Saturday, 18 February 2012

Arrival in Cape Town

I own a wine estate just outside Cape Town, South Africa, and given the never-ending Satanic English winter, I decided to take myself off for a 10-day visit; well, what harm could it do to get some well-needed Vitamin D to lift the winter blues, as well as check out a city that always seems to be full of hunky Cape Tonians who know how to party.

The above shot was taken from a helicopter ride I took.  I hope it shows you how beautiful I find Cape Town.

I wanted some independence during my stay, so rather than stay at the accommodation on the wine estate, which is 1 hour outside Cape Town, I opted to stay at what for me is not only the most luxury hotel in Cape Town, it is also one of the best hotels in the world: Ellerman House.

Once the summer residence of shipping magnate Sir John Ellerman and his wife, Lady Esther, this cliff-hugging Cape Edwardian mansion has nine rooms, two suites, a 180 degree spa with infinity pool, a Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired villa, and one of South Africa’s finest collections of contemporary local art inside a 30-ft gallery carved into the rock beneath the large, manicured garden.  The views from the garden are the best in Cape Town, stretching over the glittering Atlantic, to Robben Island and inland to the Lion’s Head; the staff tell me Lady Esther used a telescope to check the punctuality of ships on their course through the boulder-strewn waters below. 

Every guest-room is different, but themed around the ocean, such as the aquamarine, beige and oyster pastels of my bedroom, No 2.  I also adore the Cape Dutch furniture chosen for its collectibility and beauty, the duck-egg blue of the breakfast room ("you should feel like you are inside a Tiffany box") and the HIER Sculpture, a 20-ton man’s head made from stacked slate, beside a statue of a man pointing, entitled Order and Chaos, both created by Angus Taylor. 

I took an interesting cultural tour around the rainbow-coloured streets of Bo-Kaap, the old Malay quarter of Cape Town, in which one can sample some great curries. 

I will post more on my stay in Cape Town under a new entry.

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