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“Touristic”
Review of Spier Hotel

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Spier Hotel
Ranked #4 of 16 Hotels in Stellenbosch
Certificate of Excellence
Utrecht, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
116 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Touristic”
Reviewed February 26, 2012

Nice place, however much more for large groups than expected. Besides activity like horse riding was skipped but not mentioned on the website !

  • Stayed February 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank PR_S18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (272)
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English first
Derby, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed February 22, 2012

My wife and I have recently returned from an enjoyable 4 weeks holiday at the Spier Hotel.
The grounds are lovely, well kept, with a number of short walks by the river which passes through the property.
The accommodation is in rooms set out in a village style. The rooms are large and the ground floor ones have a
large patio.The downside here is that although the rooms are clean and comfortable they are getting a little shabby with age. I am told refurbishing is a priority.
The food is good and plentiful.
The staff in all departments is friendly and anxious to be helpful. Management are approachable and will do whatever they can to make their guests stay memorable.
Sometimes service in the restaurant is slow but this is Africa so take it easy, have a few glasses of the excellent wine and relax.
Four stars now but will be worth five stars when refurbishing is complete.

Room Tip: Ground floor rooms have fairly secluded patio.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank George S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Spier2011, General Manager at Spier Hotel, responded to this review, March 19, 2012
Dear Guest

Thank you for your recent comments on our TripAdvisor page, it is wonderful to read your positive comments after staying at the hotel for four weeks.

I have noted your comments on the rooms and speed of service. We will be working towards improving both of these in the months to come.

Kind regards

Wayne
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buenos Aires
Level Contributor
68 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
Reviewed February 21, 2012

This themed Wine Country hotel offers great accommodation save for the fact that there is no vineyard tour within the premises, which sort of defeats the whole purpose of staying there. Service is best at restaurants and bars, a bit short on the Front Desk (we had to take in our own luggage as we were told the staff was busy with a large group) and quite slow around the pool area. They have three restaurants on premises, the Spier itself, the massive Moyo, which offers buffet-style food in a fun, picturesque native African setting with black dancer/musician entertainers, wearing feathers and painted faces and all (a bit out of place given the fact that this is clearly situated in Boer European-looking white SA and not Tanzania) and the Eight, open for lunches. We stayed one night only and tried the Spier, which had great food and outstanding service. Wines, needless to say, are all from their own production. The Pinotage was just O.K., so I would therefore recommend drinking the very premium ones. Drunk and rowdy photo-frenzied Chinese tourists didn't quite add to the romantic, tranquil ambience of it, as it seemed that their dollars (or yuan) weighed more than good manners, since no one in the hotel asked them to put it down. Rooms are very nice, country-style with their own fireplaces, we got the ones with private garden full of birds and pear-trees. Towels, on the other hand, are shameful, they should renew their stock right away. Overall, a nice experience. Highlights include wine-tastings (although too early for my taste), visits to their cheetah zoo (where you can actually pet a live adult cat if you dare do it and pay heftily for ten minutes of that) and wonderful breakfast. Make sure to check-in no later than 2 pm as all activities end early in the day.

Room Tip: Some rooms have private gardens, others don't so make sure to request it when available.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Disfrutator
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkshire, England
Level Contributor
59 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2012

This was our third stay at Spier in the last three years. Unfortunately,it is not the same place it was three years ago.

The actual hotel is very nice with large rooms and has a lovely setting but there were a lot of little things that niggled and ultimately would prevent us from returning.

Breakfast is a buffet and all the food is left out in the heat and more often than not, covered with flies and wasps. Nothing is kept cool and as such, spoils quickly as my husband found out to his cost one morning when the milk he put on his cereal was rancid. Butter and milk are also left out on the tables from guest to guest and we had to ask for cold butter and milk every morning. The two toasters were dire and one of them broke down on two mornings.

The main swimming pool is very nice but for a 155 room hotel, there are only 14 loungers and 4 sun shades! The shaded area by the pool used to have loungers underneath it but is now used as an extension to the already large dining room. There are several smaller pools around the complex but again, only a couple of loungers available to sit on by each pool. Pool towels were in short supply and often had to be asked for as they were not put out.

During our 6 night stay, there were private functions on three evenings, none of which we were warned about in any way. It was almost impossible to even get near the bar and the poor bar staff seemed very overworked.

