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“Nice place, but”

The Sleeping Bao B&B
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The Sleeping Bao B&B
Reviewed October 15, 2012 via mobile

I spent a night at this place while on business in PMB. The bedroom and bathroom was well appointed with everything I needed.
I did have a problem trying to open the electric gate as the remote control seemed to be worn out and I was left outside the property late at night with a gate that would not open. The breakfast room with it's appropriately misplaced furniture and pictures left me feeling a bit disoriented. Also, why do people ask how you would like your breakfast eggs prepared when they have no intention of delivering what you asked for?
While this is a pleasant place, the owners need to look into their service standards.

  • Stayed: September 2012
    • Value
    • Location
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Thank Obru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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6 - 10 of 10 reviews

Reviewed February 11, 2012

This beautiful property transports you back in time, and has a magical feel about it.

We were in town for the Midmar Mile, and were well taken care of. Our hosts were attentive to our needs and extremely pleasant.

We will certainly consider staying here again next year.

  • Stayed: February 2012
    • Value
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Thank Avataarkaap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2011

My parents and I stayed here for a weekend while visiting family in the area. We had found the booking page while searching online and everything seemed ok - location, price, availability. When we arrived it looked so lovely but then things started unravelling...
The buzzer for the gate was not working and we were instructed by a badly written note to call a South African number to get in (costing R35 or £3 a minute) and it took two calls before the gate was opened. Once inside, no apologies for the delay and the assumption was made that we were taking part in the Midmar Mile (a swimming event taking place that weekend).
Once in our room things looked ok but the bathroom was tiny and the bath/shower was not very user friendly - you had to step up 2 steps and then down deep into the actual bath. One light wasnt working so it was a bit dingy at times.
Being someone who is easily bitten by mosquitos and fleas, I found that after being in the room not even 1 hour, I had been bitten by something.
The following day we went out - expecting our room to be serviced, we had locked away all valuables. When we returned, we found that the service staff were petty enough to have stolen chocolate Easter Eggs that had been left on the table - you would hope things like this didnt happen. As for the Satellite TV that is supposedly offered that was a joke - no news channels, no entertainment in English and only 2 sport channels.
On our final day we did not have any of the amenities replaced as you would expect at even the simplest hotels - toilet paper, tea and coffee. Even when leaving there was still no apology from the owners for the gate, and for taking a full 3 days to give us our change from payment - leaving the 2 maids/cooks to give it to us early on the Monday morning.
In general the house was very loud (you could hear everything other guests did or said), there was no protection from mosquitos such as nets or candles, extreme lack of parking and all in all quite relieved we didnt take food there.

  • Stayed: February 2011
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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2  Thank cindoz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SleepingBao, Owner at The Sleeping Bao B&B, responded to this reviewResponded June 22, 2011

Hi 'Cindoz'
Thanks you for your review and frank comments
I apologise for only coming back to you now, we only came across your review of our B&B this morning.
I would also like to apologise for the problems encountered over your 3 day stay.

If it helps any, I would like to address some of your problems:

Over the weekend in question Pietermaritzburg was hosting a national open water swimming competition over 3 days. We had more than a fully house with participants for this event – unfortunately what happens over this weekend - more member s of the team than were originally booked, arrive at our door looking for accommodation so that they can compete in their races and gain national points – most are willing to share beds and even on a mattress on the floor. We try and accommodate them as much as possible. Usually we only end up accommodating swimmers that weekend and they are all understanding to this plight. We were, assumingly, under the impression that you were also here for this event.

• At the time of your arrival, we were, unfortunately, busy picking and dropping the other guests / swimmers, to and from the event, depending on their start times, ( which is a service we provided ), and therefore unable to meet you, as is customary.

• The buzzer and gate motor were unfortunately struck by lightening the evening prior to your arrival and the service provider could only make it out to us on the Monday due to the number of problems experienced by other businesses and residents of PMB.

