Stayover at Melrose Arch Hotel and Dinner at March Restaurant*

A few weekends ago, I was lucky enough to be hosted by the African Pride Melrose Arch Hotel for a night’s stay plus dinner at their signature restaurant, March, which has just undergone a complete renovation. I’ve been to March for a corporate breakfast before, and back then I was struck at how classy the hotel is. It has such an upmarket feel, and with the renovations the restaurant is even more striking. Most people don’t know that there is a pool bar open to the public during the day, which has a really cool vibe in Summer.

The lobby area

Hallway to our room

 The room was gorgeous, decorated in rich, brown tones, with modern furnishings, continuing the “futuristic” theme the hallway had.  

Obviously, the best part about this hotel is the location. You have all Melrose Arch’s shops and restaurants at your doorstep, and you’re right in the middle of one of Jozi’s trendiest spots- the Melrose Arch square. There’s nothing worse than staying in a hotel where you’re confined to just being in the hotel at all times, especially if you’re staying for a long period of time.

I’d heard alot of buzz about March’s new restaurant which came with a new chef- so I was really looking forward to trying it out. I LOVED the setup of the restaurant, light and airy while remaining classy. There are also private dining rooms available for guests’ use, with TV’s as well- great for business presentations.

Now if I’m perfectly honest- I’d go to a hotel’s restaurant to have a quiet meal where I want to catch up with someone, not necessarily for the food. It’s really tough to find a hotel where the food competes well with top restaurants.

The thing with going to a top restaurant is: 1) it’s noisy- you can barely hear the person next to you speaking and you have to rub shoulders with the table next to you. 2) if you want to make a reservation for the same evening, they’ll probably laugh at you.

Therefore, I do think March is worth visiting if you want to be assured of excellent service and classy ambiance. I thought the food was good, and fairly priced too. The food isn’t going to blow you away, but you won’t be disappointed by it either. Some feedback I gave to the hotel was that starter portions should be reviewed: Rishav’s starter was huge while mine was tiny- and they were both priced similarly.

One of the private dining rooms

Instagrammin’ away

My starter: calamari with a tomato salsa

Rishav’s starter: seared tuna on microgreens

Main: Moroccan chicken with couscous. Enjoyed it, but thought the couscous could have been flavoured with something.

I was most impressed by the dessert menu. I’m so used to seeing the normal, boring selection: creme brulee, tiramisu, chocolate fondant, panacotta… etc. March’s dessert menu is so refreshing, with the most delicious selections on offer. Think “lemon meringue mille- feuille”- layers of puff pastry filled with lemon curd custard and mint; “vanilla and cardamom yoghurt mousse”- vanilla and cardamom infused yoghurt mousse with a brandy snap and finally our choice- “turkish delight creme brulee”, rose water flavoured creme brulee with malibu ice cream.

After dinner, we took a walk to the Library Bar which was buzzing by that time. We then went up to our room and scoffed down the yummy Lindor balls which were left on our pillows. Breakfast the next morning was also served in March, set up beautifully.

We helped ourselves at the buffet, and then ordered from the hot menu which was really different- with quail and duck eggs on offer. The beverage menu includes a full selection of smoothies; unfortunately they didn’t have peanut butter so couldn’t make the ones we ordered- would have been great if the waiter had offered to run across to Woolies to get some… Am I too demanding? 😛 

I really enjoyed my stay- recommend you try it out for dinner next time you’re looking for that kinda vibe.