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“Whale Watching in comfort” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Marine Hermanus

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The Marine Hermanus
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Hermanus
Certificate of Excellence
Holmfirth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
35 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 165 helpful votes
“Whale Watching in comfort”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2013

We stayed in the Marine for 3 days at the end of July during our Eastern Cape holiday. The hotel boasts the prime position in Hermanus on the cliff overlooking the bay with fantastic views. Initially we thought the area beyond the Hotel garden also belonged to the hotel but it is in fact a public area and incorporates part of the “cliff walk” so you do get many walkers and dogs playing around in front of your room.

Hermanus is sold as the “land based Whale watching capital of the world”! It didn’t disappoint!  However despite it being the beginning of the whale watching (breeding) season the hotel was very quiet during our stay presumably due to the fact it is the winter in South Africa. Although saying that the weather during our stay was 20+ degrees and short sleeve shirts. Hermanus is clearly very much a summer holiday resort for the local Africans from Cape Town and Jo’burg and the shops and restaurants supported this. I suspect it gets very busy come December and January although the whales have probably gone by then.  I think we preferred this quieter time and the amazing chance to see the whales. These appeared from the outset and put on a continual show during our stay, some close to shore and some far out to sea. One morning we were even entertained by a pod of around 100 dolphins playing “follow the leader” just off shore and going right across the bay.

Reception staff and in fact all staff in general, were very welcoming as well as helpful with information about the area. The first room we where shown wasn’t really suitable but we were quickly moved, without any fuss, to a more suitable room after we requested one with two separate rooms rather than “areas” for our daughter’s bed. The new room also had a balcony one of only two in the hotel I believe. We were very glad we did this as the sea views are a must and the downstairs outlook was not nearly as good. Our suite was very comfortable with attractive if somewhat chintzy décor however some of the fittings such as the wardrobe door did need some attention. A heavy storm wind one night did make us feel rather as if we were resident in a creepy castle with the wind rattling the windows and creaking the doors! Bathroom was large and has separate shower and bath as well as a lovely view when sitting on the loo!

In summary I would say the Hotel could be described as like a genteel, old school, British seaside hotel but mixed with the usual Relaix & Chateaux refinements. Comparisons could certainly be drawn with its sister property in Dorset at Summer Lodge.

Breakfast is taken in the ground floor restaurant and was a small buffet with a cooked food order menu. We rather enjoyed having heart shaped waffles and ice cream for breakfast! We never ate dinner in the hotel mainly as the seafood restaurant was being renovated and this would have been our choice. The lounge bar is lovely with huge comfy sofas and afternoon tea here would have been pleasant. Late night hot chocolate with whale shaped shortbread made a nice end to the day.
There were many nice restaurants in Hermanus and we particularly enjoyed Coco’s for the atmosphere and views (simple good food, entertainment some nights and a fabulous view) and Burgundy for lunch (outdoor on the front, with blankets, again great atmosphere and good food) These are all in easy walking distance of the hotel as is the local shopping mall for any missing essentials.

There is a spa and an outdoor pool which looked nice but we did not explore these. We probably did not get the full benefit of the Marine experience due to it being so quiet but then this was more than compensated for by the wonderful whale watching opportunities from our windows which would not have been there in the summer when the whales go south. Watch out too for the cute ‘dassies’ on the rocks and lawns.

We would recommend this hotel and will certainly return here when we next come to South Africa.

Room Tip: A sea view on the second floor is a must if you want to watch the whales. The balcony in 227, a Prem...
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • 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?
4 Thank pophammy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 23 August 2013
Thank you for your positive comments and I am delighted that you enjoyed the room that you moved into.
Hermanus definitely is a town worth visiting more than once and by the sounds of it, you had a fantastic experience here.
You will be happy to know that the cupboard door has been repaired but I must apologise for the rattling windows. We seldom get winds as strong as they were that night.
I look forward to welcoming you back when you next visit South Africa.
Warm regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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649 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    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 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (202)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
35 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 August 2013

I booked this hotel and "splurged" versus the other accommodations in Hermanus based on the good reviews and nice photos of the place. I have to say, I was kind of disappointed. The hotel is certainly nice and lobby / groups are all well maintained and in very nice shape. However, the rooms are a bit old school and really nothing special. They feel like they were designed 15+ years ago and have not received any major upgrades. Having said that, they are definitely very clean and have all of the necessary amenities. I think the real issue around my "disappointment" is value... I paid 2x the price of other Hermanus hotels and it's definitely not worth it...

