Review: The Silo Hotel Cape Town

Filed Under: Hotel Reviews, Trip Reports

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Review: The Silo Hotel Cape Town
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To finish off our trip we spent three nights in Cape Town. To be honest, I really struggled with where to stay in Cape Town:

  • In general I value luxury hotels much more highly in secluded places rather than cities, since I don’t spend that much time in my room in cities
  • I was tempted to just redeem points for a decent hotel (though there aren’t any amazing points hotels in Cape Town)
  • Ford encouraged us to finish off the trip on a high note; we had gone all out on this trip, and he figured we might as well see that theme through until the end

We decided to go all out and book the Silo Cape Town. The Silo opened in March 2017, and is consistently ranked as Cape Town’s best hotel. It’s also significantly more expensive than any other hotel in Cape Town. The question doesn’t typically revolve around whether the hotel is nice, but rather whether it’s worth it.

Booking The Silo Hotel Cape Town

The Silo belongs to The Royal Portfolio, which includes four luxury properties in South Africa. This ranges from La Residence, located in wine country, to Royal Malewane, which is a proper safari lodge in Kruger.

The Silo rates are published here. We were staying in mid-season, and we decided to book a family suite (34,000ZAR per night), so that we could share a room with my dad. Note that The Silo belongs to Virtuoso, which gets you perks like a room upgrade subject to availability, two 50 minute massages, early check-in and late check-out, and more.

One thing I find interesting about The Silo is their strict cancelation policy. They really seem to be going after the safari crowd rather than those just visiting Cape Town for business or leisure, since none of their rates are fully refundable. All rates have the following policy:

  • 5% of rate if canceled more than 12 weeks prior to arrival
  • 25% of rate if canceled 8-12 weeks prior to arrival
  • 50% of rate if canceled 4-8 weeks prior to arrival
  • 100% of rate if canceled within 4 weeks of arrival

As a result, it seemed like almost all guests were on safaris, where a policy like that is normal, and where your trip is locked in way in advance.

Silo Hotel Cape Town Review

With all that out of the way, let’s get into the actual review. First we’ll talk about getting to the Silo, then the check-in experience, rooms, dining, the pool, gym, and spa, service, and more.

Getting To The Silo Hotel

The Silo Hotel is located on the V&A Waterfront, so it has a fantastic location, as far as I’m concerned. The drive from the airport takes under 25 minutes. On arrival we booked a Blacklane (since I usually prefer that for airport pick-ups), while on the return we used an Uber (which cost ~20USD).

Silo Hotel Arrival

The Silo is incredibly unique, and you notice that the second you pull up to the hotel — the first few floors of the building are a parking garage. The hotel takes up floors 4-11 of the building.


Silo Hotel Cape Town exterior

The hotel’s exterior is just so darn cool, and at night they have some video on a projection screen, as well as some artsy chairs that roll around.


Silo Hotel Cape Town exterior

Service at the Silo was phenomenal across the board. The second we arrived we were greeted by the bellmen with a handshake and addressed by name.


Silo Hotel Cape Town entrance

The hotel has a small sitting area on the ground floor, should you want to wait there for an Uber, or whatever else.


Silo Hotel Cape Town entryway

Upon exiting on the sixth floor we saw reception immediately ahead of us. Even though this hotel feels really fancy, service is incredibly informal and kind. Just about every staff member introduced themselves by name and shook our hands.


Silo Hotel Cape Town lobby

There’s some seating in the lobby on both sides of reception. I’ll talk more about the public facilities of the hotel later, but this part of the lobby was almost always empty.


Silo Hotel Cape Town lobby


Silo Hotel Cape Town lobby

Once we were checked in we were given a tour of the hotel, and then eventually led to our room. This is when we found out that we had received an upgrade.

We had booked a family suite, but were upgraded one level to the royal suite. For what it’s worth, the hotel has two royal suites, and there are two penthouse suites that are an even higher category (the hotel only has a total of 28 rooms).

Our royal suite was #905/906, and it was located at the end of the hall behind double doors.


Silo Hotel Cape Town hallway


Silo Hotel Royal Suite entryway

Silo Hotel Royal Suite

O. M. G.

Okay, this was a very legitimate suite, and suffice to say we were pinching ourselves at this point. We were ready for a big downgrade after six nights at Singita properties, but boy was this incredible.

Inside the entrance was a large living room. Now, I think it’s worth acknowledging that the Silo has very untraditional decor. The design is most definitely quirky, so you can’t simply chalk this up to one general architecture or design style… and I really loved it.

