Sunday, October 14, 2007

Melville House - a home away from home

Melville House offers the traveler informal and small scale accommodation, a wonderful alternative to large and impersonal hotels. For Melville House felt immediately as a home away from home, a place to relax after a long and agonizing journey, a quiet oasis in the busy metropolis. The host at Melville House in none other than Heidi Holland, a nationally and internationally renowned writer and journalist and she is often present at breakfast and during the day sharing her views on different topics with the guests.

Location: BBBBB

Melville House is located in the northern suburb of Melville, a relatively safe area of Johannesburg. This area has a large range of shops, galleries, bars and restaurant. To get there, you have to rent your own car, or take a taxi from the airport. Once there you will find that this charming area of town has so much to offer.

Service: BBBBB

Heidi Holland and her staff made us feel like home:-)

Hygiene and maintenance: BBBBB

The rooms had wooden floors, and bathrooms were tiled. Both rooms, breakfast room and the garden outside was beautifully clean and well maintained.

Facilities: BBBBB

Melville House does not offer the facilities as an ordinary hotel would offer. There are no bar or restaurant. That does not matter - you just go outside, and you will find places to eat and drink in the nearby area. But you will find a charming garden with beautiful flowers and trees and an intimate breakfast room where you are served and informal breakfast. So the rating is given for quality, not quantity.

I have posted this little film to show you the beautiful patio at Melville House.

Room: BBBBB-

I stayed in room number 8 (picture left) and 9, during my three nights at Melville House. Both rooms had the same standard, but the latter was a ground floor room overlooking the patio.

The rooms at Melville House were spacious and with a very charming decor. Light walls, dark floors, and much space for storage. There were two beds with small and large pillows and two cute teddy bears to provide comfort for the tired traveler. Over my bed there were a beautiful original paintings in bright colours.

The room had a TV, small refrigerator with very inexpensive wine, beer and soft drinks and a kettle so you could make your own coffee in the morning.

This was definitely enough space for two, but you have to be a couple to share it. This as there were neither doors, nor blinds between the bathrooms and the rooms. This means that everything intimate has to take place in public. But let us face it. The price means that you may enjoy these room by yourself.

That was number 8, and here you may enjoy a glimpse of room number 9:

Breakfast: BBBBB

Breakfast at Melville House is served in the informal breakfast room. Here you feel the small scale atmosphere, as you are offered eggs in any form you want, bacon and fried tomatoes. Self service for the other foods available, brown bread, cheese, jam, yogurt, müesli, and juice. And you are served fresh toast with your breakfast.

And you may have a talk with Heidi Holland during the breakfast, and she has so much to tell.

Price: BBBBB

There were different rooms, and my rooms (8 and 9) were the most expensive at ZAR 550 pr night including breakfast. This is probably one of the best bargains I've had ever.

Rating the Melville House experience: BBBBB (4,96 points)

One of my best experiences ever, thanks to Heidi Holland and her staff!!


Melville House
59 Fourth Avenue
Melville 2109
Phone: +27 (011) 726-3503
Fax: +27 (011) 726-5990
Visit the Melville House website

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