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“Quirky Pretoria hotel”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Villa Sterne

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Villa Sterne
Ranked #27 of 357 Pretoria B&B and Inns
Brussels, Belgium
Level Contributor
628 reviews
104 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 205 helpful votes
“Quirky Pretoria hotel”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 January 2014

A small apparently recently constructed hotel in the midst of Pretoria's fortress-like residences.

The hotel's indeterminate style, including naff, clumpy furniture, was rather charmless and the non-functioning internet was disappointing. Against that was friendly service (although there's no reception desk, so at times difficult to track down), a quiet location and a generous buffet breakfast.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled on business
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank higvin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Villa S, Manager at Villa Sterne, responded to this review, 18 June 2014
Dear Higvin,
We thank you for your review on Tripadvisor and your stay at Villa Sterne.
Villa Sterne opened the doors in 1998. We apologise for any inconvenience during your stay at Villa Sterne. We have upgraded our internet, which is now free of charge on a 40mbps. Kind Regards Aletta
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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64 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
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Leesburg, Virginia
Level Contributor
30 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 May 2013

My wife and I spent an evening at Villa Sterne on Saturday night. When we arrived we were overwhelmed by the grandeur of this mansion of a house. The hotel looks like a really large mansion or private residence, not a hotel. It is located in a VERY nice section of Pretoria and surrounded by other mansions. And it is stunning. But it lacks some of the niceties of a real hotel. For example, there was no bellman to help us with our five suitcases (we were on a three-week tour of Africa) so it was left to us to haul our suitcases upstairs to the room. The room itself was very large and at first, appeared to be quite nice. But all was not as it appeared at first.

The first thing we noticed was that the large sliding doors leading to a beautiful balcony, that
overlooked a beautiful back yard, would not open. We asked for help and the young lady who showed us to our room strained and pulled with all her might and slid it open about a foot. I felt badly for her and I did the rest. Now I lift weights every day, but I can tell you, it took a mighty pull to get that door opened. And likewise to close it.

We walked around the beautiful grounds but discovered that the pool was not kept up and was filled with debris. We were planning on spending the day by the pool on Sunday (something we found out later was not going to be possible anyway) but when we saw the pool we realized that was not going to happen.

Then I went to take a shower. While the bathroom was large and well appointed with nice bath amenities, it was there that I found the entire ceiling of the shower and all the grout between the tiles covered in disgusting and unhealthy mold. Really a turn-off.

We wanted to check our emails as we had been on The Blue Train and had spotty WiFi. We found that to use the "free" WiFi, we had to obtain vouchers which had to be requested from the hotel manager. These vouchers were for limited time (the each lasted about 20 minutes) and kept running out so we had to keep requesting them. Again, the staff was very nice but it was just such an unnecessary hassle to have to go through this to check emails.

Going downstairs to the beautiful main floor of the mansion, we discovered that we were the only guests (the have 15 rooms) who were having dinner with them that evening. The two young ladies who helped us (we found out later that they were interns from a nearby university) were very nice and helpful and set up a beautiful and romantic candle-light dinner for my wife and me in the "family room". We were so pleased with what they did. But then dinner came. My carpaccio was not edible. I was thick and gooey and difficult to cut and even more difficult to eat. I love carpaccio but I just could not eat it. Then came the main course, a fish dish. Again, it was not done, slimy and gooey. Such a disappointment after the girls had created such a romantic environment. After dinner we did enjoy a fire in the fireplace before going to bed.

Sunday morning we had a hot breakfast and my eggs Benedict was very good but my wife said her waffles were limp and tasteless and appeared to be prepared earlier and heated up in the microwave.

Because our flight out of Jo'burg didn't leave until Sunday evening, we asked for a late check out and the staff was again very accommodating. They prepared a nice lunch for us which they served in our room as the entire facility had been rented by a family for an anniversary party on Sunday. The lunch was filet mignon and it was very good.

My wife and I spent the day in our room as the entire house was full of guests. That was not really a problem except that our one source of entertainment was a old (at least 25 years old) TV with about 10 stations, only one of which was in English. So we spent the day watching reruns of NCIS LA and such.

