Once the stately home of a shipping magnate, this meticulously restored small luxury hotel in a gracious Edwardian mansion is my favourite hotel in Cape Town.
Situated on the Atlantic Seaboard’s Kloof Road in prestigious Bantry Bay, Ellerman House is a ‘Des Res’ for a stay in The Cape. With its elevated position and fantastic views over the ocean, it is often called the Cape Riviera, and is home to some of the most expensive real estate in Africa. Despite its cliffside location, the hotels terraced gardens are expansive, with a large pool and even a contemporary art gallery.
It’s the very essence of refinement with sweeping verandas and patios, and gracious living rooms filled with plus carpets, beautiful antique furniture and oil paintings, combined with glamorous accent colours and contemporary textiles. The extensive collection of South African art – on every wall throughout the house, including the bedrooms, as well as the gallery in the garden – rivals that of South Africa’s best art museums.
Ellerman House has a luxurious gravitas that discerning travellers will appreciate. With only 13 elegant individually decorated rooms, it feels more like a luxurious private house than a hotel, yet service standards are on a par with any international five-star hotel, evidenced by it’s many awards. The staff have an uncanny ability to sense when you need them without hovering, but the homely atmosphere also makes usual no-go areas like the kitchen very approachable.
It also has fantastic facilities. The glamorous bar built around the granite rocks opens onto a terrace facing the sunset (there’s the same wonderful view from the fitness centre and the pool). You’ll want for nothing here, with wine tastings, cocktails and canapes and even a walk-in ‘pantry’ stocked with sweet and savoury treats.
The only potential drawback is that you are not within walking distance of any restaurants or beaches, but hotel staff will arrange complimentary transfers to the city centre, the bustling Waterfront or beach – all a 10-minute drive. It’s a 45 minute drive to the Cape Winelands.
This is a place for grown ups. Only children over 14 years are allowed to stay here, unless the hotel is taken on an exclusive basis.
- The hotel art collection can be explored with art guide Talita Swarts, or self-guided with the hotel iPad.
- Make sure you dine at least once at Ellerman House during your stay and make time to relax and unwind in the garden and take a plunge in the pool.