Chobe Water Villas- Inspiring Tranquility April 28, 2019
Crossing the wide expanse of Chobe waters from Botswana to Namibia, all one sees is the row of A-frame peaks, like the zigzagged scales on a crocodile’s tail. Grinning Gilbert sees us safely onto the sturdy boardwalk-jetty and then… Secluded Sophistication A tranquil, sophisticated ambience is endorsed by the warm, welcome smiles of graceful Subiya tribe staff who drift through our neutral-coloured, fascinatingly designed “home” for the next few days. The simplicity, the open spaces, the...
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Distillery 031- A Home Run April 28, 2019
“I call this my gateway spirit” said Andrew, swirling the amber liquid in his glass. Well, through the gateway, down the hatch and the rabbit hole and colour me impressed, well impressed! Andrew Rall, owner of Durban's Distillery 031 is a singular man whose burgeoning craft distillery is a portal to some unique, top-notch craft spirits. He was referring to his D’Urban Barrel Aged Gin- something rather special. Serve it on ice to guests without telling...
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Nakai Beach Homestay- a way of life April 28, 2019
Diagnosed with advanced Lymphoma cancer, Claude Venter was given six months to live by medical specialists. Seven years later, he looked relaxed and happy as he recounted his journey and explained how his decision to seek an alternative remedy saved his life- and changed his and that of his partners, Grant Horak and Paulo da Rosa. Claude probably thought me ADD as I kept bobbing my head left and right. Whales, dolphins- lots of them, cavorting...
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Bahia Mar Boutique Hotel- Sunny Side Up September 15, 2018
Half way through my second afternoon, I had had enough- enough to return home with my head and heart happily filled. Strolling the pristine beach of Magaruque Island off southern Mozambique, I thanked my lucky stars and lovely Susana Vidal, GM of Bahia Mar Boutique Hotel, who had arranged our Sailaway Dhow Safaris trip-worth every cent. The Bahia Mar Boutique Hotel in Vilanculos has truly panoramic vistas from its breezy bluff overlooking the wide, flat bay toward several...
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Q’s Review- The Royal in Riebeek March 12, 2018
My Valentines evening was not romantic. No. Anything but. I’d been deep in consultation all day and was feeling emotionally drained, in spite of the days triumphs. My client, the wry and dry Robert Brendel, proprietor of Riebeek Kasteel’s Royal Hotel where Q is working on an exciting new refurb is demanding, but with an unexpected sense of humour given the demands on his bank balance. The clock had barely chimed five when he ordered a...
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La Vanilleraie, Reunion Island February 22, 2018
Smooth as good Bourbon I like, nay love, vanilla- the taste, the smell, the textures, the colours. And I’ve tried it wherever I’ve found it- synthetic and genuine essence off shop shelves and in candle factories, pods from who knows where, from Zanzibar, Mauritius, pungent large specimens from Madagascar- all of them different in quality and price and none of them a patch on the vanilla from Reunion Island. There’s a richness, smoothness and subtlety to...
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Q’s Review- Simonsig’s restaurant Cuvée February 22, 2018
Lunching one flawless Cape afternoon on the terrace at Simonsig’s Cuvée restaurant a tall, blonde and smiling young man approached my table. “Good afternoon.” He boomed a little too loudly for Q who prefers his midweek lunches to be on the plus side of discreet. “I know you.” he announced to the sun dappled terrace in a way manner that left Q feeling decidedly awkward if not downright uncomfortable. The shady terrace, crowded with guests was...
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Q’s Review- Olive Bistro February 20, 2018
I know it's still early days at Olive Bistro, but the discreetly air-conditioned room with its crisply white décor contrasts- most favourably- with the hot umber dusted streets and boho chic of Riebeek-Kasteel, the small Swartland town in the Western Cape hinterland where it finds itself. Chic dining in Riebeek Kasteel I also know that Paul & Istelle Carlin are an ambitious pair. They’ve already moved on from Café Olive, the tiny coffee shop they took...
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The Silo Hotel, Cape Town February 20, 2018
I'd motored into Cape Town on the Wednesday. Basically to get a haircut and a carwash and to attend to some business. Luckily, I finished the business early and since   I’d dressed up in a beautiful double cuffed Paul Smith shirt I ventured into the streets of hipster central in search of Robert and Alberto. In search of hope. Hope that these two charmers could be persuaded to join me for lunch and CheninBlanc in one...
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