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“A big dissapointment”

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Winchester Mansions
Ranked #28 of 106 Hotels in Cape Town Central
Certificate of Excellence
Sandbach, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“A big dissapointment”
Reviewed February 5, 2013

Visited the hotel early in February 2013. We tagged the Winchester on to the end of our South African touring holiday specifically to do the jazz brunch and because of the many good reviews posted about this hotel. First the positives. It is undoubtedly a lovely building, well situated if you don't mind it being in a very busy location, and the room that we were allocated (325) was very nice if you could overlook the fact that the air conditioning was woefully inadequate to cool such a large room. Our problems really began on arrival. Both Cape Town and the hotel were very busy due to a race meeting and a large conference taking place in the City. Our first experience was to queue for fifteen to twenty minutes at the one check in desk that was open. Apparently the other scheduled staff on check in were sick (pity one of the many "customer services managers who were walking the floor didn’t get their hands dirty and help out behind the desk). From there on in virtually every interaction with the staff, apart from the porters, was a joke. For example we went in to the V & A Waterfront in the evening having first checked with the reception that we could call them when we were ready to return. When we did so the somewhat shocked Maître D at the restaurant we were dining at told us that they said they "were too busy" to collect us (this is a 4/5 star hotel!) and that we should "get a cab", (they say in their hotel guide in the rooms that if the driver is busy that they will organise a cab for you, no such offer of was made). The first person we saw when we got back to the hotel in the cab was the driver who was too busy to pick us up. When we did get to the brunch on the Sunday, despite making the booking seven or eight months before we were tucked away behind a pillar and could not see anything. We complained and, typically, the person that went to talk to the manger to see if she could do anything about the table did not even come back to us. The brunch was excellent as was the music but by then our experience of the Winchester has somewhat soured it. On our last morning it two me three attempts, two waiters and half an hour to get a cup of coffee on the veranda. We loved Cape Town and South Africa and will return but we will not stay at the Winchester again it was the poorest customer experience that we have had for a very long time.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank AndrewH697
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NilsHeckscher, General Manager at Winchester Mansions, responded to this review, February 6, 2013
Dear Andrew H
Thank you for your review, which sadly is not the kind of response we like to see. As you may see here we manage to impress most guests and I am sorry we seem to have failed you. I apologise for the fact that you had to wait on check in, the manager on the floor is here manage the divers requests guests make actually in order to keep the desk free for check in and out. Our complimentary shuttles are on request and sadly not always available. to order a taxi from the hotel is always done with a smile, but too often when we send taxis the restaurants also do and then double bookings occur, this the Maître d' did not tell you. The experiences with lack of feedback re the table and the wait for coffee are inexcusable and I apologise most sincerely. I do hope that you give us another chance as we pride ourselves in great service as can be seen from the review of same date as yours. Thank you.
Nils Heckscher
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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998 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (211)
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Ddorset
Level Contributor
29 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed February 3, 2013

This was our first visit to Cape Town and the Hotel was chosen for us. With a very long promenade to walk along I wondered 'were we safe' My worries were unfounded. The Hotel itself has great character with the outsisde restaurant in the middle of the Hotel with trees and shrubs in abundance! Our room was OK we would have preferred to be sea facing. The staff however could not do enough for you, from repairing a pair of shorts to producing a 'Happy Birthday' dish for my husband. The complimentary shuttle bus to the Waterfront was very convenient.
I would certainly recommend the Hotel but choose you room carefully.

Room Tip: For a room with a view choose sea facing.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Dot5346
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NilsHeckscher, General Manager at Winchester Mansions, responded to this review, February 6, 2013
Dear Dot5346
it is wonderful to see your great review, thank you for taking the time and please return very soon to renew your experience.
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Boston
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2013

The staff at Winchester Mansions is just incredible. I arrived in Cape Town at 4PM and, given the capricious weather atop Table Mountain, requested information from the front desk about how to get there as quickly as possible while the weather was good. Not only did I get the information I needed, but the front desk even arranged a cab to drive me there right away. Within 1 hour, I was on top of Table Mountain with incredible, other-worldly views of Cape Town. The experience was top-notch.

In addition, this hotel is a stop on the Hop on/off tour bus, which gets you nearly everywhere you would want to go and simultaneously stay on budget.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank summer07Boston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NilsHeckscher, General Manager at Winchester Mansions, responded to this review, February 6, 2013
Dear Summer07Boston
thank you for the great comment you posted. It makes our profession so much more worthwhile when efforts are being recognised. Hope to be able to have you back here again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ipswich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Really great hotel in lovely location. Staff extremely friendly and helpful. Good breakfast, loved eating in the courtyard - so pretty. Had two meals in the restaurant which were delicious, would really recommend this rather than the V&A, special mention to our waitress, Pepsi who was lovely. Rooms very stylish and spotless. Harveys Bar was great - staff so friendly, food here was also very good. The location is great, just across the road for the red bus stop, also nice for a stroll. All in all a great place to stay in this lovely city - would definately recommend.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sue G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NilsHeckscher, General Manager at Winchester Mansions, responded to this review, February 6, 2013
Dear Sue G
thank you for your review, I am very glad to see we managed to fulfil your expectation. Many kind regards from sunny Cape Town.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2013 via mobile

Stayed here for 4 nights in Jan 2013. Staff all friendly and helpful. Room very nice as was the swimming pool, although it gets shady in the afternoon. Terrace bar gets very crowded but has beautiful views. Restaurant was good and breakfast was excellent. Highly recommended

Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank njwoodhouse1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 18, 2013

The staff couldn't have been more solicitous, and such a great location. Great value and very nice setting. Breakfast is great - indoors or on the terrace, with eggs made to order. They have a shuttle service that is free to the Waterfront, and for a small fee they will take you other places (less expensive and more reliable than taxis). I would recommend it if you are looking for a smaller hotel.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank CathyinWDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva, Switzerland
Level Contributor
120 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed January 10, 2013

Great location, beautiful garden courtyard, great breakfast buffet! Rooms are very comfortable- have great amenities. Lime cordial a treat! Bar has buzz at sun down--lots of action with people from all ages. Bikes are great and don't miss the rides along the Promenade to the V&A or to Sunset Beach, etc! Beautiful! Sorry to miss the Sunday Jazz Brunch--sounded great!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank barefootsusyq
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Winchester Mansions

Property: Winchester Mansions
Address: 221 Beach Road | Sea Point, Cape Town Central 8005, South Africa
Phone Number:
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Cape Town > Cape Town Central
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#13 Spa Hotel in Cape Town Central
#18 Business Hotel in Cape Town Central
#27 Family Hotel in Cape Town Central
#28 Luxury Hotel in Cape Town Central
#31 Romantic Hotel in Cape Town Central
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Winchester Mansions 4*
Number of rooms: 76
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Winchester Mansions is an iconic building on the seafront in Cape Town within close proximity to the V&A Waterfront and Cape Town International Airport. Free shuttle service to the Waterfront, free wifi internet access in public areas are standard. This landmark hotel offers classic elegant rooms, many boasting stunning sea views. Facilities include a heated pool, relaxing treatments in the Ginkgo Spa, signature dishes from award winning Harveys Restaurant & Bar as well as full service conferencing. Cape Town's most famous and longest running Jazz brunch is hosted at Winchester Mansions every Sunday of the year. The monthly Grapes, Gourmet and Gallery evenings draw large numbers of food & wine lovers and art aficionados. Winchester Mansions - Part of the Journey ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Winchester Mansions Hotel Cape Town Central
Winchester Mansions Cape Town, South Africa

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