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“Culture Shock!”
Review of Illyria House

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Illyria House
Ranked #9 of 73 Hotels in Pretoria
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 4, 2010

After 2 weeks on Safari Illyria was true culture shock. It was like stepping back in time. Stepping back to a time of elegance and refinement. From the moment we arrived till the moment we left we were treated like welcome guests. Our Salome suite was beautiful and our balcony overlooked the glorious portico and lawn. The whole house was full of beautiful crystal and silver. Our dinner was perfect. We were surprised by a special piano concert in the music room before dinner. How very special.
I had read about our wonderful hostess Marietjie but was still unprepared by her very special attention. Regrettably we were only here one night but even so felt like family.
I recommend this wonderful home if you want to be treated like royalty and family.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with friends
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3  Thank SanClementeGriff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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273 - 279 of 314 reviews

Reviewed September 20, 2010

Poor room consisting of two adjacent small rooms with narrow passages in between. One had to close the door of the TV cupboard to go by to the bathroom for instance.
Worse was that the room stank strongly of desinfectant. I could not find the cause or source in the room. It probably came from a storeroom or similar next door where I noticed the next morning evidence of insect damage. Have they been trying to eliminate ants or termites?
The smell was that strong I developed pain in my eyes, throat and got head-ache during the night.
Service at the breakfest and dinner table was by witers with white gloves. But the service it self was poor! Food quality was moderate. When I orderd one glass of wine (my wife does not drink alcohol) they arrived with the winelist. "We do not service wine by the glass"
Slippery and half cooked French fries and the vegatables were brought to the table some 10 minutes before the meat was served. We did not touch them. Icecream and sorbet for dessert were outright rubbish.The sorbet was a mass of lumps of water-ice and the the icecream was full of ice-crystals. Obviously stored at too high a tempurature and/ or very old. At breakfast the butter after having asked for it arrived when we had almost finished our eggs.
One really doesn't need white gloved waiters for that

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank dr_p_j_seip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 30, 2010

My husband and I have just returned from a wonderful and exciting trip to your beautiful Country which began with an overnight stay in your exquisite hotel and I felt inspired, a first, to write and tell you how much we enjoyed meeting you and your charming staff. The welcome and, indeed, the 'send off' was quite overwhelming. From the minute we stepped through your magnificent entrance we felt totally at home and very pampered. What a truly beautiful home/hotel you have created! I am in no doubt that you must receive many letters of praise but I couldnt miss this opportunity to congratulate you on your immense skill of being able to put guests so at ease and your ability of passing on your love of illyria. So, thank you! My husband and I voted you, Marietjie, your staff and illyria the highlight of our trip and our 'all time favourite'

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank ceciliaEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IllyriaHouse327, Owner/Manager at Illyria House, responded to this reviewResponded April 22, 2010

“What have I to give you back, whose worth may counterpoise this rich and precious gift?”

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2010

We were to arrive in Pretoria at about 1 pm in the afternoon on the Blue Train, however due to several unforeseen circumstances we were arriving late. Our accommodation included dinner but as I said, we were going to be quite late. Imagine our surprise when the Train Manager handed me his mobile phone and Illyira was on the line! So we wouldn't be disappointed, the menu items were read off, so we could choose our dinner and have it ready upon our arrival. And it was. We had the most amazing private dinner out on the patio with lovely music softly playing in the background. The room, service, everything was just lovely. My only regret is that our stay was so short we couldn't appreciate everything Illyira had to offer. We'll have to do it properly next time!

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank BobLDallas_TX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 15, 2009

Lovely rooms and helpful butler. Homely food and good choice. Hotel expensive but staff must be poorly paid as the cook came out in the middle of our meal with a whole selection of home made trinkets she wanted us to buy to help support her mother, not something we have experienced in any other hotel we have stayed in anywhere in the world. Internet was meant to be available but did not work.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Scousecat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IllyriaHouse327, owner at Illyria House, responded to this reviewResponded November 19, 2009

Hotels in South Africa proudly support the local communities. Most tourists appreciate the assurance that their money will benefit the under privileged in the countries where they travel – especially in Africa. For this reason we support several children’s homes. As “charity begins at home”, we recently decided to allow one of our cooks to support her Aunt, who lives in a village in the country when ever she sends some of her beautiful beadwork. Since the cook is usually very busy during meal times and can only offer her wares well after the meal and only after the butler has advised that the guests are finished with their meal. We are surprised to learn that this was offered during a meal. We were so shocked that we sadly had to stop this. Your assumption on these grounds that the staff are badly paid comes as another surprise. All our housekeeping, kitchen and butler staff have been with us between 11 – 18 years. They are a part of the family.

Apologies for the internet not working, however this was out of our control. During the first half of November our telephone provider had been working on the lines. We are grateful to advise that this problem has been solved.

Thank you for commending our menu, butler service and rooms. We appreciate your assessment of four out of five, despite your disappointment with the cook's offer.

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Reviewed November 3, 2009

Attention to detail superb. Service excellent. Wonderful food, interesting decor. A five star experience

Stayed: September 2009, traveled on business
3  Thank GREENRHINO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2009

What a wonderful experience!!! The decor,food service and overall enjoyment of Illyria house was out of this world. All our thanks to the fantastic staff and management of this lovely and romantic get away. Do not hesitate to indulge and spoil yourselves, it is more than worth it!

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank BellaroseAnnecy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Illyria House

Address: 327 Bourke Street | Muckleneuk, Pretoria 0002, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Gauteng > Pretoria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Pretoria
#4 Romantic Hotel in Pretoria
#6 Luxury Hotel in Pretoria
#10 Business Hotel in Pretoria
Price Range: $160 - $198 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Illyria House 5*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Ultimate Romantic Getaway. 25 Minutes from the OR Tambo International Airport (Johannesburg) and 5 minutes from the Gautrain Station.The serene beauty of Illyria House has always been an irresistible attraction to all lovers of fine things. Against the backdrop of classical music, fine antiques, 17th century tapestries, and a resident duck family an enchanting colonial lifestyle unfolds. Illyria House is highly appreciated by the discerning traveler for its charm, exquisite cuisine, exclusivity, luxury and unrivalled personalised butler service. We offer intimate soirées by world class musicians. Our Oriental Spa specialises in relaxing massages. Our facilities include a jacuzzi, sauna, heated pool and a cold pool. A wide selection of tours to historical, cultural and wildlife attractions come highly recommended. Personalised shopping is ideal for a last night stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Illyria House Hotel Pretoria

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