Delaire Graff Lodges and Spa
Each of the ten luxurious suites at this mountainside retreat overlooks a valley straight out of your wildest dreams-the vineyard-slavered vistas are heaven-sent, and should you be in the mood to explore, you have easy access to a bewildering selection of wine estates and more than a handful of enchanted wine-growing valleys (including nearby Franschhoek). Built by billionaire diamond dealer, Laurence Graff, the boutique hotel is just one part of the tremendous turnaround brought to the old Delaire estate, and follows on the heels of extensive landscaping and the creation of one of the most beguiling cellars and drop-dead gorgeous restaurants in Cape Town (read our review of the Delaire Graff restaurant, here). He brought in ace London designer David Collins to create a look for the rooms that is both sober and relaxed; there’s some gentle inspiration from the classic African safari experience, all executed in a soothingly pale palette with raw, earthy fabrics, plenty of exposed timber, and abundant natural light. Each suite comes with a wooden deck and a heated infinity pool from which to take in that showstopper view, and there are foldaway shutter-doors to really bring the outside in. Meanwhile, the entire property is a showcase for some of the country’s most iconic contemporary artists-Dylan Lewis bronze cheetahs skulk in the garden; William Kentridge charcoals hang from the walls; and large, head-turning sculptures by Deborah Bell are set in unexpected places. There’s an in-house cinema, a blue-hued Asian restaurant called Indochine, and the cosseting, sensual rooms of the high-calibre spa are all within easy reach of your room-useful if you’re capable of tearing yourself away from that view. It’s ultra-classy, and aimed at the deep-pocketed, but no hedonist could ignore its once-in-a-lifetime appeal.