All in all, the Villa Sterne has a lot of possibilities, but poor management and lack of attention to detail destroys what could be really nice.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Richard N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
47 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 May 2013

we recently placed 2 overseas visitors into this small boutique Hotel. The rooms were spotlessly clean, large and well presented. The overall cost per night including breakfast came to around R1300 per night, or approx just under £100 per night. So this is a very good rate.
There is a very nice snooker room and bar, and 2 fairly large lounges in which to relax. There is a small swimming pool and a nice small garden.
there is even a presidential suite, which does in fact sometimes accomodate real life presidents. There is a connecting room for the presidents armed guards as well. Dont let this put you off, it really is a very nice place.
Our guests enjoyed the Hotel very much, the only criticisms they had centered on the following points:
1. some nights when they wanted a snack, they were told the kitchen was too busy to accomodate them. I think during these nights they were holding a function.
2. the taxi service was a bit hit and miss
3. One night they came home and found the main door locked. Made them feel like naughty school boys, which of course they still are!!!!
All in all, they have confirmed they will stay here again and indeed one of our guests will stay here next week. They were extremely happy there.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Edvard F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 February 2013

We had our wedding there and after about 14 trips to the venue, 100 calls and arrangements, they told me they didn't know about my wedding 1 week before it happened!
They forgot our ordered and prepaid drinks, had no-one to help with our stay over luggage and the food ordered via room service was poor! Besides the beautiful view, the rest of the venue and their (lack of) service was shocking. A major disappointment after paying so much to book the venue!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank V v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
77 reviews
76 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2013

Located in an upscale area of town, Villa Sterne overlooks Pretoria. A beautiful view from room and outdoor lawn and pool area. There is no reception at this place, like you might find at a hotel, and any needs you need during late night/overnight hours will go unmet. During regular business hours (6am onward) I found staff to be friendly and responsive. Complimentary breakfast was on the thin side (fruits, grains and juices), but a good presentation of the food spread overall.

The rooms were clean and well-maintained. TV had terrible reception throughout and the AC unit made a constant noise during the night. Bathroom toilitries readily available and restocked each day. Internet was an inconvinient truth. 50MB per code, and you have to keep asking for additional codes as use runs out (this is problematic for a business traveler sending/receiving documents 24/7). Their solution - only after obtaining four codes over a day was to purchase in 2-hour increments.

Overall, it was a comfortable stay, but there were a couple areas where improvement is needed to ensure a great guest experience.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mike G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lystrup, Arhus, Denmark
Level Contributor
68 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 November 2012

I have stayed several times at Villa Sterne and really enjoy it! It is situated beautifully at Waterkloof Ridge, overlooking the Pretoria area. Extremely friendly house-like atmosphere - not "fancy" but the rooms are huge, well-equipped and clean.
The breakfast is possibly the best I have ever had - be sure to get an omelet!

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa
Level Contributor
46 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 November 2012

Well attending a wedding at Villa Sterne after years of hearing about this amazing place turned out to be a bit of a damp squid. I felt like I had stepped back into the 70's in Bloemfontein.

Well I never got to stay there, but I walked around beautiful gardens with great Pretoria views and the staff were all extremely friendly and helpful so a big thumbs up to the service.

The food - finger type starters with dinner was fine - but nothing to write home about with chicken kebabs oozing with a sticky sauce - in fact there was enough for 10 more trays all smothering the one tray , so the food was OK. We ordered espressos afterwards which were good.

The wine choice and drinks service were 100% and once again the waiters and servers were really very good.

But the place needs a wake-up injection I am afraid.

Room Tip: I think the rooms must be quite dreamy and the view is amazing.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chris G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Villa Sterne

Property: Villa Sterne
Address: 212 Johann Rissik Drive | Waterkloof Ridge, Pretoria 0181, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Gauteng > Pretoria
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #27 of 357 B&Bs / Inns in Pretoria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Villa Sterne 5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The magnificent Italian-styled masterpiece, Villa Sterne Boutique Hotel is set on the highest ridge with breathtaking views overlooking the majestic Union Buildings and the exuberant Jacaranda City, Pretoria – South Africa’s capital city. Guests are afforded the elegance, privacy and comfort of a luxury modern-day existence in our gracious old-world setting. ... more   less 
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