With the help of Wesgro, Cape Town Tourism and some product owners in the know, Michelle Colman offers an update of tourist sites and activities in Cape Town.
“The biggest news for Cape Town in 2017 is the opening of Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA) at the V&A Waterfront in September,” says Leani Jansen van Vuuren, destination public relations co-ordinator of Cape Town Tourism. “It will be the biggest museum that has opened on the African continent in the last 100 years.”
The founding collection for the museum is business entrepreneur Jochen Zeitz’s collection of African art. Jochen will underwrite the running costs of the nine-floor facility and provide a substantial acquisition budget for new artworks. Supporting educational and enrichment programmes will also be a feature of the museum’s operation.
The museum will seek to emulate the status of landmark contemporary art museums such as the Tate Modern in London, MOMA in New York and Nacional del Prado in Madrid.
The opening of this venture is set for Saturday, September 23. Its home is the repurposed, heritage-listed Silo building, which also houses six floors of hotel, which opened on March 1. The five-star, 28-room Silo Hotel is run by the Royal Portfolio. Rates quoted on the hotel’s website start at a hefty R12 000 per room per night.
Hotels on the cards
The Silo district will also house a three-star Radisson Red Hotel, set to open in September, the same month planned for the opening of the 500-room Tsogo Sun Hotel Complex, which consists of a StayEasy and SunSquare, in the city centre on the corner of Strand and Buitengracht Streets.
The Ritz, refurbished to the tune of some R120m, reopens early this year. Having obtained full management control of this Sea Point landmark, the Shimmy Luxury Collection is now three properties strong. The equity-based management company, which launched last year, also manages the Shimmy Beach Club on the Waterfront and Bloemendal Wine Estate in the Durbanville Wine Valley.
As The Ritz’s room configuration and quality will change significantly, a review of all 2016 rate agreements will be conducted and engagement with tourism partners planned accordingly.
Since the end of last year, Cape Town’s hotel scene has been augmented with two new heritage hotels in the boutique category. They are Cloud 9 Boutique Hotel in Tamboerskloof, comprising the old Leeuwenvoet guesthouse and four other heritage properties, and the Victorian-style The Grey in De Waterkant.