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Reviewed March 28, 2012

Overall
I have just checked out of the Sandton Sun and wanted to input this whilst still fresh in my head. I am constantly travelling for work and in hotels 3-4 nights a week clocking up over 180 room nights last year. This was my first trip to South Africa was told that Sandton was THE place to stay to ensure (as much as one can) safety and good amenities. I stayed at the Sandton Sun for 18 nights and was highly impressed from the minute I walked in the door. Upon going to reception I was taken to the 6th floor (business reception) where I was checked in and my bags were stored as the room wasn’t ready yet (I had arrived off the early arriving flight from UK). I was offered a shower so I freshened up and was ready for work.

Once can Imagine that spending 18 consecutive nights in one place could become monotonous. However the hotel is linked to probably THE most expensive shopping centre in South Africa and right next door to Nelson Mandela square so I wasn’t spoilt for choice. There are also plenty of seating areas where one can watch TV (e.g the grand prix at weekends) or you can head out to the open air area where there is seating, a small round pool and sun loungers – sun screen is definitely recommended. You are 6000ft above sea level so the air is much thinner and you will burn faster.

The hotel is basically a large triangle with a hollow middle. The rooms are all around the outside with all the amenities in the middle on the 6th floor which makes for an airy feel to the place (see picture). I have seen reports that it is gloomy and beige – yes the decor is all in brown and gold but the light doesn’t make it feel dark and gloomy at all.

There are 3 restaurants, Vilamoura which is on the ground level and very expensive but has exquisite service, Vin which is more a la carte dining and in a small area next to the open plan kitchen and San which is the main eating area and which is a joined to the outside area – this is also where breakfast is served.

There is a medium sized fitness centre with 3 running machines, 3 cycles and free weights – all have TVs so you can lose time exercising. The hotel is joined by two tunnels one to the shopping cntre and the other to the convention centre (the gym is ¼ way down this tunnel)

Approaching the weekends there is jazz saxophone music played on the outside area with open flame firepits to keep warm – great for a drink.

The hotel offers free wi-fi which is operated by a 7 day voucher so if you stay for longer you need to go back and get another. The wi-fi can suffer at peak times as lots of businessmen are video conferencing from laptops in the lounge.

Service
Generally (90% of time) the service is incredible. There can be a couple of times especially eating in the outside section when food service and general service can be slow but overall it is very good. Very quickly you will spot the good staff and they can’t do enough to help. If you can find and get seated in Sindi’s section at breakfast and Gabrielle’s section at dinner you won’t go wrong. Tipping is between 10-15% and I didn’t hesitate as the service was excellent.

At the business centre (where you will ask most of your questions and need assistance) Abbigail is another example of what service should be like, I never felt like I was imposing and she always managed to assist. I know the manager reads these and I would hope he passes on my feedback to these individuals.

The hotel also offers a free shuttle to and from most places in Sandton such as local offices, or places you are visiting locally. This is essential at night for security and a welcome facility.

Food
The food is very good. Breakfast is open buffet and has what you would find at any Hilton, Marriott etc – cereals, freshly squeezed juice, cakes breads, meats, cheeses, hot food etc. On the weekends the hot food is self service buffet but during the week
Dinner is generally very good although I did have the same meal a couple of times in a row and presentation and makeup of the dish varied considerably. There are two menus to choose from at San, the a la carte and the lounge menu. The a la carte has about 5 things per course and the lounge menu has more light bites etc. All ingredients are ultra fresh and it is encouraging to see the kitchen preparing your food behind you. The prices aren’t too bad either. A three course meal without wine comes in at about 250-350 Rand (about £25-£35). Wine and beer are the same as you would pay back in the UK. Interestingly the wine is cheaper than many establishments in Nelson Mandela square where wine can start at 500 Rand. Beer is about 30-50 Rand a drink.

Value
The hotel is very good value for money. The hotel is classed as 5 star and I would rate it equivalent to most large London Hilton’s or Marriotts. It’s probably 4-4.5 star in reality. This would be a London equivalent of approx £200 per night.

Sleep Quality
My room had a king bed which was very comfortable. The bedding was changed every day. My only gripe would be that because of the shape of the hotel and the fact it has a 20 storey open space up the middle, that when there is large gatherings (at weekends and some evenings) you hear all the noise up on the top floor which could get annoying.

Cleanliness
Overall the hotel was very clean. All the public areas are very well maintained – you will oftern share a lift with hotel staff polishing the brass work in the lifts. The room and bathroom are maintained every day.

Location
As mentioned above, the hotel is slap bang in the middle of the Sandton shopping area and a 5 minute walk to Nelson Mandela square. There is also plenty of things close by such as the Gautrain which takes you right to O R Tambo airport in 15 minutes.

Rooms
I stayed in 2029. The room is quite large – judging from experience of Hiltons, it is probably 25sqm or larger. You have a king sized bed, large wardrobe with digital safe, 20inch flat screen TV, complimentary mini bar which is stocked each day with coke products, water and fizzy grape juice. There is also a Nespresso coffee machine with capsules refreshed every day, a BOSE sound dock for your ipod, an international socket bar so that you can use UK, SA or European plugs (although the reception will give you a SA adaptor for a 100 Rand deposit). If you can get a high floor on the side where the business centre is then you will get a spectacular view across Sandton (see pic). The windows open all the way (sliding) so you need to be ultra careful with anything you stick out there like iphones etc when taking pictures – it’s a long way down. There is a turndown service each night with yet more water placed by your bedside, a chocolate and fresh slippers. At the corners of the hotel on each floor are larger suites which you will see by the door bell outside them. Each of the rooms has a privacy switch which when activated puts a red light on outside your room so the maid won’t catch you asleep or “otherwise”.

