We stayed at the Liz at Lancaster guesthouse from June 2-4, 2012. The guesthouse is located in Craighall Park, a leafy suburb conveniently located near Johannesburg, Rosebank, Sandton, and other nearby attractions in a safe (for ZA) area. It is on a quiet street, located near a couple restaurants, gas station, and a Spar supermarket. It was safe enough to walk around during the day, we were told not to at night but did anyway and did not feel threatened at all. It is surrounded by a wall and electric fence, like most houses in South Africa are, and felt very safe within the guesthouse itself.
We stayed in two separate rooms which were accessed from the outside although they were part of the main structure of the house. This allowed each room to have its own little porch area, each with a table and chairs (and ashtrays...thanks Liz! I should add that smoking is not permitted in the rooms either, which is a good thing)
The rooms themselves were individually decorated and furnished, and had a great, homey feel to them. The bathrooms were large and equipped with everything, and there were even some nice shower gels and shampoos, as well as numerous candles. I may have overlooked some things, but that's what I remember.
The beds are extremely comfortable, There is also a faint smell of a wood stove (?) or chimney which adds a nice aromatic smell to the place.The room comes with pretty much everything you'd expect, or want, and Liz has also included plenty of brochures, useful phone numbers, and other useful information for hotel guests.
The breakfast room has a great atmosphere, with hot and cold breakfast options (made fresh to order) available. Unfortunately I was short on time but otherwise I would have loved to have stayed longer and eaten more there. I did have a hot breakfast, and it was delicious!
The staff are also excellent - Zac, the driver, who is very friendly and helpful, and of course Liz herself who is both very welcoming, friendly, and knowledgable about activities and information about the area. She put us in touch with a tour guide (Peter I believe his name was) who drove us to Soweto, which was a really great experience for first-timers to South Africa. We were also supposed to go to Pretoria, but unfortunately due to a long flight delay we were unable to do that, and Liz was able to call and cancel that tour for us, no problems. The other staff members were also very warm and friendly but I unfortunately did not get their names!
In short, the Liz at Lancaster is welcoming, clean, safe, and an excellent choice. I hope to return one day to Joburg and will definitely come back here!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- One of the first guesthouses to open in the Rosebank Region some 19 years ago, Liz at Lancaster has built a strong reputation based on excellent personal service, great comfort, convenient location, seclusion and privacy. Given recognition for this in 2011 with an AA Accommodation Award for ‘People who go the extra mile’, an AA Accommodation in 2012 for 'Traveller's best value', Liz at Lancaster was also voted a finalist three years in a row in the AA 2010, 2011 & 2012 Accommodation Awards. We are included in Greenwood Guides Handpicked Accommodation. But perhaps most telling of all are our guest comments: ‘We loved the peace and privacy – we didn’t even know there were other guests here.’ ‘Craighall Park is such a central location – under 10 minutes from Rosebank and Melrose Arch and less than 15 minutes to Sandton Central. Even Parktown and Joburg Central are easily accessible – it took us 12 minutes to Wits.’ ‘Superb service and such comfortable spacious rooms’. ‘The on-site transport was a real added bonus.’ ‘Your Joburg information booklet in our room was amazingly helpful and useful.’ It is a mere 12 minute ride from O.R Tambio International Airport to the Rosebank Gautrain Station which is only 3.5 km from Liz at Lancaster. You can either pick up your rental car when you arrive at the station, or phone us for a transfer – a real added convenience. With 7 very private individual units all with separate entrances and kitchenettes offering self-catering options, Liz at Lancaster is ideal for long stays whether for business travelers or for those relocating. Rates drop for weekly and monthly stays. There are 2 standard spacious double rooms (25 & 30 m²), 3 studio flatlets (55 m²), and 2 one-bedroom cottages (80 m²) each with separate living/dining room and open plan kitchen. All lead onto their own enclosed courtyards where you can enjoy your privacy on a warm Highveld summer evening while sipping at a sundowner from your mini-bar. During our chilly Jozi winter months you will be warmly snug with under-carpet heating and electric blankets. All units have shower and bath, ample well-lit work areas/dining tables, separate sitting area, broadband WiFi connection, flat screen TVs and DSTV with own decoders (25 channels), overhead fans, convenient luxuries like hairdryers, toweling gowns, radio clock alarms, luxurious cotton percale linen, a house branded range of natural toiletries and on-the-house E-spring filtered water. Delicious breakfasts are served to order on the breakfast patio which opens out onto the garden in summer and is warmed by a roaring log fire in winter. There is ample secure off-street undercover parking. We offer a same day laundry service and on-site transport at very reasonable rates. All credit cards including Diners and American Express are accepted. Liz and two staff live on site and are always at the other end of the internal intercoms. As Liz taught Art History and Heritage at Wits University for 25 years, she keeps abreast with cultural events and has quite an extensive library. A further bonus of staying at Liz at Lancaster is the convenience of the neighbourhood shops at the end of the block: a 7-7 grocery store, a chemist, restaurant, etc. ... more less
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