Today, our ‘My Favourite Hotel’ review is from Cape Town.
We are currently running this reader-written feature to provide some positivity and inspiration to Head for Points. You can find all of the ‘My Favourite Hotel’ reviews so far by clicking here. This was scheduled to be a series of about 25 hotels, but a good response from readers means that we have commissioned another batch and are continuing the series.
Today’s hotel is The Vineyard hotel in Cape Town. It is reader Helen’s favourite hotel and here is her review:
Nestled under Table Mountain, the most beautiful mountain in all the world, you find The Vineyard hotel in Cape Town. Its classic and understated charm provides a tranquil and gorgeous spot for a wonderful trip to “the Mother City”.
Our favourite part of the hotel are its magnificent gardens (eight acres!) which are large and abundant with gorgeous greenery and flowers. A family of tortoises roams freely through the gardens and there is a sweet river which flows at the bottom of the property.
One can spend hours getting lost in the gardens, which feel more like a magical forest. There is always something special to see, from amazing South African florals to exotic birds and butterflies.
The Vineyard is situated in the Claremont area of Cape Town. It is a great location for exploring Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, Muizenberg Beach and the city centre.
Getting to The Vineyard hotel
We travelled with British Airways and rented a car at the airport with Hertz. Parking at the hotel is free and I would definitely recommend renting a car to explore the city, the nearby wine lands and the beautiful scenery. If you don’t want to rent a car, the hotel can organise a taxi for you and Uber is widely available. There is also a private car service, which is more expensive, but can be booked at the Travel Desk, near the reception area. The hotel also offers pick-ups and drop offs to the airport and a complimentary shuttle bus which goes to the nearest shopping mall called Cavendish Square.
To the left of the main house is the swimming pool, which is large and sparkling clean. Here you can order drinks and food to your sun lounger from the Splash Café. The menu at the Splash Café is pretty extensive, from salads, sushi, hamburgers to milkshakes and ice-creams. Unfortunately we found the service slightly on the slow side.
There is also a small indoor warm-water pool and a gym. The gym is well equipped and overlooks the swimming pool. It is always a treat to have a work-out with the fresh air coming in and looking out onto a beautiful view.
I booked regular personal training sessions with the gym instructor at the hotel which was amazing and a great start to my day. I would suggest booking sessions way in advance because the instructors get booked up quickly especially during peak season.
We also had one of the gym trainers take us on a guided walk of the mountain which was really wonderful as it was nice to have a knowledgeable guide showing us the way and explaining the history of the area.
The hotel also has a spa which is part of the international Banyan Tree brand. It offers therapeutic massages, facials and a variety of lovely treatments by trained therapists, using natural ingredients and aromatherapy. I had a facial and a pedicure and my husband had a massage. Both were extremely relaxing and I would definitely have more treatments, if I return. They are not on the cheap side though, so we limited ourselves!
The bedrooms are luxurious and spacious, with lovely interiors and spotless en-suite bathrooms and sheets. The beds are large, and the hotel can accommodate roller beds and cots for families. Most rooms have recently been renovated and some have magnificent views across the gardens and of the mountain.
We travelled with my extended family so had a range of ages with us. My partner, my children and I stayed in a large mountain facing room on the first level, called a Mountain Deluxe Room. We had a large king-sized bed and there was also room for a small single bed for our toddler and a cot for our baby.
We had our own private patio area outside which had a small table and chairs and a sun lounger. This was lovely to sit on when our children had afternoon naps. Each room has a Nespresso coffee station and obviously a gorgeous en-suite with both bath and shower.
My younger brother stayed in a courtyard-facing room, in the standard option, overlooking a green courtyard. His room was on the same level as ours. His room was a very good size and also had a lovely en-suite bathroom with shower, bath, and ample cupboard space.
My parents stayed in a deluxe suite on the north side of the property with a spacious balcony overlooking the gardens and mountain scape. It was really beautiful and well worth the extra money.
Food and drinks
The food in the main restaurant was five-star and I find myself dreaming about the breakfasts, overflowing with fresh mango, granadilla, granola, yogurt, pastries and of course eggs. For later in the day, there is a wide variety of food on the menu from both The Square, but also the Garden Lounge and the on-site restaurant Myoga.
Afternoon tea under the trees is very unique and the scones with cream and jam are lovely. The hotel was extremely helpful in regards to helping us feed our children and baby. We ordered food off-menu, particularly kid’s meals. They also cleaned and sanitised our baby’s bottles and helped make up milk. In general South Africa was extremely kid-friendly and welcoming.
Importantly, the hotel has a good environmental ethos, especially in regard to saving water and using ethically sourced ingredients. I was excited to learn that the hotel has 80 solar panels which are supplied with green energy from the Darling Wind Farm and that they recycle 98% of their waste!
The best thing of all are the smiling staff who have worked there for years who are always friendly and warm. It is a family hotel and you get the sense that you are part of a large happy family whenever you stay there.
I would highly recommend The Vineyard hotel and am looking forward to my next trip as soon as possible.
How to book
We booked directly with the hotel, who were extremely helpful. Our breakfast was included in our rate.
If you want to find out more, the hotel’s website is here.
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