Hotel check: Holiday Inn Express, Sunnypark

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WHAT’S IT LIKE?

I spent two nights at this fantastic new hotel property in the heart of Pretoria, while on a conference at the nearby CSIR, and enjoyed every minute of my stay. More so because I live in Johannesburg, and there was no way that I wanted to negotiate the Joburg – Pretoria traffic nightmare that currently exists, due to the massive highway upgrade project between the two cities. I felt like a tourist in my own province and it was marvellous! This high-rise 11-storey hotel offers great convenience, fabulous views across Pretoria, and a brilliant, budgetoriented (yet very comfortable and more than adequate) product for the price. Try it once – and I have a feeling you’ll return time after time.

WHERE IS IT?

One kilometre from the centre of Pretoria on the corner of Mears Street and Trevenna in Sunnyside Pretoria. It’s a brand-new hotel in a recently renovated building above the equally refreshed Sunnypark Shopping Centre. The surrounding area is still considered a little dangerous at night, but while I found it to be busy, with some good takeaway restaurants, I didn’t feel at all concerned with personal safety. Inside the hotel (and one parks at the top of an attached parking tower block with direct hotel access) all was calm and peaceful. In fact, the property shines like a beacon in the city. I’d stay there again without hesitation.

HOW MANY ROOMS?

There are 303 rooms of which 220 are single bedded and 221 are non-smoking.

ROOM FACILITIES

Perfectly sized and very well equipped. In truth, I had expected less from an Express property and was very pleasantly surprised. A good sized flat-panel TV with satellite made the evening very pleasant, and the furnishings were comfortable and of a high standard. I used the workspace and desk during the evening and although there is a nominal charge for the Wi-Fi Internet access, I preferred to use my own 3G datacard. There was a good choice of hard or soft pillows, showing the standard of attention to detail. My modern bathroom was well sized and appointed.

RESTAURANT, BAR & BUSINESS AMENITIES

The day begins with a complimentary Continental breakfast served in the Great Room Patio adjacent to the lobby. There is also a lounge bar for a casual drink at the end of the day. I used room service in the evening, which needs to be cleared via security at reception on arrival, and fetched from reception. There are two air-conditioned meeting rooms with wireless Internet available at a nominal charge.

VERDICT

Safe, solid, clean, dependable and very pleasant. Need I say more? Prices vary all the time but quotes are obtainable over the Web, or from the hotel directly. I would definitely stay here again, should I have more work to do in Pretoria, rather than drive the 45 kilometres home. That’s how good it is.

Contact

Contact the hotel front desk on

Tel: +27 (0)12 444 1000 or for central or +27 800 999 136 (South Africa only), ichotels.com

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