velvet | Boutique hotels
jordan-wine-estate-stellenbosch-photo

Finding bliss at Jordan Wine Estate

I stepped out onto the terrace of my suite at the Jordan Wine Estate. The birds chirped excitedly as the sun slowly disappeared behind the hills, blanketing the rows of vines with a soft orange glow. In the distance, the Stellenbosch mountains were a warm pink. It was a such a serene moment and I […]

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How would you make this villa your perfect getaway?

Help design the perfect boutique hotel

Have you ever wondered – if you had the opportunity to help design the perfect boutique hotel –  what it would look like? What services, facilities, activities and amenities would you add to it? When these questions were posed to me a while back by my friends Kristin and Marcus, I sat back, sipped on […]

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The pool at Casa del Mar.

A home by the sea in Langkawi

Langkawi is an archipelago consisting of 99 islands situated in northern Malaysia near the border with Thailand. Also known as the islands of legends, Malaysian children are all brought up with stories of Langkawi legends such as Mahsuri and the fields of burnt rice. Langkawi is a beautiful destination in itself, with mountains which look […]

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majeka-house-stellenbosch-photo

The wonders of Majeka House

“Good afternoon! Welcome to Majeka House! My name is Wonder. Can I help you with your bags?” I stopped in my tracks. “Sorry, did you say your name is Wonder?”, I asked. “Yes, it is”, Wonder replied with a big smile. I didn’t know it then but this would be the first of several wonders […]

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hotel-indigo-tower-hill-mural-photo

A funky boutique hotel in the City

The City is London’s financial and historic district. Packed with stately buildings that house all sorts of financial services and law firms, the City was often considered staid. During my banking days, I was a frequent visitor to the City. So, yes, there’s some truth in that. Aside from London’s two iconic landmarks, the Tower […]

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25-hours-hotel-vienna-room-photo

A circus act in Vienna

“Where am I staying?”, I asked again, with a hint of disbelief. I just wanted to make sure I heard it right the first time. “The 25Hours Hotel“, she replied. “It’s a design hotel in Vienna, with a circus theme”. That’s it! That’s the phrase that made me doubt my ears the first time. I […]

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aigua-blava-bay-photo

A relaxing holiday at Hotel Aigua Blava

The road from the town of Begur to Llafranc winds past some of the most beautiful villas on the Costa Brava. After several miles, a left turn in the direction of Fornells leads visitors to arguably one of the most charming hotels along the coast: Hotel Aigua Blava. Situated on a promontory, this family-run hotel […]

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Sha-wellness-clinic-pool

SHA: A sanctuary like no other

Sanctuary: “a place of refuge or asylum” Looking at the sweeping views afforded by the rooftop pool of the Sha Wellness Clinic, this is the first descriptive noun that came to my mind. Just a short 15-minute drive from the hustle and bustle of Benidorm, a Spanish seaside town that welcomes 7 million sunbathers a […]

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robinson-crusoe-inn-valparaiso-photo

velvet escape’s ‘Stayed There’ feature: Robinson Crusoe Inn, Valparaiso

The Robinson Crusoe Inn is situated in the Chilean port city of Valparaiso (‘Valpo’), approximately 120 kilometers west of Santiago. The inn is perched on a hillside in the rustic neighbourhood of Cerro Bellavista and boasts a truly breathtaking view of the city, the port and Valparaiso’s harbour. The inn’s rather ramshackle exterior forms a […]

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hotel-indigo-puerto-natales-photo

velvet escape’s ‘Stayed There’ feature: Hotel Indigo, Puerto Natales

Hotel Indigo is situated in the small town of Puerto Natales in the Chilean part of Patagonia. The town is famous as the gateway to the stunning Torres del Paine National Park and the breathtaking fjords, glaciers and mountains in the area. This boutique hotel is exquisitely designed by a local Chilean architect and features […]

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