- South Africa has several hotels with multi-level penthouses, sprawling presidential suites, and exclusive villas.
- The most expensive room costs R192 500 per night.
- But others are going for a relative steal - from just R40 000 per night.
- Look inside six of the country's fanciest hotel rooms, suites, and villas.
Most of us are never likely to see the inside of the world's priciest hotels, let alone put our feet up on the table in their most expensive rooms.
Yet, despite this, there's something deeply intriguing about what's hiding behind those thick double doors that hotels believe justifies the high price tags.
The country's best hotel rooms often have incredible views of mountains, oceans, or cityscapes. But with others, it's purely about the address, prestige, and room features - coupled with the kind of service levels you'd expect when paying several thousand rands a night.
Here's what the top rooms inside South Africa's leading hotels look like:
The Silo is a luxurious boutique hotel in Cape Town's V&A Waterfront. The hotel features Table Mountain and harbour views, a rooftop bar, a private art collection, and a spa.
The Silo's most expensive room is its two-bedroom penthouse. It has panoramic views of Cape Town, a private cinema, a spa treatment room, two marble bathrooms, and two private balconies. Rates for the room top out during the festive season, when you'll need to pay R192 500 per night.
The Saxon is a luxurious hotel in the exclusive Sandhurst neighbourhood of Johannesburg. The hotel features a spa, a giant outdoor pool, an in-house fine dining restaurant, and sprawling gardens.
The Saxon's most expensive room is the Nelson Mandela Platinum Suite. It's a luxurious 400-square-meter suite that was once the private residence of Nelson Mandela. The suite sleeps four, and the main bedroom has a king-size bed, a bathroom with a walk-in shower and steam room, and a fully equipped butler's kitchen with 24-hour service. One night in the Nelson Mandela Platinum Suite costs around R90 600.
The Oyster Box
The Oyster Box is a luxury hotel in Umhlanga Rocks, just north of Durban. The hotel is in a beautiful, classical building with private beach access and multiple swimming pools and fine dining options.
The Oyster Box's most expensive room is the 450 square metre Presidential Suite, an opulent duplex with a lounge, private bar, baby grand piano, terrace, and private garden. One night in the Oyster Box Presidential Suite costs R90 000.
The Westcliff is a luxurious hotel in the affluent suburb of Westcliff in Johannesburg. The hotel features stunning views, lush gardens, multiple dining options, and a world-class spa.
The Westcliff's most lavish room is its 202 square metre Royal Suite set across three floors. It has three bedrooms, five bathrooms, a private gym, and a separate entrance for total privacy. The master bedroom is its most dramatic feature- it has a large television, indoor fireplace, and a marble bathroom with walk-in rain shower and a freestanding bathtub. The hotel doesn't publish the rates for this room, but it's safe to assume it will be a lot more expensive than its next priciest room, the two-bedroom presidential suite that goes for R59 000 a night.
Ellerman House is a luxury villa-style hotel in Cape Town that often flies below the radar, given its opulent exclusivity. The property is located on the slopes of Lion's Head with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and is renowned for its artwork collection, lavish rooms, and fine dining restaurant.
The most expensive room at Ellerman House is the three-bedroomed Villa One. It offers total privacy for up to ten guests in five en-suite rooms. The villa has a private infinity pool, and a personal chef prepares all meals in its fully equipped in-house kitchen. In peak season, one night in Villa One costs R155 000.
Mount Nelson Hotel is a historic hotel located in Gardens, Cape Town. The hotel features stunning gardens, a spa, tennis courts, two swimming pools, popular restaurants, and a famous bar.
Mount Nelson's priciest and most iconic accommodation is its Honeysuckle Cottage, part of the hotel's row of historic terraced houses. Mount Nelson incorporated these once-private homes into their property some time ago, and all underwent significant renovations in the early 1990s.
The cottage features flowering gardens, verandas, high ceilings, an indoor fireplace, and direct access to a heated swimming pool. The Honeysuckle Cottage was recently converted into a two-bedroom suite, which costs upwards of R41 000 per night, depending on your dates.