The Lab Lifestyle in Franschhoek caught my eye after I had a similar experience while staying at the Premiere Inn in Bricklane last year. The room featured a few electronic services, which were fun to try out. I was really intrigued when I saw the Lab offered similar services, particularly because this is South Africa and it’s not always easy (or affordable) to get technology here.
To be honest, the Lab was WAY better than the Premier Inn because they’ve REALLY taken their electronic services to the next level! But more about that later…
The Lab Lifestyle is situated on the hills of Franschhoek, towards Haute Cabriere. A home that’s been modernised enough to offer regular travel musts like bed and breakfast, pools and a lounge, but with a twist. The hotel features lifestyle technology far more than most, including a MASSIVE microsoft screen in the lounge, Alexas (voice activated electronics in each bedroom) and electric bikes outside!
Comfortable Bed (Get a Good Night’s Rest)
This is hands down one of the most fun beds I’ve ever slept in! Not only comfortable, but you can direct commands to the room’s appliances and set off an orchestra of electronic interactions. “Alexa, launch Netflix.” “Alexa, lights off.” “Alexa, turn water on.” AND IT WORKS! So I was not only happy to have a very large bed with fresh, soft linen, but the added bonus of the electronics truly made it fun!
Our room was very clean in the Lab, however, there were a lot of unfinished details that needed tidying up. So, not tidying as in “clean” up, but rather as in neaten up the construction details so that the stylish appliances aren’t spoilt.
The bathroom counter had more than enough space for me to pack my things out. I don’t usually even pack all my things out one by one but this illustrated how convenient this counter was. They also included hand lotion, liquid soap, moisture, etc.
The room provided a number of shelves and a decent counter for us to charge our electronics. Considering electronics is an important element to the hotel room, this was satisfactory. There was also plug points next to the bed for two prong plugs.
The Lab is located right in the centre of Franschhoek so it had perfect reception all the time. The hotel also offered free wifi which worked perfectly. The TV had Netflix so it was important for the internet to be well connected and working. We also tested the GIANT TV in the lounge which worked no problem!
Conveniences (fridges, services, etc.)
This room was packed with conveniences! Who doesn’t want to lie in bed and say, “Alexa, open blinds” and it lets the morning light in? The Lab has totally integrated digital appliances into their room and it’s a lot of fun!
Other than the abnormal electronics, they have the usual features like an honesty bar, which includes a complimentary bottle of still or sparkling water that guests can fill up at any point from the kitchen “bar”. They have a great coffee machine, snacks, Netflix and, of course, the joy of Alex. This really was a fun room to try out.
The Lab offers a small and, what feels like, a more private getaway. Guests can lounge around the pool, enjoy a spa massage in an igloo, relax in the sauna or head over to a second house to enjoy their mini cinema!
The staff are incredibly friendly and helpful when teaching how to use the electronics (and helpful after you’ve forgotten although the rooms do provide easy to read instruction manuals for the commands). There’s a HUGE wine rack so that guests can enjoy the best of SA wines or simply relax in the lounge in peace and quiet.
We really enjoyed our stay at the Lab and would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants to dabble with the electronics (or not – it’s not compulsory to use them).
Find the Lab at 15 Nerina St, Franschhoek, 7690.