We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A place to call home in the City Bowl”

We can't find prices for this accommodation
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this accommodation, but we can search other options in Cape Town Central
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Scalabrini Guest House
Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
342 reviews
92 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 345 helpful votes
“A place to call home in the City Bowl”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2011

I booked five nights at Scalabrini Guest House based on the Lonely Planet guidebook recommendation. I worried a bit that I could only find five reviews on TripAdvisor for Scalabrini at the time I booked, but was assured to see that at least all the reviews were positive. I’m glad I have the opportunity to add to the positive reviews.

I received prompt response from the Scalabrini staff from the time I submitted a booking reservation inquiry. They held my reservation when my credit card declined the deposit and worked with me until I authorized the lift on the security hold. The Scalabrini staff also arranged for an airport transfer for me through Excite Taxi, a convenience I really appreciated after 20+ hours of travel.

Upon arrival, I was welcomed by Yvette who efficiently processed me and gave me a thorough orientation of Scalabrini House. Over the next few days, Yvette proved to be a valuable resource as I explored Cape Town on my own; she even booked a day tour of the Cape Peninsula for me. There is always a staff person on duty after hours at Scalabrini, which is helpful because there is no reception desk per se. Another helpful staff was Tara, who helped arrange laundry service for me.

The Scalabrini Guest House may not look too impressive from the outside, but it was a homely haven on the inside. As a solo traveler, I felt safe staying there. Guests are provided a set of keys that ensure access to the guest house floor is limited only to registered guests. I often left early in the morning and may see a few people on the street outside but when I came back after dark, I did not see anyone loitering around the entrance. As a bonus reassurance, I always saw public safety officers and a public safety vehicle parked outside of or across the street from Scalabrini Guest House.

My single room was clean with big windows and an electric fan. The window looked out to construction/rubble across the street, but I didn’t come to Cape Town to stare out of my hotel window, I didn’t mind. The en suite was sufficiently-sized, with a shower with good water pressure. Wi-fi (for a very reasonable fee) was strong. Make sure you have the Type M/South African plug or adapter, with the three circular pins, as the rooms only have this type of outlet.

I was very pleased with the location of Scalabrini Guest House. I booked the 9 a.m. ferry to Robben Island for the morning after I arrived, and I was able to walk to the Waterfront area in less than half an hour, using a map and without having before explored the city. Other places of interest nearby include Company Gardens, Slave Lodge, District Six Museum, and Castle of Good Hope. Because of the location, I could walk to most of Red route stops of the City Sightseeing Tour bus and thus maximize my two-day City Sightseeing Tour bus by spending most of my time on the Blue route stops. Other Scalabrini Guest House reviews have mentioned the convenience of nearby grocery stores and being able to use the communal kitchen and dining area to prepare meals, but I had takeaway from the Eastern Food Bazaar (96 Long Market Street) frequently.

My one disappointment with staying at Scalabrini Guest House is that I was unable to share a meal with homeless clients at the soup kitchen (an opportunity that is still mentioned in the guest book). Unfortunately, due to funding cuts, the Scalabrini soup kitchen had terminated its services a month before.

I recommend the Scalabrini Guest House as a place to stay in Cape Town, especially for solo travelers. It is great value for the money and the staff make it feel like home.

Room Tip: All rooms are on the 3rd floor of the Scalabrini Centre.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CCC_wanderlust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

73 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    42
    28
    3
    0
    0
See reviews for
8
26
19
3
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 (8)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Tel Aviv
Level Contributor
14 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 October 2011

I came to Capetown for a conference and later some travel, so I stayed at Scalabrini for 8 nights. The people who run the place are nice and kind, the rooms are quiet high level, clean and neat. There's no breakfast included but there's a huge really good communal kitchen. Internet access if you have a laptop is only a small one time payment. I would certainly recommend the place to most people. The guesthouse is located in the city bowl which is really good, near the gardens and museums. It's not, however, in the center of the city bowl but still walking distance from important surroundings (15-25 minutes to Boo-Kaap, 30-40 minutes to the waterfront) and usually it's nice to walk. It's also located near a police station and in there are lots of public safety patrol people all around the area, so I felt relatively safe. Only caveat is if you come alone and want to find travel buddies, this is probably not the place for you unless you're in the dorm at high season. Otherwise, you'll probably have more chances of meeting people in a guesthouse with more communal spaces and a communal breakfast. Other than that, it's a really good place!

