First, the location was very convenient for Sandton. It is attached to the Sandton Convention Centre and across the street from Nelson Mandela Square mall. You can walk through the overhead sidewalks to the Sandton hotel, the adjacent mall, and eventually on to Mandela Square if desired. There are a number of restaurants in Mandela Square. The hotel is a short shuttle ride from the Gautrain station (airport express train). Call the hotel when you arrive and they will send the shuttle – they are just around the corner but it is a bit far if you have luggage. The staff is very friendly and very service oriented. They work very hard to see that your needs are met. My room was very clean, nicely appointed with a good sized corner desk and a comfortable bed. The desk chair did not maintain its height. My room had a Bose stereo which accepts an iPhone or iPod, but mine did not work. My favorite room feature is how the closet and bath are in a separate room. You can close the door and have complete privacy for changing, etc. It is spacious as well, with a separate shower, large tub, and sink. There is a dresser, which the top serves as a luggage rack and hanging rods above. There is also a tall in room safe. On either side of the sink there are shelves – a thoughtful feature often overlooked in most hotels. The toilet is in a separate closet in this closet/lavatory. The bed was very comfortable. When I arrived, my phone did not work properly, but it was repaired when I notified the staff. I also determined that the deadbolt did not fully engage. I could see that the door frame had been broken through at one time and the repair was not properly made. The maintenance staff did “fix” the problem with the deadbolt (by cutting out the middle bar on the latch plate), but the wood frame for the latch really needed replacing. I do not think it would have held all that well.
I only ate breakfast in the hotel restaurant. They really need a chef station to offer omelets, eggs, etc., as almost any other hotel around the world has this. The buffet food selection never changed. A much better recipe for the scrambled eggs on the buffet is desperately needed. If you did not get them when they first came out of the kitchen, they were not very good. The waffles looked good, but did not taste good. They had the consistency of a cake doughnut, but frankly tasted awful. A new recipe is needed there as well. I did not try the Asian selections. I mostly ate cereal and pastries (which also needed a better selection). I did have room service once. It was delivered promptly and the food was very good. I did notice that the tip I added to my room service bill was never charged to my room bill, so I hope the staff member still received their money.
Wifi was free for me. The front desk gave me vouchers for both my phone and laptop. An annoying feature is that whenever you accessed the network on the phone after it went to sleep, you had to re-enter the password. I just saved it in a note and did a copy/paste each time. However, the network worked reasonably well. I used the laundry a few times and the hanging clothes came back in a fabric like zippered hanging bag instead of the usual plastic. I took a few of these home (with their permission, of course) and find them useful as covers for suits.
Taxis around Johannesburg were very expensive. A trip to the Apartheid museum cost $70 USD round trip.
I would stay at the hotel again, as I thought the room layout, staff, and location were terrific. The hotel needs to do a better job on the breakfast, as it kept me from even thinking about having dinner there. They also need to pay more attention to maintenance of the rooms. I should not have to inventory everything that is not in order and then make maintenance calls. These deficiencies keep me from giving them a five out of five.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Centrally located in the safe hub of Sandton, Johannesburg with direct access to: shopping malls, Sandton Convention Centre, Food, Wine and excursions. Perfect for business of leisure. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Intercontinental Johannesburg Sandton Towers Hotel Sandton
- Intercontinental Johannesburg Sandton Hotel
- Intercontinental Sandton
- InterContinental Johannesburg Sandton Towers Greater Johannesburg