Earlier this year I visited South Africa and Zimbabwe – an incredible experience. Over the next few days I will post about the hotels I visited – Singita Lebombo, Matetsi River Lodge and starting here with The Saxon in Johannesburg.
Drawing up to the Saxon hotel is an experience itself, set amongst beautifully manicured lawns and landscaped gardens, the road curves around to an impressively grand hotel entrance.
Valet parking assistance and an incredibly prompt and generous attendant will magically transport your bags and car elsewhere, and whisk you through to the grand African entrance.
The stately staircase, leading up to a glass dome, which magnificently reflects the sunshine, beautifully frame a remarkable reception interposed with Asian and African artefacts and objects d’art.
The main chandelier is an impressive construction in its own right, made from native Ostrich eggs!
Each suite has beautiful views of the gardens or pools, and as nature is a running theme throughout the hotel, rooms offer a balcony or terrace to bring the African gardens outside, inside.
Bathrooms are decadent with lavender scattered throughout, and lashings of (again, nature-inspired) Molton Brown products and huge bathtubs (some with jacuzzis).
Set in the grounds are an outside infinity pool and an impressive outdoor heated swimming pool, gymnasium and a Koi pool full of remarkable pets which have been with the hotel for over 20 years.
For larger groups the villas offer privacy and seclusion, including private elevator entrances and underground parking and private street exits.
Each villa consists of a number of suites which lead from a central dining and leisure space.
Villas are much more modern in terms of design than the main hotel, and include touches such as massage suites, a 24 hour stocked and staffed bar, private gardens and infinity pools.
The Saxon Hotel’s food offering continues along the theme of excellent quality.
Lunch, brunch and dinner menus change monthly and offer a superb fine dining experience sourcing local ingredients, prepared with finesse and International flair.
The setting is grand, with wine cellars on a mezzanine level above the dining room, and a dramatic centre piece comes in the form of a branch display, which although adding to the aesthetics, is not ideal for taller guests.
The Saxon Hotel is undoubtedly one of Johannesburg’s finest hotels, once visited by Mandela himself (he wrote The Long Walk To Freedom at the Saxon).
Only a 45 minute drive from Johannesburg International Airport, and only 15 minutes from the excellent shopping district of Sandton, it is ideal for business stays, leisurely breaks or to frame holidays to the Kruger safari region.
Address: 36 Saxon Road, Sandton 2196, South Africa
Telephone: + 27 011 292 6000