The first of a collection of new boutique hotels being launched in South Africa opened in Rosebank, Johannesburg, on May 1.

The Bristol Hotel is on the corner of Oxford and Bristol Roads, with a second being developed, also in Rosebank, and a third in Sandton. Three more hotels are planned for Cape Town in Sea Point, Gardens and De Waterkant. They are due to be completed in late 2020.

The Home* Suite Hotels, launched by Lucid Ventures, aim to create “the sense of excitement when visiting a friend’s exquisite house, and then the feeling of warmth when you are welcomed and made to feel completely at home,” says Lucid Ventures Founder, Gidon Novick.

The 25 to 80 suite hotels will target discerning business travellers and well-travelled tourists, and will be located in key, trendy urban and commercial nodes across South Africa.

Designer of the renowned SLOW lounge, Tonic Design, created a cutting-edge design with innovative use of colour and lighting not previously seen in the local market. “South Africa lags behind cosmopolitan cities like Berlin and Paris in hotel design and so we decided to push the boundaries,” says Phillipe Van Der Merwe, founder of Tonic Design. 

“The gap,” according to Novick, “is for travellers looking for both the facilities of a large international hotel brand and the intimacy of smaller boutique hotel.” While location and design are important, service is the magical ingredient. “Each and every member of the team, regardless of their functional role, is responsible for creating an outstanding guest experience. We only hire people that get pleasure from helping others.”

Guests of Home* Suite Hotels can look forward to a number of amenities and experiences, including:

  • Hotels centrally located with a suburban feel
  • Hypnos beds used by royalty
  • Home-style, accessible meals served in the open-plan kitchen
  • An executive meeting room for off-site strategy sessions
  • Chromecast in-room entertainment system
  • Gym access at Virgin Active clubs in the area
  • A resident dog adopted from a local shelter

Once signed in to the hotel, guests will have access to an in-house mini-website, where they will find a health menu, trail runs, offers for a more romantic stay, and other elements exclusive to guests only.

“We’ve pulled together an exceptional team to build the most desirable hotel experience in South Africa,” concludes Novick.