R90m facelift for historic Sea Point hotel, The Winchester
“The makeover at The Winchester commenced with a functional upgrade of the hotel’s entire plumbing system, with all of the bathrooms throughout the building being completely rebuilt, as well as an exciting renewal of all the common areas and reception rooms, and a revitalisation of the magnificent and iconic courtyard with its beautiful foliage,” says Neil Markovitz, CEO of Newmark Hotels, Reserves, Lodges and Residences, which will be managing the hotel.
The Winchester is a landmark sea frontage hotel that was originally built in 1922 as a residential property and was then later converted to a hotel in 1958. Since its inception, this historic building has witnessed the evolution of the Sea Point beach front from being a strip of sandy ground with a busy railway line servicing the area, to the current day popular promenade and rolling lawns which draws people in their droves to enjoy the lifestyle and scenery whilst running, cycling, and strolling alongside the sea.
The Winchester has a rich heritage, and its iconic Cape Dutch architecture tells a story of luxury and sophistication of a romantic bygone era. The hotel has experienced several renovations over its 63-year lifespan and is once again undergoing a comprehensive refurbishment at an approximate cost of R90 million. The project revitalises this grand hotel and prepares for its renewed place as one of South Africa’s most desirable destination addresses, whilst still maintaining its historic charm.
During this refurbishment, the historic details and features of the interior architecture at The Winchester are being maintained, and in some places even reinstated, whilst bringing in furnishings, colour palettes and styling that add a modern appeal. A crisp classic black and white colour scheme features throughout the hotel’s main areas – seen in beautiful, white panelled walls and detailed ceilings, offset by striking geometric floor tiles, all accented by quirky décor elements and antiques that portray the building’s rich history and personality. The black and white theme also features in the new, beautifully appointed, bathrooms.
The front facing rooms at The Winchester have been reconfigured to create new sea-facing suites, as well as a signature Luxury Suite – all of which now take full advantage of the beautiful large windows looking out towards the ocean.
“My team and I are thrilled to be adding The Winchester to our niche portfolio of hotels and eagerly anticipate its grand reopening on 1 October this year. This signature and iconic establishment portrays the rich history of Sea Point and Cape Town as a destination of choice and we look forward to being the custodians of The Winchester’s long and promising future,” says Markovitz.