The Saxonwold Post Office once stood proudly in Oxford Road, Rosebank. It was part of an era when trolley busses glided past, and its neighbours included the Odeon Cinema, a bottle store, and a corner café advertising that ‘Men of the world smoke Max.’
All that has changed, and buildings and businesses have gone – in a way that typifies the ongoing transformation of the golden mining town. One building does remain – the one that housed the Post Office. It doesn’t stand out quite as much now. There has been much development around it, and at present there are renovations taking place beside it, and construction in front of it where the Gautrain Station is being built. However, it is still there, set slightly back from the road, looking quietly secluded, stately, and a little mysterious, with no hoardings or brash advertising to mar the facade. It remains a people place – but with a difference. It is, now, The Monarch Hotel.
A burly security guard opened the tall, glass doors for me, and ushered me into another world – a world of elegant and quiet seclusion, where the noise of the traffic and the construction was barely a distant hum. It doesn’t look like an hotel. There is no long admissions counter in a bustling foyer. Instead, there is a reception lounge with a small period desk, and a quietly welcoming smile from a graceful and gracious lady. Everything flows from there.
Outside, in a quiet garden courtyard, wait tables, chairs and umbrellas . A place to sit with your thoughts over a coffee, a drink and, if you insist, your laptop. Although the Telkom building towers up behind, the advantage is that there are no windows overlooking it. Inside, the lounges and dining rooms are light and peaceful. The original, contemporary art on the walls complements by contrast the simple formality of the furnishings.
The Monarch has twelve suites available, ranging from the Luxury suites to the exclusive Royal Apartment. The Royal Terrace Suite that I saw was characterised by its private lounge and guest toilet. This makes it possible to entertain, have a small meeting, or sit quietly, without disturbing anyone else, or using the bedroom as a passage. Outside a large, private balcony was an invitation to enjoy the early morning sun, or a gentle twilight, and to keep an eye on the developments across the road. The Luxury Suites, although less extensive, are nevertheless warm and inviting, – and spacious enough to move around and work, in extreme comfort.
Who is it for? Well, for anyone who would like to be well situated to the main business, shopping and entertainment areas, and who is looking to be indulged in comfort, style and service. However, for me, The Monarch appeals in two other important ways.
Firstly, it is quiet, intimate and exclusive, focussed on personal attention to the individual. Secondly, it offers, in its design and character, an opportunity to withdraw and to relax- either together, or with one’s self and one’s thoughts – in uncluttered privacy.
Have a look at the website for more details – and think of it for your next trip, or even a special break from home. You might be very pleased.
Oh, and when you are there mention my name … it will be fun to watch them look completely blank!
Do you have any suggestions for Jerry?
Send him an email!