DARLING SWEET, manufacturers of South Africa’s favourite toffees, is celebrating National Toffee Day on Tuesday, January 8 with the launch of a ninth new flavour to its already burgeoning assortment, as well as new packaging for the entire range of its 150g boxes.
Says Darling Sweet’s co-founder and product developer Hentie van der Merwe: “We are delighted to kick off the new year with a fabulous new flavour – Chocolate Toffee – that we think will be a hit with toffee lovers across the country. The decadence of dark chocolate adds depth and mystery to our rich butter-caramel toffee.”
Adds van der Merwe: “We are also thrilled with the new packaging which has been designed by the UK-based South African artist Peter Mammes. It is the visual brilliance of his work that we so admire and that led us to commission him to create the unique, bold and playful designs that we have used for the new look for our entire toffee range.”
Other toffee flavours available from Darling Sweet include Bird’s Eye Chili, Coffee, Mint, Liquorice, Honey & Salt, Rooibos Chai, Orange & Cranberry and Tannie Evita’s Classic.
Recognised by the National Confectioners’ Association, National Toffee Day is celebrated by millions across the world on January 8 every year as fans of the confectionery indulge in their passion. The history of this delicious sweet has sparked much debate, leading to various theories in efforts to explain its origin. Historians can highlight some important events related to food history.
The word “toffee” appeared in the Oxford English dictionary for the first time in 1825, and although it’s not known when the word was first used it is believed to come from the word “tafia”, a West Indian rum made with molasses or sugarcane juice. Another theory says that toffee’s earlier spelling, “toughy” or “tuffy”, referred to its chewy toughness.
Oddly, Americans refer to toffee as “English toffee” as their version is called Buttercrunch, the difference primarily being the ingredients, as “English” toffee is made with brown sugar, whereas buttercrunch is made with white granulated sugar and also includes a variety of nuts unlike traditional toffee.
Toffee Trivia: The largest piece of toffee weighed 1 334 kilograms and was created by Susie’s South Forty Confections, Inc of Midland, Texas on 17 September, 2002.
Darling Sweet’s 150g boxes retail at R57 and are available online or from selected outlets countrywide.]]>
5FM’s Secrets of Summer New Year’s Eve Beach Party brought to you by Corona will be at the River Club Golf Estate in Observatory, and promises to be the biggest production yet with four beautifully themed stages and dance arenas; and a (hu)man-made beach oasis complete with soft beach sand, palm trees, day beds, splash pools, geodesic domes, DJ lifeguard towers.
The lineup of SA’s finest groove masters and international stars will ensure you hear the music you love – deep and tech house, disco, hip hop, commercial, Ibiza house, EDM, Brazilian bass – from headliners Shapeless (Brazil) and Wolf Player (Brazil); and South African Favourites Kyle Watson, Locnville, Chunda Munki, Pascal & Pearce, Mark Stent, Strange Loving, The Kiffness, Dean Fuel, Apple Gule, Mogey, Minx, DdoubleJP, Khord, and Gary Night. 5FM celebrity performers include Das Kapital, Rob Forbes, Nick Hamman, and Ryan the DJ.
Limited early bird tickets are available online at www.howler.co.za/sosnye, from R420 (general access) to R880 VIP. Diamond VIP tickets are R2000 (300 only), which include unlimited free drinks served in the platinum lounge as well as access to the VIP dance Floor. For more information on the Raised Gold & Platinum VVIP table packages, call or Whatsapp David +27 74 680 0222.
Gates open at 12pm on December 31, and the event closes at 4am on January 1.
WIN! To stand a chance to win two general access tickets to the party, share this post on Facebook and tag the friend you want to take with you, using the hashtag #eatplaydrinkcapetown. Like and follow the Eat Play Drink Cape Town page on Facebook for more details.]]>
ONCE upon a time there was a private residence built in the 1950s. The family home had changed hands just once in 40 years before James Peech discovered and realised the vision of a boutique hotel deep in the heart of Joburg suburbia.
The Peech Hotel opened in 2004, and with the addition of its new luxury rooms which opened to the public two weeks ago, it now offers 32 rooms and suites. These include two heritage rooms which are in the original residence; as well as spacious suites with over-sized bathrooms and open-plan living spaces, and classic rooms which have private patios or balconies facing onto the gardens.
