Tag Archives: sunset

Hillcrest Quarry Oyster and Champagne Festival and all the chocolate cake

Yes, we really did slurp oysters and swig champers in the Hillcrest Quarry last weekend. See for yourself…

Friday, 13 October 2017: Work meeting with Design Indaba team

Design Indaba wall
There’s always something different to see when visiting the Design Indaba/Interactive Africa offices. We loved their wall art when we popped in for a brief catch-up meet last Friday.

Saturday, 14 October 2017: Family breakfast at Cafeen, Oyster and Champagne Festival in Hillcrest Quarry

Cafeen
The bike was ready for collection first thing on Saturday so Husband’s parents transported us there. This was so we could all breakfast together on the way as we had a busy afternoon planned, so a braai was out of the question. We decided on Cafeen in Claremont for breakfast as it was fairly close for Spec to reach from his end of the Cape, too. The decor is lovely.
Cafeen latte
I remembered my envy over the creme brulee latte Husband had sipped on our last visit to Cafeen – Valentine’s Day of 2016, click here for proof – so that’s what I ordered. Also see a happy Spec, Husband peppering his breakfast and the parents in conversation.
Breakfast at Cafeen
And the food? Looked, smelled, and tasted delicious. See various eggy options and my amazing French toast – cinnamon-sugared, syruped, baconed and lemon curded. Yes please.
Hillcrest Estate.
Next stop once the bike mission was complete was the Oyster and Champagne Festival at Hillcrest Quarry. Parking was full – so much so that we were directed onto an adjacent field. There was then quite a queue for shuttles to the quarry on Hillcrest Estate but it’s a short walk up hill – roughly 1km – so we hoofed it, rather.
Oyster and champagne festival at Hillcrest Quarry
Once we had huffed and puffed mildly up the hill, we joined the queue of folk waiting to enter. Once in, we bumped into Terence, a former camping buddy back when we all still lived in Joburg ages ago. See the complimentary branded champers flutes with five tasting coupons each, and some of the white-and-gold dressed attendees.
Oyster and champagne Festival
The oyster section is separate to the champagne section – housed in a different tent and at a price of R12 per oyster (over and above the R160 entry fee) We did not pay this as had media passes, but coughed up for all the oysters Husband guzzled.
Hillcrest Quarry oyster and champagne festival
One could choose from all manner of MCCs, sparkling wines and even authentic Champagne from France to sample – some cash bar only, though – as well as live music and even a coal-heated ‘jacuzzi’.
Silver candyfloss
The silvery candyfloss was a hit. Photo with Husband for size, he didn’t have any.
Bubbly at Hillcrest Quarry
Cheers to pink bubbly! Full description of all we sampled in my official review.
Hillcrest quarry
If you’ve not seen the quarry at Hillcrest Estate, it’s a gorgeous surprise. We were admiring the view when we bumped into another friend from our Joburg days – Michael Rorke, a former colleague from Caxton!
Shuttle from Oyster and Champagne Festival
We decided to shuttle back to the car once we were done. Just to say we’d experienced the Festival in full. Not because we didn’t have the energy or anything (ahem).
Dogs on couch
The doglets were on their sweetest behaviour that afternoon. Excuse the colour-contrasting blankets.
Catch 22 dinner
We had dinner at Catch 22 on the beachfront that evening. It was too chilly to sit on the outside balcony for a view of the sea and Table Mountain but we still had a good time. See my blueberry cheesecake shake and Buccaneer beef burger topped with bacon and cheese, along with Husband’s Castle Lite draught and seafood curry.

Sunday, 15 October 2017: Cafe Lacomia brekkie and strawberry lupper

Cafe Lacomia breakfast
It was time for breakfast at Cafe Lacomia in our nearest Builder’s Warehouse on Sunday. I went for a toasted chicken mayo and latte, while Husband had the bullseye washed down with a Cola, as he does.
Chocolate cake
Later that afternoon, lupper at Mum’s was all about strwaberries – look at them in the salad on the left and adorning the chocolate cake she whipped up. We got to take some home with us and Bertie was hopeful he would get to claim a slice when I had some as a treat. He didn’t, as chocolate isn’t good for dogs.

Monday, 16 October 2017: Office birthday cake

Chocolate cake
I really lucked out on the chocolate cake front this week, as my colleague Arlene brought in her sister’s famous Whispers-topped chocolate cake on Monday morning to celebrate her birthday. It was delicious, with the topping a mix of melted chocolate mixed with cream.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017: Kantar Millward Brown Re-imagining Marketing talk at 15 on Orange, cloud-flocked sky

15 on Orange breakfast
I attended a breakfast presentation at the African Pride 15 on Orange hotel first thing on Wednesday. Excellent breakfast, excellent presentation, coverage coming up soon!
Clouds
Stripe of scattered clouds in the suburbs.
Cloudy sunset
Sunset that evening – about half-an-hour later – was another example of pretty cloud play.

