My hubby and I chose to bring in the New Year (2013) in style by opting for an overnight stay at the beautiful and serene Saxon Boutique Hotel.
This boutique hotel in the affluent suburb of Sandhurst/Hyde Park makes one feel aspirational right from the outset. The well-groomed and highly visible security detail outside the main entrance is reminiscent of private bodyguards hired to look after celebrities and people of importance - this immediately gives one the feel that something of value is protected behind the gates. Or perhaps that you are the celebrity being protected. From there it was a seamless, fluid process that guided our entry into the hotel, from the guidance provided by the security to the courtyard, with attentive valets ready and waiting to whisk us and our luggage inside, the concierge and reception staff greeting us by name before we could even utter a introduction, and having the paperwork and room ready for us to occupy.
That to the Visa platinum programme, I was able to secure a complimentary upgrade to the room I had initially booked. We were taken aback to realise that the upgrade was actually a presidential suite!
On the 3rd floor in the main building, 200sqm of pure luxury and indulgence welcome us, with a central in-room reception foyer. The first door on the left lead to a spacious guest cloakroom, the second beckoned us to an expansive open plan bedroom and bathroom, with a walk in closet, dressing area and secluded balcony views over the lush gardens. The third door opened into a wonderful living space, with a lounge, dining areas, business desk and also balcony views. Lastly the fourth door opened into a fully equipped kitchen.
The realisation that this suite was bigger than our own residence was awe-inspiring, and we knew we were in the lap of luxury. The efficient Tammy sorted out the paperwork for us while our butler Sandy gave us the detailed tour of the room. High tech specs, every amenity necessary, it had it all...Bang & Olufsen TV, Harmon Kardon surround sound – both in the bedroom and living room, Molton Brown and Roja Parfum products in the bathroom, everything controlled through a single remote (lights, aircom, TV, Audio)...we took it all in.
3pm was our afternoon high tea, which was part of the package. The ever friendly staff seated us the comfortable outdoor lounge terrace area, which overlooked the smaller heated pool, koi ponds and the fitness centre. Our tea things were ready for us already and we sunk into the sofa with pleasure. We ordered hot teas at first (recommend African summer tea – aromatic and flavourful) from a tea menu and soon enough our savoury high tea was underway, with sandwiches, chutneys, springrolls and very inventive gastronomic delights. It was deliciously satisfying and the company of my husband made it all the more special. Our waiter was always available, checking if we needed anything. We did not realise it initially by the afternoon high tea is actually two courses, a savouries course and thereafter a dessert course...so we were pleasantly surprised to hear that dessert was still on its way! We ordered Tony Glass iced teas (Berry and Baobab was delicious, as was the Kiwi, Cucumber and Mint), which went extremely well with the hot weather of the day and the selection of parfaits, mousses and cakes that we were presented with. I actually could not finish my portion, and our waiter eagerly offered to transport it to our room for us for later enjoyment. Two hours later, suitably stuffed, we took a walk around the hotel and garden. Zen is the right word to describe the outdoors – so peaceful and calm with natural sounds creating a soothing melody; African opulence best describes the interior decor of the hotel, with expansive reception and meeting areas, walls lined with many South African and African artworks, and one gets the sense that it still retains its cosiness – a well oiled machine. All staff, from senior to junior members, greeted and chatted to us with smiles and personably.
We then retired to our room, having decided to skip the 6 course new years eve dinner as we were so full. We were advised that a party would occur later with live music, and a fireworks display to mark the turn of the year. We opted to revel in our room, watching classics like dirty dancing, listening to beautiful music, and generally enjoying the beautiful space we were spending the night in.
Soon midnight arrived and with anticipation we awaited the fireworks display. We were not disappointed as one after another and another went off from the garden below, filling the sky with colour, light and noise – so very beautiful. The continued unbroken for at least 7 minutes – thankfully we managed to capture most of it. A wondrous experience.
We then retired for the night, into the comfy embrace of Egyptian cotton down pillows and duvet on the king size four poster bed, and slept soundly. We awoke refreshed and rejuvenated and after showering headed to the buffet breakfast, which had quite an offering for the continental breakfast, from pastries, cereals, terrines to breads and cheeses. The hot breakfast was equally appealing and scrumptious. This was held in the Qunu room, which had hosted the dinner the previous evening – a beautifully laid out and decorated room. After our satisfying breakfast, we walked around yet again.
The only opportunity we did not get to experience was that of the spa. Unfortunately due to timing, we were unable to use the in-room vouchers that were available to us. But hey, that just means that we need to visit the Saxon yet again ;)
By midday we opted to leave to enjoy the rest of our day out and about in Sandton. Checkout was once again seamless and soon we were bidding farewell to the Saxon hotel, already reminiscing about our wonderful stay, and yes, given the opportunity, we would come back many, many times.
To date, this room is the largest hotel room we have ever stayed in. It is with pride that I can say this hotel represents South African hospitality at its finest, and you cannot go wrong with booking a stay or event at this hotel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Saxon has a story to tell. Originally a private home and host to many honoured guests. The art within the home portrays lives lived with guests and friends spending time together. Elegant. Luxurious. Unforgettable. Merging the finest culinary experiences, the ultimate in luxurious accommodation and the award-winning Spa, the Saxon will take you on an unforgettable journey. This is truly the place you can call home. Let the Saxon treat you to personalised, discreet service and unparalleled South African hospitality. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Booking.com, Priceline, Odigeo and TripOnline SA so you can book your Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Saxon Boutique Hotel Johannesburg
- Hotel Saxon Boutique
- Saxon Hotel, Villas And Spa Sandton, Greater Johannesburg