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“Very Interesting Hip Hotel”

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The Waterfront Hotel and Spa
Ranked #18 of 43 Hotels in Durban
East London
Level Contributor
158 reviews
121 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Very Interesting Hip Hotel”
Reviewed April 10, 2014

I couldn't give this hotel a very good review, but its a good hotel overall and definitely not awful. The area is recovering from ruins so the first concern for a traveller would be the outside look and feel of the hotel and the surrounding area, but there are good new-look upmarket sky scrapper apartments surrounding the hotel that could give you some calm; once you walk into the hotel you are met by professional staff with a smile, hip interior, the hotel really would appeal to a younger audience and artist people. I found the rooms to be on the small side for my liking, the open shower style doesn't work for me but isn't a bad idea if space is being maximised. i chose a room with a balcony and found the balcony to be exceptional for my smoking habits. The breakfast was adequate, I didn't find it to be overwhelmingly great. The check out young man was a bit on the rude side which was a contradiction to the young woman who welcomed us into the hotel, so this did dampen our upbeat mood. The hotel is under construction and refinement, so there will be some work around that can irritate a business traveller who just wants to get on with his busy schedule. The style, the colour scheme and the entire area which feels as if you are at the end of Durban can either appeal to you or be totally unacceptable, so go with an open mind, its definitely not on the beachfront, so don't expect that, its on the docks as the name says but you are not far from the beach either. Overall, an interesting hotel!

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank liyabee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, April 13, 2014
Thank you your recent review on your stay with us here at The Three Cities Docklands Hotel.

The Docklands Hotel is a unique product merging the Historical Durban Point Precinct with Urban Industrial architecture. Our product does cater to the Young and forward thinking guest, yet with our refurbishment that we are undertaking currently, we are softening the feel of the hotel to cater to a wider variety of guests.

Once again thank you for your review, as our valued guests' feedback is imperative in order to constantly monitor and improve our service offerings.
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218 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (72)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
38 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2014

Given that this is a Three Cities Hotel, you'd expect a decent experience but I was left terribly disappointed. Quite a few things went wrong. To start off with, the hotel is being renovated and there are contractors all over the show - this was not communicated beforehand. When we arrived at the hotel after a long day's work, we walked in on market night with food stalls and live music in the courtyard. Although a good concept, the hotel has not considered guests - loud music until 22:30 is totally unacceptable. My colleague and I both phoned reception to turn down the volume of the music, which never happened. What's even worse, I found a dirty stocking underneath the basin next to the clean towels - makes you wonder what else hasn't been cleaned properly. At check out I complained and the manager, Dean, was apologetic and assured me that he'd address the housekeeping issue and look into the volume of the live music on market night. Though I didn't expect anything, he promised me a discount on my next stay with s spa voucher and feedback regarding my complaint - I'm still waiting.

Room Tip: Don't let the price fool you. Avoid this hotel if you can.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank karinsteen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, April 8, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review your recent stay with us at the Three Cities Docklands Hotel.

Please accept our sincere apologies that we did not meet your expectations for your stay with us here at the Three Cities Docklands Hotel.

On the note of the Night Market, I would like to inform you that this market has been discontinued as from 3 April 2014, as we found this to impact and not add value on our guests stay in the hotel.

Once again, thank you for your review and I will be in contact with you directly regarding you stay with us.

Kind regards

Andrew Merrill
General Manager.
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Travelers are raving about these Durban hotels

Level Contributor
17 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed March 31, 2014

We stayed at this hotel for two nights. Its a Beautiful hotel, modern furnished and the breakfast was really tasty. Infortunately the location is poor when you are there for visiting the city as a tourist. We had a pitched noise coming from the air conditioner. And the staff did not care about it. Whe I give them a second call, they came to our room and sayd I supposed to turn off the ar cond and open the window (What?!?!?!?!?).
The whole hotel was being renovated, including surrounding areas, creating noise (I could not keep the windown opened). And we were not notified about when we booked it.

Room Tip: Modern Rooms, Tasty breakfast, noise AC, poor location.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank FranGabiatti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, April 1, 2014
Dear Fran Gabiatti,

Thank you for your recent review of the Three Cities Docklands Hotel. Our guest’s feedback is of utmost importance to us and we value your input regarding your recent experience.

The Durban Point Waterfront area is in the City Rejuvenation area and is moving towards hosting new and dynamic zone within the greater Durban Precinct. Offering prime facilities on its door step such as Ushaka Marine World, some of the best kept Durban beaches and some exciting new future developments.

We would like to apologise for any inconvenience that you may have experience during your recent stay with us here. We are currently, as you mentioned, in the process of a refurbishment which will improve our product that we offer you our guest.

Thank you for your positive comments regarding the décor and the breakfast experience.
Kind Regards,
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gilbert, Arizona
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 19, 2014

When we first arrived we were not sure if we would like this hotel, but as we became more familiar with it we began to enjoy it very much. The staff could not have been more helpful and accommodating. It is a hotel in progress and they are working very hard to please their guests. The location to the beach is great and the food exceptional.

