7 Reasons to stay at the first voco Hotel in Africa

Reasons why voco Hotel is the best bleisure hotel ever

By Renate Engelbrecht

Fri, Apr 29

I recently got to play the role of a true bleisure traveller – you know, those people travelling for both business and leisure – and I must admit, I liked it. A lot. Especially as I got to stay in the all new voco Hotel in Rosebank – the first of its kind in Africa.

For a day, I got to act like a real businesswoman at a real business hotel. Well, in essence I guess I am a businesswoman, but I don’t get to hang out at fancy hotels like the voco Hotel very often, so for me, and my husband who joined me for the evening, it was a refreshing treat and a wonderful change of scenery.

Located right next to Rosebank Mall, The Bank, which is home to the voco hotel, stands tall and proud. It is also home to the restaurant, Proud Mary and Workshop 17, which offers immaculate, flexible workspaces 24/7.

Here is why the voco Hotel is probably one of the best bleisure hotels in Joburg:

voco Hotel Johannesburg Rosebank
voco Hotel Johannesburg Rosebank. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Location, location, location

While any business hotel is usually located in a city’s business hub, the voco Hotel’s location cannot be better. Rosebank Mall is just across the road from the hotel’s entrance, and you can literally walk to the hotel from the Rosebank Gautrain station. Everything you might need is right at your fingertips – from transport, banks and shopping options to brilliant restaurants like its resident Proud Mary and many others.

This is what you see when you step out of the lift
This is what you see when you step out of the lift. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

The voco Hotel’s special touches

Even the build-up to entering our room was a unique experience, with the hotel’s teal-coloured lifts and glamorous trimmings instantly transporting you to another era. And, while a hotel room is often just another hotel room with crisp white linen, puffed up pillows and duplicated wall art, the voco Hotel’s rooms are different.

Art deco vibes at voco
Art deco vibes at the voco Hotel. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Apart from its refreshing, yet nostalgic art deco feel, our room was spacious and instantly lured us to the windows from which we had views for days. The room was filled with distinct art pieces (as were the corridors leading to the room) and the room’s details and fixtures were clearly carefully chosen with its specific purpose and aesthetic appeal in mind.

Me-time at voco Hotel
Me-time at voco Hotel. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Prior to our arrival, I was asked which fruits were my favourite and as we walked into the room, a generous plate of fresh fruit and delicious cheese awaited, coupled with canned Spier wine as a welcoming gift.

Fruit as welcoming gift
Fruit as welcoming gift. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

The voco Hotel also does a simple, yet thoughtful turndown at night, with a delicious chocolate treat from Proud Mary.

Our restroom
The bathroom in our room with a specious shower. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Joburg views from the voco Hotel

A Joburg sunset is a unique sunset and seeing it from the tenth floor at the voco Hotel was quite something. As the sun was setting, the sides of the numerous neutral-hued buildings outside slowly turned to gold, reminding me of one of the many reasons why Joburg is also called the City of Gold. Glistening in twilight, the buildings showed off their stature – some old, some new – highlighting Jozi’s unique and intriguing charisma.

Our bedroom at voco Hotel Rosebank
Our bedroom at voco Hotel Rosebank. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

It was also wonderful to watch the streets around the hotel awake the next morning, and that from our room’s windows! At one stage we spotted a couple of joggers stretching in front of Starbucks just across the street – clearly still feeling the early morning, autumn chill. Later, some cyclists came past. With Rosebank Mall and the Rosebank Gautrain station just there, people were coming and going all the time, unknowingly setting the tone and creating the lovely vibe these two Pretorian visitors soon came to appreciate and enjoy.

Views for days at the voco Hotel
Views for days. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Workshop 17

With Workshop 17 being situated in the same building, getting some work done after checking in without worrying about where to find steady internet is a no-brainer. In fact, at this beautifully designed, flexible workspace you can even book a meeting room from which you can host in-person or virtual meetings. Whilst our room was fitted with a small desk and some chairs, the elegant décor and light, open atmosphere of Workshop 17 is a lovely change of scenery for someone staying at the hotel for more than one day.

Hot desks at Workshop 17
Hot desks can be booked at Workshop 17. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

The bonus is that the café space at Workshop 17, for which there is no need to make a booking, can be used by hotel guests at no additional charge.

Cafe area at Workshop 17
Cafe area at Workshop 17. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Valet parking at the voco Hotel

At an additional R100, voco Hotel’s friendly porters assist you with your car and park it safely for you. You can contact them on Whatsapp at any given time when you want them to bring your car around. Apart from making you feel rather special upon arrival, it’s a great add-on that certainly doesn’t go unnoticed.

Proud Mary at the voco Hotel

Another thing the voco Hotel can truly be proud of, is their continuous collaboration with The Bank’s resident restaurant, Proud Mary. This restaurant is not only beautifully decorated with copper and teal, but it also boasts wonderful, out of the ordinary and very tasteful menu items.

Dinner at the voco Hotel's restident restaurant, Proud Mary
Dinner at Proud Mary. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

If you’re looking for a restaurant that subtly prevents you from ordering what you always order, encouraging you to try something different when it comes to gastronomy, this is it. Proud Mary’s menu is filled with meals that will make your taste buds dance. Even the simplest lamb chops had me in awe with its accompanying tzatziki and I have yet to see Wikus enjoy a pork belly as much as he did here.

Lamb chops with tzatziki
Lamb chops with tzatziki. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Our dinner was coupled with Beaumont Family Wines’ 2019 Jackals River Pinotage, which the sommelier kindly assisted us with. What a wise man and what a wonderful wine.

Pork belly
Pork belly at Proud Mary. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Of course, we had to end off dinner with something sweet and although we pondered long and hard, I opted for the Milktart Crème Brûlée, while Wikus chose the Poached Pear Anglaise. Divine.

Milk tart creme brulee
Milktart Crème Brûlée. Image: Renate Engelbrecht
Poached pear anglaise
Poached pear anglaise. Image: Renate Engelbrecht

Even breakfast was out of this world with delicious oats with stone fruit, eggs benedict and coffee in none other than Le Creuset mugs.

P.S. When you’re there, be sure to pop into their restrooms too, even if it’s just to take a peek.

READ: 5 Reasons why Spier is the perfect hibernation destination

Something for the road

As our car got pulled up for us to leave after check-out, I popped in at Proud Mary’s little café window and got myself a coffee for the road. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful bleisure experience – one that I would recommend to anyone travelling to Joburg for work, or even someone looking for a unique staycation experience.

Proud Mary Proud Coffee
Proud Mary, Proud Coffee. Image: Wikus Engelbrecht

P.S. The voco Hotel is also officially launching their exclusive hotel gym on the 7th of May with, wait for it, a sunset yoga event. And, you can buy a ticket to the event. There are only 100 tickets, so you’d better hurry up and get one soon.

*Our stay at the voco Hotel, including dinner and breakfast at Proud Mary was sponsored.

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