The garden is an enormously important feature at The Peech, with a majestic oak tree that came with the property; the previous owners made it a condition of sale that it would not be cut down. From this departure point, the garden has grown over the years and offers a tranquil haven for guests to relax. Now in summer, when Joburg gets its rainfall – often accompanied by thunderstorms – the myriad birds rejoice in song after the short downpours.
My room was a classic, on ground level, so it had the private little patio, screened by plants. These rooms are in double-storey “units” of four, and it is interesting to note that although they were built back in the beginning, their exterior design has not dated at all and still works well with the new rooms on the other side of the property.
The Peech is owner-run, supported by a team of friendly and efficient staff. Arriving on a rumble of thunder, as the heavy wooden front door opened, a cat – in typical cat fashion – streaked outside. This was Pippa, with whom I wished to become fast friends but other than allowing me to touch her head, she had different ideas and sadly did not sneak into my bed in the dead of night.
I was warmly welcomed and checked in (even though I was early). Armed with a bottle of red wine and a room service order for an excellent ostrich burger, I retired to my room. In the comprehensive book on the desk I discovered – along with details suggestions of places to visit while in Joburg – that instead of a boring old Do Not Disturb sign, there is a cute little pillow which says “Go Away, I’m Asleep” which you hang on the door handle. Already being a fan of the Do Not Disturb sign, this delighted me. Even better was being told I could take it home as a souvenir.
The next morning, after a wonderful breakfast in the bistro – where all meals are made to order so expect a little bit of a wait – Vicky Peech took me on a tour of the new rooms, and told me more about their policies.
The hotel was Fair Trade certified in 2010, and responsible tourism is a key strategy. This includes sustainability, eco-friendliness, recycling water, solar power, and supporting local industries, businesses and artists wherever possible.
For example, double glazing provides warmth in winter and cool in summer; Oggie hardwood flooring is sourced from sustainable forests; more showers, fewer baths; heat pumps which use less energy than geysers; and award-winning Kalahari bathroom products which are made using only naturally harvested botanical ingredients.
Attention is paid to every detail, including the bistro menu where elements conducive to well-being are used to refresh and rejuvenate guests. When The Peech is a mid-journey destination for visitors en-route to or from the nature reserves and game parks of the northern regions, this is a welcome respite from the ravages of travelling.
“It’s like home…only 10 times better,” smiles Vicky.
The Peech is 10 minutes from the shopping and business centres of Melrose Arch, Rosebank and Sandton, and 45 minutes from OR Tambo Airport. It has two outdoor swimming pools, an acre of gardens, boardroom, library, bar, and gym access (private entrance to adjacent Planet Fitness gym with small charge). Across the road is the James Gray Park and the Wanderers International Cricket Stadium is nearby.
Where: 61 North St, Melrose North, Johannesburg
Telephone: 011 537 9797
THE jazz world recently celebrated the magnificent Ella Fitzgerald’s 100th birthday. The First Lady of Song is remembered through her prolific discography that brings joy to millions of jazz fans all over the globe. She is widely acclaimed as one of the best female singers in history with a timeless repertoire. In her honour, Artscape Theatre Centre is hosting Ella Fitzgerald – A Century in Song, a short season from December 19 to 22, in the Artscape Arena. Performances are at 8pm each night.
Join Anna Davel and Sima Mashazi in this swinging tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, presenting the timeless songs that she made her own, including I Got Rhythm, Can’t Take That Away From Me, Cheek To Cheek, The Lady Is A Tramp, and Summertime, accompanied by Melissa van der Spuy on piano and bassist Wesley Rustin.
The centennial of Ella Fitzgerald celebrates a vocalist whose legacy and influence define a classic era of jazz singing. Remembering 100 years of the “Queen of Jazz”, Davel and Mashazi will be honouring Ella by performing their personal favourite Ella Fitzgerald songs; music she recorded throughout her career – from her early Decca years through to her most beloved Verve albums, as well as Pablo. Through diverse repertoire arranged by the Grammy nominee American pianist John Fresk, Ella’s uncompromising musicality and great song choices can be heard afresh.
