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“Terrible breakfast and service at the Carvery”
Review of Royal Hotel

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Royal Hotel
Ranked #24 of 43 Hotels in Durban
Reviewed 10 December 2010

We booked at the Royal Hotel for the weekend of 26/27 November 2010 as it was my husbands birthday, I wanted everything to be perfect, the room was lovely, dinner at the royal grill on Friday night was perfect, the food, the service etc. The service for breakfast at the Carvery on Saturday morning was deplorable, we sat there for over 30 minutes and were not offered a cup of coffee or tea. We ordered 2 sunny side up eggs and 2 well done eggs and 4 mutton sausages as we are Hindus and do not eat pork or beef, all the eggs came well done and the sausages were brought about 30 minutes after the eggs...BURNT. We did not eat that as we were not hungry anymore and were quiet annoyed, I then ordered a cup of tea with the waitress, the saucer was hot but the tea was warm. We were very irritated as this was not what we expected, we stayed at many 4 star hotels overseas (Thailand, Hong Kong, Seychelles, India ands Dubai) yet the service at a 5 star in our own country was so disappointing.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Sholz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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163 - 169 of 185 reviews

Reviewed 19 November 2010

The hotel is classy, elegant, old and timeless. The dinner at The Grill is an experience, you wont feel the need to move out of your chair fast.

The hotel restaurant, which opens only for lunch, has the most awesome curry, but the restaurant only opens for lunch, but its worth the wait, you wont pay more that R60 for your meal ... great value for money!

The rooms are sizeable, they have a floor for ladies only on the 16th Floor, and they have a lounge area for guest to hold meetings or work from on the 17th Floor.

Its a great spot, you walk to town!

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled on business
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Thank liyabee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2010

The Royal provides the common basics you expect from a 5-star-hotel. Certainly there is a wide range within the group of 5-star-accomodations but the Royal is more located at the bottom. I was missing the flair which you connect with the name “Royal”. The building has -besides the restaurant- the charm of any other 20-storey downtown-hotel-tower. And the “flair” which is produced by the staff is average.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank MichiwV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 May 2010

I am not completely surprised to see so many negative reviews of this hotel. Yes it does seem like its old stylish but it would be unfair to not higlight the positive . It seems to be predominantly a matter of tast and for some, interior design and trend this is more important than the little comforts that comes with a five star hotel.

Although the furniture, doors, carpets etc reflect scenes from the mid 1900's its by now means out of touch with luxury and modern technology. Its obviously been upgraded over the years to keep up with the things you want in a 5 star hotel. What struck me is that everything looks relatively brand new (although old style) and one has to apreciate that. I wondered how they kept evreything in such tip-top shape. Bottom line is, it wouldnt have received 5 stars for no reason! The rating of hotels are strict.

Maybe its because, when people read and hear the word, "Royal Hotel", and see its rated a five star, the expect the grandour of luxury combined with the most modern ideas in architecture and interior design. Well, it might be "old styled" but not certianly not old period.

The location might be a bit of a disappointment to some but to business people etc it could be ideal. Its right in centre of Durban. Off course, if you compare it to the hotels on the beach (holiday goers) you would feel that you could have done better. The view of my window overlooked the harbour though and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Another minor dissapointment is, I would say, is the restaurant in the lobby that seemed a little too small. But again, Durban is full of dining choices and this shouldn't put one off too much. In general I had a very comfortable stay there. The staff were very helpful in giving me special parking due to the size of the vehicle I drove too.

Now for the final and difficult question, would I recommend it to a friend? The reason I say its difficult is due to the price. This I would say is the biggest draw back. Having stayed there for work I thoroughly enjoyed it, but to me the hotel is a little pricy. I am personally quite happy with a 4 star hotel that doenst have all the fine tuning of the 5 star hotels. But if you are a person who can afford these services, go for it.

  • Stayed: September 2008, travelled on business
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Thank JohannesT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2010

We stayed at the Royal for two night, while the hotel interior wasn't that bad the Hotel is in the wrong part of town. Years ago this was tourist central but not any longer. We where advised by a tour guide not to venture out of the hotel unless it is to get a taxi elsewhere because it is unsafe. The food within the hotel was great, but we felt trapped inside after returning from tours outside the city. Upon leaving Durban to go north we drove throught the newer part of Durban and it was beautiful. We recommend research into hotels before staying in Durban

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank aussiehewys
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2009

Clean, comfortable, spacious rooms and the staff are very friendly. Food is good and very reasonably priced. Great central location, opposite City Hall, the art gallery and science museum and a minute's walk from the Playhouse. Only two quibbles: piped muzak and very slow coffee service at breakfast.

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled on business
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Thank Lucy_Howe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2009

We stayed here based upon the recommendation found in Fodor's guidebook, which rates it quite well. We stayed for one night, June 21. The rooms were decent, about the quality of a Holiday Inn (in the US). It definitely seemed like it was past it's prime. The next morning, at around 7am, we heard a loud explosion. We were in the 12th floor of the hotel. Our windows were soon engulfed in thick black smoke. I looked down to the parking garage below and saw people screaming and running. The fire alarms did not go off on our floor. We ran down the stairs in our pajamas, fearing literally for our lives. We had to rip off wood planks which were blocking the fire escape on the third floor, and when we got to the bottom floor it was covered in smoke, the fire department was there, and we had to run out of the hotel. All the guests got out safely, and several employees suffered from burns and/or smoke inhalation. We waited outside for two hours (I missed the first day of work at my job), most of us in our pajamas, and the management didn't explain anything to us (including whether we would get any of our things back). We were finally let back in to retrieve our luggage, which smelled of smoke, and they put us up in their sister hotel, The Riverside. They did not comp any rooms, and in fact double charged me. They reopened the hotel after about a week, even though there was serious smoke damage. The hotel claims it was the city at fault, who in turn blames the hotel. This was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life, and I would never, never recommend staying here.

http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?art_id=vn20090622124636728C712866

http://www.int.iol.co.za/index.php?art_id=vn20090114052343410C715399

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled on business
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2  Thank cls2486
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Royal Hotel

Address: 267 Anton Lembede Street, Durban 4001, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Durban
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in Durban
Price Range: £41 - £108 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Royal Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 113
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Royal Hotel Durban

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