The large living room had a dining table with four chairs on one side, along with a desk. Then on the other side was a sitting area with a couch and two chairs.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite living room


Silo Hotel Royal Suite living room


Silo Hotel Royal Suite dining area


Silo Hotel Royal Suite desk

Silo Hotel Royal Suite living area

To one side of the couch was a large wall display that housed the minibar.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite living room

There was a Nespresso machine and a kettle.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite Nespresso machine & kettle

In addition to that there was a minibar with soft drinks, water, beer, wine, liquor, and more. Everything (including the snacks and wine) was complimentary, with the exception of the liquor.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite minibar


Silo Hotel Royal Suite minibar drinks

I also appreciated how unique their snacks were. Rather than just having your typical packaged brand name chips, they had gift boxes with all kinds of (relatively freshly prepared) snacks.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite minibar snacks


Silo Hotel Royal Suite minibar snacks

Continuing with the room’s quirkiness, there were at least half a dozen dishes throughout the room with chocolates in them.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite in-room chocolates

The desk even had a big bowl with candies.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite in-room candy

There was a lovely welcome amenity waiting for us, including a bottle of South African sparkling wine, some fresh fruit, and chocolates (this is a standard welcome amenity for all rooms).


Silo Hotel Royal Suite welcome gift

Off the living room was a large balcony, featuring two sets of sitting areas.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite balcony


Silo Hotel Royal Suite balcony

The royal suite then had two roughly comparably sized bedrooms. My dad stayed in the bedroom off the right side of the living room, which was spectacular, with incredible floor-to-ceiling windows. It’s pretty incredible how windows can completely transform a building — the Silo wouldn’t be the same without these windows.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bedroom


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bedroom


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bedroom

This room looked out over the port.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bedroom

The bathroom was about the same size as the bedroom, and featured a huge walk-in shower, a soaking tub, double sinks, a toilet, and more.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bathroom


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bathroom


Silo Hotel Royal Suite toilet


Silo Hotel Royal Suite shower

As you’d expect, water pressure in the shower wasn’t amazing, given Cape Town’s water shortages.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite shower

Toiletries were in reusable Penhaligon’s containers, with their Quercus scent.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite shower toiletries

There was also a ton of closet space.


Silo Hotel Royal Suite bathroom

Ford and I stayed in the bedroom to the left of the living room. The layout was identical, though the design was significantly different.


Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bedroom

How breathtaking is this room?!

Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bedroom


Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bedroom

Our room had an awesome direct view of the V&A Waterfront.


Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bedroom view

And we also had a very nice bathroom…


Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bathroom

That art… hah!


Silo Hotel Cape Town Royal Suite bathroom

Wifi in the room was fast and free, and our room was refreshed twice daily. Every evening they’d bring different canapés for us to snack on, which is a cute touch.


Silo Hotel Cape Town evening snacks


Silo Hotel Cape Town evening snacks

At turndown they also brought freshly baked cookies.


Silo Hotel Cape Town turndown cookies

Silo Hotel Cape Town Breakfast

Breakfast is included with all rates at the Silo, and is served in Granary Cafe, which is the hotel’s signature restaurant on the sixth floor, right next to the lobby. Breakfast is served daily from 6:30AM until 11AM.

The Silo Granary Cafe


The Silo Granary Cafe

Here’s the breakfast menu:

Breakfast was such a treat. It always started with the “harvest table,” as they called it, which included some yogurt, granola, fresh berries, salmon, and cheese, all on an afternoon tea-style platter, plus fresh pastries in a basket.

Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast

The cappuccinos at the Silo were spectacular, and there was also always a juice of the day. The carrot orange juice was my favorite.


Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast

One morning I had the avocado toast.


Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast

Another morning I had the hummus toast.


Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast

Ford and my dad mostly stuck to the egg dishes.


Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast


Silo Hotel Cape Town breakfast

Everything about the restaurant experience was awesome, and we didn’t even have to sign for anything.

Granary Cafe Dinner

Cape Town has an incredible food scene, and while we ate out for two nights, the first night we decided to eat at the hotel’s restaurant, which came highly recommended. The whole experience, from food quality to service, was flawless. With us each having an appetizer and main course, and a total of five glasses of wine, the total came out to less than 100USD.