Pro's - very clean, nice common spaces and views in Hermanus, central location (but really everything is), friendly staff (issues with our reservation were resolved quickly, we were given a late check-out since hotel was not fully booked)

Con's - value (it's just not worth the extra $$), old design, outdated rooms

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Blakery
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 23 August 2013
Thank you for writing so honestly about your experience. I would like very much for you to contact me directly on hamish@themarine.co.za so that we can go more in depth on how we can improve on room quality. All comments are important to us in order for us to maintain our high standards. As you would have seen, we have a more classic style in our rooms, each one individually decorated by the owner herself and I am terribly sorry that you did not enjoy the room experience.
I look forward to hearing from soon.
Kind regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Seattle
Level Contributor
17 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2013

We spent 2 nights at the Marine Hermanus last July and had a great experience. My husband and I had a room which was very spacious and our 3 children were in a room next door to us that was even bigger. We had a beautiful ocean view and we could watch whales from our rooms. The hotel has a great location and we could walk to many places in Hermanus. The staff was very caring and helpful - We even left a small package at the hotel for them to mail to the US on our behalf. We enjoyed a very good breakfast buffet. We also had room service one night that was a little disappointing.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Flo S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 6 August 2013
Thank you for your positive comments and I am delighted that you enjoyed your rooms.
I must apologise for your disappointment with our in-room dining option and would love to hear back from you with more detail so we can improve on our service.
Please contact me on hamish@themarine.co.za
Hope to welcome you back soon
Warm regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cape Town Central, South Africa
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 August 2013

Had an awesome spa session at The Marine Hotel in Hermanus!! The attention to detail and personal care was nothing lesse than 5*. My friend and I had a facial, 5* massage, bodyscrub and a session in the Dermalife-pure bliss!! I can reccomend this spa, it rates up there with many other luxury spa's out there !!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank DeziS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 6 August 2013
The Derma-life really is an experience and I am delighted that you enjoyed your treatments.
I will be sure to let all of the ladies in the spa know about your positive comments.
Please join us again soon
Warm regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 August 2013

My friend and I visited the Carchele Spa at The Marine Hotel for a half day spa & we had an amazing experience. The beauty therapists were friendly and caring and the service was of a superior standard. We had the most amazing 90 minute massage and was pampered from head to toe. Attention to detail makes all the difference. I left rejuvenated and totally relaxed, feeling like a princess! Thank you very much for an amazing experience, we will come back any day!!!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank JolandiGriessel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 6 August 2013
Thank you for the positve sentiment and we are delighted that you had such a rejuvenating experience. I will be sure to let all the ladies in the Spa know about your comments and we all look forward to seeing you again soon.
Warm regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
northampton
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 August 2013

We found this hotel a luxury for our family - a small lobby with two ensuite rooms off. the staff were extremely helpful but not overbearing. Lucas was a star!. The food was fantastic. Amazing to watch for whales whilst eating breakfast.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Aysgarth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 6 August 2013
Thank you for your comments and I will be sure to pass this on to Lucas. He will be thrilled.
We look forward to welcoming you back soon.
Warm regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paarl, South Africa
Level Contributor
26 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2013

We loved the grounds but were very disappointed with the rooms. Pool also a bit dated. We asked to switch, as when we arrived, there were stains on the carpet, there was a damp smell, and the bed was sunken in. The room we switched to was not much better. It was chilly, and the underfloor heating in the bathroom did not work. Bathrooms were spartan.
The restaurant was great, definately go, but stay somewhere else. It's a lot of money for South Africa and NOT a 5 star hotel by interenational standards. Overpriced no doubt.

Room Tip: they vary a lot!
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Kimberly278
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hamishhofmeyr, General Manager at The Marine Hermanus, responded to this review, 6 August 2013
I am terribly sorry that you did not find The Marine to your liking. We have addressed the carpet issues as well as replaced the mattress and apologise for these inefficiencies during your stay.
We have recently undertaken a soft refurbishment in 10 of our rooms and would love to show these to you when you next return.
Thank you for the positive comments concerning the staff and the restaurant.
I look forward to welcoming you back soon.
Kind regards
Hamish Hofmeyr
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 Marine Hermanus

Property: The Marine Hermanus
Address: Marine Drive, Hermanus 7200, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Western Cape > Overberg District > Hermanus
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Hermanus
#2 Romantic Hotel in Hermanus
#3 Luxury Hotel in Hermanus
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Marine Hermanus 5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Marine is one of the southern hemisphere's most spectacular seaside Relais & Chateaux properties. Perched on the cliffs, overlooking Hermanus's Walker Bay, The Marine boasts 40 individually decorated bedrooms and suites. This unforgettable property overlooks South Africa's most pristine whale sanctuary, and it is just a stone's throw from one of the greatest densities of the endangered Great White Shark, and selection of fynbos species in the Cape. The Marine offers guests the unique opportunity to experience the finest land-based whale watching in the world. From June to September guests are able to view these majestic creatures from the comfort of their beautiful sea-facing bedroom. The attention to detail is apparent in every aspect of this remarkable owner managed property - from the personal service to the exceptional cuisine which is overseen by The Collection by Liz McGrath's Grand Chef, Peter Tempelhoff, the perfect-for-sundowners Sun Lounge and the in-house Carchele Beauty Spa. Each piece of The Marine story adds another element to an unforgettable stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Marine Hermanus Hotel Hermanus
The Marine Hotel Hermanus

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