General
Given the chance I will definitely stay at this hotel again.

Room Tip: Stay on a high floor on the side with the lifts.
  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled on business
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4  Thank Iain F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 27, 2012

Pure force of habit drives me back to Sandton Sun. It is situated in a cluster of other hotels but I have never summoned enough energy to try them. Maybe on my next visit I will. I like the terrace area, the bar is ok and the service is good enough. It is a gloomy place though. A riot of beige. Popular base for touring cricketing teams, is it any wonder that a number of them have issues with depression. My room on the 15 floor, overlooking a building site was sad. I think I need to move on.

Stayed: March 2012
Thank Dodge51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewDavidson, General Manager at Sandton Sun, responded to this reviewResponded March 28, 2012

Dear Dodge51, Thank you for taking the time to post your valuable feedback on Trip Adivsor - I do appreciate all feedback as it really helps us grow. Yes, you could say there is a lot of beige, but I hope you don't venture to any of the competitors as they don't have our great facilities and link to both the Shopping mall and Nelson Mandela Square. Apologies for the construction that is taking place in the shopping centre parking lot. As I am sure you saw the Sandton Shopping Centre has upgraded many of the shops and really taken it to a new level, but now they need extra parking bays - so that is what you are seing being built. We are pushing the management team on that side to get it done - so that we can get this annoyance out of mind and sight. Keep well and I hope to see you soon again, Regards, Andrew Davidson, General Manager.

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Reviewed March 26, 2012

Very impressed with Sandton Sun. Convenient location in the Impressive Sandton Shopping Centre. Overseas business colleagues very impressed with location and Hotel although built decades ago still has maintained its standards. Great place to stay near the Gauteng Train service to Airport.

  • Stayed: March 2012
    • Value
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Thank Shmsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewDavidson, General Manager at Sandton Sun, responded to this reviewResponded March 27, 2012

Good Evening Shmsy - Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to post a comment for us on Trip Advisor - really appreciated. Yes, the Sandton Sun is the grand old lady of the Sandton area - and proud of it. Thank you for your positive feedback - much appreciated and I hope it won't be too long before we see you again. Keep well, Kind Regards Andrew Davidson, General Manager

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Reviewed March 20, 2012

Stayed here for 7 nights and very impressed by the location and staff. The staff is very polite, very helpful, and you will find so many staff near the reception area to help you with your luggage, get in and out of the car or get you a glass of water/champagne/juice while checking in.
Breakfast - It is a very good spread of continental breakfast. Hot breakfast is very good too. Sunday breakfast is a buffet including the hot breakfast.
Room - we stayed in1702 and it has a very big window overlooking Jo Burg. It can be a little noisy due to traffic, but the room has AirCon so you hardly ever need to open the window.
Location - 40 mins drive from airport, and is interconnected with the Nelson Mandela Shopping Mall and Square. Very safe and secure location in central JoBurg.
Will definitely recommend it to friends and will surely stay there again!

Room Tip: go as higher as possible!
  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
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Thank Sheikha K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewDavidson, General Manager at Sandton Sun, responded to this reviewResponded March 24, 2012

Good Evening Shik06,
Thank you for taking the time to put something on Trip Advisor for us - much appreciated. I am even more glad to see that you had a great time with us. Lets hope it won't be too long before your next visit. Keep well and kind regards, Andrew Davidson, General Manager.

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Reviewed March 15, 2012

What a hotel!

My wife and I stayed at this hotel as a stopover on our honeymoon and it was strongly recommended by the people at her work, as they are predominantly South Africans. We caught the rail into Sandton and walked to the Hotel, through the shopping centre, a 2 minute walk, very convenient for the wife to do some shopping!

The hotel itself is kept to the highest standard and the service is fantastic. The food for breakfast was unbelievable!

And then to top it off.......I left my wedding ring in the bathroom and did not realise until I got to the airport. I called the otel and told them and they said that they would send security up to have a look. I was a little concerned about losing my wedding ring in South Africa and did not hol too much hope. But within ten minutes, I was called by th manager Willian to be told that they had found it and not to worry as it is in his posession and he will ensure that I get it back. And he did, they had my address details and couriered back home to me and I know have it back.

Thank-you so much to William and the staff for amazing service at a brilliant hotel.

Would HIGHLY recommend this hotel.

Rick - Melbourne

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Rick P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewDavidson, General Manager at Sandton Sun, responded to this reviewResponded March 16, 2012

Good Evening Rick,
Thank you so much for taking the time to post your experiences at our lovely hotel on Trip Adivsor - Appreciated. I was really worried about getting your ring back to you - as jewerly in the post does not always reach its destination. But in your case it did - great news. I hope we will see you for lots of up comming anniversaries. Keep well - Kind Regards - Andrew Davidson - General Manager

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