Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Green Route Africa’s favourite beach-side resorts & hotels

We often get asked by our clients for an island-style, beach resort in South Africa. Not as easy as one would think, considering the extent of our coastline. South Africa does not offer any island-style resort, in the true sense of the word, if one is envisaging swaying palm trees, aquamarine seas and warm water. Fortunately we can most definitely offer this ideal in Mozambique and Mauritius, a mere 1hr and 4hr flight away respectively. What we do have in abundance are “beach-side” hotels that cater to all budgets and requirements, from Northern KwaZulu-Natal to Cape Town. We thought we would take a look at a few on offer, to showcase their unique attributes, and how you can include them in future programmes. For the purists we have also included a few of our favourite island-style beach resorts.

Tintswalo Atlantic – Cape Town
This magnificent 11 bedroomed, all suite, luxury lodge is situated in one of the most stunning locations in Southern Africa! Positioned at the base of Chapman’s Peak, Tintswalo Atlantic overlooks the quaint fishing village of Hout Bay, Cape Town. Each suite pays homage to an iconic island. It is ideal for small incentives, family groups and FIT’s.

Conrad Pezula Resort & Spa – Knysna, Garden Route
Located on the Eastern head of Knysna on South Africa’s legendary Garden Route, Conrad Pezula Resort & Spa is set in a lush paradise of ancient indigenous forests, mountains, lakes, and pristine beaches on the prestigious Pezula Private Estate.
The hotel features 83 rooms and is easily accessible either via George Airport, or a 5 hour drive from Cape Town. Pezula Championship Golf Course offers 18 holes of challenging and rewarding golf in a sensational location. For a meeting with a difference, the hotel has three unique venues.

Oyster Box – Umhlanga KwaZulu Natal
The Oyster Box Hotel is well situated on the ocean’s edge, a brief 5 minutes’ walk from Umhlanga Village Centre, a mere 15 minutes to the Durban CBD and 20 minutes to King Shaka International Airport as well as numerous stylish shopping centres…yet the hotel still has a feeling of classical charm and elegance.
The hotel has 86 different rooms to choose from.
We have successfully utilised The Oyster Box in “Beach & Bush” style programmes, as well as in combination with the gracious Rovos Rail, which travels from Pretoria to Durban over a 2 night programme.

Phinda – beach and bush in KwaZulu-Natal
Located in KwaZulu-Natal and showcasing one of the continents finest Big 5 (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) game viewing experiences, Phinda is described as “Seven Worlds of Wonder” due to its seven distinct habitats. A magnificent tapestry of woodland, grassland, wetland and forest, interspersed with mountain ranges, river courses, marshes and pans, Phinda has a rich diversity of ecosystems and wildlife. Access is via Richards Bay Airport, or a 3 ½ hour drive from Durban.
Whilst primarily a game reserve, the reason we have included Phinda in this list is that it is located near the Indian Ocean and groups can have a fun day event on the beach, in conjunction with a Big Five safari.

Indigo Bay – Bazaruto Island - Mozambique
For a true island resort, it does not get much better than Indigo Bay. Located on Bazaruto Island, off the coast of Mozambique, Indigo Bay has 29 Mozambique styled thatched Beach Chalets, 12 two-roomed Bay View Villas, an Executive Suite, Presidential Villa, and Honeymoon chalet.
Access is via a short air hop from Vilancoulos to Bazaruto Island. SAA Airlink is now offering direct flights from Johannesburg to Vilancoulos.
Ideal for incentive groups, the resort offers a variety of fun activities including a Survivor-style team build programme.

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