Review: One & Only Cape Town – A picturesque resort in the middle of the city


Cape Town always keeps its promises. Be it the promise of a bustling, multi-ethnic fusion of denizens bringing celebrating their diversity or a breath-taking view of the curiously-hewn Table Mountain. If you’re in the city and are looking for a promise of luxurious accommodation, then look no further than the spectacular One&Only Cape Town hotel. Located a few hundred meters away from the Victoria and Albert Waterfront Marina, the city’s most frequented thoroughfare. This along with a spectacular view of the famed flat-headed hill from a private balcony that sits atop the city’s best restaurants and you can be assured that you couldn’t have a finer experience here.

Just some sweets for the afternoon tea.

As you make your way through the elaborate front façade and into the lobby, you’d imagine it’s a meticulously constructed 3D piece of art, with the Vista bar situated before tall glass windows that overlook the Table Mountain in the background. The bar hosts the hotel’s famous afternoon tea. What really sets this property apart from commonplace 5-Star hotels is that it doesn’t feel like one. In fact, the family-friendly aspect is so amplified that one enjoys all the good things a resort would pamper you with. The large 350-square meter, heated, infinity-edge pool supplements the view of the nearby waterfront. It is located at the private man-made island, one of the hotel’s exclusive fineries. The island also hosts an expansive spa with twelve treatment rooms that offer a wealth of holistic wellness services as well as forty exclusive guest rooms. The rest of the rooms and suites are in the main 7-storey building called the Marina Rise.

Among the choicest rooms, is the Marina Table Mountain Room, which overlooks the natural monument of Cape Town. The room greets you with a welcome amenity that comprises of a bottle of red wine and a fruit basket. This well-appointed room is simply huge, spanning an impressive 63 square meters. An inviting king-sized bed takes up a fair portion of the room, which, like that other furnishing, is made of dark African wood. The walls have vivacious artworks strews across them. A study table will keep your executive tasks in check while the night-lighting sets the perfect mood with large windows overlooking Table Mountain in the distance. Incredibly, the finest feature of the room is the bathroom and its half-egg-shaped bath tub that’s sufficiently spacious. For all its delights, the most uplifting experience is waking up to the view of the Table Mountain as you perch yourself on the private balcony sipping an impressive brew from the Nespresso machine that comes with the room. It’s the kind of hotel room that makes you want to stay in to take in most of its finesse, something many wouldn’t imagine doing in a city like Cape Town.

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If you are a Yogurt fan, then be ready to be surprised for breakfast.
Starting the day with a healthy breakfast

Cape Town can offer a feast for many palettes and two of the best options are located in the One&Only Cape Town. One’s South Africa’s first Nobu restaurant, by Michelin-starred chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa. Nobu serves Japanese dishes with South African flavors. The other famous culinary treat within the hotel is the brainchild of local celebrity chef Reuben Riffel, who brings a Corporate-styled cuisine to the fore. The highlight of the day is the breakfast buffet served at Reubens. It’s here that you can surprise your taste-buds with a relish of novelties such as M&M yoghurt.

The Marina Rise also hosts a fitness centre, which is equipped with Technogym Excite supported by the Wellness System. An adjoining studio hosts Kinesiotherapy sessions and high-end equipment from FLEXability. The spa is located on the private islands and needs to be accessed on foot via a bridge. Located in a picturesque scenery with fountains and sub-tropical vegetation, the beautifully designed landscape has been oftentimes hailed to be the highlight of the hotel. The fitness centre and spa are a must-visit after long walks through Cape Town’s heavily-treated walkways.

Being a family-friendly facility, it makes perfect sense for the hotel to have a section dedicated to kids. The Kids Only activity centre offers a number of attractions for kids aged 4 to 11, and these allow the accommodation of a babysitter or caretaker if needed. Kids could enjoy their vacation time playing Nintendo Wii, PlayStation or Xbox games while their parents indulge in wellness activities.

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One and Only Cape Town has plenty of such quaint sitting spots.
A cocktail trolley for special cocktails.

Other than the 40 South African Rand tourism levy collected, on a per night basis, on your arrival at the One&Only Cape Town, the experience is truly enchanting. Combining the benefits of a comfortable room, great service and views that could be an artist’s muse, this property fulfills nearly every criteria of being a luxury resort. And surely one of South Africa’s finest. So if you’re one who loves a sprinkle of suave urban luxury in the heart of a city that’s always on the move, you’ve got your perfect concoction right here.

The lively wharf is just a 5-minute walk from the One and Only Cape Town.

Where: One&Only Cape Town
Dock Road, V & A Waterfront,
Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
Phone: +27 21 431 5888

Note: The critic was invited by the hotel but all the opinions expressed herewith are his own

The luxe factor is

10 Location
9 Accomodation
8 F&B
8.5 Service
9 Spa
9 Value for money
8.9