Thursday, April 9, 2009

The One&Only And Other Cape Town Bits

Long time! Today, I wanted to blog about something I should have a long time ago...

Yesterday, I caught up on some WWD reading and learned that the billionaire investor Sol Kerzner hosted what seemed like a fab party in Cape Town to celebrate the opening of his One&Only resort there. (Looks like the property is scheduled to open later this year.) Well, Kerzner certainly brought the big dogs out. Nelson Mandela was invited (not sure if he actually attended), Thandie Newton was in the house, Bebe Winans, Hugh Masekela, Robert DeNiro and Grace Hightower and Mariah Carey were all partying it up in the new space as well. I've been to the One&Only resort in the Bahamas and folks, it is SICK. Simply beautiful and you don't have to want for anything while you're there.

Reading about Cape Town's newest luxury hotel made me think back to my own stay in the Cape last fall. I lodged at the 12 Apostles and it too was SICK. My friends and I had no idea we were going to be staying at such a posh spot when we first booked the trip but once we were there, people thought we were a singing group (real talk). They just couldn't imagine seven young Black women being able to afford the 12 Apostles. (That's a whole 'notha post.) Well the 12 Apostles has a top of the line spa, movie theater, 3/4 restaurants...all the bells and whistles. We got a GREAT deal (told y'all I don't like paying retail, that includes my vacations) and were practically treated like royalty during our stay. Now it looks like the 12 Apostles will have more competition for those taking a holiday on the Cape.

This is one of the 12 Apostles restaurants I ate at during my stay in Cape Town last fall.

But you know what? There's a lot of poverty in Cape Town. Still. PLENTY. I saw miles and miles of shanty towns while visiting and it made me SICK at times to be staying in such a SICK hotel. Poor me? Nah, I'm not about to have an American guilt trip moment -- it is what it is and I don't regret my stay but I am grateful that I managed to dontate to a worthy cause while I was visiting. One of our tour guides told me of the volunteer work she does with orphans and although I didn't know the woman from Eve, I believed she was sincere. I whipped out a U.S. $20 bill and gave to it her right then. In hindsight, I should have given much more. She called me at the hotel later on to thank me again and assure me that the money would be put to good use. Then an email was sent to me from an administrator of the group she works with, Little Angels to thank me. I'm sure lots of similiar orgs exist in Cape Town but now Little Angles holds a special place in my heart. Mr. TK and I plan to go to Cape Town in the near future (he's still salty he couldn't go with me in September) and I hope that we can spend a couple of days doing hands-on work with Little Angels then. In the meantime, I'll donate what I can, when I can. Orphans and foster children have a special, special place in my heart whether they live in South Africa or the South Bronx.

An example of a shanty town in Cape Town. There must be hundreds of them.

So if you consider treating yourself to a stay at the Cape's new One&Only or 12 Apostles, I'm sure you won't be disappointed. But just consider checking out Little Angels too. Tell them an American lady sent 'ya. ;-)


Candice Frederick said...

this looks beautiful!

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