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“Great Service, Dark Rooms” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse

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Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse
Ranked #5 of 29 St Lucia B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Earth
Level Contributor
214 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 115 helpful votes
“Great Service, Dark Rooms”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 January 2013

This guest house is among many tucked away on the back streets of St Lucia. The photos of the place are terrific conjuring up an image of a very modern bright structure with lots of light. We arrived into a well lit reception area beautifully decorated with charming staff. However, when we were shown our room, we were very disappointed. All four modern guests rooms are actually located on what would normally be considered a basement or underground garage area, giving the actual living space a very dark and dungeon like feeling. The one wall facing the garden does feature floor to ceiling windows but the other three sides of the room are solid and very dark. Though the furnishing are very nice and the staff lovely, the entire experience was missing a beat. It was different than we imagined it would be looking at the promotional photos.

Room Tip: All rooms are on the lower basement level with walk outs to the garden.
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  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank boudecca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hans720, Owner at Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse, responded to this review, 14 January 2013
Comment on review:

As owner/manager, it is always difficult to have a discussion with anonymous guests regarding a negative experience, sent to Tripadvisor. Via internet, we finally have traced the guests, coming from the US and as couple they have stayed with us for 2 nights in July 2012, mid-winter. First of all, we haven’t received any complaints or negative experience during their short stay, nothing at all. Secondly, experience of an accommodation is purely individually based, there is no accounting for tastes. We respect another opinion. However, an opinion has to be founded on reasonable arguments. We believe this review is unfair for several reasons.
1. Our accommodation is located at the edge of the village, very quiet with only pure nature around us (directly bordering Wetlands Park). This part in St Lucia is recognized as the best place in town.
2. Our accommodation has been designed by professionals and the quality is not an issue for discussion (I refer to all other reviews from all over the world).
3. As St Lucia has a hilly landscape with differences in height, the design has been based on using the advantages of these differences. All rooms including owner's residence have absolutely 100% free view into the nature. The concerning room is at the park level, all 4 rooms with private gardens and the back garden including the big pool are all at the same level. The landscape of the property and the adjacent park has been integrated. The idea of an ‘underground garage’ is completely misplaced.
4. One of our assets is the lighting, artificial and day light as well. All big and bright Parkview rooms (50 m2) have big ‘full sized’ window frames at the park side (whole room width and height) is for South African standards oversized. To bring extra day light in the rear of the rooms (bath room area), we have used so-called ‘sun catchers’, bringing day light from the roof.
5. We don’t understand the lack of ‘beat’, no arguments have been used. We are trying to achieve serenity in all aspects.
Summarized, we regret the review very much because in our view it isn’t founded on objective arguments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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293 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    241
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    6
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    1
See reviews for
39
212
5
4
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
156 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 January 2013

Serene was one of the best places we have been in South Africa. The grounds are perfect, the venue is clean and neat. the rooms are spacious and comfortable. We stayed in the yellow.
Their breakfast was phenomenal and Hans and Olga are very kind and engaging and know how to accommodate your every need without being too much in your face or space.

Room Tip: All the garden rooms are good
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank 8mmSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kirkby Stephen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 January 2013

Wow! what a great stay we had. The building is fantastic,we chose the property for the modern design and certainly were not disapointed. A lot of time had been spent designing and fitting out the house to a very high standard.Our room was a delight,big and spacious and flooded with sunlight. It was a suprisingly large swimming pool for a guest house. Olga and Hans were wonderful hosts. They organised 3 exellent trips for us and recomended some restaurants(one we ate at 3 times the fish was so good). The breakfast was of the same high class. I would love to live in our room. We travelled 6000 km through S.A and this package was the best, you must stay there!

Room Tip: Upstairs looking out the back
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank mark e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brooklyn, NY
Level Contributor
87 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 December 2012

As described by earlier guests you are set down during check in, given a refreshing drink and given suggestions on how to enjoy the area. They set us up for the drive to Cape Vidal (several cool loop roads), a sunset boat trip on the estuary to see hippos and crocs and a great game drive to Imfolozi Park. They also gave us restaurant suggestions. Great rooms with cool wildlife sightings in the garden. I also enjoyed the breakfasts here. Very modern architecture. Highly recommend this guesthouse to anyone.

Room Tip: Choose the rooms in the back
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Copperdesk63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
70 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 November 2012

My wife & I stayed here for 3 nights in October.
As others have mentioned the property is an architectural masterpiece. The rooms are huge with very high quality fit-out and a patio area that overlooks the pool.
Olga and Hans are very friendly and on arrival Olga sits you down with a drink and explains the various activities that are available in the surrounding areas. If required she can also arrange bookings for you.
Our only regret is that we didn't say longer as there a many activities in the areas we couldn't squeeze in.
We highly recommend at stay at Serene.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank SCS62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
kildare
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 November 2012

Beautiful modern rooms in very impressive building. Walking distance to the main street (mind the hippos though!). Breakfast would benefit from more variety and flexibility. Pool area is lovely. Good wildlife including bush buck, monkeys and hornbills in the garden.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank nealj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 May 2012

This guesthouse is simply stunning! If you appreciate fine architecture, a beautiful setting, great hospitality, spotless rooms - decorated in an ecclectic and interesting way and one of the best served breakfast`s imaginable ...then Serene is for you. Serene Guesthouse is an amazing find....do stay 2 or 3 nights minimum becuase there is so much to see and do - and Serene makes the perfect oasis to return to each night.

Room Tip: The ground floor park view rooms are the best!
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Rosemary S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse

Property: Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse
Address: 119 Hornbill Street, St Lucia 3936, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > St Lucia
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 29 B&Bs / Inns in St Lucia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Serene-estate Boutique Guesthouse 5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Unique design: poetic architecture, serene atmosphere, pure quality, maximum convenience challenges for an unforgettable visit The most exclusive newly build guesthouse in St. Lucia is totally different regarding architecture and exclusivity. Minimalistic with a warm atmosphere. Big luxury rooms (50m2 each), a fantastic view into the garden and Wetlands Park with all the birds and animals, the silence, a beautiful large swimming pool and warm Dutch hospitality. ... more   less 
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