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“Pleasently suprised!!”

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The St. James on Venice
Ranked #12 of 43 Hotels in Durban
Certificate of Excellence
Jhb
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Pleasently suprised!!”
Reviewed 25 November 2013

We stayed here in November 2013 while visiting family in Morningside and were pleasantly surprised. The hotel is very well decorated, well equipped and modern while still retaining an antique feel to it.
Breakfast was fantastic - we expected a buffet but received meals cooked to order that looked amazing. Staff were friendly and helpful as well.
There were a few negative points (but these are very minor and should not deter anyone from staying at this hotel) - The reception is not open 24hrs, the hotel is next to a church so if you are a light sleeper, the Sunday morning bells might disturb you (not a problem for us though).
The room we stayed in had a shower in the bedroom (see pics). This looked amazing, but may make some couples a bit uncomfortable. Not all rooms are like this, so you could request a room with a separate shower.
All in all - a great stay. We enjoyed it so much that we have already booked another stay at this hotel...!! Can't wait to go back there soon!

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Zee M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunet P, General Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, 1 April 2014
Thank-you for your positive comments. We can arrange for separate bathrooms if this is requested in advance yes.
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102 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
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English first
Chichester, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
49 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 November 2013

Absolutely loved this small but perfectly formed boutique hotel - great location (Morningside - walking distance to restaurants on Florida), stunning building, beautifully decorated, individual quirky rooms that are well equipped. The staff were fantastic, the food at breakfast was great (cooked fresh to order) and there is a lovely outside seating area. Great value for money and would love to come back. The hotel doesn't currently stock alcohol but were happy to let us have glasses for a bottle of wine we took back with us.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Katie A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunet P, General Manager at The St. James on Venice, responded to this review, 1 April 2014
Thank-you Katie! And I am delighted to report we are now stocking a FULL bar. Please come again soon.
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Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 October 2013

We didn't even get to stay. We made a confirmed booking, money was taken then we arrived they would not let us stay. The only staff member was present was a security guard, so we waited over 40 minutes for him to contact Sinitta, the manager, who claimed check-in closes as ten. When I asked why we couldn't have a room, she said they were not made up - and there was nobody competent to manage check-in. Also be aware the hotel security has no way of checking which rooms guests are in - which could be problematic if there was a fire. To add insult to injury, Sinitta suggested she was incovenience by being contacted at 1230 at night, oblivious to what it feels to drive all the way from Joburg, wait for 40 minutes, have to pay twice the costs to find a room, wait for credit card to be refunded etc. When I stated they must be in breach of contract for taking bookings they cannot fulfill, Sinitta claimed two websites say check-in is not 24 hours, althought I find no reference to this on the hotels.com hotel page or booking email. Please also be aware that it extremely difficult to book hotels in Durban as 'walk-ins' - we were told no vacancies at five different hotels afterwards, though each was showing availability on hotels.com and other websites. All in all, a terrible experience - we had to pay twice the cost to find somewhere to stay, made to think it was our fault, have lost the cost of the hotel, and incurred delay, stress and hassle which soured our view of Durban unfortunately.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank saclark
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, 21 October 2013
Dear Mr Clark

At the time that you contacted us, the booking had not come through on our system via email nor on my cell phone, as it is set-up to do. We had no way of knowing that your booking was a legitimate one. It was also explained to you at the time that we do not have a 24-hour reception and could therefor not assist you at 00.30 in the morning. It is common practice not to allow "walk-ins" due to security reasons.

Your booking was made through a 3rd party booking engine, who took payment from your card - payment was never made to us. This 3rd party has confirmed to us that they have refunded you in full, plus given you a free voucher for a future booking.

We respectfully request that you remove these unfounded comments from Tripadvisor.
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Hout Bay, South Africa
Level Contributor
35 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 September 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, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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, 14 October 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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Tel Aviv, Israel
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 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, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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, 14 October 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 Contributor
187 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 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, travelled 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, 14 October 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 Contributor
237 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 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, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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, 14 October 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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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 (diagonally opposite Clifton school acquatic centre), Durban 4001, South Africa
Region: 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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