Part 2 – Cape Town to Rio on the Regent Seven Seas Mariner
Arriving at 1 AM, we weren’t looking for anything fancy in a hotel, just a place to sleep until we could board the ship the next day. I had reserved a room on line at Cape Town Airport Road Lodge. It was inexpensive by Cape Town standards. The hotel charged 30 Rand (about $5) each for their shuttle from the airport which only took about 3 minutes. however we were arriving about 2 hrs, late and it was wonderful to see a very nice gentleman waiting for us with a sign with our name on it after we had been travelling for so long. The room was small with 2 twin beds. I was a bit worried since the sheets looked yellow and worn out but must admit I was too tired to care. I couldn’t find my toothbrush and called the front desk to see if they had one. They said yes, the price was 10 R (about $1.50)”plus tip,” which I thought that was pretty funny. As it turned out they were out of them anyway. You couldn’t stand in the shower for more than a few seconds before it filled up with water and overflowed. Had to get creative – washing one arm, leg, at a time, etc. We slept too late for their continental breakfast (50R).
I went to the front desk to inquire about their shuttle or a taxi to the “waterfront”. The receptionist was on the phone and as I waited I saw a cab pull up. The man came in and also stood at the front desk. When I finally got to telling the receptist what I needed of course the taxi driver said “Oh was just stopping in to see if anyone here needed a cab”. Sounded too good to be true to me! He asked for 250 R so I asked what the hotel’s shuttle price was and she said not that much. We ended up paying 180 R which the receptionist said was a better price than their shuttle. The receptionist also called the cab company to verify that this driver was legitimate (he was). The driver was very nice and of course tried to get us to book a tour with him for later in the day, which we declined.
Overall, the Cape Town Airport Road Lodge offered minimal amenities in a very small room, but was fine for an inexpensive place to crash for a few hours before resuming our journey.