Granary Cafe dinner


Granary Cafe dinner


Granary Cafe dinner


Granary Cafe dinner

The Silo Rooftop & Pool

The Silo’s rooftop is on the 11th floor, and is popular, both among hotel guests and outsiders. For one, the Silo’s pool is pretty awesome-looking. We never did end up using it given that we were there in winter and it was a bit on the chilly side, but it is a very cool pool.

Silo rooftop pool


Silo rooftop pool

The rooftop also has a wraparound bar that was pretty awesome. It had such a cool vibe, with excellent cocktails, impeccable service, and unbeatable views.

Silo Cape Town rooftop


Silo Cape Town rooftop


Silo Cape Town rooftop view

The coolest part of the rooftop, though, was the private and secret rooftop. This is only available to hotel guests. When you’re on the rooftop there’s a secret set of stairs leading up to an even higher level, where there are just a few sitting areas.

You really feel like you’re on top of the world and all alone here, as you’re basically looking down towards the rooftop.

Silo Cape Town secret rooftop


Silo Cape Town secret rooftop


Silo Cape Town secret rooftop

We had cocktails here two nights at sunset, and had the area to ourselves. The servers would constantly come and check on us, and I just thought the whole setup was so magical.

Silo Hotel cocktails

Willaston Bar At Silo Cape Town

On the opposite side of the lobby of the main restaurant was Willaston Bar, which is open all day and serves drinks, snacks, afternoon tea, etc. I came here a couple of times for cappuccinos while working.

Silo Cape Town Willaston Bar


Silo Cape Town Willaston Bar


Silo Cape Town Willaston Bar

Silo Hotel Gym & Spa

The Silo’s gym and spa are located on the fourth floor. The gym can be accessed 24/7. The gym is on the small side, so it sure would be nice if it were a bit bigger (for example, there’s only one treadmill and elliptical). Then again, it’s a very small hotel filled mostly with safari guests, who aren’t necessarily the most active at times.

Silo Cape Town gym


Silo Cape Town gym

Then there’s the spa, and we all got massages here at one point or another during our stay. You can find the full spa menu here.

Silo Hotel spa

Obviously the room rate was high to begin with, though I was pleasantly surprised by how reasonably priced everything was once on property. For example, an hour massage cost ~57USD. I of course understand Cape Town in general is going to be cheaper than New York or London, but often we see top hotels in cities charge exorbitant prices for things, and that wasn’t really the case on-property here.

All that being said, I’d say the massage was good but not great, and it also wasn’t the most beautiful spa I’ve seen. Compared to the rest of the hotel, which almost feels like an art exhibit, the spa felt like a somewhat out of place afterthought.


Silo Hotel spa treatment room

Silo Hotel Service

The service at the Silo matched every other aspect of the experience, which is to say that it was exceptional. There was such a high sense of pride among employees working here, and they all seemed to enjoy their jobs.

The hotel only has 28 rooms, and I got the sense it wasn’t even nearly full when we were there, so you really felt like you had a massive private residence, with service to match. Where do we even start?

  • Hoon, the concierge, was one-of-a-kind, and one of the most hands on and attentive concierges I’ve seen anywhere; he helped us with some great restaurant reservations before our stay, was very responsive, and checked on us every morning as we headed to breakfast to see if we needed help planning anything
  • In the restaurant every morning our drink preferences were remembered, as was my dad’s breakfast preference (since he had the same thing every morning)
  • The bellmen weren’t just helpful at the door, but in one instance we were trying to go to the Robbin Island ferry, and Eugene walked us all the way there, rather than just giving us directions
  • We loved spending time on the rooftop, and the staff there couldn’t have been more attentive and fun

In our experience the Silo truly had exceptional service.

Silo Hotel Bottom Line

I was hesitant to spend this much on a city hotel, but this was a once in a lifetime trip, and I wanted it to be amazing from start to finish. I’m so happy we still splurged on the last portion of the trip, because the Silo most definitely didn’t disappoint, and actually significantly exceeded my expectations.

The Silo is an architectural masterpiece, and the decor is also quirky as heck. The hotel feels intimate given that it only has 28 rooms, the food and drinks were top notch, and the service was incredible.

I recently stayed at Aman Tokyo and said that I thought it was my favorite city hotel, but I actually think the Silo might have taken that spot for me. The hotel has everything you could hope for from a city hotel, with a lot of quirkiness thrown in as well, which I love.

All that being said, this is also by far Cape Town’s most expensive hotel. In the low season rates start at ~900USD per night, and it only goes up from there. It’s about double the price of the next best hotel.

