Cape Town and winelands

When we arrived in Cape Town we headed straight out to the Cape winelands where we checked into the elegant La Clé in Franschhoek, a boutique 5-bedroom, hidden gem. La Clé has the feeling of a B&B and it’s as if you are stepping into someone’s home. The hospitality is warm, and the food is surprisingly impressive. Our first stop was lunch at Protégé, neatly positioned in the Le Quartier Français hotel where we stayed last time we were in town. During our short stay in Franschhoek we rode e-bikes through the vineyards stopping to taste classic Cape varietals at Leeu Estates before continuing to Le Lude for an impressive MCC tasting. We had lunch at Hamm & Uys in nearby Stellenbosch and savored a private tour of the Dylan Lewis Sculpture Garden.

Another highlight of our trip was our stay at Delaire Graff to experience their newly renovated lodges. Situated on the Helshoogte Pass, Delaire Graff has one of the most unforgettable settings in the area with breathtaking views over the valley. Delaire is luxurious and spacious and a must-see for art aficionados. We stopped for lunch with friends at The Werf restaurant at Boschendal and ordered almost everything on the thoughtfully curated menu.

From the Cape winelands we made our way back to Cape Town and checked into a newer property, Camissa House. A serene hideaway on the side of Table Mountain with views of the city. We always feel at home at Ellerman House and settled into ‘room four’ for the next three nights. Some of the memorable experiences as we explored the city included dinner and drinks at LOCAL in Heritage Square; a day trip to the Cape Peninsula for a hike, bumping into ostrich along the way; lunch at a friend’s cottage outside of Scarborough with renowned local chefs; and many hours on the Ellerman House patio, drinking colorful gin and tonics as we caught up with friends and colleagues. One of our most impressive and unexpected meals was at Himitsu in Camps Bay, paired with eating at classic favorites like Kloof Street House and Bao Down. You will never go hungry in Cape Town, with seemingly endless foodie favorites.

Throughout our trip we experienced ‘gentle travel’. You would expect that travel would not be fun in a Covid-environment, but it was! It wasn’t stressful, people were nicer in airport lines and the excited look on someone’s face when they heard our American accent was heartwarming. If you’re thinking about a safari or trip to Cape Town, you’ll make a big impact. The hotels and lodges are ready to welcome you…and you’ll appreciate every minute of this unique time.

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