Tickets are R120 though Artscape-Dial-a- Seat 021 421 7695, Computicket, Shoprite and Checkers outlets or by calling 0861 915 8000 or online. Discounts are available. Block bookings of 10 or more, pensioners and students with proof of status pay less 10%. Scholars (5-18 years) on presentation of ID pay R80. Seating is unreserved. The duration of the show is 75 minutes and there is no interval.
For more information, contact Artscape, Tanya Williams-Kaponda 021 410 9210 or email email@example.com]]>
WHEN someone asks “single or double?” I don’t understand the question; the answer is always a double. This summer, South African craft gin pioneer Inverroche is hosting a series of live music events in the newly-built outdoor concert area at its Stilbaai distillery, each one featuring an artist double bill.
The first one is on Monday, December 17 with my favourite rockers of all time, Wonderboom, setting the sizzling summer tone along with Prime Circle. There are 12 concerts in the series, which runs until January 4.
But as they say in the late night TV commercials, wait, there is more: Inverroche has released five limited edition gins in collaboration with five of the artists. A single batch of about 1200 bottles per artist has been distilled in “Meg”, Inverroche’s trusted copper pot still (which are usually named after significant women) and each bottle will be filled, labelled and numbered by hand and co-created by each artist. The limited edition bottles will be on sale online and at the Inverroche distillery during the performance of the respective artist. The artists collaborating with Inverroche are Prime Circle, Watershed, Jeremy Loops, Parlotones and Freshlyground.
The Southern Cape region of Stillbaai and its immediate surrounds has recently been recognised as the birthplace of human creativity, with the world’s oldest artwork being discovered at the Blombos Cave not far from the Inverroche distillery. Highlighting the creative connections between the region, the music of the artists and the creativity of Inverroche’s unique fynbos-infused gins, the gin-makers have recently released Coco Carissa, a new gin in its “Creative Collection”.
Concerts are set to begin at 7pm, but the distillery will be operating as usual, offering many activities like gin schools, tours and tastings, rum schools and tastings, as well as garden picnics on the luscious green lawn and liqueur tastings.
Book all events and activities online here, where you’ll also find the full lineup. Tickets from R280 to R350.
One lucky Eat Play Drink Cape Town subscriber will win a prize of a trio of Inverroche gins (Verdant, Classic, Amber) and two VIP tickets to the concert of their choice, including – squeal! – a meet and greet with the bands. All you have to do it sign up for the email notifications and you’ll be in the draw. The winner will be drawn on Friday, December 14. Good luck and happy holidays!
FOR a gift that ticks all the right boxes, look no further than Tokara’s ultra-elegant Méthode Cap Classique. Let the maiden 2011 vintage, available in a slick black gift box, add a touch of style to your Christmas cheer.
This 100% Chardonnay is crafted from cool climate grapes grown on Tokara’s prized Elgin property. The Blanc de Blancs owes its elegance and finesse to the more than four years the wine matured on the lees. These spent yeast cells that remain after bottle fermentation to create the vibrant effervescence, impart texture and complexity to the wine.
The fine, consistent mousse interplays with aromas of freshly baked brioche, fresh apples and a hint of lemon blossom typical of Chardonnay. Delicate bubbles explode in your mouth upon entry leaving you with mouth filling flavours of toasted almonds, freshly buttered toast and notes of lemon and lime preserve.
This dashing MCC is set apart by its unusual Butterfly bottle, specially designed to lend gravitas and sophistication. The depth of flavour is extraordinary and well worth the cellar door price of R650 including the stylish gift box.
For more information, go to www.tokara.com
Put the Balance into gifting with generous twin- pack
Christmas gifting on a budget is a fine balancing act. Balance, the quirky, easy drinking range of wines has it covered with a handy gift pack of two refreshing summer wines and a long stemmed glass to suit your pocket.
Quality driven yet affordable, Balance wines are perfect for life’s lighter moments. The gift packs include the vibrant Balance Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2018 and the vibey Balance Shiraz Rosé 2018. The white wine is crisp and juicy – ideal with light summer foods and Asian inspired dishes. The fruity Rosé teems with raspberries and prunes and goes swimmingly with fuss-free foods – think pasta, pizza, smoked salmon and salads.