• Regarding the problem with the bath and shower in the room, we have, to date, not received any complaints from our other guests. In fact most guests have positively commented on our ‘Alcove’ bath. If you do have a suggestion as to what could be done, we would be happy to make adjustments. ( Please keep in mind that the issue we do face, is that due to the age and therefore the historical nature of the house, we are restricted to make any structural changes.)

• We have checked our service records and found that there was a fused bulb in the shower area, that should have been changed prior to your arrival.

• We are also fortunate enough to be in any area of PMB that does not experience too great a problem with mosquitoes, However, in summer , we do have insects flying around but have never required preventative measures. However , we have now taken to putting a mosquito repellent spray in the room and offering our summer guests a mosquito net if required.

• All our room are serviced, everyday, including Sundays. Our service log’s shows that your room was serviced. I will follow up as to why there were no amenities were available in your room ( but this will not be resolved easily as the problem experienced was in February and difficult to address this issue months down the line. )

• Regarding the lost Easter egg - Our room are thoroughly cleaned after every guest leaves and our service records show that a chocolate was found under the bed next to the window. (unfortunately, our records don't detail what type of chocolate it was ).

• We are unfortunately restricted to offering, what the local satellite TV provider terms as : 'commercial Bouquet’. It contains only about 20 channels ( of which there are 10 sports channels ). 90% of the channels are in English - but most are not those that I personally like to watch. As much as we would like to offer you the whole range - we are restricted by the Satellite Company’s broadcasting policy. We are trying to see if they will increase the range of viewings, but when this may happen is anyone's guess!

I apologise about the change not being given to you earlier. We had your change ( R 50 – GBP 5 ) in the office but always seemed to miss you as you were leaving to visit your family or returning late in the evening. We had left it with the staff to give to you on your departure as we had already left the B&B prior to you checking out.

Again, I apologise for all the problems you faced during your stay, but I would like to emphasise that this is not indicative of a typical stay with us.

Thanks you again for your comments.

Nihal and Manisha Shah

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2016 via mobile
Google Translation

Stayed: March 2016, traveled on business
1  Thank Edson B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2012
Google Translation

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank lastrega76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Sleeping Bao B&B

Address: 139 Howick Road | Wembley, Pietermaritzburg 3201, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Pietermaritzburg
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #41 of 64 B&Bs / Inns in Pietermaritzbu...
Price Range: $59 - $84 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — The Sleeping Bao B&B 3*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Sleeping Bao B&B was established about in 2006, in the heart of Pietermaritzburg in one of the city's preeminent residential areas. The luxury accommodation is situated less than 5 minutes of the Johannesburg - Durban highway, with easy access to all local amenities and central to the numerous events hosted by in and around the city (Comrades Marathon, Duzi Canoe Marathon, Midmar mile, AmaShovashova Cycle race). We are also a perfect spring board to explore the famous Midland's Meanders and the surrounding inherent attractions, with the Indian Ocean ( Durban ) and Drakensburg mountains in easy striking distance. The Sleeping Bao is a beautiful face brick structure with a rich wood interior and a history spanning over 70 years. Situated in country like settings, it is a mere 3 minutes from the city centre and 15 minutes from Oribi Airport. Available are 6 individually and elegantly, fully furnished rooms overlooking well established gardens. Rooms have air conditioning / fans, all rooms are fully heated in winter. Each of the rooms have tea and coffee making facilities and TVs. Visitors have full use of the lounge for business meetings or pleasure as well as a fully stocked pub bar. Guests have full access to the heated swimming pool. A braai area around the pool is also available for use. Lunches are available on request. Prepared individually and with the freshest ingredients, many from our own garden. Prior arrangement needs to be made for dinner. Menus can be individually tailored to suit all needs. Transfers to and from Durban International and Oribi airports can be arranged, as can tours around the midlands meander. Guests have full electronic access to secure off road parking. Laundry facilities are available daily. ... more   less 
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