That’s all, folks! Have a restful weekend πŸ™‚

10th anniversary in Zanzibar

As promised, this is a bumper update as I have two weeks’ worth of pics from our recent 10th anniversary break in Zanzibar to share with you…

Monday, 11 September 2017: Fly SAA from Cape Town to JHB

Cape Town airport
First stop, the airport. Having packed our bags and checked we had everything we needed – I left Husband’s passport in the scanner for our last overseas trip, and will never do that again! Check-in was easy so we had breakfast at Primi overlooking the flight deck. And then we were off!
Pool at City Lodge Johannesburg airport.
By the time we reached our first hotel of the trip – the City Lodge at Johannesburg’s main airport it was a sunny, summery afternoon. We dropped off our bags in our room and decamped to the pool area for a while. Just blissful!
Lucios dins
The moment we found out we’d need to spend the night in Joburg we decided we would have a special dinner at Lucio’s in Blackheath – they make gnocchi piccante, which is a bolognaise sauce with cream, brandy, chillies and lime. Too delicious for words. We also invited Gords as it was close to his birthday and we’d not seen him in ages. It was a lovely evening.

Tuesday, 12 to Tuesday, 19 September: Week at Azanzi Beach Hotel, Zanzibar

Mugg & Bean at Johannesburg airport
We needed to be at the airport at 5am for the Zanzibar flight so checked out of our hotel around 4:30am then trundled across the walkway into the main airport building. Check-in was another breeze, so we were pleased to find the Mugg & Bean open and ready to serve coffee, cookies and proper breakfast things for Husband. Then we were off again – up, up and away!
Sightseeing in Zanzibar.
Having made sense of the chaos of the Zanzibar airport – meaning we found the correct forms, filled them in, made our way through passport control, located our bags, found our travel guide, paid 1$ USD to use the bathroom – we were ready to survive the roads to our resort in Matemwe on the island’s north-east coast, about 45 minutes from the airport. We saw many sights on the way, but mostly lush greenery as we passed the various spice farms and bright bunches of fruit and clothing for sale in the small towns we passed. Transport is very expensive in Zanzibar, so we didn’t leave the resort much.
Palm trees in Zanzibar
Zanzibar is palm tree central. There are leafy trees everywhere you look.
Azanzi Beach Hotel
Our resort was sunny, with thatched rooves nestled between palm trees – and you could walk right through, on to the beach.
Drinks in Zanzibar
The jambo juice cocktail, presented with a cold facecloth once you’ve checked into Azanzi, was about the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted. It’s a mix of coconut milk, pineapple juice and strawberry juice. Husband enjoyed the local Safari beers, I downed bottles of Stoney tangawizi (ginger beer) and Husband enjoyed the local wines with dinner.
Villas at Azanzi Beach
The rooms are bright and airy, cleaned each morning and sprayed and ‘netted’ each evening to ensure a bug-free stay. Our suite was upstairs so we had a balcony with view of the bright bouganvilleas and palm trees to gaze at.
Mosquito nets at Azanzi
The mosquito-netted beds are very pretty and make you feel relaxed and peaceful and protected (though you still need to take your full course of malaria pills just in case. We are almost done with ours).
Bouganvillea in Zanzibar
Some of the pretty bouganvillea blooms. There were pinks, oranges and reds, which were quite spectacular from the balcony.
Pool at Azanzi
The pool is gorgeous, partially shaded as it flows beneath the upstairs dining area. We spent lots of time wading in these waters.

The rest of this travel diary is grouped by events and things to do rather than running chronologically, as you’ll see…

Wake early to catch the sunrise

Sunrise in Zanzibar
Matemwe beach is an excellent spot from which to catch the sunrise. We climbed up into the massage hut on the beach for these, so very different to the sunset shots below.

Sip chilled, fruity drinks at (and in) the pool

Zanzibar Azanzi Beach
It’s always a good time for a drink in Zanzibar. Local soft drinks, beers, wines and more are part of the all-inclusive package and the Fanta Orange tasted just delicious there.
Pina Colada in pool
Cocktails are not included in the package, but we couldn’t resist a pina colada IN the pool! πŸ™‚
Jambo juice.
I was thrilled to find that the jambo juice I’d loved so much on our arrival is also one of the cocktails on the bar menu.

Be active – play or watch sports – or rest in a hammock

Playing pool at Azanzi Beach
When it was just too hot and windy to sit outside, we stepped indoors to play a few games of pool. Oh how we laughed and laughed at my ‘excellent’ skills πŸ˜‰
Cola in Zanzibar
We happened to have our SA shirts with us, so tuned into the rugby match against NZ. Some say this was not a wise move. This is us sipping Colas in the resort lounge.
Hammock in Zanzibar
Azanzi Beach Hotel is the ultimate spot for relaxation, with hammocks and comfy seats everywhere you look. Take a few novels and magazines with you, or just let your eyes switch into screensaver mode for a while and feel your worries slip away.

