(City Press, Rhodé Marshall)
There’s something strangely beautiful about being in an unfamiliar area in a city you call home, though it can easily make you feel out of place and somewhat uncomfortable. I think I was probably a pre-teen when I saw the beautiful Clifton 4th Beach for the first time – about 35km away from my childhood home in Belhar. Besides the freezing water and the chic suburb, I was confused by the feeling of wonder and discomfort. I was a weird and quiet kid back then – afraid of almost everything foreign to my norm. Everything was so unfamiliar... I couldn’t stop staring at the couple next to us eating what I didn’t know at the time was sushi. So confused!
Years later, after landing in Cape Town on a strangely warm winter day, when the mountain looked beautiful and sans a horrendous Cape wind, my eyes were a little bigger than usual as we drove in the opposite direction of my usual visit to the city. The Marly, a boutique hotel in Camps Bay, is an 11-suite, five-star showpiece and would be my home for one night before I’d jet off to the not-so-glam but oh-so-warm and homely Kraaifontein.
While a little confused about where to enter the hotel, I eventually liked the secluded and private entrance at the top of The Promenade on the buzzing Victoria Road. To get there, you have to drive up to the top of the parking lot of The Promenade. The staff are friendly and helpful from the moment they hear a car approaching the entrance, offering the most seamless check-in. My sea-facing room was gorgeous – white linen, white towels, white furniture – I was almost too afraid to touch anything, but the enchanting sea breeze calmed my guilty feelings.
While an afternoon at the beach was tempting, considering the unseasonably beautiful and sunny day, taking to the deck chairs with a book and sparkling wine was a more sensible option. The hotel is a dream of luxury and comfort with the location as an added bonus.
It’s in the heart of what’s a quintessential sexy Cape Town hang-out spot with all the necessary trimmings of beach, restaurants, mountain views and unaffordable properties.
It makes for a perfect cross between city and beach hotel with a dining service from Umi, a modern Japanese fusion restaurant. Before or after dinner, you can visit Umi’s glamorous whiskey bar, which has a wide range of blends and single malts. It was rather hard to leave the hotel the next morning – the little slice of Cape Town heaven had ended too quickly.
Rates for a sea-facing room are R3 000 to R5 200 at thebookingbutton.co.uk
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