Capetown Travel Guide
The art gallery at the Ellerman House contains one of the best collections of contemporary South African art in the whole world. As a result, it's become a favorite among art collectors who go just to admire the hotel's private collection as well as take trips to other galleries in Cape Town.
But it's not just the art that's special here. The gallery itself, which is located in a cellar underneath the pool, is a fairly interesting space too. Because Ellerman House sits on a hill, the cozy gallery manages to both feel like an underground hideout while also offer some stunning views of the Atlantic ocean. And though you wouldn't exactly want to spend the duration of your stay holed up in the vault (it's only one room big), it certainly makes for a peaceful retreat.
Or, in the case of one recent guest, a great spot for napping.
As you may or may not remember, we were a little gung-ho about the World Cup this past summer.
But apparently, that's nothing compared to the fans who are anxious to book their hotel rooms in South Africa, the host of the 2010 World Cup. The hotels there were hoping to start charging a fortune for hotel rooms during games until FIFA decided to step in:
Hotel groups and guesthouses contracted by Fifa would have to charge a fixed rate for different grades of accommodation during the 2010 World Cup, the soccer governing body's accommodation and ticketing arm told hoteliers in Cape Town on Thursday night. This did not go down well with some local hotel owners.
The fixed rates should be released soon and from there you can determine how much you wanna spend to see your team of choice. But if you are already counting down the days until 2010, then you probably have your budget figured out already too.
Image of the Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg via South Africa World Cup 2010
· Fifa wants low season hotel rates for 2010 [IOL]
When hearing that the world's first hotel specifically geared toward extreme sport enthusiasts, one has to wonder if it's underwater near Dubai, on the edge of a cliff in the Outback, or maybe in the Space Station. But no it's in Cape Town and that's fitting too because aren't their waters riddled with great whites?
However, The Extreme Hotel is more about virtual extreme sports and illusions than it really is about real-life extreme sports (aside from the climbing wall located on its exterior):
The hotel's swimming pool has been designed to look like an aquarium from the restaurant. The water comes right up to the 30 mm thick glass windows of the restaurant, giving diners an underwater view of swimmers. The men's urinals appear to be suspended on scaffolding at the edge of the building while the entering the lift feels like being in a shark cage thanks to floor to ceiling life-size photography.
Nothing was said in regard to the women's bathroom but we're a little scared that there may be a fake mini-alligator inside the toilet or something. Either way, this place is full of surprises to uncover. It was developed by Al Gosling the founder of the Extreme Sports Channel. Plans are underway to add more in equally cool and extreme locations, first targeting ski and surf areas and then possibly expanding. What's best, they aim to provide 5-star quality with 3-star prices and they've already won us with free WiFi.
Now, can you say...Mancation?
· Hotels for Adrenalin Freaks [Times Online]
We all know that hotels create a lot of waste and it's probably something that we'd rather not think about. If we do think about it, then we can choose to stay in eco-hotels and try not to fill the garbage bin in our room every day.
But the Mount Nelson Hotel in Capetown has another method, one that may leave guests feeling a little uneasy: worms. The hotel has an "army" of worms, a million of them ready to break down the hotel's organic waste and gives it back to the earth. This apparently means less fertilizer and chemicals and more compost to create their exquisite gardens.
The hotel's resident worm farmer (here's a title we never thought we'd see) explained to the Seattle Times:
The hotel industry produces a lot of food waste...We're trying to deal with our problem and not pass it along to the next person. We're trying to do our little bit for nature.
My personal opinion: The more people who get involved in this, the better it will be for the whole world. It eliminates a substance, methane gas, which is damaging to the environment. It's helping the ozone.
Now as long as they can keep these worms where they should be, we'll totally support this happy Ozone, Earthy, Worm project.
(We couldn't handle real worms early this morning so this picture of jelly worms comes via Gotta_luv_Green/Flickr)