Room Tip: Be sure the air conditioning is working.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank theatersandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, April 1, 2014
Dear Theatersandy,

Thank you for your recent review of your stay with us at The Three Cities Docklands Hotel.
Our Guest’s experience is a key factor in our success, and feedback is our key measurement tool.
Your comments regarding your stay show that we have created another fan of the Three Cities Docklands Hotel and we are humbled that you enjoyed your stay with us.

Of late we have embarked on a refurbishment of the hotel and we are working toward creating and superior guest product.

Once again, thank you for your positive comments your recent stay with us.
Kind Regards,
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
204 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2014 via mobile

Driving down the old point road with the plan to stay in a hotel in that area would be something I would never consider a couple of years ago. However, even with the conflicting new and old in the area the Docklands Hotel is an urban gem.

The rooms are very comfortable and the decor is unique and quite frankly very clever (for example they built lighting onto painted scaffolding).

The dining area is wonderfully spacious and the service is great. Front of house is well organized and thy are willing to help wherever possible. The conference area and rooms also look very impressive.

All round lovely hotel that's a hidden gem.

  • Stayed January 2014
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Yachal_D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, February 4, 2014
Dear Y_JDP,

Thank you for your current review of the Three Cities Docklands Hotel.

You positive comments will be passed through to the team here at the Three Cities Docklands Hotel, and we hope to welcome your back in the near future.

Kind Regards
Andrew Merrill
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed January 23, 2014

Although The Docklands is located in an ideal spot, overlooking Durban harbour, there is little to be said for it, aside from its aesthetic value. I can confidently say this was the most badly run hotel we've ever stayed in!!! We couldn't check into our room until 5.30 as there was no linen?! The mattress cover was stained in urine, aircon didn't work (in 31deg heat!!), the hotel had run out of basics such as bottled water, lemons, most of the wines displayed on the wine list, etc...the room cards were constantly de-activated so we couldn't enter our rooms and to make matters worse, the booster pump was inadequate which meant that residents of the hotel's fourth floor,(like ourselves) were unable to take a shower (not a drop of water coming out of the taps!?) After a stern chat with the General Manager, (to their credit) they moved us to rooms on the first floor where we were able to shower and the aircon was working, but what was truly astounding was that the hotel continued checking new guests into rooms on the 4th floor, knowing full well that there was no running water?! Three Cities....this type of 'service' is a disgrace!!! You should be paying US for the dubious privilege of staying in this hotel, and not the other way around! Shocking!

Room Tip: If you absolutely HAVE to stay at The Docklands, ensure you are not on the 4th floor!!!
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 201Liana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, January 26, 2014
Dear 201Liana,

Thank you for your review on the Trip Advisor Website.

We apologise that we did not meet your expectations as our guest, and that you experienced may problems during your stay with us here in December.

We are in the process of working with our owners on a rectification project as we have had a server water pressure drop in the Durban area which has resulted in the hotel experiencing some problems.

We value all feedback we receive from you our valued guests.

Kind regards

Andrew Merrill
General Manager
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chippenham
Level Contributor
36 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2014

Having left it to the last minute to go to Durbs for a holiday we found this little gem of a hotel.
Its almost next door to UShaka and easy to get to the beach and a quick walk to town.

The room was superb and the breakfasts as good as I have had anywhere in Europe or America.

Excellent service from the staff and the restaurant made the trip even better, our only regret was that we did'nt dine as often as we should have at Wodka, the time we did it was excellent.

This is one botique hotel I will be staying at again.

A little tip as well, if you go to the beach you will walk past some canals - look out for the Hammerhead shark sancturary where we found the uShaka stuff feeding them in the morning.

Room Tip: Deluxe rooms had a balcony with a view to the sea.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank waterishail
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndrewMerrill, General Manager at The Waterfront Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, January 19, 2014
Thank you for your review on the Trip Advisor Website.

Our constant goal is to provide our guests with an exceptional experience at the Three Cities Docklands Hotel and we thank you for your acknowledgement of your recent stay with us will be passed through to them members of the Docklands Team.

Once again, thank you for your feedback and we hope to welcome your back at the Three Cities Docklands Hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Waterfront Hotel and Spa

Property: The Waterfront Hotel and Spa
Address: 40 Mahatma Gandhi Road | Durban Point Waterfront, Durban 4001, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Durban
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 43 Hotels in Durban
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Waterfront Hotel and Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 83
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Three Cities Waterfront Hotel and Spa (Formally known as the Three Cities Docklands Hotel) is located in the historical Durban Point Precinct. On the door step of Ushaka Marine World, Durban ICC and the famous Durban Golden Mile. The Three Cities Waterfront Hotel and Spa offers a quiet oasis overlooking the Durban Harbour. Offering Wodka Restaurant and three conference venues, The Three Cities Waterfront Hotel and Spa is enjoyed by the local artist crowd. Historical Walls have been retained to envelope the recently refurbished Three Cities Waterfront Hotel and Spa. ... more   less 
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