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Yuval S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
110 reviews
101 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 October 2011

We stayed 4 night in the Scalabrini Guest House.
Very good, new clean rooms, big bathroom, direct access from fist floor to the guest house floor.
Two supermarkets in walking distance (5 min) and 10 minutes from the Castle of Good Hope and Company Gardens.
Shared kitchen where everybody can keep their stuff in the fridge.
Great value for price

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Juestra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 October 2011

The BEST part of it was it felt like home. Very clean and quiet, with a nice kitchen and sitting room where you can cook what you like and also share nice meals as well as plan trips together with other guests from ALL over the world. I made some life-time friends there ! the staff are young and wonderful and very helpful !Scalabrini guesthouse is right in the center of Cape Town, 5 min. walk to the nearest stores, 15 min. walk to the train / bus stations. Would DEFINITELY recommend it. Will DEFINITELY book there on my next trip!

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank M0naaa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 October 2011

They were renovating while I was there so unfortunately I could only stay there 1 night. Huge room & bathroom. Both very clean! I was lucky enough to have my own room so I actually took a hot bath. Towels,soap provided basically seemed like a hotel with bunkbed. Best service I ever received from hostel staff - who is all generally happy to make your stay excellent. Only minor drawback was I couldn't get wifi to work on my phone but that was a constant s Africa problem for me. Was still able to use their computers.

  • Stayed June 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ratonmatt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 September 2011

This has to be the best place to stay in Cape Town for those on a budget. Great central location, immaculate quiet rooms with en suite bathrooms, and a huge communal kitchen equipped with everything you may need. The staff are all wonderfully friendly and able to help out with any request you may have. They even do your laundry and ironing for a small fee - what a lifesaver as I stayed for almost a month - and there's wireless internet as well. Importantly, all profits made from the guest house go back into maintaining the refugee support centre that the Scalabrini Centre also run. Highly recommended for anyone keen to travel ethically in South Africa.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank AislingLyon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montreal, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 June 2011

It was the best accomodation I picked during my trip in SA. If you are looking for a well situated location, huge room, quiet, clean, affordable, secure, with a nice kitchen and friendly staff, you should consider the Scalabrini Guest House. There was some renovation going on when I was there so expect even better rooms. My bathroom looks like one in a hotel. Special thank you to Yvette and Tara. You rock girls!!!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Gonthieri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Cape Town Central
City Bowl
Ikhaya Lodge
Ikhaya Lodge
#77 of 106 in Cape Town Central
4.0 of 5 bubbles 71 reviews
Townhouse Hotel
#63 of 106 in Cape Town Central
4.0 of 5 bubbles 364 reviews
Parliament Hotel
#37 of 106 in Cape Town Central
4.5 of 5 bubbles 567 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
Schotsche Kloof
Hilton Cape Town City Centre
Hilton Cape Town City Centre
#42 of 106 in Cape Town Central
4.0 of 5 bubbles 1,220 reviews
Midtown Rentals at Perspectives
#62 of 125 in Cape Town Central
3.5 of 5 bubbles 5 reviews
Kimbo Lodge Backpackers
#277 of 498 in Cape Town
3.5 of 5 bubbles 13 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Scalabrini Guest House? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Scalabrini Guest House

Property: Scalabrini Guest House
Address: 47 Commercial Street, Cape Town Central 8001, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Western Cape > Cape Town > Cape Town Central
Hotel Style:
Ranked #52 of 125 Speciality Lodging in Cape Town Central
Number of rooms: 9
Also Known As:
Scalabrini Guest House Cape Town, South Africa

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing