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“Business Hotel in Cape Town, customer service needs to be polished a bit.”

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The Westin Cape Town
Ranked #28 of 110 Hotels in Cape Town Central
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 January 2014

This was my 1st trip to Cape Town and I would rank this Westin as a good business hotel option I've stayed due to the accessibility of my business requirements and proximity to the harbor and restaurant options. If you have business at the CTICC this is a great option as it is less than a 1 minute walk from front door of the Westin to the CTICC.

The Good: Hotel rooms are nice, comfy and clean. Bathrooms are spacious, modern and clean. Hotel is across from CTICC and walking distance to the harbor/restaurants. The hotel also provides a free shuttle to the harbor frequently. The travel/tour desk was GREAT. Very accommodating and had tons of suggestions and also cautioned me on a few things I mentioned. Greatly appreciated as a 1st timer in Cape Town.

The Not so Good: I checked in after midnight (in which I made the hotel aware) and they welcomed me with a smile, sent me up to my room only to have double beds when I requested a king, with a view on an upper floor if possible (I did my trip advisor homework in advance). I had confirmation of my king bed and made it know when I called down to the hotel to complain. I was informed that there were no king beds available and needed to stay put. To know me is to know that option was not working for me. I requested a manager (explained to her my reasoning) and within 30 minutes I was moved to a king room on a higher floor with a great view. The breakfast buffet could have been a little better. During peak times I had to go up and get my made-to-order eggs vs. during non-peak times when the waitstaff delivered it to my table. I was pleased with the fresh juice and smoothie bar. There were thunderstorms one evening and the power flickered off and on for almost an hour. Getting thru to the operator was almost impossible, strike that, it was impossible. The gentlemen at the concierge desk were a little lazy and short tempered in not wanted to do simple task, but after strongly suggesting and noting this was a basic concierge task all was handled.

The Bad: The F&B staff has some polishing to do to on customer service on the bar/lounge side. I sat down a few times on the side of the bar and notified the bartender where I would be to make sure the server came over and watched as servers passed me by and wouldn't acknowledge me. I complained to the bar manager on duty, two separate times about the same lack of service I was provided on two different days. He apologized, while looking confused asking me what he could do for me. As a frequent traveler, it is a BIG pet peeve of mine when I complain about service and managers ask me what I would like, let me see….the world please bundled up for free, is usually my answer. My suggestion to all managers in customer service, at least be able to think on your feet and suggest to me what you think could rectify the current situation. Hmmm, in this instance I'm waiting to be served and I mentioned what I was waiting for, how about comp me that glass of wine…at least. (This section determined my selection of poor for the service rating)

Please keep in mind that I am a frequent business traveler and call myself a travel snob. I also have a high expectation when it comes to certain things at hotels, restaurants, etc which is higher than most people. I say all of this to say, I would stay at this hotel again because the Good during my 7 night stay did outweigh the bad.

Room Tip: Request a higher floor with a view. You may need to pay more but waking up to leap at the harbor and...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank cazjamz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 13 January 2014

Dear Cazjamz

Thank you for your feedback and taking the time to post your comments. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed the hotel.

I reviewed your comments regarding your stay with us at Westin Cape Town. We do take all comments seriously and appreciate all the feedback we can get. I do apologize for all the issues you have experienced while stay at our hotel. We do share all comments with our staff, so we may resolve any and all issues.

Hope to welcome you back on your next visit to Cape Town

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera
General Manager

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1,083 - 1,089 of 2,279 reviews

Reviewed 3 January 2014

Modern hotel at good location. Easy to get there by rental car as well. Immediate attendance by the bell man who took care of our bags and our car. Check-in was friendly but utmost complicated. I had 4 nights booked, though in individual bookings, since I had to remain flexible in terms of being able to cancel and leave (whilst a single booking for 4 nights would not allow to do that). So that is my business, yet I had to explain to the front desk lady in lengthy detail as to what I did that. This is none of her business nor is it a bit indiscreet, bordering arrogance, to be so persistent on such trivial matter. Anyhow, after talking her though it, she still did what she wanted and combined my bookings. Having said that we did leave the day after for one night only. Again, big discussion and big confusion on top of that. I was getting to the point of asking them to freely tell me that they prefer not to have me as a guest, being SPG platinum, rather than having to undergo another set of interrogation. Very annoying.

So then the room we got was nice, modern with a good view, but rather standard. Standard is what I expect when I book any hotel without being preferred guest in the highest tier. The did claim the hotel was full but then again, I spend more than enough nights at hotels to see when that is the case. An empty lobby at 6pm and a half-full breakfast restaurant at 8am are usually not signs of a full hotel. Nice try but try harder next time!

Executive lounge is nice and offers magnificent views and complimentary sparkling wine, wine and beer with tastefully home made appetizers. Service up there is good and personal. Very well done. Unfortunately, the lounge (on all evenings we were there, as we came back again), turns into a childrens playground after sometimes and gets very loud. I would expect staff at a lounge to, in such case, have a word with the parents as I do not think executive lounges are made for kids to run around. As much as I love kids, there is a children playground on the Mezzanine floor that is made for that so it is up to the staff to take action and the parents might want to think about living their role as parents also abroad in luxury hotels, if I may suggest.

We had dinner at the lounge one day - perfect! We also had breakfast up there one day - also nice but on that day staff was not very awake and we had to order everything three times and start putting empty dishes on the floor hoping they would start to get the point that they shall remove it. Mixed experience overall with the lounge.

Went to the Spa one evening - very nice! Beautiful view. Very clean. Loved it.

On our first morning of the second stay, we had breakfast downstairs. A disaster. The restaurant was half empty but the waitress wanted to place us at the smallest desk next to the cashier and kitchen entrance. We then said no and wanted another table. That did upset her and she also was not reluctant to show that to us. Does hotel staff have to endorse my table choice? I am hesitant but maybe at the Westin Cape Town they do. We then ordered our eggs. The most cumbersome process for probably the most trivial transaction in hospitality industry: you tell a waiter. He confirms and tells another waiter behind, inside the kitchen. That second waiter does nothing so the first waiter writes down our order on a piece of paper. They then promise to bring your order to the table. In not a busy restaurant, we did enquire 10 minutes later about our order. Nothing happened. So I went back to waiter number one. He then points you to waiter number two who has no better idea to show me the paper on which all the orders are ticked off (so in other words they are trying to tell me I am a bloody idiot and that I am trying to lie since I already had my food???). A few minutes later, I am pointing out to them that I full of these games and that my order was noted on the top of the page and not on the bottom as they had pointed out (again, do I care as a guest where you write it down???). So eventually the difficulties were sorted out and I was told I will get my order. Note that I had now already spent 20 minutes at breakfast without having breakfast. Pretty quickly, my object of desire, my eggs with tomato and mushroom came with cheese inside that I did not order. I sent it back and guess what, after roughly half an hour of arguing, lying, trying to avoid work, my order came and it was my order the way I did order it.

I didn't take 5 minutes and what had the next lovely encounter. The waitress who serves tea or coffee was not in the mood for work at all that morning. She was "swinging" through the restaurant as if she was on drugs. When then ordered coffee. Instead of stopping the dance performance, she nearly spilled coffee on my wife's trousers and threw down the christmas decoration that was on the table. Of course, all of that without any word of apology. Maybe another feature of this lovely place. Maybe I had to apologize for not inviting her to spill coffee over my cloths as well?

It was not over yet. With all the delays, we got to our croissants after nearly one hour. As my wife took the marmalade, she noticed that the seal had been broken and was asking the same dancing lady for another jar. That lady said that the seal is not broken. Now again, do I have to have an argument with staff about my order? I guess no, at least not to this date. My wife then repeated her wish until the lady did finally realize that a guest speakes to her and that it might be advisable to do what the guest asks for.

All the other observations are in line with what previous reviews had mentioned.

The problem with the prostitutes in the Mezzanine Bar appears to have been partially solved. We cannot speak for the late evening as we were only there for a drink at around 7pm. There was one lady only in the company of local VIPs so I doubt there is a true interest in the hotel's announcement to seriously take care of this problem.

The staff at the Mezzanine Bar though is very friendly and "uplifting" in this fool's building. We were always very well looked after in the bar. These guys there should be the role models for this place!

All in all the worst luxury hotel experience. Definitely not acceptable as an SPG platinum. I am not sure if Starwood shall fire management or 95% of the staff.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank RHW1974
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 13 January 2014

Dear RHW 1974

Thank you for your feedback and taking the time to post your comments.

As a management team, we take all comments seriously and share them with our staff, so we may resolve any and all issues. Again, thank you for the comments, which will help us in our ongoing efforts to improve our service.

Whilst I can assure you that any neglect experienced in this instance would have been as a result of toughtlessness rather than intent, please be assured, the issues raised have been addressed and appropriate action taken to prevent any guests being similarly inconvenced in the future.

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera
General Manager

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Reviewed 2 January 2014

I have been there several times.
The hotel is very modern and luxurius. Plenty of space everywhere, rooms, restaurants etc.
Service is very good. There is a very nice spa-gym. It is very close to the waterfront and there is a free shuttle to go there. They finally have a proper wifi.

Room Tip: The upper floors are great.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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1  Thank alf viajero d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2014

Dear alf viajero d

We are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful stay with us at the Westin. It was nice to hear that the Westin Staff and Hotel exceeded your expectations. They work exceptionally hard to make every guest feel special. Thank you so much for staying with us and we hope to see you in the near future.

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera

Unwind – A Westin Evening Ritual SM

Continuing to find ways to make a stay more enjoyable, Westin encourages travelers to share an inviting transition from day to night with friends, family and fellow guests. As nightfall approaches, the lobby transforms into a relaxing social space with food, drink and entertainment infused with the style and culture of the location.

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Reviewed 1 January 2014

We stayed twice over a period of two weeks at this wonderful hotel and loved every minute. The first time was only for a night and the second for three nights. The staff is incredible and so are the rooms. We had wonderful views of the Harbor. We had access to the Executive Club level and enjoyed breakfast and afternoon cocktails. This is the hotel of choice for Cape Town.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Nick P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2014

Dear NickP

Thank you for the positive review of our hotel. We are very happy to know you enjoyed your time at the Westin Cape Town and we hope to see you again very soon for your next stay in Cape Town.

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera

"WestinWORKOUT
State-of-the-art and well equipped, the WestinWORKOUT gym helps keep fitness routines active while on the road. Guests can energize with a wide choice of treadmills and bikes for heart-pumping cardio, tone up with strength machines and free weights or flex in open areas for stretching or yoga. This first-class facility also keeps guests hydrated and entertained. Select locations offer customized WestinWORKOUT guestrooms with in-room equipment for all performance levels. The RunWESTIN program provides local running maps for every hotel with three- and five- mile routes. Select properties offer a change of pace with guided ‘discovery runs’ led by a running concierge. RunWESTIN welcomes back all runners with a fresh towel and cold bottled water. During the week 1 to 9 November 2012 all Westin Hotels across the globe will be launching the New Balance gear lending programme where guests can have fresh, clean New Balance shoes and clothing delivered to their room during their stay, allowing them to pack light and stay fit"

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Reviewed 1 January 2014

I booked in around mid afternoon on a Saturday and expressly asked for a room with a high floor, the fairly unhelpful receptionist took ages to sort out my room and she wasn't a trainee just incompetent at her job unfortunately. She said I was being given a suite due my employer booking the room and then told me it was on the 3rd floor, this hotel has 17 floors, so I said will I get a view, yes of course you will. I was going to be here 5 days so I wanted some view of Cape Town. I went to the room even though I didn't believe her and suffice to say the view looked directly into a roof of the conference centre, the worst view you could imagine after a 16 hour journey I was furious (I've attached the original room view so you can see what I mean) Went back to reception and seriously this bunch need to be replaced, the worst reception team I have come across and I've stayed in a lot of hotels. Eventually I said I'd a room downgrade to get a higher floor, thankfully it was one their better rooms and was excellent. Overall I had a good stay here, the bed was super comfortable, breakfast was excellent as was the hotel minibus and car service. I had access to the club lounge and it was ok but probably one of the worst for service, it had good views but poor service. I decided to have breakfast downstairs in the main restaurant and it was excellent each day both in terms of the food and the service. One evening I had meal in the restaurant as I had arrived back late from work and was surprised just how good the food was. Overall this is a good, safe standard of hotel with great beds I would be happy to stay again. The only real problem area unfortunately for the hotel is the poor reception team which is a pity as they are on the front line of greeting guests and throughout my stay I would say the were consistently poor, never a smile, never that busy and mostly lazy.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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Thank RJB1000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2014

Dear RJB1000

Thank you for your feedback and taking the time to post your comments.

As a management team, we take all comments seriously and share them with our staff, so we may resolve any and all issues. We train and remind all our staff to be helpful and courteous and I regret that we did not meet your expectations on this occasion.

Again, thank you for the comments, which will help us in our ongoing efforts to improve our service.

We hope to see you again very soon for your next stay in Cape Town.

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera

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Reviewed 31 December 2013

We really enjoyed our stay at the Westin. It's a thoroughly modern, comfortable, urban hotel with just about everything you could possibly need. Our room had a gorgeous view of the waterfront and the sea. It also had that amazing Westin heavenly bed which is somehow exactly the same and super comfortable (eg: perfect!) no matter where you may find yourself in the world. Also, the bathroom was spectacular - heated floors and a rain fall shower, glorious. After spending the prior ten days out in the bush, it was a nice luxury. Breakfast (incredible!) and wifi were also included in our room rate, which always makes traveling a bit easier. There are a few different bars, including a cigar bar where you are allowed to smoke inside. The staff was really friendly and super helpful to us, whether it was asking for something to be sent up to our room, just hailing us a taxi or sorting out our bill.

My only very minor complaint is about transportation. We had arranged for someone to pick us up at the airport and when we got through baggage claim, there was no one there, so we hopped into a taxi instead. There is a free shuttle that runs to/from the V&A Waterfront (which you can also walk in about 20 minutes or take a 5 minute cab ride), though we could never quite get it together to catch it.. which is also partially because the hotel changed the pick up spot and forgot to tell us. Luckily cabs are only about US$5 so not a big deal.

Room Tip: ask for a room with a view.. literally!
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank KatGD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2014

Dear KatGD

Thank you for your feedback and taking the time to post your comments. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay at the Westin Cape Town.

We do take all comments seriously and appreciate all the feedback we can get. I do apologize for the transport company not being at the airport on your arrival, please be assured, the issue raised have been addressed and appropriate action taken to prevent any guests being similarly inconvenienced in the future.

'In-Room Spa Services
Restore energy and relieve stress with a menu of custom treatments developed especially for Westin In-Room Spa services. Guests can indulge in the experience of a soothing spa getaway in the privacy of their own room. Many resort locations also offer peaceful healing in beautifully designed on-site spas where innovative therapies help guests get back to their best selves'

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera

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Reviewed 30 December 2013

Stayed there on a couple a occasions, great place on the city center close to the warf and where the life is. Ideal for meetings, business and the like. Close to most of the shopping area, don't even need a car to move around.

Room Tip: Junior suites a great.......
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank loloDLagos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The_Westin_Cape_Town, General Manager at The Westin Cape Town, responded to this reviewResponded 3 January 2014

Dear loloDLagos

We were delighted to hear that you had a wonderful stay with us at the Westin Cape Town. Thank you for the positive review of our hotel. We hope to see you again very soon for your next stay in Cape Town

"In-Room Spa Services

Restore energy and relieve stress with a menu of custom treatments developed especially for Westin In-Room Spa services. Guests can indulge in the experience of a soothing spa getaway in the privacy of their own room. Many resort locations also offer peaceful healing in beautifully designed on-site spas where innovative therapies help guests get back to their best selves"

Be well, be Westin

Rob Kucera

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Westin Cape Town

Address: Lower Long Street | Convention Square, Cape Town Central 8000, South Africa (Formerly Arabella Sheraton Grand Hotel)
Region: South Africa > Western Cape > Cape Town > Cape Town Central
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Business Hotel in Cape Town Central
#15 Spa Hotel in Cape Town Central
#17 Family Hotel in Cape Town Central
#25 Romantic Hotel in Cape Town Central
#28 Luxury Hotel in Cape Town Central
Price Range: £180 - £363 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Westin Cape Town 5*
Number of rooms: 483
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in one of the most popular destinations in the world, at the gateway to the historic V&A Waterfront, The Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays is only minutes away from excellent shopping, vibrant city night life, historical monuments and museums, iconic Table Mountain, and the pristine beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay. The hotel offers unlimited complimentary shuttle transfers to the V&A Waterfront. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Westin Cape Town Hotel Cape Town Central
Westin Cape Town
Cape Town Westin
The Westin Cape Town South Africa

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