I’ve had many wonderful Saturdays in my never-ending Travelife this 2014. In fact, every single Saturday was probably spent somewhere lovely, as I was on a plane or a boat almost every week of this year.
But one morning in January, in South Africa living a never-ending Travelife, I woke up in the most perfect place possible.
I happen to know of this house very well, because I’d stayed in Birkenhead’s sister property in Franschhoek about two yeas ago.
I just chose La Residence out of a handful of properties on my shortlist in Franschhoek, for that first visit to South Africa.
That hotel, La Residence, blew my mind away the minute I set foot in it, and I went on to write about the beautiful La Residence for Travelife Magazine.
No one in Asia really knew about it back then, but I’d booked this for our stay in Franschhoek on my first trip to South Africa because it seemed like a truly interesting hotel.
I loved everything about La Residence, including the amazing Chef’s Table they prepared for us. This was not only a gastronomic feast, but a visual and multi-sensory one.
And my favourite memory associated with this hotel is an after-dinner walk we took in the rain. We stood outside taking photos, and, perhaps because of the light, the rain came out like snowflakes instead.
VERY NICE MEMORIES OF
MY FAVORITE HOTEL IN THE WORLD
After staying in La Residence, it became one of my favorite hotels in the world.
And, of course, its sister properties went onto my bucket list for hotels. Now that I’ve stayed at Birkenhead, I have just one more property to go.
THE ELTON JOHN SUITE
OF LA RESIDENCE
By the way, the suite I stayed in at La Residence, which is known as the Elton John suite, is also one of my favorite hotel rooms of all time.
It just happens to be the best suite in the hotel, although every suite here is impeccably beautiful. I also liked the Armani suite, which is decorated with a black and white theme.
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LA RESIDENCE BECAME #1
Then — guess what.
In 2013, La Residence was named the best hotel in the world.
Travelife was probably the first magazine in Asia to feature La Residence in a major way because it’s so out of the way and it was still so under the mainstream radar in late 2012.
You heard it from us first at Travelife Magazine.
Of course, now everyone wants to stay here, as it’s the best hotel in the world, and La Residence is on the travel plans of every luxury hotel junkie on the planet.
THE MORE UNDERSTATED SISTER
Well, Birkenhead House is its slightly more understated sister.
It’s small and intimate, and on the casual side, but in an ever so stylish way. Everything about it is perfect.
A PERFECT SATURDAY
The companion doing yoga by the beach…
So was this one Saturday in January at Birkenhead, living a Travelife.
The companion woke up early to do yoga by the beach with a private trainer. Meanwhile, I sat by the pool answering emails and drinking my favorite rooibos tea.
Then, mid-morning, I went to get a massage at the spa.
This was one of the most amazing massages I’ve had in recent memory, in a never-ending Travelife full of massages and spa treatments.
Midway into my massage, the companion burst into my massage room without even knocking. I’d left him fiddling with his iPad by the pool, you see.
“I’m going surfing,” he announced. “Sean’s taking me down to the beach.”
I guess he went to tell me this so that I wouldn’t look for him after my massage. Sean is one of the staff working at Birkenhead House.
Apparently, while I was getting my massage, they’d started talking about surfing.
Then Sean had suggested they go out for a ride on the waves.
The companion had done lots of surfing in Hawaii in a previous lifetime, you see, way before he went into global investment banking and became a big shot.
YOU JUST NEVER WANT TO LEAVE
It was really nice of Sean to take him out to surf. But that’s the service at Birkenhead House, for you. They always go the extra kilometre with a smile.
It just makes you want to keep coming back.
Or actually, it just makes you want to never check out. I so didn’t want to. Truly.
Even in a never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.