This upscale hotel in a converted warehouse is smack in the middle of the Waterfront and surrounded by shops, bars, and restaurants, so it's a good choice for those who want to be in the thick of the (admittedly touristy) action. There's an industrial/nautical theme that abounds throughout the lobby and bar, which opens out onto a long terrace for waterside views, meals and drinks. Rooms are huge and luxurious.
Crisp linens, red velvet chairs and the original-style warehouse windows and whitewashed brick walls give the rooms a sense of personality and comfort.
Views from the costlier mountain-facing rooms are spectacular, encompassing not only Table Mountain but the city and docks as well. These rooms can also be a bit quieter than those which overlook the piazza's street performers.
Bathrooms are large and airy too, with baths and showers.
The nautical chic lobby is staffed by extremely friendly personnel and has some refreshing elements, like citrus water, available for arriving guests (who also get a free welcome drink). It's accessed through the mall, which makes the entrance a bit confusing, but once you're in there are glimpses available of the docks through the bar and a general feeling of efficiency and style.
Guests can use the pool at the nearby Dock House Hotel, in a palm-tree fringed courtyard with views of the mountains beyond.
Similarly, the Sanctuary spa is off-site--but not far. It's run by the same company as the hotel.
Ginja is the hotel's restaurant, with the aforementioned lovely terrace and a wide range of meals. The hotel's luxurious breakfast--oysters and champagne, anyone?--is served here, or at Dash in the Queen Victoria Hotel.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The regular outsourcing of the hotel's facilities to other nearby properties in the group - the pool, the spa, even the breakfast - can be a little bewildering.
Hotel guests and members of the public can also drink by the water at Ginja, or in the daytime there's Native Espresso Bar for a coffee fix.
The hotel is right in the thick of it for the buzzy waterfront and short drives away from the other top tourist areas--around 20 minutes to the beaches of Camps Bay and Clifton as well as Table Mountain.
The Greek Fisherman (4-minute walk) has excellent mezze and, as you'd expect, seafood. Or the best sushi in town is available at the popular Japanese restaurant, Willoughby & Co (6-minute walk).
Mitchell's Scottish Ale House (2-minute walk) is the place to party - good prices, views and drinks as well as a dance floor and even karaoke. Or try the Cape Town Comedy Club (4-minute walk) for some belly laughs at top local comedians.
WHY WE LIKE IT
A well-run hotel right in the V&A Waterfront, with great views and huge rooms. Plus staff are faultlessly helpful and friendly, and you'll feel smug as you sip wine on the waterside terrace knowing your room is only steps away--not like the other tourist mugs who have chosen to stay elsewhere.