made our way to Cassia. The wooden pathway, with its near perfect lighting, provided ample opportunity for a sneaky photo shoot. The dinner service, under moonlight, was a treat. With some great South African wines on offer, we settled into the evening, cold beverage in hand. Starters like the Ostrich parfait really surprised with complex flavours and understanding of flavour combinations. The Zambezi bream and the springbok shank gave a hint of familiarity whilst being true to the award-winning nature of the kitchen. Dessert was starred by the caramelized apple tart, which truly was a delight.

The breakfast service was equally worthy of superlatives. Fresh, enticing, and plentiful the fair on offer really ensured we started our day on the front foot. Tucking into the full breakfast and the pancakes with Chantilly cream really cemented the high quality of the food at Ilala Lodge.

With the hotel perched in a quiet corner of what is a bustling town centre, you get a distinct feeling of being intertwining with the region. Featuring some boutique stores, some local vendors, and restaurants, one can walk around and really get to feel the energy of this charming corner of Zimbabwe.

Ilala Lodge was, for us, an environment to reconnect and really reflect on each other. With spaces for reading a book or intimate chatter strewn about, it really was the backdrop of an almost spiritually journey. With the falls providing the echo and the wildlife providing the sounds, and the hotel providing the upstanding hospitality, you really can say God bless Africa.

KingPhewa is a South African based duo who through their love of food, travel and lifestyle curate and review relatable and enticing content. Their focus is on fine dining, luxury travel and all things beautiful. Follow them on Instagram @kingphewa



Africa Travel

Cassia Restaurant

IIala Lodge

South Africa


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