The Balance gift pack is available exclusively at Checkers stores countrywide at a festive price of R149.99. You will also find it at the Overhex Winery & Bistro if you are passing through Worcester over the holidays.
Innovative Mensa gift pack unfolds as a nifty ice bucket
Mensa, the ultimate book club wine taking storytelling to the next level through digital innovation, has come up with a novel gift pack for the festive season that doubles up as a nifty ice bucket.
The gift pack literally unfolds into a cooler making it ideal as a fun stocking filler or as a centre piece for sharing at the Christmas table. All you need to do is add the ice.
Launched earlier this year as the first South African wine supported by an augmented reality (AR) wine app, Mensa has already been lauded for innovative design and packaging at the 2018 International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) Design & Media Awards in London.
The gift pack is available exclusively at Checkers stores countrywide at a festive price of R74.99. You will also find it at the Overhex Winery & Bistro if you are passing through Worcester over the holidays.
The Mensa label on the bottle comes to life as a book revealing the full story of the wine when scanned using the Mensa Wine App on a smartphone. Mensa also sports the convenient Amorim Helix closure that can be twisted open and resealed by hand.
For more information go to www.mensawines.com, or follow MensaWine on Facebook and Instagram, and @mensa_wine on Twitter.
Survivor Pinotage gift pack comes to the rescue at Makro
Survive the Christmas rush and head straight for the wine aisle at your nearest Makro to pick up a Survivor Pinotage gift pack courtesy of this free-spirited range of quality wines from the Swartland.
The perfect gift for wine lovers, the gift pack comprises a bottle of hearty Survivor Pinotage 2016 and two trendy stemless wine glasses. The pack depicts the legendary Nguni cow that jumped off a bakkie and chose as its new home the Rust’s Constantia farm near Malmesbury where the Survivor grapes are grown, declaring: “The cow stops here”.
Firmly rooted in low-yielding dryland Swartland vineyards, Survivor Pinotage is enjoyed for its structure and fullness. This is a fruit driven wine with rich flavours of prune, plum and cherries complemented by elegant notes of spice and cedar. The wine was barrel-matured for 18 months. This home grown wine variety is a perfect fit for an authentic South African festive season braai of sweet barbeque ribs, boerewors and steak.
The Survivor gift pack is available exclusively at Makro stores countrywide at a festive price of R169. You will also find it at the Overhex Winery & Bistro if you are passing through Worcester over the holidays. For more information visit www.overhexsurvivor.com]]>
WHEN they make it look so effortless, you know you are in the presence of true talent… ballerinas, singers, acrobats, magicians…and David Kramer. His latest musical, Langarm, now on at The Fugard Theatre, is pure Kramer magic.
The story of love and intrigue set in the story-world of Cape Town’s ballroom dance culture in the 1960s when the threat of the new apartheid laws were hanging ominously overhead, is deftly driven by the songs. These are complemented by the extremely fine vocals, exquisite dancing, fabulous costumes and all-round powerful energy. Yes, I think those are enough adjectives for now.
The tale begins with the recently-widowed Dinah Levin (Kim Louis – reuniting with Kramer after 20 years, having been in Kat And The Kings on Broadway), who invites her recently-dumped nephew Jeff (Cameron Botha – Funny Girl, West Side Story) to come help her manage her late husband’s hotel, the Canterbury. This being a street name not far from the Fugard itself gives us an appropriate sense of location.
When Jeff meets ballroom dancer Angelina (Rushney Ferguson – King Kong, District Six: Kanala), he’s quite taken with her, and when her dance partner bails on her she asks Jeff to step in for the very important championships in Swaziland. Easy? Not at all – the laws of the time could see them both jailed for fraternising across the colour lines.
Then there is Eddie Jephta, the leader of the Moonlight Serenaders langarm band, which comes to play at The Canterbury Hotel when Jeff decides to introduce langarm dance evenings. There are more secrets here, old ones reaching back into the past, which Dinah must confront.
Eddie is played by Elton Landrew who was in the award-winning Ellen: The Ellen Pakkies Story. He originally played Young Kat Diamond in the David Kramer and Taliep Petersen musical Kat And The Kings, touring Germany and Austria as well as the Tricycle Theatre in London.
