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African Pride Arabella Hotel & Spa
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All reviewsgolf coursea la carte restaurantroom servicegolf estatebot riverplay golfbeautiful hotelcape townround of golfworld classrainforest experiencestunning viewsin room dininglagoon facing roomattention to detailwhale watchingconference
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Reviewed 1 November 2011

Stunning Hotel, excellent service and food. Rooms were clean, neat and fresh. Good view. Food was also great BUT they are terribly over-priced for food and drinks. Overall a good experience - just pricey

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled on business
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Thank Pam B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 October 2011

We are visiting this hotel every time we are in South Africa since 2006. This was the first visit since becoming part of Pride of Africa hotels, having been previously managed by Starwood.
Maintenance of the rooms seems to have declined slightly since, with shower hose broken, appliances hanging loosely off the wall in the toilet, bath tub and shower. There was a new flat screen TV installed, however, a note that was about 6 days old stated that only about 6 channels were available, this was still the same when we left another 4 days later.
Only one restaurant open with a somewhat limited menu. With no other restaurant in close distance, this is somewhat disappointing and we were glad to leave after 4 days as we ran out of choice. Had the buffet on Saturday evening - quality of food was poor, starter choice was salad and soup, very basic, mains were tasteless and deserts only a number of similar looking small cakes - was the worst dinner buffet I have experienced in many years, however, the quality of food during the other days was good, same with the breakfast buffet which had a wide choice available. Whereby the hotel highlights a dress code, this is clearly not being implemented, with people sitting in the evening in the bar area dressing in pool ware, wrapped in towels, with feet on the chairs - the staff does not seem to mind - they would NOT have happened under Starwood. Kids running around without control shouting from one level to the next - seems to be acceptable to staff as well.
Service, however in the restaurant is great and the staff are nice and friendly. Reception staff seems to be a little above themselves.
Rooms are comfortable and clean. Not sure I would return to the property in the future.

Room Tip: Rooms facing the lagoon and golf course enjoy very nice views.
  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank STEPDI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leon_Meyer_AHS, General Manager at African Pride Arabella Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 8 November 2011

Your feedback is essential to us and I would like to thank you for providing it. We can confirm that the flat screen televisions have now been installed and are fully operational. Additionally, we are in the process of relooking at our menus and pricing. We are delighted to advise that our new owners are in the process of looking at the items that need updating in the hotel. Thank you for your kind comments about our STAFF - we certainly appreciate it and will share this with them. We look forward to welcoming you back!
With kind regards
Leon

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2011

Donal and I spent 2 nights here (24/25 September 2011) to 'celebrate' my getting even older!
The welcome at reception was great and all of the staff (from the porter,room service,cleaners,check in desk) were friendly and smiling.
The room was wonderful, spotlessly clean and extremely comfortable. What a treat to have goose down feather pillows on the king-size bed.
The view from the balcony was fine - we didn't feel it necessary to pay extra for a room facing the golf course and lagoon.
However we were rather disappointed in the television set supplied in the room. A clumsy, old fashioned one with a remote control that required considerable patience as it was not very responsive. To make matters worse there wasn't the advertised option of pay to view movies and so we had to settle for very limited viewing. The final straw was when the entire thing froze and we had to have a technician up to sort it out.
On checking out I mentioned our dissatisfaction and was told that they are in the process of upgrading all of the rooms to flat screen t.v.'s with a lot of new features. However, this didn't help us in any way and we were charged the same advertised rate as if the 5 star service was available.
Breakfasts were awesome - could not fault them in ANY way. But only one dining option was available for our evening meal, Jamani Restaurant. Première Restaurant was closed, a big disappointment as that was to be part of the birthday treat. We opted for the buffet type meal as it sounded very nice. Alas, the 'lamb' I think must have gambolled in the fields many years ago as it was a tough piece of meat when it landed on our plates. And the cruelest cut of all for my Irish husband ... not a potato to be had! He voiced his disappointment in a mild manner and about 10 minutes later was presented with a small dish of potato wedges....unfortunately not cooked enough and thus inedible.
A final winge from us - having stayed in a lot of very good hotels we felt that Arabella was very overpriced. From the mini bar stocks, to the cost of a tray for room service, and the very expensive wines on offer in the dining room. For pity's sake we live in a country awash with good affordable wine and to see the huge mark ups on the wine was little short of nausea making. If you wish to bring your own wine you are whacked with a whopping corkage fee of R50!!
Its time to cop on S.A. hoteliers. The world is in recession and anybody who travels these days does so with an eye to value for money. Don't kill the tourist goose (both local and imported) that lays the golden egg.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank patzimbo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2011

