Like all major cities, Cape Town is home to a selection of the world's leading hotel brands but if it's intimate proportions and character you want, then a boutique hotel or guesthouse may be a better choice for your Cape Town holiday.
Cape Town is known for being ‘a country in one city’: the city limits include everything from a vibrant downtown district to Blue Flag beaches and even Table Mountain National Park. We’ve divided our top picks into city or beach, allowing you to select the boutique hotel that most suits your holiday plans.
Cape Town has a very compact city centre and it is possible to walk much of it within a day or two. There are plenty of very good restaurants for lunch and dinner, and several streets that host unique art galleries and eye-catching boutiques – our favourites are Kloof Street and Bree Street. The city also has views of Table Mountain from just about every angle which, with its collection of architectural styles spanning more than three centuries, makes it one of the most beautiful cities in Africa.
Our city guesthouses have been chosen for their excellent service, convenient locations and consistent attention to detail – we prefer to work with only the best!
A national monument, Cape Cadogan Boutique Hotel has an enviable position in a quiet lane off trendy Kloof Street and is within walking distance to the Company’s Gardens and Bree Street. Expect classic elements like pillars, checkerboard floors, twinkling chandeliers and antiques in the sophisticated interior, where all the rooms are individually decorated. After a day of sightseeing, return to the Cadogan’s leafy courtyard for a glass of chilled South African Sauvignon blanc.
Set further up from the city centre in the foothills of Table Mountain, Four Rosmead has lovely views of Lion’s Head from the garden, which has indigenous plants to attract local birdlife. There is a heated swimming pool, a pamper spa, unlimited Wi-Fi and secure parking for your rental car – what more could you want?
Situated a stone’s throw away from the province’s grand official residence, Kensington Place has lovely views of Table Mountain and its established garden makes you feel like you are in a rural retreat in the middle of the city. The menu changes seasonally and breakfast is served all day – perfect if you decide on an extra-long lie-in. You are on vacation, after all.
More and more travellers want to ‘do their own thing’ on holiday and not be bound by limited dining hours or having to share a lounge with other guests. More Quarters has very stylish holiday apartments with kitchenettes and patios that allow you to have that ‘home away from home’ feeling. Never fear if you don’t fancy cooking: there is a scrumptious and very generous breakfast buffet. This is an ideal option if you’re travelling with your children as they can have a second or even third bedroom to themselves.
BEST OF BEACH
Cape Town’s main beaches are among the prettiest in the world: long stretches of soft sand on Camps Bay and Clifton are broken up by gigantic boulders big enough to set out a picnic on. Just remember that the water, although mesmerising shades of azure, is from the decidedly chilly Atlantic Ocean (although it is bracingly refreshing when the temperatures hit the 30Cs/90Fs in January and February. Cold water aside, Cape Town’s beaches are known for incredible sunsets and a laidback atmosphere, especially in summer when the sun sets after 8pm.
Camps Bay Retreat gives you the best of both worlds: the close proximity of Camps Bay beach and the tranquillity of a private nature reserve. Dog lovers will love going for walks in the 35-hectare reserve, which borders Table Mountain National Park, with the property’s three resident pooches. Be sure to try one of the unique ‘Nature Baths’: an escapist treat that will instantly relax you.
The Atlantic in front of you and Lion’s Head peak to your right: those are your views from the sunny pool terrace at Sea Five Boutique Hotel, a few streets away from Camps Bay beach. Sleep on imported Italian linen, wake up to freshly baked croissants and enjoy vistas of the Twelve Apostles mountain range from the balconies at the back of the property – ideal for easy-going honeymooners!
Bantry Bay is one of Cape Town’s most exclusive beach enclaves and is littered with gorgeous properties. The Clarendon – which has a sister hotel in nearby and equally afflluent Fresnaye – proves the saying that bigger isn’t necessarily better. Rooms have sun-splashed terraces with ocean views and Bantry Bay is known for some of Cape Town’s most breath-taking sunsets. A suite here puts you an equal distance between the beaches of Camps Bay and the attractions of the city centre.
The Camps Bay Strip is the most glamorous stretch of beach in South Africa, especially over December and January when it buzzes with models, supercars and plenty of ‘bling’. A block away is The Marly Boutique Hotel, which has slick interiors of white leather, modern art and mid-century furniture. It has a modern Japanese restaurant called Umi, and your bath-butler service will ensure your suite is exactly how you like it after a night of wining, dining and dancing on The Strip.
City or sea, Cape Town boutique hotels and guesthouses offer superb accommodation for honeymooners, friends and families visiting the Mother City. Go2Africa can arrange every aspect of your vacation, from your round-trip flights and hotel, to transfers, activities and even restaurant bookings. View our comprehensive Cape Town guide here to start planning your next holiday!