THE GRACEFUL ELEGANCE OF CAPE GRACE HOTEL
The moment we walked into the Cape Grace Hotel in Cape Town, South Africa, I sensed we had entered a world of personalized service, refinement and quiet elegance one might expect in a top-drawer luxury boutique hotel. We were invited to sit down at the reception desk, offered a refreshing drink, and enjoyed a relaxing check-in focused on our needs for our stay at the Cape Grace Hotel. Did we have any questions about our stay in Cape Town? … did we need a Cape Grace Hotel chauffeur to take us anywhere? … did we want the Hotel Concierge to make any bookings for us?
This focus on exceptionally fine service continued throughout our stay and clearly embodies the philosophy of the Cape Grace Hotel to welcome and attend to the needs of all its guests as family. No request is too small, because the staff take great pride and care to share in the goal of enhancing the pleasure of their guests. And they succeed.
What else is exceptional about the multiple-award winning Cape Grace Hotel ?
The location, the comfort and decor of the rooms, the fine dining, the bar, and the spa along with the other amenities including the pool. In essence, quite simply everything, including the soothing, relaxing ambiance.
If I’ve piqued your curiosity, then let’s examine some of the particulars … Starting with its ideal location in the heart of Cape Town, the Cape Grace Hotel offers views over the splendid Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and the iconic Table Mountain, named one of the new 7 Wonders of Nature in 2011.
The Harbor views from the Guest Rooms on the top floors and from all the 13 Suites are breathtaking, but the hotel, which is surrounded on three sides by water, offers magnificent views from most all of its rooms. I loved sitting out on the balcony off our room, sipping an herbal tea, and allowing myself to be entranced by the views. Of course, a glass of a fine Stellenbosch wine provided the ultimate pleasure.
As for the spacious guest rooms, each one is decorated differently but they all elegantly showcase local African artifacts and hand-painted fabrics and feature spacious dressing rooms, including a dressing table which I adored. They also feature complimentary Wi-Fi, comfy chairs and fresh complimentary biscotti in the room’s armoire bar … irresistible along with the views.
The suites, on the other hand, are truly furnished to serve as a home-away-from-home, and are ideal for an extended stay in Cape Town as well as for families since the Cape Grace Hotel graciously provides special services for families arriving with children.
Part of the elegance and allure of the Cape Grace Hotel is the decorative attention to detail and the fine woodwork. Artwork and artifacts, especially those with a nautical theme, are found throughout the hotel, so that walking the corridors, exiting an elevator, or relaxing in the Library with Afternoon Tea highlighted by local South African Rooibus tea and freshly baked cakes is enhanced by the fascinating decor. In other words, eye candy of genuine interest is everywhere, and the view inside the Cape Grace Hotel can be as alluring as the views of nature and the harbor outside the hotel. Plus, once you sink into one of the hotel’s many comfy, plush chairs or sofas, I can assure you that parting will be sweet sorrow.
Should the mention of Afternoon Tea whet your appetite, then let me share that we enjoyed a spectacular evening at the elegant award-winning Signal Restaurant, renowned for its Cape Cosmopolitan Cuisine which features traditional South African dishes with a Cape Malay twist.
Upon our arrival at the restaurant’s elegant old-world bar, we were treated to a South African wine tasting by the bartender who is also a knowledgeable sommelier.
Thirty minutes later, very mellow and ready for dinner, we moved into the main room of Signal Restaurant for a fabulous Tasting Menu with wine pairings. Luxurious with impeccable service, the meal was superb and original. I loved Signal’s eclectic focus on the blending of the many nationalities and cuisines of South Africa, including Dutch, British, French, Asian and African. My favorite …the bobotie-spiced springbok, butternut arancini, cauliflower and apricot jus paired exquisitely with a South African The Berrio, 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon.
Should you be after the ultimate bar experience in Cape Town, then you must try Cape Grace Hotel’s Bascule Whiskey, Wine and Cocktail Bar. Featuring a gorgeous waterfront view, Bascule offers over 500 whiskies from around the world as well as some of the finest wines on the Cape. Bespoke whiskey tastings orchestrated by a Whiskey Sommelier can be booked for seekers of fine whiskey, and Bascule also serves tapas and other bar food to accompany the whiskey and wine in the Bascule Lounge adjacent to the main bar.
What about breakfast, the most important meal of the day? Our first morning we tried the room service and felt very pampered indeed. Would I like my bacon a bit crispier? Or, oh my goodness, did I forget to order a fruit platter? No problem, the waiter whisked away and returned in a flash while I sipped my green tea and enjoyed the view.
The next two mornings we stopped counting calories and indulged in the fabulous breakfast buffet of Signal Restaurant. The array of appealing food was awesome, making selection a difficult challenge on an empty stomach. But that was the point, and we thoroughly enjoyed our meal both mornings, from start to finish, with – of course – very attentive service from our waiter as I ordered more green tea and then a double espresso to accompany the sweet indulgence I’ve become accustomed to enjoying at the end of a buffet breakfast.
I must also point out that the breakfast ambiance was thoroughly enhanced by the elegance of the crystal chandelier and Bird of Paradise flowers gracing the buffet table. Plus, the charming view of the swimming pool from our breakfast window added a bit of panache as well.
Even the hotel gift shop has an excellent assortment of quality gifts to purchase and offers the top-drawer service which is clearly pervasive throughout the Cape Grace Hotel. With no intention of doing anything more than browsing, I wondered into the gift shop and 45 minutes later emerged with three items, each carefully selected with one of the shop owners to suit my needs. Twenty minutes later, all three purchases were delivered to my room impeccably packaged to survive the travel home in my luggage.
La crème-de-la-crème in quality and service. Why would you want to stay anywhere else in Cape Town than at the Cape Grace Hotel?
Stay tuned to BonVoyageurs.com for our writings about other Countries of the World as we share our joie de vivre from around the world. Luxury escapes, cruises and city breaks to Québec City, New York, Washington, Buenos Aires. In Europe and the Mediterranean, places like Paris and Nice in France, Florence, Rome, Napoli and the Amalfi Coast in Italy, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in Israel. In Asia, countries like China, India, Nepal and so much more!