In December 2009, Taj Hotels Resorts & Palaces will open Taj Cape Town, its 80th hotel and its first in South Africa. This new landmark will offer the signature Indian hospitality and luxury accommodation synonymous with Asia’s leading hotel group within South Africa’s thriving cultural and tourism capital.
The 166-room Taj Cape Town is located on St. George’s Mall, in the historic heart of the city. In keeping with Taj Hotels’ tradition of breathing life into iconic properties, the hotel encompasses two buildings of historic significance: The Temple Chambers, also known as the Board of Executors, which was built in 1890, and the South African Reserve Bank building. These buildings house 20 heritage luxury rooms with mountain views and an additional 10 rooms overlooking the city.
A new 17-floor Tower rises dramatically behind these two heritage buildings, and features rooms with floor to ceiling glass facades, walk-out balconies and panoramic views of Table Mountain or the city. The Taj Club floor offers business travelers a private lounge and butler service.
Taj’s reputation for culinary excellence can be experienced at the hotel’s three restaurants. The three-level Mint, a grill restaurant, has an open show kitchen, a floor-to-ceiling wine wall, and full-length sliding doors with uninhibited views of St. George’s Mall. The fine-dining restaurant Bombay Brasserie is modeled after its namesake in London and offers authentic Indian flavors transformed into a contemporary gourmet experience. The Twankey, a seafood and Champagne bar, is a relaxed but sophisticated gathering place with live evening entertainment.
The restored ground floor of the Reserve Bank building, with the original marble columns, skylight and anatomically correct lion medallions pressed into the ceilings, remains a triumph to the fastidiousness of James Morris, who designed the building in 1929. He famously bullied the Astronomer Royal into measuring the position of the sun every day that year to ensure the banking hall, now the hotel’s lobby, would be bathed in Cape sunlight.
For rest and rejuvenation, the Jiva Spa draws from Ayurveda, an ancient Indian healing tradition, and delivers a range of signature treatments, yoga, and meditation. The spa includes two suites dedicated to skin and nail and beauty treatments, four generously sized massage suites, a double massage suite with a Jacuzzi and an Ayurvedic consultation and treatment suite. A fitness center comprises a fully equipped Technogym, heated indoor pool, two saunas, and male and female changing areas.
The Board of Executors building also houses a business center, boardrooms, banquet and meeting rooms, whose interiors have been restored to their original opulence and are now complemented by state-of-the-art technology.