Hotel check: The Capital Empire

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Background

The Capital Empire is part of The Capital Hotel Group. Formed in 2008, it was previously known as EAH Executive Apartments and Hotels. The group currently consists of six properties – all in the South African province of Gauteng – with expansion plans to grow by a further 11 properties. It offers standard hotel rooms, fully-furnished serviced apartments and modern conference facilities, with options for short, medium and long-term accommodation.

Where Is It?

The 205-room Capital Empire is on the corner of Empire Place and Rivonia Road, in the heart of Sandton, Johannesburg’s business ‘capital’. A shuttle service is available for travel to the nearby Sandton City shopping mall, whilst the local Gautrain station is a 10-minute walk away. O.R. Tambo International Airport is half an hour away.

Room Facilities

The property has standard and executive rooms, as well as one, two and three-bedroom apartments. There are also two, three and four-bedroom penthouses. All the rooms are air-conditioned and are accessed via electronic key-controlled lifts and doors. I stayed in an impressive one-bedroom apartment that featured a fully-equipped open-plan kitchen with fridge/freezer, washing machine, dryer, stove, oven and microwave. The dining area had a four-seater dining room table, whilst the lounge featured a comfortable couch and two armchairs facing a large flat-screen TV and DVD player. A sliding door opened out onto a balcony. My bedroom was comfortable, with a queen-sized bed, electronic laptop safe, and workstation with local and international plug points. The bathroom, with complimentary toiletries, featured a separate bath and shower. The shower itself had a large shower head and good water pressure.

Restaurants & Bars

The general dining/bar area opens up to an outside dining area and swimming pool. Large glass sliding doors enable this area to be closed up during cold or inclement weather. The bar has a large selection of wines and alcoholic drinks. Dinner is either a buffet or a comprehensive a la carte menu. On the evening I was there, the buffet was not available, so I opted for the pan-fried calamari served with spinach, cherry tomatoes and onions for starters – very tasty – followed by a succulent and tasty lamb curry on a bed of rice. The portions were generous. A 24-hour in-room dining service is also available. Owing to its close proximity to Sandton City, you are also spoilt for a choice of restaurants, should you wish to get out of the hotel. Breakfast is buffet-style with a selection of yoghurts, cereals, pastries and fruit juices. Eggs are cooked whichever way you prefer. I settled for a very tasty omelette with savoury mince.

Business & Meeting Facilities

The Capital Empire has the capability to host meetings and conferences for between five and 250 delegates. The largest venue can be divided with soundproof sliding doors. A further three meeting rooms and a smaller additional meeting room can be used as breakaway rooms or as stand-alone conference venues. Natural light enhances all the venues, and should a darker venue be needed, you can pull the blackout curtains. Each of the venues is equipped with state-of-the-art technology. Standard conference equipment, note pads, pens and bottled water form part of the full-day or half-day package. The hotel has full standby generator capacity, so electricity load shedding (a current South African problem!) will not hamper operations. Complimentary Wi-Fi is available (limited to 400MB per day). Secure parking and 24-hour security are part of the package.  

Leisure Facilities

There is a fitness centre and a free-weight area for your daily workout. Adjoining the fitness centre is a business centre and early arrival lounge with shower and changeroom facilities. If the weather is good, you could head out to the swimming pool and lie on one of the loungers.

Verdict

If you’re looking for a long-term accommodation option, then serious consideration should be given to this property, particularly if you need to be close to Sandton. It has all that the business person might need, ticking a lot of boxes.

Pierre Grobler

Contact Details
Address:
Empire Place and Rivonia Road, Sandton
T
+27 11 911 5000
E empire@thecapital.co.za
W
thecapital.co.za