Take a sunset cruise at Nungwi

Sunset cruise at Nungwi
This was one of the highlights of our holiday. We were transported in an air-conditioned vehicle to Nungwi on the island’s north coast, the best spot to catch the sunset. After Husband had a quick dip in the sea we set off towards the horizon, with more drinks and fresh fruit midway. We were at sea from 4pm to just after 6pm.
Nungwi
It’s clear to see why Nungwi is so popular with tourists – calm, clear blue water, lots of resorts to choose from and the best view of the sunset.
Sunset at sea
Aww. Love this boy, and the sunset, and the sea so much! ❀
Zanzibar sunset
Husband spent some time in the water, of course, saying ‘hi’ to starfish and the like, and the sunset was truly spectacular.
Boats at sunset on sea in Zanzibar
Boats. Sunset. Sea.

Snorkelling, beach walks and sunning ourselves

Matemwe beach
Or you could take a stroll along the beach in Matemwe – everyone will greet you, ask for your name and where you’re from. There’s lots to see as most of the fishing takes place right before of your eyes.
Zanzibar sea
We spent the bulk of our time in, on or gazing at the sea. It was an unbelievable shade and temperature, I can’t describe how warm and calm it is!
Beach photos
Make sure you’re both facing the right direction when you take your beach photos or you may end up with a sequence like this. Lol.
Snorkelling
Me in my shortie wetsuit with flippers (snorkel and mask not pictured), Husband at the map of Mnemba Island on the Scubafish boat, us before hopping in to swim with the dolphins and the clear, calm turquoise sea.
Muyuni beach lunch
Morning of snorkelling under the sun over with, it was time for a BBQ lunch at nearby Muyuni beach. We ate fresh chicken and tuna steaks with tiramisu for dessert, swam in the warm sea and napped in hammocks. That’s what being on holiday’s all about. That’s also the only meal we had away from our resort.

Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at Azanzi Beach Hotel

Breakfast at Azanzi
Breakfast! The best meal of the day, or the most important, say some. At Azanzi it was usually a buffet offering with eggs as you like them, crispy bacon and other assorted delights – chocolatey pastries, honeyed croissants, chicken or pork sausages, curry, noodles, French toast, pancakes, cheeses and cold meats, cereals with yoghurt and fresh fruit, juices and coffees… sure to get your day off to the right start!
Coffee in Zanzibar
We had many a good cup of coffee at Azanzi. See the breakfast pot, which usually provided three full cups, as well as coffee from our balcony and below, over the pool.
Lunch at Azanzi Beach
Lunch! The food at Azanzi Beach is really delicious and if you’ve taken the all-inclusive/full board offering, it’s all covered before you get there. We looked forward to our three meals a day and often had more than one course at each. This is lunch on the beach – a chicken curry for Husband and a bacon-banana toasted panini for me.
Food at Azanzi Beach Hotel
Just a handful of the food pics I took when we were at Azanzi Beach Hotel. We ate everything from pork loins to prawn skewers, butternut-orange soup and octopus pili pili to green bananas in coconut sauce. All lip-smackingly good.
Azanzi beach bbq
There’s a weekly special beach BBQ/braai dinner buffet – such a treat! Tables are set up on the beach, with many salad type starters, a chef ready to toss potatoes, chicken, tuna, calamari, prawns and crayfish on the grill and sides of delicious oxtail soup and sweet-and-sour brinjals. For dessert, a choice of white chocolate tart, creme caramel and fruit salad left everybody smiling and singing along to the live music.
Cats in Zanzibar
There was lots of wildlife to befriend, too. See the birdies that joined us at breakfast, Zanzikat or Chewie, who often visited our room, and another kitty that was sitting with a monkey on the beach at Nungwi. We also saw little goats and skinny cows.
Flying
Wash, rinse, repeat the above, and following a bumpy ride back to the airport, we were finally on our way home a full week after the journey began. Until next time!

That’s all, folks! We’re looking forward to spending quality time with the doglets this weekend. πŸ™‚

What to do in Tulbagh

It feels like we’ve been celebrating it for months already (well, we have been), but last Friday was finally our 10th wedding anniversary. Though we both worked on the day, we had the opportunity to spend the weekend in sun-drenched Tulbagh – what a treat it was, as you’ll see below…

