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“"tired but comfortable"” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Maseru Sun Hotel

Maseru Sun Hotel
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Maseru Sun Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   12 Orpen Road, Maseru, Lesotho   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #6 of 8 Hotels in Maseru
Australia
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
“"tired but comfortable"”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2009

I agree with the other reviewer about maintaining reasonably low expectations. Once you have that sorted out you will probably have a pleasant stay.

The rooms are very ordinary but are quite adequate.

The restaurants offer a good breakfast and good dinner buffet service. After a few days the bar area grew on me - very good value for money and good bar service.

The grounds are pleasant gardens and the property is located on the edge of a hill with good views into the surrounding countryside. It is about a 5 minute drive into Maseru.

The hotel reception was generally disorganised - no one seemed to know what internet service was available or how it was sold. As it happened you could get free wi-fi internet in the bar area which worked fine.

The overall ambience is 1970's international - almost becoming retro chic by accident. If you are going to Maseru I would recommend this hotel. I don't think there is much else available, other than the other Sun property which I did not visit.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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47 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    17
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    2
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
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English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Top Contributor
134 reviews 134 reviews
66 hotel reviews
Reviews in 56 cities Reviews in 56 cities
153 helpful votes 153 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2009

First - note that this is a review for the Maseru Sun, which is different (totally different property, about 3 km away and slightly below in quality, probably after the Lesotho Sun's renovations significantly below in quality) from the Lesotho Sun. (I asked TripAdvisor to make a separate one for the Maseru Sun but never got a response back.) These are part of the Sun properties which are (at least in Lesotho) casino hotels and formerly part of “Sun City” (if you remember the apartheid days). I've heard that they were rather grand back in the day.

Well, that was then... it seems that nothing has been done to improve or maintain the Maseru Sun in years. If you have read my previous reviews, you know I tend to upgrade hotels slightly beause I cut them a little slack for being in Africa. If they bill themselves as a 5* and it's a 3* (or would be in the U.S. or Europe), I'll give 'em a 4* because for Africa, it is a 4*. The Sun is probably between a 2* and a 1* - and I'm inclined to give them the single star only because as a South African chain and a casino hotel, the Sun chain knows what to do and has the resources to do it, it just has chosen not to. But, I hate to fault the hotel for the parent's inattention. It's got good bones and good people, and good potential, but it really needs some attention from it's parent office. I have to say, I wasn't impressed at the beginning but over the course of a week the hotel grew on me.

I'll try to start with the positive, and there is lot to say that's positive, but will probably end up drifting into criticisms as well. The staff is nice, there seems to be plenty of parking, the grounds are pretty nice – the pool is lovely (although I was there in winter) and we had barbecues and cocktail hours out by the pool that were just great – ambiance, food, wine, service, etc. all great. The bar is fine, well-stocked and reasonably priced, and open until 1:30 in the morning, and the restaurant was fine, with a very extensive buffet for breakfast and lunch (breakfast was included with my room). However, the restaurant and room service close at 10 or 10:30 – it seems silly to me, what's the point of having room service only when the restaurant hours are open, people need the room service when it's not restaurant hours! Very frustrating to come from a full day of working at 10:45 at night and lunch had been at noon, and there's nothing at all to eat – you can't even buy biscuits or chips from the hotel shop. There is wifi when it works, and when it does it works well, although it's only available in the lobby. Supposedly there was wifi throughout but I was never able to get it on the 4th floor and no one else was able to get it anywhere else in the hotel, either (when I asked they said, oh we're having trouble wth it). The conference center is quite nice as well – spacious, laid out nicely. It's very close to the hotel. The bathrooms are okay there but they smell gross as if they are dirty or something.

My room had a good sized balcony – it seems all the rooms have them, and the heat worked very well. (The rooms have heat, I don't think the hallways do.) The room was also quite spacious with two double beds, two chairs and table, then the desk, wardrobe and other regular hotel accoutrements. Housekeeping was excellent and really does an excellent job, towels are clean as well, the shower has the best water pressure I have ever encountered, and there is lotion, shampoo and shower gel that they leave for you. There's no facecloth but there are two bath towels and two hand towels. There's a kettle in the room, and the TV gets 8 channels, one of which is CNN, a couple of them are South African movie and sports channels. There is no safe. This isn't your Las Vegas casino hotel – not even close. It really is like a standard U.S. highway motel (4 stories), though, and no better. In fact, one with mildew (must be from the summers, because the winters aren't humid at all), and needing serious refurbishing, carpet worn, stained/mildewed bath antislip mat and shower curtain, cracks that need to be caulked, the paint on the bottom of the doors (on the edge) is chipped and peeling in a big way, etc. There is one elevator at one end of the hallway. The power seems to go out in the morning a number of times – first it's on then off, etc. for about 30 mins total. It's not a big deal, I think it's a Maeru problem actually, but it can be problematic. One problem is, there is a console built into the nightstand table between the beds, that is a clock/alarm radio. On mine it was a pain because it worked as long as you put NOTHING on the nightstand table – if you did (remote control, book, water glass), the whole thing flickers and resets and you get the blinking lamps and lights and clock registering a blinking 12:00. Well, when the power goes out guess what – so does the alarm. Pretty chancey, you never know when you will have an alarm or not, which is stressful and doesn't make for a good night sleep. And due to the way it's installed and set up, it is a pain to re-set the time and alarm two or three times a day.

It's a very noisy hotel. You can hear everything in other rooms, the hallway, etc. There was a bike race when I was there and you could hear all the teenagers and kids running up and down the hallways and yelling at all hours of the night, even with the door closed and the TV on. In the room off the lobby where we had meetings, you could hear all the activity in the lobby. Right as you come in there is the casino which is very smoky, and it makes for a noisy lobby. The bar is at the far end and is at a nice lounging area with great views and has a hotel-provided computer at a desk if you want to use their computer for wifi (but if it's down, this is affected too). Very late at night I saw a couple of prostitutes, but actually very few compared to other hoels in Africa I've stayed in. There is a small shop with some sundries and souvenirs – pretty nice souvenirs, actually, and probably way overpriced compared to a central market, but with the exchange rate it's still very reasonable. There's a place to exchange money at the reception, it's not a good rate but better than nothing (7 to US$1 when it's 7.8 at the airport). It is the same as rand, in fact it's interchangable with rand throughout Lesotho – be prepared, you will get both currences back as change when you transact, from buying things to changing money. The hotel will change your Lesotho currency to all rand before you leave if you ask them to (and if they have the rand on hand).

I hate to be too critical, because the hotel is trying and deserves better. Most of my colleagues were also rather pleased with the hotel overall as well. The rooms especially, and the hotel overall, can really use some renovation to make it a casino hotel in line with (or at least approaching) other casino hotels in the world, and perhaps attract more people in this way.

Stayed August 2009, traveled on business
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Maseru Sun Hotel

Address: 12 Orpen Road, Maseru, Lesotho
Location: Lesotho > Maseru District > Maseru
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 8 Hotels in Maseru
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Maseru Sun Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 141
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Also Known As:
Maseru Sun Hotel Lesotho

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