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“Westcliff Hotel is a lovely hotel in Jo'burg” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Westcliff

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The Westcliff
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   67 Jan Smuts Avenue | Westcliff, Johannesburg 2193, South Africa   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 71 hotels in Johannesburg
Redding, Connecticut
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Westcliff Hotel is a lovely hotel in Jo'burg”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

I am always in Jo'burg on business and traditionally stay at an Intercontinental or Hilton in Sandton....but decided to come early and have a mini-vacation weekend before the work week began. What a lovely property! Pool is great...spa was good...meals were terrific...and not terribly expensive. Staff is helpful, smiling. I never left the property all weekend....and enjoyed it. Workout room is small...but has what you need and a lovely view from the eliptical! Highly recommend for a change of pace.

Room Tip: It's a hilly property...so depending on the location you want....you may want to ask for a room...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 27, 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments on TripAdvisor. Thank you also for your kind comments about our hotel, I often say “we are like an oasis in a big city”, a nice break from the hustle and bustle of city life.

We are also embarking upon an exciting renovation project, the middle to the end of April, so please do come back and see the exciting changes we have in store.

Thanks again for your kind words,

Ian Jones
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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343 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (61)
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English first
Melbourne
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

Nice hotel that is more of a gated community than your normal property. Has all the facilites with a great bar overlooking an awesome pool. Very freindly and service orientated staff. Seemed to be popular with corporates having meetings but as I can compare with nothing else in Jozi I would rate this place and will be back again in July to visit.

Room Tip: Rooms are allocated in blocks. The higher up the better the view and its always a downhill walk toi...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 25, 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments on TripAdvisor. Thank you also for your kind comments about our staff, I will be sure to pass those along, as they sincerely appreciate receiving comments about their passionate service style.

We sincerely hope to see you again, maybe after our renovation of the hotel, so you can see the spectacular product we will create, truly magnificent.

Have a nice week ahead.

Ian Jones
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shropshire
Top Contributor
113 reviews 113 reviews
61 hotel reviews
Reviews in 65 cities Reviews in 65 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

Having stayed at other Orient Express hotels we had no hesitation in booking the Westcliff for our two nights stay in Johannesburg.

On arrival everything was as expected first class reception and concierge. Our room was good with an excellent bathroom. However the we're a few minor problems that we would not have expected in a quality hotel.

We had booked a gourmet package which included a meal in the restaurant the meal was very good apart from my wife's rack of lamb which was on the tough side we did not make an issue of but did mention it to one of the managers who failed even to apologies.

Breakfast was excellent in both the restaurant and in our room at 6am we had an early flight out of Johannesburg.

I have left the Polo Bar to last because although there are excellent views and generally the service was first class, we did have a very unfortunate experience there which spoilt my wife's evening.

We had been in Johannesburg all day and on our return we decided to go to the Polo Bar for a drink, when we arrived the head waiter said that the only seat available was in a corner of the bar unless we wanted to eat when we could sit by the pool. Although not really hungry we decided to have a pool side seat and a sandwich.

It would have been understandable to restrict tables by the pool to people eating if all the tables were occupied however at least 4 tables remained empty during the two hours we sat there.

It is a pity that this one incident took the shine off what was overall an enjoyable stay.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 20, 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments on TripAdvisor. Although I was displeased to read of your experience in the Polo Bar and with the food quality in La Belle, I am thankful for your feedback.

As you may have read in previous responses, we are embarking upon a full scale renovation, which will address a lot of the tired building issues; it will not address any current service or food quality issues, which I have already addressed with our Chef and F&B Manager. We have no such policy to sit by the pool, I have no idea why the Head Waiter said such a thing, please accept my personally apology to this regard.

I do hope you will come and see us again, especially all the improvements we have planned.

Sincerely,

Ian Jones
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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

We had a wonderful six days at the Westcliffe. The staff are amazing and all so lovely to deal with. Even when kippers arrive in place of smoked haddock one can only wrily smile! Some things, like a bathroom heater not working even after many requests, were eventually put right with good humour - and the manager, always on top of things, apologised afterwards. The restaurant was extremely good, though why a 'gourmet' menu has included a course of bottled artichoke hearts and not home-smoked salmon, is beyond me. The food in general was excellent but it seemed that the chef tried too hard, as the basic ingredients were so very good that they could be left to tell their own tale. Our room, a Junior suite, was excellent with a terrace and view that were stunning. Always kept clean and with loads of towels, we were very happy. Yes, the hotel may be a little tired which adds character - but the staff are never tired! We loved The Westcliffe, and must say a big 'thank you' to everyone there ....

