Thursday, 27 August 2015

Staycation until vacation...redirect your eyes in your own city.

Time is tight. I am moving from one production into another until April 2016 and this means no gaps for me to flee to foreign lands, as I'm given to doing. Anyone who knows me will confirm that I'm a wanderluster, always picking a flight. Perpetually seeking a new destination, a different culture, interesting food, new all leads to a fresh perspective, takes the focus off myself and re-energises my life.

Make no mistake, I have a great job as PR in the theatre industry...dynamic, creative, never a dull moment. But I am allergic to office monotony. My day starts at 06h30, I nail the campaigns at hand and then I'm off, to a coffee shop in my hood to meet a friend, listen to other stories, absorb alternate surroundings and soak up the excellence I find in my beautiful city. It's amazing, seriously -  Cape Town is exploding with outstanding eateries, coffee, bars, design, style, theatre.

And nature. I mean where can compare? If you've no time for a trip out of town, and find yourself, like me, craving the Cederberg and its fynbos aromas, you can breathe it in deeply in the biodiversity garden of the urban park in Green's that simple.

People sometimes ask, in an irritated way most of the time: "I mean, do you ever're always out somewhere...." Well yes. I work. Very hard. With passion and 150% delivery. But, I've discovered a formula that works for me, that negates stress and it's called hashtag #MixingItUpALittle. Monday to Friday, I do office work and then the virtual desk thing. Work continues, my gadgets are always close by. I don't miss a trick as I sip on a cortado and make small talk with the neighbouring table. I've worked from Tokyo, Istanbul and Prague without clients even knowing I was away. I'm quite enterprising that way.

So now, back to the 'no gaps to flee' dilemma. In lieu of this, I am opting for staycations. I am taking short breaks over the weekends to visit somewhere new, stay in a hotel, explore a little, walk a different path, take in new views. Making little holidays in my own town until I get a bigger break...staycation until vacation.

I'll take you with me via my blogposts and Steller montages because I am all about inspiring others (and myself), showing off Cape Town and what lies a little beyond its immediate borders...the winelands, the countryside, the mountains, valleys and beaches. Cape country....unique and gorgeous. Follow me and I'll take you places.

Have at look at this recent staycation post of mine on Steller, captured in the Franschhoek valley last weekend....

Labels: , ,

Sunday, 23 August 2015

My staycation at Klein Waterval in the Franschhoek Valley

One of my best friends Megan got married yesterday at Boschendal, in the Manor House.  She looked a Parisian princess in a delicate organza creation by Gabi Rosenwerth.

I went to the wedding on my own because Lateral Paul is away & driving back to town solo & late after an evening of partying in the winelands wasn't an option. Enter the opportunity for a staycation in one of my favourite parts of the Cape.

Klein Waterval is 10 minutes from Boschendal, on the Berg  River overlooking blue mountains & an expanse of vineyards in what must be one of the Cape's most exquisite areas, the Franschhoek Valley. I checked in about 3 hours before the wedding to indulge in the beautiful day & sip a glass of Haute Cabriere 's fine pinot noir Chardonnay on the patio...such amazing views & it was a gorgeous early spring afternoon.

From my first communication with the lodge I knew that I was going to love the experience at Klein Waterval (which means small waterfall)  ~ the staff know how to make one feel welcome & at home... this is hospitality at its finest. Ezna & Greg took such good care of me. 

stayed in #10, a double volume suite with a private patio, overlooking lavender & rows of knobbly vines that'll come to life as soon as the winter heads out. It was a perfect setting. The rooms are decorated simply & tastefully, & have thatched roofs that add to the rustic feel. And there's complimentary wifi which is always a big deal for me.

Breakfast is included in the rate & is a generous offering of cereals, fresh & stewed fruit, cheese, cold meats & eggs of your choice... delicious! 

And the dogs... one cutie spent a few minutes with me... I can never resist animals as you know & am always finding one or two and coaxing them to hang out with me... 

Klein Waterval is on Route 45, just outside Franschhoek, about 10 minutes from Boschendal. Accommodation prices at the latter are a little excessive in my opinion so finding this lodge close by was a win. They also offer a car service to and from the wine estate which, at R250 there & back is a little costly but they explained it's because it's a shuttle, not a cab and Uber - my taxi of choice in Cape Town & in most other cities in the world when I travel - doesn't yet operate in that area specifically. 

As for things to do? Well other than relaxing chez nous, there are beautiful walks in the Mont Rochelle nature reserve I am told... & the village of Franschhoek has loads to offer & of course there are incredible wine farms to visit (Backsberg, Babylonstoren, Anura, Solms Delta etc etc) - this is wine country people, rated as amongst the best in the world. 

Go visit & give the terriers a kiss from Diva. 

Explore your own town...there are so many treasures*

Labels: , ,

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Lunch with Karen Dudley at the Company's Garden Restaurant

It's not for nothing that Cape Town is listed as one of the top foodie destinations in the world. Conde Nast Traveler said it and I couldn't agree more. We are oozing chef talent all over our amazing city.

Karen Dudley of The Kitchen (in Woodstock) fame has put together an irresistible lunch table at the Company's Garden Restaurant which is owned by the Madame Zingara group. Richard Griffin & Karen, two old friends making new culinary magic. 

There are dishes to make both vegetarians (bulghar patties with hummus, aubergine ratatoullie) & meat lovers (honey mustard pork bangers) smile & a lot of the delish fresh produce is hand picked in the garden alongside the restaurant. 

Lunch with Karen is available Monday's to Friday's from 12h to 14h. The Company's Garden is at 15 Victoria Street, 0214232919.

After lunch take a walk around the rest of the gardens ...feed the squirrels, pigeons and geese, lie on the lawns, read a book on a's a great green space in the middle of town.


Heinrich, Richard, Karen & Julia...

I've got my copy!

Labels: ,