Saturday, 26 August 2017: Roadrip to Tulbagh and Oakhurst Olives

Roadtrip in canola fields
A roadtrip selfie is a must, especially if you’re passing bright canola fields just before the start of Spring, as we did…
Canola fields in the Cape.
The crops of canola appear out of nowhere and are so very pretty, it’s like someone spilled bright yellow below and blue above.
Oakhurst Olives.
The first stop on our schedule was Oakhurst Olives, just a little bit out of town and well worth a visit. We did olive oil shots (yes really – quite the experience!) We also dipped the most delicious bits of freshly baked bread into it and smeared a tasty olive tapanade on the rest. You can buy all their products right there, so we did.
Oakhurst Olives
Once you’ve climbed the stairs you marvel at the view outside.
Oakhurst Olives
If you have the time, take a little wander around the property. There are lilies and ponies and not-so-wild horses roaming the grounds.
Horse at Oakhurst Olives
Like this guy! He came running over to say hi when he saw us. Such a friendly horsey. Loved having his nose and neck rubbed. The dark one in the bottom right wasn’t quite as keen.
Tulbagh Hotel Rooms
Next stop, check in at the Tulbagh Heritage Boutique Hotel. There were beautiful Proteas everywhere we looked, and just look at those rooms! A ginormous royal bed, bright fluffy gowns that put the usual scratchy white ones hotels offer to shame, and the fireplace downstairs in the restaurant.
Tulbagh Hotel bar.
Some of the outside scenes. The stairway up to our room, a quaint water feature, big chilly pool, and the bar that was packed to sardine levels just before dins that evening with McGregor-Mayweather preamble.
Pizza at Olive Terrace
First up at the hotel, lunch! We seated ourselves beneath the shade of the tree on the terrace where Husband enjoyed a BBQ chicken butterflied burger while I made a go at the ‘Schuster’ (there’s a pizza on my terrace) – crispy based with rocket, peppadews, feta, avo and slices of biltong, it was enormous – we took the rest up to our room to snack on later.
Coffee with a view
I had ample opportunity for coffee with a view here. See the Olive Terrace below our room, an inviting bench and the must-dunk rusks in our room.
Tulbagh town
Late-afternoon is just the right time to take a quick tour of the town, as the setting sun gives the light a magical quality.
Historic Church Street, Tulbagh
A walking tour of Historic Church Street is highly recommended. There are guided tours, but we ventured out on our own and had a wonderful time reading up on the various beautiful old homesteads and appealing coffee shops.
Tulbagh cemetery
The cemetery is peaceful and sunny if you’re not freaked out by things like that.
Church Street Tulbagh
The botanical gardens grounds were open so we soaked up some sunshine, and also popped in to the Paddagang to see their interesting decor.
Tulbagh town.
Tulbagh really is an undiscovered gem of a town. Everyone greets you in the streets and you see sights like this almost every which way you turn your head.
Sunset in Tulbagh
We were back in time to watch the sun set from our balcony.
The Tulbagh Boutique Heritage Hotel.
The rooms are bright, airy and beautifully decorated. Plus, little bite-size nougat treats are left on your pillow! Such a nice touch.
Olive Terrace at the Tulbagh Boutique Hotel
We sampled some truly delicious dishes for dinner in the completely booked out Olive Terrace restaurant that evening. See my Frangelico Hazelnut Mochaccino, the Cape Malay Lamb curry Husband enjoyed with sambals and popadoms, while I went for the spicy Mexican bean soup with nachos and guacamole, and ended off with the coffee creme brulee and an unpictured whisky dom pedro for Husband. No wonder this has been voted the top restaurant in Tulbagh on TripAdvisor for three years running!
Tulbagh Hotel at night
Tummies purring, we stepped outside again to see the blue-lit tree after dins and took our customary ‘gownie snap’ once we’d settled in for the night.

Sunday, 27 August 2017: Breakfast at the Olive Terrace, ziplining with Ceres Zipslide Adventures

Breakfast at Olive Terrace, Tulbagh
Breakfast! Yes, this was to be our third meal at the Olive Terrace, and we were the only ones to brave sitting outdoors as there was a slight chill. The cappuccinos were strong and the food just what we were after – the homemade granola was sweet rolled oats baked in local vanilla and honey, topped with toasted seeds and fruit from the Tulbagh region, as well as thick, unsweetened Greek yoghurt with a side jar of honey to drizzle to your heart’s content. Being a benedict-man, Husband went for the eggs royale, served on sweetcorn-pumpkin fritters. Yum!
Ceres pink blossoms
After a quick checkout it was time for a very short roadtrip. Fields of pink blossoms lined the way into Ceres.
Ziplining in Ceres
Just 20 minutes later we were harnessed, helmeted and ready to zip our way through the Ceres valley with Ceres Zipslide Adventures! Quite the different experience to when I first went ziplining along the Acrobranch obstacle course earlier this year, click here for a reminder…
Ceres ziplining
This is a screenshot of the Ceres valley ziplining area from one of the videos Husband filmed.
Ceres ziplining
Wheeee! Off I go! You zip across 1.4km over 8 different sections. It’s a wonderfully exhilarating activity, definitely a reason to add Ceres to your Cape travel itinerary.
Huguenot Tunnel
There are fields and hills and vales and peaks to explore as you slowly make your way home again – thanks for a wonderful time, Tulbagh!

*Disclaimer: Obviously our meals and accommodation at Oakhurst Olives, Ceres Zipslide Adventures and the Tulbagh Boutique Heritage Hotel were part of our review package. All else came from our own pockets. All enjoyed equally. Watch for my official review on Biz!

