Hotel review: Cape Town Marriott Hotel Crystal Towers


BACKGROUND: Originally an African Pride hotel, the property was rebranded as a Marriott hotel in 2017. The conversion encompassed much of the décor, including converting the lobby into a Greatroom, where guests can meet, work and relax. There are more renovations planned for this year, to give the hotel more of a Marriott ‘feel’.

WHERE IS IT? The hotel is part of the Century City development complex, about 20 kilometres from Cape Town International Airport, depending on the route you take. Travel time can vary from 20 to 60 minutes, so keep this in mind when booking flights. A five-minute walk will take you to the shops of Canal Walk and the hotel is about 10 kilometres from Cape Town International Convention Centre.

ROOM FACILITIES: The 180 rooms are split over eight floors. Checking into my superior room on the seventh floor was a quick, simple process and after a short explanation of how to get the elevator to take me to my floor, I stepped into a dark room lit with accents – a remnant of the African Pride décor. The room layout is different to others I’ve stayed in. The bathroom can be separated from the bedroom by closing a pair of curtains and the shower is housed in a large cylinder in the middle of the floor. There was a tall work desk, with plugs built into the desk top, which became the headboard of the extra-length bed. The foot of the bed doubled as a TV stand from which the screen emerges. My room had views of Table Mountains – a nice touch for a non-Capetonian. The bed was comfortable, the shower refreshing and the free wi-fi reliable.

RESTAURANTS & BARS: The Towers restaurant on the ground floor serves a traditional buffet breakfast, with the option of additional a la carte dishes. Dinner is more of a fine dining affair. I didn’t have breakfast, but was treated to a delicious three-course dinner. I chose a creamy goat’s cheese mousse for starters; beef fillet with leek fondue, fondant potatoes and beetroot for mains; and a lemon tart for dessert. It was all prepared and plated to perfection. I’m not a huge fan of haute cuisine, but this meal was delicious. The Greatroom and Deli is open 24 hours and serves a selection of light bites, deli sandwiches, fresh pastries and sushi. Also on the ground floor, and open in the evening, is the Orah Bar & Lounge for expertly crafted cocktails and an array of single malt whiskeys. Two features of Orah are the rooms dedicated to David Kramer and Kingsley Holgate; the men both donated all of the decorations in their rooms.

BUSINESS & MEETING FACILITIES: Crystal Towers is fully equipped to cater for meetings and functions thanks to 1,420 square metres of event space. The lower level conference floor offers three rooms that can be used separately or together for up to 350 people, two breakaway rooms and a pre-event space. The mezzanine floor has nine meeting rooms. High speed wi-fi is available to delegates. Even the lobby space and Orah Lounge can be set up for smaller functions. And the Greatroom, with its power outlets, is a great place for business travellers to catch up on emails.

LEISURE FACILITIES: The onsite Life Day Spa offers a selection of relaxing and rejuvenating treatments. The outdoor swimming pool has views of Table Mountain. If you’d like to get out of the hotel, though, the Travel Desk in reception will organise an outing to a nearby attraction.

VERDICT: I thoroughly enjoyed my short stay at the Cape Town Marriot Hotel Crystal Towers. The setting is comfortable and the facilities are of a high standard. The service is friendly and efficient. If I’m ever in Cape Town again, I’d definitely book in here.

Address: Corner of Century Boulevard and Rialto Road
T: +27 21 525 3888