A night at the Palace – A review of the Taj Hotel Cape Town

Parents of small children will understand the unique bliss of a night sans kids, holed up in a hotel with not a care in the world, no mouths to feed, no homework to sign, no sports to watch, no nappies to change (Ok thankfully I’m past that parenting phase!)

One might think that this type of experience is positively royal…

And so it was!

For the one magical night that we spent at the palace, The Taj Palace Hotel, we were treated like royalty indeed.

Taj Cape Town Review

From the moment we walked the plush corridors of the Taj Palace and were shown to our spacious suite overlooking Table Mountain and Lion’s Head we knew we were in for a treat. The rooms of Cape Town’s Taj Palace are furnished with a classic opulence and touches of India.

Jiva Spa Review

After a brief rendezvous in our room, our first stop was a visit to Jiva Spa. On arrival I was immediately transported back to my time in Bali by the spa’s jasmine-infused atmosphere.

Jiva Spa’s space draws on the lifestyle and culture of Indian royalty through the centuries and we were welcomed by the smiling staff and shown to our changing rooms to step into our robe and grass thong slippers.

After catching our breathe in the relaxation area and sipping on our soothing aromatic tea, we were escorted down the dimly lit passage to the couples treatment room where, bathed in a warm red glow, we were treated to an indulgent aromatherapy massage devised to align body, soul and mind.

The meaningful ceremonies, relaxing rituals and natural materials of this spa space surely makes this one of the most heavenly in Cape Town.

Wine Tasting at The Taj

Following a quick change after our early evening massage (and a few nibbles on the complimentary chocolates that had magically arrived in our room), we headed down to the reception area of The Taj to participate in their wine tasting experience – a complimentary offering hosted for all hotel guests every evening at 6pm.

My husband was particularly looking forward to this part of our stay as he is a “wine amateur”

A few of the wine highlights were the De Wetshof Finesse 2017 and the Bartinney Chardonnay 2016

As regular wine farm visitors we felt this experience was a little bit disappointing… but what it did provide us with was a chance to chat to some of the foreign guests visiting Cape Town for the first time.. and an opportunity to share some of our own wine knowledge… maybe we aren’t such amateurs after all!

Dinner at Bombay Brasserie

One of my favourite things about staying in a hotel is heading downstairs to dinner… and then back upstairs to bed. I love the fact that there’s no worries about drinking and driving, or, worse, not drinking and having to take a long drive home!

To walk down the hall and enter the sumptuous Bombay Brasserie was a treat in more ways than one…

Located in the old Board of Executors building at the top of Adderley Street, the space is grand in proportions, the decor is glamorous and the atmosphere lively. Huge chandeliers cast a soft light over the silken chairs adding to the romantic ambience.

But at Bombay Brasserie it’s the food that steals the show!

If the name of the hotel or the restaurant hasn’t already given the game away… Bombay Brasserie serves up an incredible Indian menu and is one of the best fine dining experiences I’ve enjoyed in Cape Town.

Now I love Indian food, but I can’t cope with too much chilli… I shouldn’t have worried. The cuisine served at Bombay Brasserie is contemporary and authentic… and not too hot! A team of five Indian chefs create amazing flavours with their spice (up to 20 in one dish!) that you can still enjoy without reaching for a glass of water or milk throughout the meal.

We took a gastronomic journey through India, enjoying the wine and food pairing menu…

To start an assortments of colourful crudités and crunchy poppadoms were delivered to our table, served with the Bombay Brasserie’s signature chutneys to get our mouths watering.

A starter of Roasted Yellow Corn Soup with Turmeric Popcorn (Bhuni Makai Ka Shorba) arrived next. An odd combination one might think… but once the roasted corn soup was poured from a teapot into my bowl and I had my first taste I was sold… not usually a corn fan, this is a soup that needs to be sampled! What an incredible combination.

Our meal continues with a sampling of Char Grilled Prawns (Bhatti Ka Jheenga) that are fiery and fresh and Salmon Flavoured with Bishop’s Weed (Tandoori Norwegian Salmon) 

The attentive manageress checks in occasionally and the food flows abundantly, we continue to indulge in everything that crosses our plates… and almost forget that there is a still a main meal to come!

Slow Cooked Lamb Shanks in a Delicate Saffron Curry (Dum Ki Nalli), Black Lentils and Kidney Beans simmered overnight (Dal Makhani), Sautéed Spinach with Golden Fried Garlic (Lasooni Palak) all paired with steaming Basmati rice and plain naan bread. This is pure Indian indulgence.

As our girth’s expanded further, yet another dish was placed before us… and who could refuse a dessert this delightful? Not I!

The next morning we rose without the aid of an alarm, or a kid alarm… leisurely and at our own pace! Unused to waking in the city centre it was with glee that we drew the shades and watched the sun’s rays inch across the face of the mountain… rousing the city to life.

Knowing reality beckoned, we headed down to enjoy one last moment of peace and quiet, breakfast at Mint.

After the feast of the night before I may have sworn off eating ever again, but my promise was short lived upon seeing the breakfast buffet on display!

And when in India (well, India in Cape Town) it has to be Marsala Dosa for breakfast -this is a popular south Indian breakfast of a thin crispy crepe made using fermented rice and lentil batter and stuffed with spiced and seasoned potatoes! A delicious way to round out our stay at the Palace.

Stay at The Taj

The Taj Hotel in Cape Town are currently offering a Staycation Special. Valid until 31 December 2018.

The rate includes buffet breakfast in Mint Restaurant, a R100 Spa Voucher towards any treatment, basic WiFi on 4 devices. and Free City Walking Tour (10:30am. Tues – Sat) Rates are inclusive of VAT , exclusive of 1 pct Tourism levy

Click here to book your Staycation at The Taj

 

The Taj Hotel Contact Details

Address: 1 Wale St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8000

Phone: 021 819 2000

Web: taj.tajhotels.com/en-in/taj-cape-town/

Kathryn Rossiter

Kathryn is a South African lifestyle blogger and mom of 2 who has been blogging daily for almost 7 years! She writes about travel, health, beauty, fashion, decor and family... but not food (unless it's food she's eaten made by someone else) as she is a hopeless cook. She only wakes up early for 2 things... a red-eye flight to somewhere exotic and early morning game drives. She has just finished an extensive home renovation and would prefer to never see another box again. She's never met a chocolate or glass of bubbles that she didn't like!

1 Comment
  1. That looks lovely! I am curious – how was the wine pairing with the meal? I am told that some wines work well with curries and Indian spices but I have yet to do a proper pairing.

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