Velvet cakes, mum’s Moyo 63rd and mum-in-law’s 65th at Steenberg Bistro 1982

I think every August blog post I’ve ever published has mentioned that it’s been a very birthday-filled month. Add my Loeries work coverage to the mix and it’s almost impossible to fit in everything we want or need to do. Despite the craziness we did still get to see both our moms for their birthdays in the past few days, as you’ll see below…

Sunday, 13 August 2017: Mum’s birthday lunch at Moyo

Birthday at Moyo
My mom usually cooks Sunday lupper for us, so we decided having her NOT cook would be one of her gifts, especially as her birthday fell on a Sunday this year. We went to Moyo for something different, and as we’d let them know it was Mum’s birthday, she was presented with a special dish of ice cream and berry sauce, was sung to, made to wear a hat AND fed the first spoonful.
Moyo food
To eat, we went with the sweet potato soup (me), the flame-grilled chermoula fish (Husband), the Maputo peri-peri chicken (Mum) and the oxtail with dumplings (Dad). We were all licking our fingers afterwards, so delicious!
Shooters at Moyo
We tried the ‘Independence’ shooters to end the meal in style. They’re yummy Pina Colada-y concoctions!
Moyo face paint
We took a photo of our Moyo-painted faces when we got home before the paint started flaking off.
Sunset in the suburbs
Sunset from my parents’ house later that evening.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017: Velvet Cake Co sneak peek

Cake painted walls at Velvet Cake Co
I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek of some of the Velvet Cake Co’s new treats – my parents came along. Click here for all the words, this is just proof I was there in front of the lovely cake-painted walls.
Velvet Cake Co
Aren’t these the most gorgeous cakes? Really special.
Pastel rainbow cake slice.
Probably the prettiest slice of cake I’ve ever seen.
Velvet Cake Co
Little bites of all sorts of niceness. An enormous strawberry, caramel-popcorn-meringue topped cupcake, and red velvet cupcake.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017: Opening of CEM Africa Summit

CEM Africa Summit at Century City Conference Centre
Scenes from the first day of the CEM Africa Summit – gin stands, a packed panel session, interesting art work in the Century City Conference Centre and proof I was there covering it.

Saturday, 19 August 2017: Mum-in-law’s birthday breakfast at Steenberg’s Bistro 1682

Steenberg Bistro 1682
My mum-in-law decided she wanted to host her 65th birthday breakfast at Steenberg’s Bistro 1682 all the way back when we first took her there in November last year, before they had officially moved down here from Johannesburg. The weather played along beautifully on the day.
Breakfast at Bistro 1682
If you’ve been to Bistro 1682 for breakfast you’ll know the wonder of this surprise – the warm, sweet rolls with toffee sauce to dip in that are served while waiting for your meals to arrive. Drool!
Birthday at Steenberg's Bistro 1682
“Happy birthday to you!” Oysters were shucked, pork belly-bacon benedicts devoured, bubbly toasts were made and a special birthday plate of treats was presented to the birthday girl. All in all a lovely birthday experience.
Steenberg Bistro 1682
The other side of the table – an almost-well-from-his-cold Husband, a just-starting-to-suffer-the-symptoms dad and a smiling-happily brother-in-law.
Steenberg Bistro 1682
Bellies full, we trotted outside for some family photos. First up, Husband with his clan.
Steenberg Bistro 1682
Then it was our turn.,, ❀
Steenberg Bistro 1682
Now one with everyone, minus my father-in-law as photographer. On taking this pic we realised we had all dressed to a blue/green theme without realising. Stylish!
Spur salad
Husband whisked me away to our nearest Spur with a view of the sea much, much later for a quick Saturday afternoon treat between batches of work. We ended up with a Pina Colada, hazelnut latte and chicken-bacon-avo salad to share.

Sunday, 18 August 2017: Coffee tasting tray at The Daily

Breakfast at The Daily
We popped in at Seaside Village’s Daily Cafe for a quick breakfast bite before more work rolled in. Here is Husband with his coffee, the new menus and my Nutella-banana pancakes. Always start your day with chocolate, where you can!
Coffee tasting tray at The Daily
Of course I went for the coffee tasting tray when I saw it on the menu. It’s three tiny cups of plain espresso, espresso con panna (with cream) and their famous ‘tin cup’ with condensed milk. A must for coffee lovers like me. I’m trying their hot chocolate tasting tray next!
Freckles angel fish
Apologies for the lack of doggy pics this week, kids – here’s a pic of our little angel Freckles to make up for it.

That’s all, folks! Have a happy, sunny weekend and click here for more of our Velvet Cake Co experience.

Elgin sunsets, rainbows and Sup boarding at Old Mac Daddy

While we weren’t at work for the past week in full, it sure was a busy one as we sorted quite a bit of admin, had a mini vacation and still spent quite a few long hours Β in our offices…

Friday, 28 July 2017: Creative Mornings Cape Town on the Nasdak

Creative Mornings Cape Town
Last Friday I attended the monthly #CreativeMorningsCT session, this time at the Nasdak. Click here to read my coverage on Biz.

