Ritz reopens iconic Cape Town revolving restaurant hotel after $9m renovation
Built in the early 1970s, The Ritz was an icon on the city’s skyline with its unique revolving restaurant. But by 2016 it had been overtaken and outclassed, so The Ritz Hotel Management Company closed it and embarked on a ‘reimagining’ of the icon.
“It’s a beautiful piece of local architecture,” explains Lisa Carey, marketing & PR manager for The Ritz. “All it needed was a new lease on life.”
And that new lease on life has come courtesy of a R120 million makeover – which has turned the hotel into a luxury and design-forward destination. “We had a clear vision of what we wanted to create and, more importantly, what Cape Town needed,” she adds. “This is not a quirky boutique property, nor is it a stiff five-star hotel.” The Ritz in Cape Town has been reimagined as a cool, Miami-style resort where personalised service is one of the cornerstones of its offering – you won’t find gimmicky mobile apps here!
Each of the 213 rooms has been given a sleek, modern look – with a moody colour palette, smoky mirrors, deep-buttoned velvet bucket chairs, and Louboutin-inspired wardrobes. The look is luxe yet unpretentious; finesse without the frills. And, of course, killer views of the ocean and the city – from every single room in the hotel – enhance the five-star experience. (The Ritz reopens with 114 rooms, with balance to be completed during 2018.)
Prices start at 2,500 a night rising to 25,000 for its top suites.
While the moody interiors set the scene, the pleasure is to be found at one the hotel’s various restaurants, bars and lounges, says the Ritz.
Casa Restaurant & Cabanas on the first floor is a relaxed South Beach-style eatery where hotel guests andlocals are invited to enjoy a selection of all-day dishes (including sushi, wood-fired pizzas and a range of brasserie classics). Tables flow out onto a sun-splashed pool deck, where a Veuve Clicquot Bar awaits…
The top floors of the hotel are decidedly suited for the after-dark set… The Champagne Lounge on the 22nd floor, for example, is a sultry and sophisticated space ideal for pre-dinner bubbly and sundowner cocktails, with local DJs spinning laid-back beats from late-afternoon.
The Cigar Lounge on the 21st floor is similarly set to become an address for after-dinner digestifs and late-night cocktails.
And then, of course, there’s the revolving restaurant at the Top of the Ritz – whose elegant décor provides a perfect foil for the refined dining on offer (think: Philippe Starck lamps and moody black interiors).
While the top three floors of the hotel are well suited for late-night rendez-vous, the sun-drenched pool deck on the first floor is open all day, and welcomes locals and travellers alike. Stop by for a bite on your way to the nearby Promenade, or settle in for the day at one of the exclusive poolside Ritz Cabanas. As general manager Johann du Plessis explains: “How do you create a buzz in a hotel? It’s the locals. Local residents are essential for creating the soul of a hotel, and we can’t wait to welcome them to The Ritz.”