Room Tip: Ask for a room higher up, and overlooking the zoo, and it is worth paying extra for a better room.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 19, 2013
Thank you very much for your kind words about our team, I will be sure to share your comments, always nice to read.

It is true, this grand old dame needs some shoe polish and in fact we are preparing for that very thing. Late April we will embark upon a full scale renovation, which will of course include fixing those pesky towel bar heaters.

Nevertheless, I am glad you enjoyed your stay in the end, and I will be sure to ask our Chef to let the food speak for itself next time, we are fortunate to have some wonderful fresh food in the part of the world, mother nature is very good to us.

Warm regards,

Ian Jones
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

I have really good memories of the Westlciff, having High Tea and watching the Elephants in the distance at the zoo. In years gone by.

I recently stayed for a weekend for a conference and was shocked at the state of some of the rooms, my room had a sharp nail which was sticking through the carpet at the boundary between the bathroom and bedroom, the cups had not been washed since the previous visit. How this room passed a room inspection is beyond belief!

The pastries for breakfast were flat and tasteless, although I did enjoy an egg Benedict from the kitchen.

I really hope this Gem in Joburg is polished to its former luster, I was incredibly disappointed!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 19, 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments on TripAdvisor. Although disappointed to read you didn’t enjoy your stay, I am excited to share the news that we are embarking upon a full renovation, which will address all of the issues of this tired “grand Lady”. The project will begin in late April and will include a full scale refurbishment; please do come back and see what exciting changes have taken place.

Once again, thank you for your feedback, always invaluable.

Ian Jones
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Johannesburg
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013 via mobile

Came for morning tea on sunny summer day. Didn't want to leave until late aftermoon.Great service which is rare in SA. Views are spectacular and atmosphere relaxed. Food also top quality and put together with thoughtfulness

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 10, 2013
Thank you very much for your kind words about the service and the food quality, sincerely appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback. I will be sure to copy your comments to the team up in Polo, this makes 3 great comments in a row – what a team !

We all hope to see you again real soon, we just had new furniture delivered to the pool area as well, which makes for even nicer “sun-downer drinks”, come by again, we’d love to have you !

Warm regards,

Ian Jones
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Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2013

A year and a half ago, I wrote about a wonderful extended family lunch on the pool deck. This year we gathered in your hospitality again, and we were not disappointed. Main course had just been served when the sky suddenly darkened. Our meals were hastily moved indoors to watch the storm from the big, beautiful windows. As soon as the sun came out, the patio furniture was wiped off and we were whisked back out to the glorious Johannesburg view for coffee and exquisite desserts. The service, quality of food and comfort remains unique in our experience. I can't wait come back and see you again!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestcliffGM, General Manager at The Westcliff, responded to this review, March 9, 2013
As a fellow Torontonian, I was thrilled to read your very kind words, I will be sure to forward your comments on to the Polo Bar team, that’s two great reviews in a row for this group.

They make my job easy, as does the other 150 staff members at the Westcliff. They are passionate and genuine in their customer service; we all hope to see you or your friends back at the Westcliff one soon day.

Take care,

Ian Jones
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Westcliff

Also Known As:
The Westcliff By Orient-Express Hotel Johannesburg
The Westcliff By Orient-Express Hotel
Westcliff Hotel Johannesburg
Westcliff Johannesburg
Address: 67 Jan Smuts Avenue | Westcliff, Johannesburg 2193, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Gauteng > Greater Johannesburg > Johannesburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Johannesburg
#5 Romantic Hotel in Johannesburg
#9 Luxury Hotel in Johannesburg
#12 Business Hotel in Johannesburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Westcliff 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Johannesburg’s most iconic hotel offers spectacular views of the lush forested suburbs of Johannesburg and the Zoological Gardens. Set on the historic Westcliff Ridge the hotel offers spacious rooms and suites, an on site gym and the holistic Botanica Spa SuitesLa Belle Terrasse restaurant is a beautiful terrace where guests can enjoy South Africa’s local produce. Traditional Teas are served in the sunny Loggia restaurant and the stylish Polo Bar is a must for Tapas and sundowners. ... more   less 
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