Saturday, 29 July 2017: New Village Place Cafe menu, Uni Mil rugby and Orient sushi dins

Village Place Cafe breakfast
We were intrigued by the new menu at Village Place Cafe on Saturday morning – note my cappuccino with heart-shaped biscuit and French toast topped with bacon, banana and nuts. Scrumdiddlyumptious, as the BFG would say.
Uni Mil Rugby
We collected Husband’s brother and dad to support the local rugby team, Uni Mil or ‘Millies’, at Theo Marais Park. The wind was blowing away but luckily the main team had enough bluster of their own to secure a win.
Sushi at The Orient.
We’d planned an Andrews family dinner that evening to celebrate Spec’s 35th birthday and new job, along with other things. We opted for The Orient at Seaside Village for sushi, and I had sweet-sour chicken with the chocolate spring rolls to start.

Sunday, 30 July 2017: Fancy French toast and sunny Sunday afternoons

French toast at Poplars at D'Aria
We started our Sunday at Poplars at D’Aria in Durbanville. There was a chill in the air so we sat inside even though the outside setting looked very inviting. Note my amazing French toast.
Driftwood Cafe
We had our traditional Sunday afternoon treat at the Driftwood Cafe – that’s a custard shake for me and a draught beer for Husband. See the pretty birdie flying overhead and sunset from Mum’s that eve.

Monday, 31 July 2017: One night’s stay at Old Mac Daddy

Sir Lowry's Pass
Following a lazy lie-in it was time to pack our bags as we’d booked a mid-week break at Old Mac Daddy in Elgin. Lol at this photo. The wind was so strong at the top of Sir Lowry’s Pass we decided to include this photo as proof. #Messyhairdontcare.
Old Mac Daddy.
Hidden in the Elgin Valley, Old Mac Daddy promises a getaway with a difference. Note the Airstream trailers, chilly pool and swing chairs on our porch.
Old Mac Daddy trailers
The trailers are highly detailed – we stayed in The Birdie and my parents were in The Dream, which comes complete with scary naked-lady pillow.
Coffee in nature at Old Mac Daddy in Elgin
Ahh. My favourite. Relaxing with a freshly brewed cuppa java in a peaceful setting. That’s just what we did after settling into our trailer.
Beach at Old Mac Daddy
Introducing the beach at Old Mac Daddy! You can swing in hammocks, sip a cocktail, take a family photo or try your hand at Sup boarding.
Next stop, off for an explore! Husband tried his hand at stand-up paddling or Supping at the Old Mac Daddy β€˜beach’ – he took to it like a fish to water. Not meaning that he fell in, we’re Aquarians so natural water masters, remember?
Next stop, off for an explore! Husband tried his hand at stand-up paddling or Supping at the Old Mac Daddy β€˜beach’ – he took to it like a fish to water. Not meaning that he fell in, we’re Aquarians so natural water masters, remember?
Old Mac Daddy Barn.
Husband started talking about ‘bucket lists’ after seeing these bucket lights in the main eating barn at Old Mac Daddy. That’s also where we watched the sunset and had cocktails and dins.
Sunset
This is the sunset I mentioned. Brittle and wintery.
Food at Old Mac Daddy
The dins I mentioned – I went for the jalapeno poppers top left and apple pie-cheesecake (yes, cheesecake topped with apple pie) bottom right, mom had the Mexican burger bottom left, Husband had the chicken-prawn jambalaya curry in the middle and dad had the pizza top right.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017: Rainy doggy beach walkies

Barn at Old Mac Daddy
It was back to the barn for breakfast first thing on Tuesday. We then spent some time relaxing in our trailer before check out time.
Rainbow and sandy dogs
It was a cold, rainy day – see the rainbow we snapped out of the Elgin Valley, and happy sandy doggies after a brief walk on the beach in the drizzle.

That’s all, folks! Have a happy weekend πŸ™‚

What to do in Franschhoek: Stay at Angala

I can’t believe I managed to cut down the endless stream of pics we took this past week into the following, hundreds were left on the ‘cutting room floor’. It’s not usually this big of a task, especially when the bulk of the pics are not from the weekend itself. But this week was special as we had a few days to celebrate an ‘early anniversary’ at Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House in Franschhoek, and it was possibly one of the nicest breaks we’ve had. Ever. See for yourself…

Saturday, 8 July 2017: Very belated post-Father’s Day breakfast at I ❀ Melkies

Breakfast at I <3 Melies
We’d not seen my in-laws for a while so decided to meet up for breakfast at I ❀ Melkies. All went for cappuccinos to start and various savoury meals, apart from me…
Breakfast at I <3 Melkies
My own breakfast was a little sweeter – a regular cappuccino like the rest, as well as a single bacon marscapone waffle with strawberries and drizzle of syrup. Just what the doctor ordered.
Burgers at News Cafe
News Cafe on Marine Circle was calling our names on Saturday afternoon. We heeded the call, opting for the happy hour strawberry daquiri and long island ice tea (just R39 each) as well as the ‘fired up’ beef and haloumi avo chicken burgers.
Sunset in Blouberg
We snapped a few pics across the road at sunset once our bellies were purring. Lol at the variety of expressions Husband pulled – love that face!

