Hotel check: Shamwari Townhouse

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What’s it like?

It’s an elegant and modern boutique hotel, well suited to the corporate traveller. Upon arrival I was given a warm greeting, creating the impression that the hotel, although upmarket, does want to reflect the ‘down-to-earth’ nature of Port Elizabeth and its residents. En route to my suite, I made sure that I paused, took in the sea breeze and listened to the soothing ‘pitter-patter’ of the hotel’s signature pool. A good start!

Where is it?

Less than a 10-minute drive from Port Elizabeth Airport, Shamwari Townhouse is 100 metres from the beach, situated in the suburb of Summerstrand. Port Elizabeth is on the east coast of South Africa, approximately two hours flight away from Johannesburg.

Room Facilities

Shamwari Townhouse has seven suites, all of which are luxurious, cosy, spacious and, most importantly, comfortable. A private terrace provides for some down time, whilst the room itself is well-equipped for ‘business as usual’, with a business desk featuring a wired network point or complimentary wireless connectivity. Other features include a private mini-bar area, DVD player, a substantial lounge area, LCD TV screens with satellite channels, an espresso coffee maker, and an exquisite double bathroom complete with a plethora of pristine, white fluffy towels. With an inviting king-sized bed on offer, I found it difficult to drag myself away from my room.

Restaurants & Bars

Shamwari Townhouse offers an à la carte menu in its Jazz Room, with both South African and ‘international’ cuisine. The room seats 28 and the menu is the same for both lunch and dinner – made up of simple dishes that are excellently executed. As I was on the run, I opted for something small, in the form of the mushroom and spinach risotto starter – it was delicious. The Provençal-style dining cellar seats 14 and is made available for special occasions, offering a selection of vintage wines that are accompanied with a set menu on request (pre-booking required). The Salon Privè, or ‘gentleman’s club’, offers an array of single malt whiskies and Cuban cigars – fortunately, though, ladies are welcome! The Champagne Lounge, which opens out onto the main terrace and rim-flow pool area, provides a suitable area for guests to sip coffee, tea and/or other refreshments.

Business Facilities

There is free Internet access with wireless connectivity running throughout the entire hotel, with Wi-Fi/LAN and network points available. The Executive Boardroom is 4.5m x 6m and can accommodate up to 10 people. It includes a presentation projector and LCD screens for video conferencing, along with a printer, telephone and fax machine. The boardroom (only) is wheel-chair friendly.

Leisure Facilities

The Rock Retreat offers a host of signature treatments, a steam room, roof deck with loungers, designer Mosaic shower, and a Pevonia Botanica professional Spa Care for Him and Her, if you’re travelling as a couple. There’s also a well-equipped gym, with distant views of the ocean, and a personal trainer on request. Then there’s the Mountbatten Theatre – a private cinema seating 14 people and equipped with satellite TV channels, DVD player and surround sound.

Verdict

Port Elizabeth is obviously not the bustling business hub that Johannesburg is. But, if you’re looking for a business hotel in the coastal city, you won’t be far off the mark if you go for Shamwari Townhouse. I found some of the service a little slow, but the accommodation was luxurious and spacious, it was well-equipped to fulfil my business needs, the food was excellent, and the location convenient. A big thumbs up!

Contact

Address: 5 Brighton Drive, Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth, +27 41 502 6000, shamwaritownhouse.com

Lindsey Kin

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