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“Sadly ...Much to be desired..”

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The St. James on Venice
Ranked #12 of 43 Hotels in Durban
Certificate of Excellence
Hout Bay, South Africa
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Sadly ...Much to be desired..”
Reviewed September 17, 2013

We booked two rooms for 4 nights after reading great reviews on Tripadvisor. My room upstairs faced the church and I asked to be moved as I could not sleep with the sound of cars racing down the road. Despite moving the walls are thin and I could hear footsteps in the corridor and sounds from the kitchen- I am by no means a light sleeper so was surprised by this in such a solid looking building.
Excellent location, wonderful staff though sloppy housekeeping (stained towels in the room) and my room had a damp odour. The breakfasts were great though our vegetarian dinner on night 3 was terrible.
The only redeeming factor is the staff (from the security, reception through to our lovely breakfast waitress) who were obliging, kind and very warm. They really took excellent care of my parents.

Better use should be made of the space and there is a need for a warm inviting lounge where guests can relax and have a drink. The conference room looks awkward and is empty most of the time - could be used better. The St James has a lot of potential and I hope they get things right in future.

Room Tip: Ask for a room that does not face the road / church.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank ashantha t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Dear Ashantha

Thank-you for your kind words regarding the staff, they truly are a great asset to the hotel and a pleasure for me to them part of the team.
I have taken your comments re the noise on the road, I will certainly look at how we can sound proof it better.
I hope that you will give us a try again when visiting Durban, we would like to show you our kitchen's true potential; a menu change is also on the cards so watch this space. There is a lovely lounge upstairs where guests can enjoy a drink or watch TV together, perhaps you did not see it? The conference room downstairs is often used for meetings, however that week we did not have any.
Thanks again, best regards to your folks.

Sunet Pringle
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104 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
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English first
Tel Aviv, Israel
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 28, 2013

With its excellent location in Durban, well-kept rooms and friendly, welcoming service I cannot recommend this hotel enough. Their breakfasts were delicious, the courtyard beautiful. The rooms would be a match to an honest 4-star hotel.

My girlfriend and I actually stayed for two periods of 4-5 days each, the first was planned and the second when our flight was cancelled due to an airline strike. The hotel was very happy to welcome us back, and had ready for us two fresh cupcakes with "welcome back" written on the plate -- it's that sort of place. The staff were just excellent, friendly and wonderful people.

Only downside? The internet connection was temporarily a bit spotty (I understand this is somewhat common in SA) but the St. James sorted me out with access to a neighboring hotel's system as a backup for my work.

Most highly recommended, they really are special.

Room Tip: The outdoor-accessible rooms were great, we stayed in both and it was very convenient.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank Cal G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Good Day

Thanks so much for your kind words and positive review. I am happy to report that our internet is super fast these days as we have had another line put in.
We look forward to having you back when visiting Durban family again!

Sunet
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Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level 6 Contributor
186 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed July 15, 2013

I stayed in this hotel for 4 days in July. The room was spacious and well equipped. The food was of an excellent quality (matching some top restaurants) and I ate many meals at the hotel. It is very well located with easy access to local schools, good restaurants and tourist attractions. The staff were friendly and helpful and the manageress helped with information and bookings.
Only small downside is that the walls between the rooms are thin and the sounds from the bathroom in the adjacent room were easily audible in my room

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Karenvanh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Good morning
Thank-you so much for your kind review, we look forward to having you back soon!

Regards
Sunet
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Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level 6 Contributor
237 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
Reviewed July 15, 2013

This is an excellent boutique hotel that goes out of its way to be helpful in every way possible. All requests are handled quickly and efficiently. Last minute lunch packs - not a problem - freshly prepared in five minutes. Pleasant settings for breakfasts and other meals. Terrific staff throughout. Very good chef.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank capeintl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Good morning

Thank-you so much for your comments re the chef and hotel; we do look forward to welcoming you back soon!
Regards

Sunet
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Leighton Buzzard, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed June 26, 2013

My husband and I stayed at this hotel for a week in May this year (2013). We were very impressed with the room (spacious and clean), food (presentation and taste) and staff (very friendly). The Manageress was on hand during the day and was accommodating. We definitely would recommend this place and will stay there again on our next visit to Durban.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Nicole C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Thank-you Nicole, please visit us again when you are in Durban. Have a great week.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portsmouth, England, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2013

This establishment is one of those hidden gems in a busy city like Durban. The service is top notch. They go that extra mile to ensure that you are enjoying your stay. It doesn't feel like an ordinary commercial hotel with tiny rooms, it feels like you are an elegantly decorated large home. It's situated in a lovely, quiet neighbourhood (approximately 30 mins from the beach and city centre) so sleep time is a joy. The rooms have A/C which is good during summer. Only down side is that they don't have many holiday (junk) food choices during dinner time like burgers, ribs, pizza etc. It was more like a like a menu for special occasions/posh restaurant, which would tie in with the hotel theme. Better service than commercial hotels, but not as expensive. I would definitely go there again.

Room Tip: If you are fussy, choose a room that has a wall separating the bathroom from the bedroom.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DerekJr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
We look forward to welcoming you 'home' soon!
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Durban, South Africa
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 10, 2013

The St. James on Venice is a lovely hotel which combines all of the comforts one would expect from a larger establishment with the attentive service and intimacy of a smaller establishment, not to mention the old world charm of the building itself. The staff excellent and go out of their way to ensure that your stay is pleasant. Another added benefit of staying at the St. James is the restaurant which is excellent and offers a good selection at competitive prices. I would highly recommend the St. James on Venice to anyone who is looking for accommodation in Durban and would encourage you to consider this elegant establishment as an alternative to the more commercial run of the mill hotel chains, you won’t regret it.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank IAN_H12345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunet P, Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
Thank-you for your great review, we hope that you visit us again in the near future.
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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 St. James on Venice

Property: The St. James on Venice
Address: 100 Venice Road | Morningside, Durban 4001, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Durban
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 43 Hotels in Durban
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The St. James on Venice 4*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Originally the home of Corobrick founder Robert Storm who built it in 1892, the guesthouse is steeped in Durban history and retains much of its old world charm. The 15 bedrooms are individually decorated in a classically elegant style with some having a view over the century's old St James church while others look over the hotel's peaceful garden patio. Being close to the trendy eateries of Florida Road, Durban's beachfront, major sports stadiums (Kings Park and Moses Mabhida Football Stadium), golf courses and Jameson and Mitchell Parks means all Durban's attractions are just a short drive away. The guesthouse is ideal for small meetings, conferences and private dinners and is well equipped to ensure business runs smoothly and efficiently. For business guests, the guesthouse is well-placed for access to the ICC, as well as quick freeway access to the Umhlanga Ridge precinct. ... more   less 
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