Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Africa & the Middle East
Reload this Page >

Armed gang holds up the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel in Capetown

Armed gang holds up the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel in Capetown

Aug 15th, 2019, 07:50 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 5,975
Armed gang holds up the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel in Capetown

https://www.thesouthafrican.com/news...by-armed-gang/

Posting this as we recently stayed at this hotel, the Mount Nelson in Capetown, which was lovely. I chose it partly because I wanted to feel safe; hearing this news story and some other stories from our relatives in Capetown I'm inclined to think travelling there is a bit of a gamble. Yes, there is crime everywhere but not on this level.
raincitygirl is offline  
Aug 15th, 2019, 10:50 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,551
I read that story when it came out a month ago. Fortunately no one was hurt. I’ve been to Cape Town three times, never had a bad experience, and will be back for a fourth visit this coming Christmas and New Year. As far as I know, my in-laws who have lived in Cape Town all their lives, have never been involved in that sort of incident.
Heimdall is online now  
Aug 15th, 2019, 11:29 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 5,975
Well it's a beautiful place Heimdall and I loved it. Just think people should know that is a bit riskier than a lot of other places.
My inlaws are originally from the Cape and still lots of relatives there. My MIL's aunt and her husband were robbed at gunpoint, all their money jewellery etc stolen, from inside a friend's garage while they were in their car waiting for the automatic door to go up. This aunt now lives in a gated community in Somerset West with big walls with electrified razor wire on top and gates and guards that look like something from a border crossing in the old iron curtain days. She feels safe there as she was living for years at a winterized cottage at Kleinmond on her own after her husband died and it was nonstop break ins and thefts and really not safe.
Husband's cousin lives in Constantia in a lovely neighbourhood, 2 people were assaulted while out jogging there last week, they feel these types of problems are getting worse.

It is really sad because it is a spectacular country with so much to offer.
raincitygirl is offline  
Aug 15th, 2019, 01:29 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,551
Raincitygirl, it’s not just South Africa where people feel the need for that sort of security around their homes. The first private home I visited in Africa was in Livingstone, Zambia, and they too had a wall topped with electrified razor wire. The black African bishop of an Anglican diocese in Rwanda who invited me to dinner even had a permanent gate guard at his home. Most crime occurs in townships and informal settlements, though, not in well off parts of the city.
Heimdall is online now  
Aug 15th, 2019, 02:09 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 5,975
Originally Posted by Heimdall View Post
Raincitygirl, itís not just South Africa where people feel the need for that sort of security around their homes. The first private home I visited in Africa was in Livingstone, Zambia, and they too had a wall topped with electrified razor wire. The black African bishop of an Anglican diocese in Rwanda who invited me to dinner even had a permanent gate guard at his home. Most crime occurs in townships and informal settlements, though, not in well off parts of the city.
Oh no doubt Heimdall. I think what we are hearing from our relatives in Capetown though is that more crime is occurring now than before in non township/settlement areas and more crimes against tourists.
raincitygirl is offline  
Aug 15th, 2019, 10:31 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,493
Thanks for posting the link. We are n our way to South Africa in October for a couple of months, I have just been looking at places to eat during our last week in Cape Town. The Nelson has been recommended to me for Sunday brunch. Would this put me off? Probably not. But then we are also looking at places to have dinner in the townships. I imagine that is where at least part of the problem, lie - a wide diversity of economic wealth within a small area.

"I'm inclined to think travelling there is a bit of a gamble" - travelling anywhere is a bit of a gamble. Given the regularity of mass shootings in the US and terrorist attacks in London, staying at home is a bit of a gamble too. Perspective is everything these days.

With regard to home security issues, razor wire and barred windows are surely the norm in many, if not most parts of Africa. It certainly was when we lived in West Africa for a time and, for that matter, it is also the norm in most of South America. In the latter, there were armed guards at just about every ATM. Didn’t make me feel any less safe, quite the opposite.

I am really looking forward to Cape and indeed the rest of South Africa so I will be able to judge for myself whether it is really any different form any major city anywhere in the world.
crellston is offline  
Aug 16th, 2019, 07:35 AM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 5,975
Originally Posted by crellston View Post
Thanks for posting the link. We are n our way to South Africa in October for a couple of months, I have just been looking at places to eat during our last week in Cape Town. The Nelson has been recommended to me for Sunday brunch. Would this put me off? Probably not. But then we are also looking at places to have dinner in the townships. I imagine that is where at least part of the problem, lie - a wide diversity of economic wealth within a small area.

"I'm inclined to think travelling there is a bit of a gamble" - travelling anywhere is a bit of a gamble. Given the regularity of mass shootings in the US and terrorist attacks in London, staying at home is a bit of a gamble too. Perspective is everything these days.

With regard to home security issues, razor wire and barred windows are surely the norm in many, if not most parts of Africa. It certainly was when we lived in West Africa for a time and, for that matter, it is also the norm in most of South America. In the latter, there were armed guards at just about every ATM. Didnít make me feel any less safe, quite the opposite.

I am really looking forward to Cape and indeed the rest of South Africa so I will be able to judge for myself whether it is really any different form any major city anywhere in the world.
I enjoyed it very much but yes, I found it different to the major cities I have been to, and spent time in, including London, Paris, Rome, New York etc etc. I get that there are vast income disparities and all the reasons for that. And I loved staying at the Mount Nelson, you will love brunch there. I just think it is misleading to tell people it is perfectly fine and no different to any other big city in the world and that it's a gamble to travel anywhere or stay home for that matter. The fact is that there is more crime there and lately there has been more crime against tourists. A Ukrainian tourist was stabbed on Table Mountain, a group of tourists hiking in Newlands ravine were assaulted, made to strip and robbed recently. Our young relatives are noticing more and more assaults and there have started to be farmers murdered out on the land. Our old relatives and friends are enjoying life behind all their security (they are too old to move anywhere else) and telling us and each other "well it's not TOO dangerous."

raincitygirl is offline  
Aug 16th, 2019, 11:46 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,493
"I just think it is misleading to tell people it is perfectly fine and no different to any other big city in the world" - I suggest that you read again what I actually wrote and you will see that I said nothing of the sort. If you gained that impression then apparently I have not been clear in what I was trying to convey.

My point is that it is all to easy to become alarmist based on a few random events. I haven’t yet visited South Africa and I have yet to form an opinion.

Upon reading of the number or mass shootings in the USA or terrorist attacks in London, or the rise in knife crime, many may well be put off from visiting either place, but in reality, the chances of anything bad happening are minimal and little different from staying at home. As I said, perspective is everything.
crellston is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
emcash
United States
12
Jan 11th, 2016 01:01 PM
Gardyloo
Africa & the Middle East
17
Jun 12th, 2005 04:14 PM
Rocco
Africa & the Middle East
8
Feb 23rd, 2002 05:18 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:42 PM.