Cape Town Contemporary

8052714489_938c599eeb_b

Cape Town overwhelms your senses, a city built around its astonishing geography — the winding roads, pastel-colored houses, highest peaks, the twelve apostles standing as guardians, the ocean stretching and curving like a necklace. You can look up and around at any moment and you are just blown over yet again. 

No other African city combines heart-stopping beauty and historical gravitas so effortlessly. – NYTimes

Here is a Culture guide to get you through the different neighborhoods and the good food that’s around. Cape Town is a must-do starting point to any good adventure in South Africa, and this is just one post of a multi-part series.

STAY// O on Kloof

image

image

O on Kloof has to be the choice of a discerning traveler who wants hotel amenities in a private home. O is a small hotel with very intimate settings; the entrance feels like a grand stair entrance to a private mansion. Stepping through the main gate you find yourself in a serene modernist water garden.

You enter into a library and a bar with a side of the Atlantic Ocean as your views, the balcony overlooks the roof-tops of Sea Point towards the sea where huge ships slide slowly past Robben Island. Take a sip of champagne that is offered as a welcome drink and be ready to be wowed from here on out.

A sophisticated city sanctuary presiding over Cape Town’s cosmopolitan Atlantic Seaboard.

Named after its owner Olaf (Dambrowski), the O on Kloof is an oasis of calm on the bustling Sea Point, picturesque drives across a forest and thick wooded roads and couple of turns later you land on the other side of Kloof that is closer to the beaches and occasional viewings of the Humpbacks from your terrace.

image

image

Martin, the bartender/manager is ready to pour you Sherrys (that are on-the-house) or mix up some ‘heart-happy-drinks’.

image

Interiors of the ‘living room/library/bar’

image

Our room was the O-suite, biggest in the hotel with a jacuzzi, hot tub and terrace with great views.

image

image

image

Nothing beats a bubbly soak and a bubbly in your hand.

image

Wrap around terrace with loungers and hammocks for the ultimate relaxation.

image

On top of all this, I HAVE to mention the staff at O on Kloof for their incredible surprises and services that were provided. It was my birthday and there were cute reminders for the occasion in terms of the decor, a yummy mousse cake with my name on it, and plentiful of champagnes that were always waiting for our arrival.

Patrycja and Bernadette were more than helpful in securing reservations for us, setting us up with itineraries. It’s folks like these that make hotel a home out of home, well with cannot-get-this-at-home service.

EAT//

High Tea at Mt. Nelson

image

I am a BIG fan of this Brit-import custom and I swear no visit to Cape Town is complete without the afternoon Tea at Mount Nelson Hotel, the epitome of the Colonial past.
Delicate finger sandwiches filled with rare roast beef, smoked salmon, egg mayonnaise or cucumber, followed by dark chocolate cake, and lemon meringue with freshly baked scones and clotted cream.

image

Conversations are deep, mind fully relaxed, Tea time should become official everywhere!

image

You are literally transported to the bygone era, the rich, the elegance, ramblings of the high society while sipping tea, powerful men making decisions and you are suddenly sorta reminded of the divide if you look past all the scones and the petite finger food.

With an Apartheid rule until 18 years back, its evident that the divide is still pretty prominent in the ranks of staff in any establishment.

Old Biscuit Mill – Neighborhood Market

The revamped Old Biscuit Mill, built in the late 1800s, now hosts the buzzing Saturday morning Neighbourgoods Market

image

Locals gather to sample organic products, latest collections of South African designers, baked goods, tasting the latest batch of wines while traversing through countless booths of delectable food.

image

Leather goods by Chapel Clothing

image

Long community tables are set, to mingle with Capetonians and share conversations..

image

Wild Mushrooms on skewers

image

image

Impressive display of Roulades

image

A Tea Wagon. One Roobois, please!

image

Col Cacchio

A pizza joint with locations throughout S.Africa.

image

With the perfect toppings that cater to the Indian tastes – minced garlic and green chillies. That makes any shiz taste uber-good.

Manna Epicure

For the best breakfast in town.. The sleek white interior of the stylish Manna Epicure stands in perfect contrast to the delicious, farm style bread paired with freshly made juices.

image

Birds Boutique Cafe

image

A cute cafe with an interesting decor.

The gentle sound of birdsong, playing off a battered old turntable, welcomes you to the rough and ready interior of Birds Boutique Café, a quirky restaurant housed in a beautiful old building in Bree Street. Everything here is slightly unconventional, from the milk crates that serve as chairs to the old bedsheet that separates the dining area from the kitchen. – Unlike

Clarke’s

image

A little bar/dining room close to Birds, is a neat place to grab a sandwich and people watch in the city-center.

Grand Daddy Airstream Park

image

A whimsical airstream trailer park in the rooftop of Grand Daddy Hotel, that also serves as rooms ranging from Easter egg interiors to Afro Punk to Goldilocks blonde outfit and a bar that surrounds it.

image

This over the top, tongue in cheek, accommodations are most sought after especially for its Long Street location, which is always filled with boisterous energy day or night.

Nightly events with live music, film projections make this airstream an unique place to hang.

For a colorful experience stop by the nearby Bo Kaap neighborhood. Pastel colored houses and impressive to the core color combinations make it a super locale for picture perfect photo-op.

image

image

&Union

A Beer Salon and Charcuterie bar, &Union is trying to educate Capetonians about fine beer. Located on Church Street, take a leisure stroll to nearby indie design shops and galleries.

image

Mama Africa

Try atleast one meal thats down right South African cooking, with a cuisine that isn’t very diverse, go here for the experience. Local musicians perform here as well.

image

Curried ‘game’ stew with wild rice. (Game can be anything from Kudu, Ostrich, Springbok)

image

A magnificent city to live, to visit — makes you sad to leave it behind.

Very few places have that effect on you. ‘til next time I visit Cape Town!

Curator. Dreamer. Designer. Founder of FreshGrub. Based in NYC. Seeking Inspiration Everywhere.

Be first to comment

Leave a Reply