The cast is completed with a superb ensemble of singers and dancers: “We have brought together some of SA’s most established stage performers with the country’s phenomenal rising talent,” says Kramer.
The esteemed Eddy Cassar wrote this post on Facebook after seeing the show, and I hope he doesn’t mind me sharing it here, because it really does sum up everything I felt too, and I can’t say it better:
“David Kramer’s new musical, Langarm at The Fugard in District Six, is not to be missed. I have always loved the way Kramer tell stories, creates characters and brings them to life.
“You can see that Langarm has been crafted by a perfectionist. Every aspect of the production is beautiful. The attention to every miniscule detail, is spectacular.
“The production introduces many new characters to the stage, most unknown to the industry. Kramer has shaped them into stars that shine so brightly in this story.
“Expect one beautiful song after another, world-class acting, dancing and singing, great costumes, a magnificent set and lighting, a super-tight band and bucket loads of energy and enthusiasm.
“Don’t miss this one Cape Town. Booking I would imagine is heavy.
“It’s our duty to support local theatre – you won’t be disappointed.”
Langarm has a recommended age advisory of no under 12s, and will be performed at The Fugard Theatre from Tuesdays to Saturdays at 8pm with a matinee performance on Saturdays at 3pm. From Sunday December 16, there will be an additional Sunday matinee at 3pm. There will be a Monday night performance at 8pm on December 31 also at 8pm.
Tickets ranging from R150 to R260 can be booked through The Fugard Theatre box office on 021 461 4554 or through The Fugard Theatre’s website. There is a 20% discount for the Friends of The Fugard members. These discounted tickets can be booked through the box office.
Visit the ground-floor bar for a before and after show drink and snacks. If the weather plays along, enjoy the panoramic city views from The Fugard Theatre’s rooftop bar. There is secure parking for a small fee directly opposite The Fugard Theatre in Harrington Square.
FEATURED IMAGE BY JESSE KRAMER]]>
WINE, olives, horse riding, mountain biking, game viewing, zip lining, bygone ways of baking bread, cocktails, dalliances with Lady Luck…all of these are available to visitors to the Worcester area. We experienced a few of them, and more than one has delivered ongoing advantages.
Here in the Breede Valley is the home of the award-winning Willow Creek olive oils, which you can taste and buy at the factory shop at very jolly prices. Besides the fabulous range of flavoured oils which have been generously used in almost all my cooking ever since, jars of olives and tapenades make great gifts for yourself or others.
That is long-term pleasure number one. The other one which has surprised me enormously is the soap from the Worcester Museum. Allow me to elaborate.
The museum at Kleinplasie, a short distance outside of the Worcester CBD, is not only a succession of rooms with displays of Cape colonial history with agricultural implements, wagons, furniture, glass, ceramics, textiles and metal inside glass cases and behind ropes (a locked cage in the case of the firearms); it’s a cultural history museum with a strong focus on agriculture where the grounds have been developed with structures forming a traditional Cape farmyard. Live demonstrations depict activities of a bygone era such as the baking of bread in an outdoor brick oven and the forging of metal by a blacksmith.
A tour of the property takes you to these buildings where people dressed in period costume actually make things like bread and milk tart (melktert), cigars, witblits, candles and soap. Your guide will explain the history as you go along.
If you’ve seen Fight Club you might remember a bit about making soap. Apparently any kind of fat can be used along with carbolic acid; for candles you can use only beef or goat fat. Now you know. The sorcery of this soap, however, is that it is a fabulous stain remover when washing your clothes. Yes, yes, I know – terribly domestic. But also terribly practical. You can buy a chunk of it in the museum shop, and you won’t be sorry.
Other activities demonstrated at the museum include the roasting and milling of coffee beans, and metal forging. Two lazy-eyed donkeys are hitched to a cart upon which you can ride. Outside, all manner of fowl ranges around, including a large number of geese who surrounded our car, blocking our exit. I’ve learned on my travels not to mess with geese, so we just had to wait.
Among the wineries in the region is Overhex, which came to my attention earlier this year when it released a wine called Mensa, which is supported by an augmented reality (AR) wine app. I got the cabernet sauvignon which I have yet to open and discover but apparently between the label and the app, it all comes to life as a book revealing the full story of the wine, which should certainly be lots of fun after a few glasses.