I had a brief stay at the Arabella Hotel & Spa and must admit it had some of the most impressive views I've seen so far, albeit not from my own room. The reception staff were cordial but for a 5-star graded establishment, did not go out of their way to explain what facilities were available (spa and activities), where breakfast would be and so on. Although all this info is easily obtained, there shouldn't be a need to request it.

My room, the Deluxe Suite was nicely furnished and had a spacious lounge, bedroom and bathroom. Much like the bathroom, the shower cubicle was large - with a 3-settings shower head that was not fixed, but could be moved to the best position. There was a built-in television, to watch tv while taking a bath and a mounted fan heater below the wash-basin counter for those cold nights. The sofa in the lounge had a couple of visible scuff marks and the main tv was pretty old, a big bulky box running the hotels guest tv system (GuestLink?). The interface was incredibly slow to respond.

The suite had a stocked mini-bar and a couple of snacks like jellybeans, biltong all of which were hugely overpriced.Whilst I don't mind paying for the convenience of drinks or snacks in the room, theres a point where the pricing don't make sense and you get the feel you're being taken for a ride if you choose to consume.I was feeling peckish the evening and did not want to go have a sit-down meal at the restaurant. So I ordered a turkey sandwich that came with a few potato wedges from the in-room service menu. It had a cost of ZAR65 (just 2 slices), over & above this had to pay another ZAR25 for a tray charge? Lets not forget gratuity. It was my choice to use room service, I accept that, but why should such a large hotel, behave as though it can't be reasonable in what it charges, and needs to resort to overcharging? Perhaps foreigners are more forgiving. Being able to afford, shouldn't be a license to being taken advantage of.

As a guest of the hotel, the indoor pool, steam and sauna rooms were complimentary but only available up to 8pm which is too early. Children are permitted at the spa only during set times. It was convenient staying on the same floor as the spa. The indoor pool was heated, but could have been a few degrees warmer. There are three cold showers by the pool area, that work in a haphazard manner and the falling water made a loud noise. Just having normal showers would have been more practical. I didn't do any spa treatments, but had a look at the pricelist and they weren't exorbitant.

Arabella is one of the few places I actually took time to sit down, read a newspaper whilst looking over the lagoon and the golf course. It was quite relaxing. You're definitely not limited to the confines of your room. There are lots to see from the many open areas.The garden and outside pools with the waterfalls were amazing. It was still too cold to swim in the outside pools, but come summer, its where I'd want to be.

I enjoyed my stay at Arabella Hotel and would return, but was not happy at all with the pricing of the mini bar and the in-room service charges. Pricing should be made attractive.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank cwl-sa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leon_Meyer_AHS, General Manager at African Pride Arabella Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 8 November 2011

Thank you for advising of your experiences whilst staying with us. We find all feedback, whether it be positive or negative, extremely valuable. I can advise that we have listened to our GUESTS and are in the process of amending our in-room, mini-bar menus, in addition to tailoring our restaurant menus.

We do hope to see you again in the future!

Kind regards
Leon

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Reviewed 20 September 2011

We had a lovely stay and although we're not golfers we enjoyed the fact that our views were of the Kleinmond river mouth and the lush greens of the course. If you want to relax for a few days out of the hustle and bustle of Cape Town we would recommend this hotel. Perhaps a little out of the way if you think you'll be close to Hermanus - it's not!!. Having said that, the service was great (especially at the bars/lounge area and at breakfast) - the bar snacks were incredible when we went for sundowners and the breakfast was truly awesome. We had a lovely comfortable room with a balcony and the bathroom was one of the best of anywhere we've ever stayed - huge with great toiletries and wonderful fluffy towels and robes.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Megmara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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