The Heinitzburg Hotel is housed in an old castle...
Heinitzburg Hotel: Our full report
Affording superb views of Windhoek from its location on top of a hill, the Heinitzburg Hotel is a small converted castle that was originally built at the turn of the 19th century. Completely refurbished in June 2009, when the restaurant was also enlarged, the hotel continues to offer high quality and refined place to stay. This owner run property has all the facilities of a large luxury hotel but still retains the atmosphere and attention of a small boutique hotel. Situated in a quiet and secluded area, it is still close to the city centre, making the Heinitzburg both convenient, and a good place to indulge yourself during your trip to Namibia.
Porters will carry your luggage to one of the 16 spacious en-suite rooms which are decorated individually, with no two looking exactly the same. However all are well designed, clean and very comfortable, with a wide range of facilities. Numerous mirrors are a common feature of the rooms, which not only makes them feel more spacious, but the reflective surfaces also make the room brighter. The luxurious honeymoon suite is located in one of the castle's turrets. (Read more about a deluxe room at the Heinitzburg Hotel.)
The rooms are all built around a lovely flower-filled garden with statues and fountains, which is also home to a fair number of birds and brightly-coloured lizards. On one side of the garden, next to one of the castle turrets, is a turquoise pool (heated in winter) with an elephant statue at one end that sporadically squirts water into the pool.
Around the back of the reception area is the Garden Terrace, which has fantastic views over the city and the surrounding mountains. This is a popular spot for sundowners or afternoon tea and cakes - breakfast, lunch and dinner can be eaten at the umbrella shaded tables here. For dinners only, try the adjacent Leo's at the Castle restaurant. This offers fine dining in quite a formal setting, with white table cloths, chandeliers and uniformed waiters. The restaurant, overlooking the city which is lit up at night, offers a range of international and French cuisine.
Underneath the Leo's at the Castle restaurant is a large wine cellar, the Felsenkeller, built into the mountain rock. Filled with a wide range of quality South African and European wines that guests can enjoy with their dinner, the wine cellar can also be used to host private dinners and lunches, seating up to 24 people.
The hotel can book guests on a wide selection of day trips and activities, including golf, horse riding and game viewing. Massages can be arranged in your room. The hotel can also book private transfers for guests.
Our viewAlthough the refined atmosphere and luxury may be too much for those who prefer to keep things simple, if you want to stay somewhere that offers relaxation and a bit of extravagance, while still retaining its character and attention to detail, then the Heinitzburg Hotel would be perfect.
Ideal length of stay: 1-2 nights
Directions: Turn left off Sam Nujoma Drive into Heinitzburg Street. The hotel is at number 22, on the left, up a very steep driveway.
Accessible by: Self-drive or Fly-and-Transfer
Owner: Beate Raith & Tibor Raith
Staff: Camp/Lodge Managers: Beate Raith & Tibor Raith
Food & drink
Usual board basis: B&B
Food quality: Breakfast is a buffet served every morning between 06:30 and 10:30 in the Knight's Room in the original castle. The buffet has a wide selection on offer, including fresh fruit, homemade jams and freshly baked breads and croissants. There's also pâté, chutney, cheese and meats. Drinks include juices, tea and coffee. Hot breakfast is cooked to order, and consists of anything from eggs cooked any way you like to a full English breakfast.
Lunch is served on the garden terrace. The lunch menu is separate to 'Leo's at the Castle' dinner menu, and consists of lighter meals such as salads.
Dinner is served from 18.30 to 22.00 in the classy Leo's At the Castle 52-seater restaurant overlooking the city. There is both an à la carte and degustation menu, which is based on international, though mainly French cuisine. The gourmet food is of an excellent standard. Examples of dishes available include oysters, pigeon breast and on our last visit we ate Namibian truffles fried in butter and pan-fried sea bream in a crayfish sauce followed by a selection of fruit sorbets. All courses were delicious.
There is a wide selection of international wines and spirits on offer too.
Please note that guests are expected to dress smartly for dinner here.
Food is available at any time of day on the terrace.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Further dining info: Room service is available.
Attitude towards children: Children are welcome and the hotel has some rooms specifically for families.
Property’s age restrictions: No age restrictions
Special activities & services: Activities such as drawing can be arranged for children.
Equipment: Cots and highchairs are available on request.
Generally recommended for children: Children would enjoy splashing around in the pool, but the highly-flavoured cuisine in the restaurant might be too much for some. However guests are welcome to eat at one of the numerous restaurants in town.
Power supply: Mains Electricity
Communications: WiFi (this is an extra charge).
TV & radio: All rooms have satellite TV.
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: No
Medical care: There are many doctors located throughout Windhoek, plus very good hospitals
Dangerous animals: Low Risk
Security measures: There is a guard on site 24 hours.
Fire safety: Fire extinguishers are located in all main areas.
Disabled access: On Request
Laundry facilities: Full laundry service availble - extra charge.
Money: Euros and US dollars can be exchanged.
Accepted payment on location: Visa and MasterCard are accepted. The guesthouse accepts payment in South African rand, Namibian Dollars, US dollars and Euros.