So is this an incredible hotel? Absolutely. Is it worth it? Obviously that depends on your budget and situation. If money is no object, or if you are visiting Cape Town for a special occasion and can splurge, then I’d absolutely recommend the Silo.

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Comments
  1. @ Ben — There isn’t a hotel in the world worth $2,300 per night. Maybe next time you could think of the plight of others and give part of that money to charity while slumming it in a different 5-star hotel.

  2. Impressive. What card did you use to pay for this hotel – Sapphire Reserve, Citi Premier or something else?

  3. Lol… I am sorry but while some of the decor works, a lot of it doesn’t. The pool area looks depressing! No way this is worth $900 a night, let alone more during peak season! The views are also not great…

    Many hotels for far cheaper, with much nicer pools and much better views in CPT.

  4. Great review! Small correction: the toiletries’ brand is Penhaligon’s, which is a very prominent British perfume house with lots of history behind it. Quercus is just the scent.

  5. So how much commission did Ford get on the deal, assuming you went through him and not some other Virtuoso agent? That rate is a bit ridiculous.

  6. yet you flew comair…. what a complete mismatched disappointment.

    Silo is good, and the service phenomenal, but would far rather recommend the one & only.

  7. Well, love it or loathe it, The Silo is full-on Liz Biden – décor wise – that’s for sure.

    I haven’t stayed at The Silo (we’re loyal to The Cape Grace), but my husband and I have stayed at the other three Royal Portfolio properties. We absolutely loved Royal Malewane, and I could live forever at The Residence, but weren’t won-over by Birkenhead House, which was originally the Biden’s Hermanus beach house and where we had the slightly creepy feeling that we were somehow trespassing on private property throughout our stay. We were the small hotel’s only guests and felt the staff was monitoring our every move. By day two I wanted to scream “WE’RE NOT STEALING ANYTHING!”

  8. wow I don’t know many people who spend USD$ 50,000 on a 9 day trip like this. I wont. Looks like blogging is VERY lucrative……….

  9. @fs- lucky paid $2300 a night as he stated (current conversion from the rand amount). $900 is the starting price. While it’s a cool hotel, South Africa is generally cheap. This hotel literally is for rich white people who want to insulate themselves from “scary” black people on their way to/ from Safari. Who are convinced that they have to pay that much to be safe in a country known for crime. Many great options at a fraction of the cost in better neighborhoods.

  10. That is the worst designed hotel I have ever seen. We visit the Salone in Milan each year and pass by these tacky Halls of furniture being pitched to designers. Now, I know what type of people buy these goods.
    And, “trip of a lifetime”…. I thought you are about 30 years old. You have about 70 more years for trips of a lifetime.

  11. The hotel certainly looks stunning. I guess at the end of the day, the question for me is whether the beautiful architecture and excellent service is worth the price. Obviously airbnb has changed the equation — the “royal suite” at a hotel is really just a 2 bedroom on airbnb. Different people will have different answers on whether the convenience and service of a hotel are worth $900/night. To an extent, I think city hotels have a higher burden here, because there are other places to stay, eat, and drink.

    One thing though, you blame the water pressure on Cape Town’s drought. To be honest, any building that tall should have its own pressurization system. Municipal water is meant to provide adequate pressure for a house, not an 11-story building. The hotel shouldn’t get a pass on that.

  12. @Ben….i really appreciate all you flight and plane reviews. But please…dont forget that your blog is about POINTS AND MILES…not dollars. Thanks!

  13. That decor looks like a Palm Springs garage sale. That said, looks like they know what they are doing.

    The social justice warriors are already gunning for your accumulated wealth and denouncing how you choose to spend it. That’s what you get for even humoring them in the first place. You can’t have it both ways.

  14. I’ll start by saying that I have a lot of respect for Lucky and appreciate that it’s not my business telling him how to spend his money. I’ll also say that, as someone who spends a fair bit on luxury travel every year and has visited Cape Town fairly frequently, some might say I’m being a hypocite. But a few thoughts:

    1. This hotel is one of the ugliest I’ve ever seen in my life, in my opinion. I say that purely based on the pictures. The design just doesn’t work. The view from the room is also fairly bland, some might say ugly. Compared to other hotels in Cape Town, which have nice views of Table Mountain or Constantia, I’d give it a 1/10.

    2. I don’t think I’d ever spend $2,300 per night on a hotel, but I wouldn’t even consider it in Cape Town. The city has dozens of really nice hotels that rarely exceed $700/night. Ellerman House, One and Only, Mount Nelson are the big names, but smaller hotels like the Twelve Apostles and boutique hotels in Constantia also come to mind. I also have a moral objection to it. As I say, it’s not my business, but I think at a certain point one has to question the moral validity of one’s actions. South Africa is still recovering from the effects of Apartheid, and there continues to be lots of poverty in the country. One has to think, if I spend $700, or even $1000 per night, and give enough money for a kid to get an education for a year, is that worth it? The answer to me would be yes.
    No judgement, but this isn’t really consistent with Lucky otherwise, he usually has good judgement about what to spend and where, but in this case has really missed the mark.

  15. Why is everyone shitting on Lucky here? This is his blog and he can go where he wants, and spend how ever much he wants to get there! It sounds like this was a special trip with his elderly father – worth doing something special.

  16. Really nice. Crazy expensive, but nice.

    The exterior is not new – the building a converted 1920’s grain elevator. There is a Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in the same building that absolutely worth a visit if you are in Cape Town.

    V&A waterfront is a great area. As has been mentioned, there are other hotels there (One and Only, Cape Grace, …). There are also really nice serviced apartments next door to One and Only, for a more budget-friendly stay if you are traveling as a group.

  17. “I’d say the massage was good but not great, and it also wasn’t the most beautiful spa I’ve seen.”

    Would be interested if there are any standout spa’s you remember (hotel linked or otherwise).

  18. I almost stayed there also at the end of a safari earlier this year, but opted against it because 1/ I just couldn’t understand how it could be so much more expensive than virtually any other hotel in town and 2/ the waterfront area is really terrible in my opinion (just packed with tourists and souvenir shops). We opted for an AirBNB in Seapoint instead, which was wonderful. There is a surprising amount of inventory for luxury airbnbs in Cape Town, and they’re mostly super affordable compared to other cities. It was great to see that review nonetheless, I’d still love to try this property one day.

  19. @MarkG
    Let’s not forget the plane trip was also paid for in $$$ not points.
    Unfortunately we still don’t know how the $4200 price tag came from because Lucky is being secretive about how he booked the tickets.

  20. It’s almost more fun to read the comments than the article as usual with a blog post like this… I’m surprised you didn’t get drag through the mud with Singita reviews!

    Hotel service in Cape Town, when staying at top hotels, are generally quite good not just at Silo. One thing odd about Cape Town is luxury hotel prices are high but everything else is quite cheap especially great food. Hope you enjoyed Robben island. To me the tour was very educational. Did you guys get to go to Test Kitchen or La Colombe? I thought both were quite good and cheap for NYC/SF standard. Hopefully you went to Franschhoek. It’s definitely prettier than Napa Valley hands down. Look forward to read your Namibia trip next year!

  21. Just to pile on with all the SJW. How dare you work hard, make money and spend your money the way you please. Most of that money should have been taxed to ensure you are paying your fair share. Think about all the poor minorities who could have benefited from all that extra tax money you wasted on poluting airplanes and the exploitation of animals

  22. Telling Ben not to waste his own money is definitely ridiculous. I think more people are mad that he wasted it on an ugly hotel, but “De gustibus non est disputandum.”

  23. Ok Ben, now that you’ve splurged on a $2,000+ per night hotel, its time to tighten the budget and stay at a random Holiday Inn Express like the old days.

  24. I quite like the decor of the hotel tbh. It reminds of the design of Firmdale hotels, which run a couple of hotels in New York and a bunch in London. Bold colors, mismatched furniture styles.

    Ok maybe the blue closet in the bathroom is out of place, but everything else looks fine.

  25. When does “quirky” become tacky? The Silo, Cape Town.

    $2300 USD for a bizarre looking room in a bizarre looking hotel? Hell no. Yeah, I get that the people at the hotel were all nice. Sorry, not for that price.

    The travel reviews here used to involve maximizing value on points at nicer hotels and in premium cabins. From my perspective, they are now simply a wealthy man wasting large sums of money at exorbitantly overpriced hotels & resorts, of which it appears his spouse gets a commission on.

  26. $2300 was spent on a suite not a standard room…albeit one with questionable decor.

    That said to continue with the pile-on,
    for someone who raves about places like Aman, Singita, Park Hyatt, etc, it seems like this place comes nowhere near that.
    It looks like you bought into the hype of the “best Cape Town hotel” and booked it simply for that reason.

    For once I’d like to see a blogger express some buyer’s remorse instead of trying to rationalize spending all that money on a mediocre property.

  27. @Gene

    “ @ Ben — There isn’t a hotel in the world worth $2,300 per night.”

    What another person pays for anything is none of your business. Sure, shake your head And wonder why he did it but you don’t have the right to tell him how to spend his money. I stayed at a hostel called Once In Capetown. I doubt I raised anyone out of poverty by doing so. I’m fairly certain Ben helped pay some pretty decent salaries at the Silo.

    Do you mind my asking how much of the expense Ben asked to to help with?

    As for you asking why he didn’t give some amount of what he spent to charity, that’s a slippery slope. Lots of charities end up actually giving a fairly small amount of the original contribution to the intended recipient or recipient group but I wouldn’t have the faintest idea what Ben does in this regard, do you?

  28. Why on earth would anyone stay at a dirt expensive hotel in Cape Town? CT has so many fantastic and affordable boutique hotels and guesthouses where you get the real deal.

  29. Loved your pictures of the property which is also part of the Signature Travel Network.
    Such a smart idea to spend some time in Cape Town at the end of your safari.

  30. I train at the Virgin active opposite the Silo Hotel. I have eaten there but cannot imagine paying those prices to stay. By the way your stays included ‘game drives’ not Safaris.
    A safari involves crossing Botswana in a Land Cruiser and tents. Not eating cooked food or else every carnivore for twenty miles will visit you. Chasing baboons and sometimes elephants from your camp by banging pots together and cursing. No longer but 30 years ago you could visit areas where the animals had not seen humans. When a game park starts naming its animals like they do in Kenya and Kruger it’s game over. Botswana is the last great eden but we will have Leo the lion there too before long I fear.

  31. I thought the room was quite lovely, but that’s when I was thinking $500 max. Holy crap at how much you spent, you deserve the pile on.

    Please bring back Tiffany and her trips which happen in the real world.

  32. The room is lovely, very Lily Pulitzer-ish. The building is hideous from the outside, could they not have done something to all that concrete?

    Life is short – spend your money as you wish, Ben.

  33. Lucky, I enjoyed so much reading your latest trip report! There were definitely some things for me to consider for my next trip to South Africa.

    Regarding Cape Town: I spent at least 6 weeks every year during the past 10 years, in different luxury hotels. Sadly, by now the Mount Nelson Hotel (Belmond) is a joke, with a terrible re-design, and ridiculously bad service. The GM is Xavier Lablaude, and even though I spent about 60.000 dollars in past years through my Amex Centurion Service, I never met the guy… Service is a joke, nothing works. Definitely not a luxury hotel anymore. As sadly can be said about other hotels in SA (Coach House Hotel, anyone?!?).

    In my mind, the best way to spend nights in Cape Town is either the Westin or the Taj. Sadly, there are no real luxury hotels (well, Ellerman House, but not a hotel connected to a points systems), and other hotels at the Waterfront ask for ridiculous prices.

    I have to say, comparing the general level of prices in South Africa, the Silo is definitely part of the “ridiculous” price point, even though you apparently enjoyed your stay (good for you). However, in a city where you feel unsafe most of the time walking down normal streets, paying these prices feels wrong, period. It is a certain “Disneyland” feel, completely disconnected from reality around you.

    Now, I am very happy for you that you had a fantastic trip. But honestly, Cape Town, though truly a wonderful spot, has become so unsafe and unstable, it is simply not something recommended to visit anymore. I will stay away after many years of wonderful memories. It’s a shame.

  34. @ Ben/Lucky –

    When having breakfast at The Granary Cafe were you presented with menus without prices (you wrote that breakfast is included in the nightly rate)?

    Was there a small buffet section or was this covered by the “Harvest Table” on the al la carte menu?

    Cheers.

  35. Oh dear! From reading these comments it appears to be a mortal sin to spend money on an extraordinary hotel. I think people often forget that you are paying for the total experience, the ‘occasion’ if you will, and that level of attention in a small hotel doesn’t come cheap. Questions of ‘worth’ perhaps should be reserved for material objects, not experiences.

    I recently stayed in Quito, Ecuador in a small hotel: Casa Gangotena. The cost was in my terms extortionate and was only made possible by some hotels.com credits.

    However, at roughly 30 rooms, it was extraordinary, with staffing and levels of service that made us feel something more than comfortable. Would I suggest you beg, borrow and steal to stay there – no. But if you can afford it – its a very good choice.

    On the interior style – Diana Vreeland knew how to carry off a jumbled eclectic style. Liz Biden is not Diana Vreeland – let’s just leave it there.

  36. I’ve never felt moved to comment on a review, despite many years of reading Lucky’s blog on a near daily basis. As a South African who has lived abroad for some time now, but regularly returns to visit family, I can confirm that the Silo hotel’s pricing is asinine and an insult to the intelligence of international visitors. As far as waterfront properties are concerned, the Cape Grace and the One & Only are world-class luxury properties, which charge less than half the rates of the Silo. Even the most expensive wineland properties such as Delaire Graff come in at ~40% less in peak season.

    My objection has very little to do with dictating how Lucky spends the well-deserved proceeds from his successful blog, which has helped many people (including myself) derive better value from their travel. It’s more a question of this trip and particularly the inordinate amount of money spent undermining the fundamental raison d’etre of the blog, which was to show how luxury travel lies within the reach of moderately affluent people who otherwise wouldn’t be able to stay at aspirational properties around the world.

    Now Lucky clearly enjoys a financial position that affords him effectively unlimited freedom with respect to paid travel and though I find it heartwarming that he chooses to spend his fortune on experiences with loved ones, I can’t help but feeling that he is edging into the territory of conspicuous consumption. This review left a bad taste in my mouth, and while I highly doubt it was Lucky’s intention to flaunt his supercharged spending power, I do hope he at least considers the feedback in the comments without taking offence or feeling attacked.

  37. We need to remember this was a once in a lifetime trip for his dad. This hotel is also somewhat popular with other bloggers instagram and YouTube to why not stay there. While it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, it worked for this trip. The suite price matches those prices in the Maldives for the over water villas and some Dubai hotels were many people actually do pay that. While it might not be his usual, he tried something for us to see and different than his usual. Thanks lucky! Allows me to make an informed decision, as I was considering this hotel next year. After seeing the pictures I will shy away because I believe I can do better views and decor as it is not my style. Hope your dad had an amazing birthday! I know my dad would have enjoyed this, and hope to do something similar for him on his 65th in 6 years.

  38. It should have been noted that the Silo is in the same building as the Zeitz MOCAA, a super interesting modern art museum. The decor which so many commenters have objected to closely mirrors the art in the museum. It’s different, loud, and obviously not for everyone. If you prefer beige walls and Renoirs, then more power to you, but it’s nice to see properties actually take a chance once in a while.

    On that note, anyone with even a passing interest in art should set aside an hour or two to check out the MOCAA while in Cape Town. With the focus on African artists (both those living in Africa and international artists with African heritage), it’s a refreshing mix-up from the typical modern art museum roster of Warhol, Haring, Calder, etc.

  39. It is a lovely hotel. Lucky has every right to spend his money the way he sees fit and it is no one else’s business but maybe Ford’s. He was on an incredible lifetime experience with his two favorite men in his life and he should be applauded and not reprimanded for that.

    Do you want others to tell you how to spend your money? You act like you are his parents and acting all self-righteous. It’s his blog, so y’all need to respect it.

    It is mainly points and miles, but I do not believe he ever said it has to be only points and miles. Sometimes, it is more worthwhile to buy it outright with cash and to get the extra bonus points or miles. Other times, Lucky can only use cash.

    Maybe, it is one of these times. It is probably not associated with any loyalty brands that Lucky is a part of and so, Ford would book it through Virtuoso to get something in return for the hard-earned money. Lucky has worked hard to bring you reviews and such, so please show him and his family the due respect and courtesy.

  40. Of course Lucky has every right to spend his money where and when he sees fit, and to write the reviews he sees fit. I don’t think anybody questions that.

    When the travel reviews presented on this blog have been, up until recently, primarily a resource in terms of maximizing value on points, and now have pivoted in another direction (i.e. travel to hotels & resorts which are clearly *not* a good value, and a number of examples could be cited – here, various Amans, etc.), it would be helpful if management were to state that the blog’s perspective has shifted, and why. My suspicion is because Ford receives some remuneration from booking these types of properties.

  41. PEOPLE CAN SPEND THEIR OWN MONEY HOWEVER THEY PLEASE! How is that so hard to understand?

    Most people bashing Ben are jealous he can afford these experiences and they can’t. Y’all have no right to dictate what he should do with his money. If you’re this worked up over him splurging on a special trip, then that means there’s something wrong WITH YOU. There’s no need to put someone down just so you feel superior.

