DURBAN - Labotessa, a 17th-century congregational church now turned lifestyle hotel, will open in Cape Town in August 2019.
Originally built in the early 1700s, the intimate, seven-roomed property is one of the oldest buildings in South Africa and the debut project in the Labotessa portfolio by first-time hoteliers Jan Fourie and Johan du Plessis.
"We are delighted to begin our foray into hotel ownership with one of South Africa's oldest buildings, which has been a true testament to the country’s rich history and heritage. Labotessa is a culmination of our affinity for exceptional design, relaxed hospitality, and our connection to the city of Cape Town," said du Plessis.
Situated in a restored national monument structure in the heart of the city, Labotessa is the only hotel on historic Church Square. This landmark lifestyle property blends luxury and personal service with the independence of residential living. Each of the hotel’s seven spacious suites features private elevator access, a balcony and sweeping views of the city, Lion’s Head and Table Mountain.
On the ground floor, guests and locals can enjoy the newest outpost of Starling’s, a beloved local cafe utilizing organic and ethically sourced ingredients. The cafe will spill out onto the square and sits adjacent to the hotel’s Diptyque boutique, a public concession for the revered international perfumery. All the hotel’s suites will carry the Diptyque range of toiletries.
From the ground floor, an antique balustrade guides guests to the reception area on the mezzanine level, with views of the property’s classic fireplace, original chandelier and plush velvet armchairs.
Commissioned works by local artists and antique furniture weave a narrative inspired by the city’s European influences. Each guest room is unique in its design and configuration. Labotessa is home to one of Cape Town’s largest penthouse suites: The Governor Suite.
The Governor Suite
The three-bedroom Governor Suite is named after Simon Van der Stel, the first Governor of the Cape. At 300 square metres in size, the suite spans two floors with breathtaking views of Church Square, Signal Hill, and Table Mountain. A completely new build on the hotel’s top floor, the Governor Suite features distinctly modern touches such as a floating staircase and private plunge pool looking out through the balcony’s glass walls. The Governor Suite has bedrooms, en suite bathrooms with freestanding bathtubs that overlook the city of Cape Town.
Six Signature Suites
Accessible via private elevator from the hotel’s mezzanine level, the Signature Suites feature living and sleeping areas separated by glass paneling. High ceilings and French oak floors emphasise the spaciousness of each 65 square-metre room, and en suite bathrooms. Modern amenities are integrated within each suite including a custom French armoire with a hidden minibar outfitted with Smeg appliances and crystal flutes for celebrations. A round cocktail table, sofa and balcony create multi-use spaces for dining, lounging and basking while taking in the views.
Labotessa is surrounded by several architectural and cultural treasures including the monumental Groote Kerk, the Slave Lodge set beneath the unmistakable mountainscape of Lion’s Head, The Company Gardens, and the Parliament buildings. The hotel is in close proximity to the V&A Waterfront and within walking distance of some of Cape Town’s top restaurants, coffee bars, cafés and nightclubs.
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