A few years ago there was a Tsogo Sun advertisement on television, where a man arrives at his hotel and feels like he’s come home. I was reminded of that advertisement when I arrived at Garden Court Umhlanga . Although I had stayed at that particular hotel only once before, I had stayed at many other Tsogo Sun hotels– so much so that I felt that I was returning home to familiar high standards of comfort, hospitality and facilities. When the affable receptionist discovered that I had previously stayed there, she welcomed me back affectionately like an old friend or family member, leaving me with a warm, fuzzy feeling.
Durban was in the throes of a huge conference and good accommodation was scarce. I was fortunate to get a last-minute booking at this upmarket hotel in uMhlanga Rocks. Well-located for business and pleasure, it is only 15 minutes away from King Shaka International Airport, a short stroll away from the Gateway Theatre of Shopping mall and a short drive away from the beautiful Umhlanga beaches. The hotel has 204 rooms, including 8 suites, and 115 family rooms. It also has a restaurant, a fitness centre, two outdoor heated swimming pools and conference facilities. Free high-speed wi-fi is available throughout the hotel so it is easy to work there.
Our suite on the fifth floor was spacious. A bed dominated the centre of the room. It was flanked by a lounge area with a sofa, and a working area with a desk and a chair. There were ample wardrobes and drawers to store our luggage. We had a flat-screen television, a coffee machine and a minibar at our disposal. Rusks and cookies were provided with our beverages. A delightful gift box of Forest Fairies with a personalized welcome message from management awaited us too.
The en-suite bathroom had a bath tub and a shower, with complimentary amenities.
Huge glass sliding doors led onto a private balcony with views of the lush greenery and the Indian Ocean. I found it relaxing to just sit on the balcony and look at the sea.
Dotted with palm trees, the pool deck was another great place to relax and bask in the warm Durban sunshine. The little ones were catered for with a shallow swimming pool and a sand pit filled with toys. I recalled my kids spending a lot of time there on my previous visit. This time though, we had left them at home.
Mnandi Restaurant is a vibrant, airy space which offers breakfast, light lunches, dinners and room service. Our delicious breakfast featured a wide variety of dishes, catering for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. I enjoyed fusion cuisine by combining my scrambled eggs with tomato chutney, ratatouille and lentil curry.
Durban is known as the warmest place to be, with so much to do, and Garden Court Umhlanga is a modern, comfortable and conveniently located hotel that won’t break your budget. If you need any more enticement to visit the coast, check out Tsogo Sun’s great Durban’s Spring Break Specials here.
See my other Tsogo Sun reviews here: