The VIP treatment: My stay at the Empire Hotel

When you get on a plane and the seat next to you is open, you know it’s going to be a good trip.

Being in client service is an extremely hard job. It entails late nights, early mornings and being there for your clients 24/7. A lot of the time you feel like crying, and a simple “thank you for your work” seems few and far between.

Well, that changes when you fly to Johannesburg to see a project you have been working on all year – the launch of the amazing Empire Hotel. The moment you get to experience everything you have worked so hard for makes all the late nights and early mornings so much better!


EAH, luxury hotel, Empire Hotel

When we arrived at the launch, we were served a selection of lavender or honey cocktails, as well as Jameson for the whisky lovers. Shortly after, we went on a tour of the hotel, and it was truly beautiful. From the gym, to the spa, to the massive penthouses with a panoramic view of Rivonia Road, it was evident that the months of hard work from the Empire team had finally paid off.

Each room is designed in such a way that allows guests the option of a single standard room, a standard room with a separate kitchen and TV area, or an executive room with the living area in the centre – perfect for when travelling as a family. Alternatively, an extra room can be added on, which will then turn the suite into a three bedroomed apartment.

Make no mistake – the kitchens and lounges housed within the Empire aren’t of your everyday, run-of-the-mill variety. They are equipped with only the best goods and finishes, including Russell Hobbs, Hans Groche and Carol Boyes products.

The Managing Director of the EAH Group, Marc Wachsberger, aimed for ceramic finishes. The clean, clinical feel translated through everything from the cups to the basins to the headboards.

Sorry – I got so into talking about the bedrooms that I almost forgot to mention the launch happening downstairs!

There was an orchestra band unlike I have ever seen before, an open bar and plenty of finger snacks. The launch party went on until 3AM, with only the who’s who of the city invited – I must say, they sure know how to party!


EAH, The Empire Hotel

After a long day, I was off to bed. When I got to my room, I discovered an engraved bottle of Barron wine to welcome me, as well as a gift bag filled with goodies. The aircon was also set perfectly, and the TV was on BBC News.

While the party was wonderful, the following day was filled with client meetings, so it was back to early mornings for me. But I first decided to treat myself to some room service – and I was not disappointed! There was so much food, I couldn’t even finish it all – and it was all delivered efficiently, and at a very reasonable price.

The next morning, I met a colleague of mine downstairs for breakfast. Now that’s what you call a meal! With everything from meringue cookies to pancakes, cheeses, meat, bacon and eggs, the Empire’s veranda was phenomenal. The big, glass doors that open up onto the pool and relaxing lounge area are used to their full potential too – during the party, it felt like a night club, and right then, it felt like a plush, five-star restaurant.

I’m the kind of girl who likes things plain and simple. I am not a fan of flowers, even, as I often feel as though they’re too much. That’s what I loved about the Empire Hotel – it’s straight forward, without any unnecessary details. At the Empire, you get everything you need, without any of the unwanted trimmings.

Another great thing about this hotel is that they have a chill out area dedicated to guests who arrive before check-in times. Here, you can relax, grab some coffee and even hit the gym (if you’re crazy enough) before checking into your room.

I’m now sitting on the plane back to Cape Town, still reliving my fairy tale night. I’ve realised that client service has its perks. I may not always hear a heartfelt “thank you”, and I work late most nights and start early most mornings. However, it all becomes worth it once I see the final picture come together.

All images courtesy of

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