Next month – January 26 – the winery will host a concert featuring alternative Afrikaans music with Spoegwolf, ahead of the release of the band’s fourth album, Koma, in February. Tickets are R250 and include a picnic basket. Good to keep in mind when entering the competition alongside.
Our base during this stay was the Golden Valley Casino & Lodge. There’s nothing fancy or pretentious about it; simply a good old-fashioned no-frills stayover packaged in small-town hospitality and generosity of spirit.
The two-storey family-friendly lodge is a separate building from the casino. It’s here you’ll be accommodated in comfortable rooms (it is alongside the N1 so expect a bit of traffic noise if you’re booked on that side), and where you’ll take your buffet breakfast in the morning. The poolside is one of my favourite places, with its views of the mountains in the distance. A pretty umbrella drink – alcoholic or virgin – close at hand is just the thing for a holiday feeling.
Later, you can stroll across to the casino where you can flirt with Lady Luck (doubling my R50 on the roulette table was still a win, even if I’m hardly a high roller), have a meal at Kuipers Restaurant (lots of super-affordable specials), and enjoy live entertainment in the Winners Sports Bar. On the night we were there, 2015 Idols contestant and Worcester local Elwira Standili was performing for her fans.
With all it has to offer, Worcester is a lovely option for a little getaway.
Golden Valley Casino & Lodge
Where: Between Brandwag and Roux Roads
Telephone: 023 348 7200
Where: Mountain Mill Mall, Entrance 2
Telephone: 023 342 6244
PHOTO CREDIT: BIANCA COLEMAN
BECOME part of a musical journey with more than a hundred electronic artists from around the world at at Vortex Open Source 2018, a five-day event over several music arenas creating a flowing musical mosaic, from December 13 to 17. Participate in holistic workshops and educational talks, camp in the forest, and reconnect with friends and family – old and new.
It’s been 24 years since Vortex was founded by Grant Dreyer (pictured below), who discovered trance when he visited India and found 50 different nationalities, from many different religions, all partying together to a single beat of music. “The joy exuded was mind blowing – especially as I was from South Africa,” he recalls. “Immediately I realised this was a wonderful experience to introduce to our rainbow nation back home where no one knew much about it.”
Vortex began the electronic music experience in South Africa in 1994; there was no techno or house or any of the other rave genres that exist today, says Grant. “When we began, it was just ‘rave music and one was either a raver or not. The beauty of this music was the close connection between everyone.”
Trance began its journey in India where a regular gathering of people danced and partied on the beaches. The actual roots of its sound was developed from disco music in the 1980s when electronic pieces of music were extracted from multiple, current artists and then generated into one-hour long mixes of electronic music. And trance was born.
Trance culture shouldn’t be confused with a ‘hippie culture’, which has negative connotations, comments Grant. “I prefer the academic term ‘Bohemian philosophy’, which precludes any kind of definitions or judgements about race, colour, and religion. This is a single philosophy which interconnects those who welcome it and so its catch phrase is ‘one love’. It is the realisation everyone is the same because we all face the same daily problems in today’s world and by working together we can live byond these problems.”
Over the past 24 years, trance has become a universal phenomenon with millions of followers and the community that has evolved from it is shows that it is a way of living which everyone can embrace.
Vortex Open Source holds two annual music festivals: the Open Source Five Day Festival in December and the Phoenix Festival Of Fire in June. Both are as close as possible to the two annual solstices. The winter solstice is the Pagan celebration of the feminine aspect of the world; at the summer solstice, Pagans honour the sun and the divine powers that create life.
“We are just coming out of a patriarchal society where man has dominated the planet and looking at the world news today, we must ask, ‘Have men done a good job on our planet?’, says Grant.
DATE: December 13 – 17
TIME: 9am (13th) till 6pm (17th)
VENUE: Circle of Dreams, Riviersonderend
CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org, cell 071 468 8339
LINE-UP: Too many to mention ( but does Vortex ever disappoint?)
