Located in the Rosebank district of Johannesburg and surrounded by several shopping malls, my wife and I spent five nights at the Hyatt Regency Johannesburg to round out our time in Johannesburg.
The hotel is a Category 2 property, meaning only 8,000 Hyatt points per night or 4,000 points and $55. Compared to the $220 daily rate, we stayed five nights for 20,000 points and $275. At least that was the plan…more on that in a moment.
Taxi drivers are crooked and Uber had not yet caught on yet in South Africa (it has now), so be warned traveling from the airport to the hotel if you take a cab…I think our taxi driver took us on a scenic route. Even so, two Gautrain tickets (the nearest station is very close to the hotel) would have set us back almost as much.
The plan was to stay here two nights…get the police clearance certificate…and head down to George for a few days before concluding the trip in Cape Town for the final two nights. But as the police clearance certificate was delayed, we were forced to extend our stay three additional days, one day at a time.
Hyatt Regency Johannesburg Suite
Using a Hyatt Diamond Suite Certificate, my wife and I were assigned a very comfortable suite in Room 422. The living room was included a couch and wing chairs, desk, and even a nice balcony.
A welcome gift including fruit, wine, and sparking and still water was waiting for us at the table. Wi-Fi was complimentary for all guests, with a faster option available for purchase (free for Platinum and Diamond members).
The bedroom featured a king-size bed, another table and chair, and a wardrobe. The bathroom contained a fresh cut rose, bathrobes and slippers, a rain shower, and separate bathtub.
Our suite had floor-to-ceiling windows looking outside plus a balcony, though the views were nothing special–
Hyatt Regency Johannesburg Dining
Food is surprisingly cheap in South Africa – think steak or lamb at a nice restaurant for under $20. The hotel offers the oneNINEone Restaurant (pictured above) with a perfectly nice seasonal menu, but we saved money by eating at the mall connected to the hotel. Check out the Grillhouse, which is just a few paces from the hotel lobby—we got all of this for $40 (combined).
The hotel also has an outdoor dining area and bar–
Hyatt Regency Johannesburg Regency Club
We took breakfast each morning in the Regency Club, which was the best feature of this hotel. The staff was incredible and the breakfast menu more than adequate. No hot foods (wish they would have warmed the quiche), but a wide selection of cold breakfast items.
Evening h’dourves and drinks were available each evening and we admittedly had a snack there every evening during our stay. And why not with food like this–
If you’re on a shoestring budget like we were, you can load up on breakfast, go out for lunch, then have a light meal in the lounge in the evening and not go to bed with a full stomach. Just outside the hotel is a Nando’s, one of my favorite takeaways!
One thing about the lounge – it was often very crowded and German was the predominant language spoken Lufthansa uses the Hyatt Johannesburg as its crew hotel and either by contract or by status, it seemed like most of the crew had access, for each morning and evening the lounge was full of German speakers. The lounge also seemed to run out of food each night, so go early if you want to eat.
Hyatt Regency Johannesburg Spa and Fitness
My wife and I used the fitness center each day and a swimming pool is also available—
Hyatt Regency Johannesburg Billing Problem
I ran into a billing a problem at the end of the stay, which certainly dampened an otherwise very nice stay. As I mentioned, after the second night, we extended one day at a time for three additional days. We offered to vacate the suite, but the front desk said it was no problem to stay. Each night I made a new Gold Passport reservation and forwarded it to the front desk for them to update my reservation. I also called downstairs. Oddly, my key never had to be renewed.
When it came time to checkout, I received a bill for over $800 – a three-night stay plus taxes. I immediately protested the bill, but the man working at the front desk was not really able to help after five minutes of fooling around on his computer. It was 7am, I had a flight leaving in 90 minutes with a rental car to return, and I did not have the time to escalate. So on the bill I crossed out the three nights, crossed out the total amount, and signed. I also made a notation on the bill indicating that the three nights were Gold Passport stays. I told him to check with his colleagues later and send me an updated invoice reflecting only the cash supplement on the room each night. He promised to do so.
Only I never received that e-mail. Instead, the $842 bill posted to my credit card. I wrote the hotel back immediately asking them to correct it and never heard back. I waited a week and sent a follow-up note. Nothing. Finally, after two weeks I partially disputed the charge (paying what I owed). The hotel never bothered to respond to that either. Not a good impression to leave with me…but so typically South African.
And yet I do recommend this hotel. It was a nice stay overall with a very nice room, great lounge, and nice amenities. The location is great and it was wonderful to relax for five days in a hotel after roughing it (relatively speaking of course) for several days in Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.
Read More of My Month in Africa Trip Report
Introduction: A Month in Africa
Review: Houston to Lagos in United Airlines 787 Business
Transit in Lagos: Bribing My Way Out
Review: Oasis Lounge Lagos (LOS)
Review: Gabfol Lounge Lagos (LOS)
Lagos to Johannesburg in South African Airways Economy Class
Setting Up Shop in Pretoria
How to Obtain a South African Police Report
A Safari in Kruger National Park
Review: Nkambeni Safari Camp
Driving Through Swaziland
Review: Mountain Inn Mbabane, Swaziland
Review: Johannesburg to Livingstone, Zambia in British Airways Comair Economy Class
Our Humble Abode in Zambia
Victoria Falls from the Zambian Side
From Hate to Great: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
The Old House Guest Lodge – Kasane, Botswana
A Visit to Impalila Island, Namibia
Kasane, Botswana to Johannesburg on South African Airways (Airlink)