I must admit that I am getting a little blasé about my life. A few years ago, when I was teaching high school kids where to put the apostrophe and how to speak in public, if someone had told me that at some point in the future I would be flying to Cape Town for business and staying in one of the most beautiful hotels in the Cape FOR FREE, I would have laughed hysterically before checking their schoolbag for Ecstasy pills. Or diet pills (one can never have too many). But fast forward, and here I am with my butt firmly in the butter.
If truth be told, the shine may have worn off a little, but it still takes a lot to impress me. One hotel room begins to blend into another and at the end of the day you really end up missing your family and staring at the television – no matter how superbly decorated your little room may be.
But not this time – because THIS time, I was at the Cape Royale. And let me tell you – this hotel is VERY different.
Pay attention now.
It’s actually quite hard to do this superb venue justice – because it is such a melting pot of styles. Picture a New York hotel with a doorman that is dressed to the nines, taking your bag and welcoming you (and meaning it). Then picture stepping into something that looks like the lobby of The Grace Hotel in Rosebank but more opulent and sumptuous. Then picture the lift doors opening and you have row upon row of black glossy doors that open into your own studio apartment – that is so much more than a hotel room – it’s a whole suite. (In fact, the hotel actually has permanent residents – I don’t blame them. I also wanted to stay forever.)
My “apartment” had a fully stocked kitchen – dishwasher, full-sized fridge, washing machine, coffee maker, toaster (I thought it was the CD player and accidentally almost roasted Kings of Leon). It even has a full oven and microwave. I had my own flat screen TV, the (real) DVD player with a list of movies I could order free of charge from downstairs, two air conditioners, a TV in the bedroom, free Wi-Fi access, and the most enormous shower I have ever seen. The only thing missing is a bath, but it’s a small price to pay when you can run laps around your hotel room instead of staring at 4 walls. There is even an iron and ironing board – heaven for the business traveller who needs to iron a few hastily packed clothes.
The breakfast each morning is in the restaurant downstairs and is pretty standard as breakfast menus come and go – but just that little bit tastier. I chose to spend an extra hour in bed one morning and had a rather delicious meal at my dining room table (did I mention that my room had one?) while watching Sky News and drinking freshly percolated coffee that I had made earlier that morning. It just feels more like “home” – with all the conveniences of a house but with the luxuries of a hotel. No little kettles being filled in the bathroom sink – you have a whole open-plan kitchen here!
There is a SUPERB spa called Equinox downstairs and I suggest you ask for the male masseuse called Peter. His Chakra Balancing Massage was superb. I also had a Dermalogica facial and LED light treatment which is highly recommended and very well priced. You can read all about LED in this week’s Beauty Column
The Hotel is also so incredibly accommodating with shuttles to other hotels or venues in the nearby CBD. It is close to the Waterfront, the Cape Town Convention Centre, as well as the Mount Nelson for that well-deserved Afternoon Tea.
I think it is the only hotel for corporates – you will never be able to stay in a hotel again, as well as couples visiting Cape Town and wanting to be in the centre of town or near the V & A Waterfront. But if you are a regular traveller – then this has to be high on your contact list – I cannot recommend it enough.
Review by Shelli NT