TICKETS: R700 (Quicket and selected outlets). Gate 13/12 R750, 14/12 R700, 15/12 R650, 16/12 R400, 17/12 R250
For more information on accommodation and shuttles, click here or here.
www.Vortex Trance Adventures or FaceBook Event page Vortex Open Source 2018
BETWEEN Simon’s Town and Cape Point, you’ll find Boulders Beach; how it got its name is obvious from the giant granite rocks that protect sheltered coves. The beach itself is part of Table Mountain National Park, and is home to the endangered and protected African penguins who settled there back in the 1980s.
Endemic to the coastlines of Southern Africa (South Africa and Namibia) these penguins are under the protection of Cape Nature which is infinitely better than being under the protection of the Mob. The Boulders section of TMNP – part of SANpark or South African National Parks – consists of three pristine beaches, one penguin viewing area and three boardwalks. The boardwalks were built to allow for viewing of the birds while keeping spectators at a safe and respectful distance for both parties. Access to this area is almost on the doorstep of the newly-opened Tintswalo Boulders boutique villa.
The villa is the latest addition to the Tintswalo Lodges portfolio of luxury lodges and boutique hotels that are all set in iconic locations. The collection of family-owned and run properties includes Tintswalo Atlantic in Hout Bay, Tintswalo Safari Lodge and Tintswalo Manor House in the Manyeleti Private Game Reserve, and luxury tented camp Tintswalo at Lapalala Wilderness in the Waterberg region (Limpopo province).
With nine double suites and a children’s suite, Tintswalo Boulders can sleep 18 adults and two little ones; one of those suites has two queen beds so you could probably push up the numbers. Once two houses now combined in a renovation, rebuilding and decorating feat which took only a remarkable two months, the villa can be booked in its entirety or split into two; each side has its own kitchen and communal living and dining areas, as well as deep, verandas overlooking False Bay. A small pool on the upper deck, as well as a fire pit in the courtyard, service the whole property.
Guests can cook for themselves in the fabulous life-goal kitchen, or a private chef can be added to the bill to dish up delicious dinners and lunches. A sumptuous breakfast buffet complemented by a hot meal made to order is included in your stay, as are afternoon snacks, which is terribly civilised. You get complimentary wifi, and you can book an in-room spa treatment. Next year, they’ll be adding a flotation tank.
Beautiful interior design and décor is a trademark of the Tintswalo brand and this villa is no exception. There is incredible attention to detail throughout, and the mood is distinctly sophisticated seaside holiday. Each suite is named after a famous ship; mine was Mary Rose and clearly the best suite in the house.
Glass double doors open up onto a deck, and two short flights of stairs lead to a gate which in turn allows access to the pathway to the beach and the penguin boardwalk. The massive four-poster bed contains a startling 14 pillows and cushions (most of which were discreetly whisked away at turn-down) and there was an antique “ladder” to help a person climb up.
The windows have black out shutters which are most welcome as the suite faces the rising sun. There is a large dressing room which will suit long term guests. In there, you’ll also find the extensive mini bar and coffee/tea making facilities (including fresh milk in the fridge), as well as robes and fabulously squishy slippers which murmur “luxury” as you slide your feet into them.
After that is the huge bathroom with double vanity and a bath in which sea shells are arranged to spell out the words “save H20”; I rearranged them into a smiley heart which may or may not have amused housekeeping. There’s still more, though: another short corridor to the shower and loo, all in all making my accommodation probably bigger than my entire flat.
I was impressed by the numerous thoughtful touches which add that little bit extra when it comes to ensuring a comfortable stay. I’ve never used one, but I’m sure a diffuser attachment for the hairdryer will be appreciated by those who do, and the magazines were the kind I like to read (no Golf Digest, no offense).
While simply spending time in the villa is a tonic for the soul, if you need to spread your adventurous wings a bit, a concierge service is offered for snorkeling safaris and guided sea kayaking excursions, as well as bookings at restaurants.
An opening special is available until March 31, 2019, offering a complimentary third night when booking a two-night stay (peak season block out period December 15 – January 15 applies). Low season rate is from R2500 per room per night and high season from R3000 per room per night including full breakfast and afternoon snacks.
Exclusive-use of the villa is from R24 000 per night (excluding all meals). A minimum stay of three nights is required for exclusive-use bookings.
Where: 7 Gay Road, Simon’s Town
Telephone: 011 300 8888
Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org