Sunday, 9 July 2017: Soup for lupper

Breakfast at Netcafe
Sunday morning saw us starting off the day at the Netcafe at the Netcare Blouberg Hospital, simply because it’s just up the street and we’d heard the food is good. And so it was – see Husband’s brekkie top left and bottom right, along with my caramel latte and pepper toastie with sweet potato fries. Really yummy.
Soup and gloves
It was a fully rainy day, so we had authentic German pea-and-ham soup with cheesy breadsticks for starters at Mum’s that eve – note the fingerless glove/mittens, a sure sign that things had turned Wintery for the weekend.

Monday, 10 July 2017: Night away at Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House, Franschhoek

All in the Kitchen breakfast
We started off our ‘holiday’ with breakfast at All in the Kitchen – a special treat as it’s not open over weekends and closed by the time we get home in the evenings, so rare for us to sit and take in the goodness. And it sure is good – see some of the breakfast menu bottom right along with our flat whites, as well as the Omega Me Crazy salmon-y breakfast Husband opted for, and my delicious chicken mayo on brown – such a hefty portion that I took half home with me as ‘padkos’.
Cape clouds
Yes, ‘padkos’ means road tripping! The weather played along and treated us to one of those rare Cape winter Goldilocks days – not too cold, not too hot, not too cloudy, not too windy – it was just right.
Angala Estate, Franschhoek
Out destination for the night – the five-star Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House. It was pure bliss. Here’s why…
Angels at Angala
Once you’ve stopped exclaiming over the gorgeous vistas and natural beauty, you notice there are little ‘fairy’ touches dotting the grounds, hidden under bushes and tucked into unexpected corners – hearts, cherubs and angels all adding to the sense of love and the feeling that ‘you can relax here’.
Eco pool at Angala
And relax we did. A sign of its focus on complete wellness and that overwhelming sense of tranquility, one of Angala’s most unusual features is the eco pool. Echoing Mother Nature herself, all natural filtering takes place, and without any harmful chemicals, it’s just brimming with life – you can expect to hear frogs croaking and birds singing songs of joy as they swoop in for a sip. This is also the spot to sit and take in the view. See below.
Ecopool and recliners at Angala
The most inviting recliners at the eco pool. As they’re swathed in terrycloth dressing, taking in the view from there is like nestling in your comforting bathrobe.
Pool at Angala
Water is one of the main elements of healing and it features strongly at Angala, so us Aquarian water babies were quite literally in our element. Here you can see the cold pool in front of the infrared sauna below the main deck, with the hot pool hidden in this shot – it’s just in front of the garden umbrellas.
Hot tub at Angala
Cold pool on the left, hot pool on the right. I dipped a toe in the cold pool and decided the hot pool would be my home for the next few hours. We stayed in until the stars came out and it was time to get ready for dinner, so we trotted back to our suite, pronto.
Bedroom at Angala Estate
Just a selection of the tasteful bedrooms we saw at Angala. All plush, fresh linens and soothing tones, each with its own distinctive personality. Ours was the bottom right, but I think the bed in the next pic was my favourite…
Angala bedroom
This photo just screams comfort, luxury and ‘room with a view’. Absolutely gorgeous.
Sherry and coffee at Angala
A few examples of how your every comfort is taken care of at Angala – not just a handful of coffee sachets but the full complement of Nespresso pods, as well as sherry in every room, a well-stocked mini bar – make that ‘bar cabinet’ – that’s also completely complimentary including local wines, beers, soft drinks and milk for all that coffee.
Sunset in Franschhoek
Coffee cup filled with aromatic java and a view of the sun setting over the mountains is my idea of magic.
Dinner at Angala.
Dinner was so good I had to stitch together quite a few pics. Note my beetroot tart tatin starter, the wine Husband sampled and enjoyed so much he is looking out for a bottle to buy, his trout starter, his linefish mains (kingklip) and my lamb mains. Full descriptions on my review on Biz soon!
Dessert at Angala
More dinner snaps – the standard ‘bread and menu’ shot, and dessert. That’s my lavender panna cotta topped with syrupy figs and tart berries, as well as Husband’s impressive cheese and nut board. Impressive as he enjoyed every single cheese on the board, including an unexpectedly soft, sweet slice we couldn’t get enough of. Plus a cappuccino of course, just visible in the shot of me with my candle-lit purple hair, bottom right.
Amarula and gowns at Angala
We returned to our room to find something better than the customary ‘chocolate turndown’ – instead, a mini bottle of Amarula cream and glass on our bedside tables. We promptly hopped into our gowns and slippers and enjoyed it while sitting on the couch in front of the fire, that had also been lit before our return. Truly delightful!
Fireplaces at Angala
Yip, you guessed it. Another of of my favourite winter creature comforts is fire. There are fireplaces everywhere at Angala, each with piles of wood stacked nearby and adding a natural warmth and happy glow to your stay.