    I am VERY thankful and glad that Ben splurges on special occasions in luxury hotels and experiences, it INSPIRES me to be able to one day have the opportunity to do these things as well. I am happy this blog covers EVERYTHING- credit card points, airline miles, luxury hotels & experiences, budget friendly options, etc.

    IF you don’t like reading about things that have no value to you, SKIP THE ARTICLE. No one is forcing you to read about a non point hotel. Some people really have issues with others enjoying their life, my goodness. Go wash some dishes if you’re this upset over Ben enjoying a luxury trip.

    Keep up the good work Ben! 🙂

  42. @schar

    I completely agree. People should spend their money however they want. A few points though:

    a) this blog is about miles and points, rather than spending thousands of dollars a night on uber expensive hotels
    b) readers aren’t stupid. While this blog is highly successful I doubt he’s in a position to shell $2300 a night after all the other expenditures of this trip. Clearly Ford is getting a *very* high commission on this rate
    c) things are becoming rather secretive. We have no clue how he bought AF first class. He says the rate was $4,200 out of Canada (connecting in JFK) but I can’t price anything close to that from my end.
    d) As someone who is an experienced safari-goer, Singita properties are quite a ripoff. There are much more authentic (and smaller) lodges that give a feeling of being ‘in the bush’. Singita is more of a household name and one pays through the nose for it.

    To each their own, I accept. But it’s just important to point out how far Lucky has been moving away from the original premise of the blog.

  43. The exterior of the building looks awesome, as did the room’s bathrooms…but what happened to the decor? Did they run out of money and have to go to the thrift store to furnish the rooms?

    I’m all for quirky things (there’s a lava lamp and a pink leather couch in my living room), but the room decor just has no cohesiveness to it. At least it has color, which is more than I can say for Marriott’s gray on gray interiors these days.

  44. @Alistair

    I see where you’re coming from, but:

    1) While the main theme of this blog is airline miles and credit card points, it is not only valuable but important to also feature other things related to the travel world, whether that’d be breaking news, viral videos, information on destinations, new hotels & products that aren’t in the miles/points world, etc, otherwise content would grow stale and there would be no reader expansion. A wise man will always appreciate more information and getting exposed to a broader range of topics than to just stay in a little bubble. If Ben chooses to post an article about his family, or about a cool non points hotel he stayed at, he most definitely can and should, since it’s his blog, and you have all the freedom in the world to skip through that article. I skip through allllllllllll the credit card articles since it doesn’t interest me, and yet you don’t see me complaining on those articles “enough with CCs, gimme more trip reports!!!!”

    2) Do you pay his bills? Do you have access to his credit card statement?? If not, you can assume all you want but you have no idea how much money someone has in their bank account or not, AND it’s none of anyone’s business. This might come as a shock to you but bloggers/youtubers/influencers make SO much money. Plus, Ford seems like he comes from a wealthy family. But still, it’s none of our business. 2300/night might be a lot for you but it might be a drop in a bucket to someone else. It shouldn’t matter to you, and it shouldn’t be a problem for them.

    3)I agree he’s being secretive about the AF rate, but then again what am I gonna do? He will reveal if he wants to, if not so be it. I’m still grateful I had TWO AF First Class reviews to read 🙂

    4) Again, for you it might be a ripoff, for someone else it might be a good deal and if they enjoyed it, who cares? Price/worth is allllll subjective. Some people find value in a $1000 Rimowa, others think that’s a ripoff and stick to their $400 Aways, and yet others STILL find THAT a ripoff and won’t spend more than $100 on a Costco brand luggage. See? It’s all subjective.

    Just saying…at the end of the day, you have your opinion, which is valid, and I have mine, and Lucky has his, and his autonomy over his blog, so that’s life.

  45. There is nothing, but nothing, to justify the price of The Silo. I’ve had a walk around and also to a function there and I am yet to be won over. It seems to attract online bloggers and the somewhat vulgar DYKWIA types. It’s decor is borderline random acid trip and the views; who wants to pay that much for a view of a port ?

    No thanks. I’ll save myself a fortune, stay at the Mount Nelson and luxuriate in the understated fineries, the grounds and the attention to detail if affords.

  46. Hi Lucky. Mind sharing what restaurants and activities you did in Cape Town? I’ll be there in a couple of months, so trying to plan my trip.

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