The wine tasting cost has escalated in the three years and they have recently got rid of one restaurant and the deli to make way for the new wine tasting centre. The cheese platter on offer there for R60 was a joke, with three tiny bits of cheese and five finger thin biscuits. We had cheese platters at a number of other wine estates which were three times the size and a lot less expensive. The deli (that used to be very good) has been replaced with "8 To Go", where you can buy upmarket food for picnics as very inflated prices.

Basically Spier seems to be trying to upgrade itself but is failing in quite a few areas to meet those standards. We will not return again.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Traveller from UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Spier2011, General Manager at Spier Hotel, responded to this review, March 19, 2012
Dear Guest

Thank you for the recent comments left on TripAdvisor, I apologise for the hotel not meeting your expectations and for the service defects. I have taken note of the issues mentioned and have addressed them with the managers responsible. As a return guest to the hotel your feedback is very important to us, and I wish to assure you that this is not the general level of service one can expect from Spier.

We are currently reviewing the restaurant standards, specifically the breakfast offering and will be implementing the changes in the coming months.

I have also noted your comments regarding the number of pool towels, loungers and umbrellas.

We hope to welcome you back at some stage in the future and see the improvements that we have made.

Kind regards
Wayne Siepman
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
24 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2012

We stayed 5 nights at the hotel as part of a group. Rooms are large and reasonable maintained, but would benefit from better cleaning. The facilities and grounds are beautiful with nice plantations and walkways. The hotel have several smaller pools among the Mediterranean style villas as well as a larger pool. Service was generally good apart from the bar where service was very slow often accompanied with a lot of confusion. Breakfast was very good. Wi-Fi connection worked well from the room and was free to a certain extent. There are electrical sockets for all European/US plugs so you do not need an adapter. It is a good location for visiting wineries around Stellenbosch.

I can definitely recommend this hotel

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Anders52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surrey
Level Contributor
29 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed February 13, 2012

We had been booked to stay at Spier since last July but only a couple of weeks before we were due to travel to SA our travel agent contacted us to advise that as a conference was being held there during our stay they were offering an upgraded transfer to another hotel in the middle of Stellenbosh - as our travel agent didn't have any knowledge of the alternative hotel we rejected it. A mistake? - possibly!
We stayed in a standard room which was, to say the least, fairly basic - and largely functional although the showerhead sprayed water everywhere. The bed linen and towels, while clean, were stained - they clearly need replacing.
Our room was accessed up a tiled staircase where the handrail stopped (or started) 4 steps from the bottom which left nothing to hold onto when starting or ending your journey. There was an open gulley immediately at the foot of the stairs which was difficult to avoid stepping onto and very difficult to see if the evening sun was in your eyes when going for dinner. My wife sprained an ankle on the first night.
The service at dinner on our first night was not good - very slow and inexperienced - and the food was frankly mediocre. None of this was due to the effect of the conference - they weren't to be seen that evening. The 2nd night's food was slightly better, as was the service but it was still not great.
A disappointing 2 nights in a beautiful part of SA - but we wouldn't use Spier if we made a return trip to this fantastic country.
We spoke with the deputy general manager as we were leaving the hotel and he noted our concerns.
The Spier Wine Tasting facilities were excellent as was the cheetah attraction adjoining the hotel although the latter is being relocated within the next few months.
Hire car is essential to get around.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank RonanneSurrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Welwyn Garden City, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
132 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed February 6, 2012

We spent a few days visiting the wineries in the area and the hotel is well located to act as a good base, provided that you either have a car or are happy to use the local railway or bus services (the hotel taxis are expensive by Cape standards). Rooms are odd old colonial eclectic mix, getting shabby in places like the bathroom. Wifi works but only really in the lobby. Given that you're a captive audience the restaurant is disappointing - breakfast aside which it is difficult to make a mess of - too much gravy and over cooked. Wine tasting is good. The Cheetah sanctuary is being relocated so check if that is important to you. Big SAGA coach party there whilst we were in, but no problems caused!

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ted S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Spier Hotel

Property: Spier Hotel
Address: R310, Stellenbosch 7599, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Stellenbosch
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 16 Hotels in Stellenbosch
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Spier Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 153
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Spier, in the heart the famous Cape Winelands, is more than a hotel. It is a destination in itself. One of the first hotels in South Africa to be Fair Trade in Tourism certified, Spier offers visitors a variety of authentic experiences - from food and wine to outdoor activities - in beautiful surroundings. ... more   less 
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