Tuesday, 11, July 2017: Outdoor showers and breakfast at Angala

Bath and shower at Angala
More focus on water with the simply stunning baths and outdoor showers. Husband was brave enough to give the outdoor shower a brisk go, but we didn’t run a bath as water’s so scarce in the Cape at the moment. Just imagine a soak with those gorgeous views though…
Breakfast at Angala
Breakfast is included in the overnight rates at Angala, so we took full advantage, ordering the Angala Rarebit off the hot menu and also plating up from the continental buffet offering. Lip-smackingly good.

Before we knew it, the time had come to check out and make our way back home, much more relaxed and peaceful than when we’d set out. So much so that I was told I looked ‘so serene’ when I returned to the office on Wednesday. We’ll definitely visit Angala again!

*Disclaimer: Obviously our meals and accommodation at Angala were part of our review package. All else came from our own pockets. All enjoyed equally. Click here for my official review on Biz!

Winter’s best comfort food: Italian Club gnocchi, News Cafe’s cherry hot chocolate

Fiddlesticks and phew, here we are at the start of a weekend where both of us are going to switch off, not think too deeply and have many happy moments together.

But first a few of our favourite happy moments from the past week…

Friday, 30 June 2017: Day off breakfast and winter gnocchi

Breakfast at La Rocca
We both had Friday off work so once we woke (without an alarm, yay), we headed out to Canal Walk. Breakfast took place at La Rocca. That’s my cappuccino and caramel banana pancakes with Husband’s deboned rib eggs benedict topped with prego sauce.
Italian Club gnocchi
The day was cold so after naps and chores we decided on the Italian Club for dins. Just look at these perfect plates of gnocchi bolognese, drowning in grated parmesan and chilli. Plus Husband’s Stella Artois and my cappuccino.
Dogs at fireplace
Happy doglets in front of the fire a little later that evening.

Saturday, 1 July 2017: Durban July at the in-laws

Our table at Primi for Saturday morning breakfast. Close-ups in next snap…
French toast and cappuccino at Primi
We each started with a cappuccino, then I had the French toast with peanut butter and caramelised banana (mmm), and Husband had the Eggs Florentine with haloumi and many mini tomatoes adding a ruby glow.
Sunset in Cape Town
Sunset at Husband’s parents house that evening where we were having a braai to celebrate the Durban July.
Dog on couch
Bassie took a liking to her grampa’s SA beanie and spent most of the afternoon on, in and under it.
Dog on couch
Bertie was also at his sweetest – this is the face he made when asked if he’s allowed to sit on granny’s new couch.
Lindt Strawberry
Coffee and my Durban July draw ‘second place prize’ Strawberry Lindt (I shared with everyone, promise).

Sunday, 2 July 2017: Rainy Baconville brekkie and News Cafe afternoon

Sleepy dog
My sleepy boys. Best faces. ❀
Baconville breakfast
Sunday morning was rainy and cold and we had a craving for bacon so breakfasted at Baconville in Willowbridge. See my chocolate latte, bacon flapjacks, Husband’s Breakfast Club with an extra egg and his ‘hmm’ face at the ‘I dare you sauce’ – child’s play, he said.
News Cafe hot chocolate
Sunday afternoon felt like an ‘afternoon treat at News Cafe’ time of the week – I tried the cherry hot chocolate while Husband had a dom pedro. Not on the menu but one of the best he’s had, and he’s had a few.
News Cafe cherry hot chocolate.
In addition to sweet-tart cherry flavoured syrup in the hot chocolate, you get a sweet cherry on top.
italian food
More delicious wintery food ensued at Mum’s for lupper that eve – minestrone soup with cheesy breadsticks, spag bol topped with parmesan, malva pudding with custard and stormy skies.

Midweek lonely evenings with dogs

Dogs on couch
Husband was Marvin this week so these are the faces I was rushing home to from work – sometimes with pretty pink streaky clouds when I got there, sometimes with night already setting in.

Thursday, 6 July 2017: Digital influence launch at Grand Daddy Hotel, after-work drinks at Tap Room

Elephant graffiti
Such pretty elephant graffiti just outside the Grand Mac Daddy Hotel on Long Street – my early morning stop before work to cover Popimedia’s digital influence in SA study launch. Coverage on Biz next week.
Grand Mac Daddy Hotel Long Street
Not joking when I say I got there before the sun was up. The lovely view down Long Street, as well as coffee and cold breakfast bits to snack on kept everyone happy.
Seal painting
One of the amazing student artworks in the main hotel area. Such soulful eyes.
Tap Room at Devil's Peak Brewery
My colleague from Joburg was visiting for a few days this week so a few of us went for a chat over liquid refreshments at the Tap Room at Devil’s Peak Brewery after work on Thursday as it’s close to the office. Of course we took photos as proof we were there. These people keep me sane during office hours!
Double-choc shake at Tap Room.
I went for the double choc milkshake – it’s a small as it’s listed under the kiddies’ drinks. The others enjoyed the ginger cider, if you’re in the area.

That’s all, folks! It’s set to be a cold wet weekend in Cape Town – stay warm and dry.