Gorgeous George: The hot new Cape Town boutique hotel celebrating local art, food and design


If you’ve been on the lookout for a Cape Town boutique hotel for foodies that will blow your socks off, we’re happy to announce that a truly unique inner-city accommodation destination has opened its doors in the Mother City in recent years. Gorgeous George may be a place to stay, but it’s also a place to go.

For a bite, for a drink, up the ante, down the rabbit hole. It’s a Cape Town boutique hotel that invites you to hang your hat and choose your own adventure. Intrigued? Here are a few reasons why Gorgeous George should be on the top of your list of Cape Town foodie stays:

#1 It’s where local design & innovation meet

Situated on a cobbled, tree-lined road in the heart of the city where past myth and future legend collide, Gorgeous George is a historic stronghold that has been reimagined with luxury, glamour, and ground-breaking design in mind.

Here, the creativity of a diverse group of artisans and dreamers has shaped a meeting place of minds and a beacon of inspiration. From the top of the turreted pool and bar that overlooks the Mother City’s comings and goings, to the bottom of the historic steps leading to the Art Deco doorway, it is a place for friends to stay and play.

Created by German owner Tobias Alter and a merry band of Capetonian creatives out of two beautifully restored heritage buildings just off of Greenmarket Square, Gorgeous George is also the first accommodation destination in Cape Town to join the Design Hotels stable, a hand-selected worldwide collection of privately owned and operated design-forward and culturally-rooted hotels.

Art and design lovers can thank their lucky stars that Kara Furter was involved in bringing together an impressive line-up of local creatives and will be able to revel in spellbinding touches added by the likes of Lucie De Moyencourt, who contributed a mind-boggling, hand-painted ceramic map of Cape Town that graces the hotel’s foyer; Gregor Jenkins who had a hand in the furniture design; David Britz who added wall art to the rooms; and many more besides.

The space of this new Cape Town boutique hotel is infused with exceptional attention to detail and riveting design at every turn.

2# The accommodation is plush without being prissy

Gorgeous George comprises 32 luxe rooms ranging from studios to 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom suites with industrial tones of raw, exposed concrete and edgy steelwork, blended with modern Victorian design elements.

International award-winning interior designer Tristan du Plessis created a concept celebrating timeless and contemporary African design that showcases locally manufactured, high-end South African decor.

Plus, all those must-have creature comforts have been taken care of. All rooms feature luxuries such as complimentary in-room French Press and tea goodies, bespoke SCENT for Gorgeous George luxury bathroom amenities, a Marshall Bluetooth speaker and 24-hour room service.

Overnight guests have the option of eating in, but can also saunter up to the 6th floor to enjoy a sun-dappled breakfast and read the paper with the fragrant aroma of freshly-brewed coffee in the air.

#3 Chef Guy Bennett mans the helm at the restaurant

Keen on enjoying farm-to-fork cuisine in one of the hottest locations in town? Step right up – seasoned chef Guy Bennett of Delaire Graff and Buitenverwachting Wine Estate fame has taken the helm at the GiGi Rooftop restaurant and his menu is inspired by everything local.

“I’m a Capetonian cooking local food,” enthuses chef Bennett. “I love knowing where our produce comes from; who is involved in the farming, butchering etc.

Cooking relaxed, tasty food is where it’s at for me. I’m excited about food and our local scene, and draw a lot of inspiration from other South African chefs, such as my previous mentors Michael Deg and Reuben Riffel.”

The GiGi Rooftop space also provided plenty of inspiration while he crafted his innovative menu. “The space is something else and provided lots of influence while I tailored the menu. Like Gorgeous George itself, our menu is varied, casual and accessible, yet undeniably chic.

It will evolve with the seasons and the chefs in my brigade are given the opportunity to put forward their ideas so we can keep things fresh and exciting. The sky is the limit and our diners can rest assured that we will keep pushing the envelope.”

So, what should you order when you go to GiGi Rooftop? Naturally, the whole menu is jampacked with exciting dishes that have been designed to tempt you to come for breakfast and stay for dinner, but chef Bennett has also admitted that there are a few go-to orders that have already emerged as frontrunners since they recently opened their doors. Cue: the Spicy Lamb Ribs and 70% Choc Fondant.

“The lamb ribs on the small plates menu has been flying off the pass since the day we opened,” says chef Bennett. “Think Karoo lamb cooked on an indoor braai, served with home-made BBQ sauce, pickled cucumber relish and sweetcorn salsa salad – comfort food at its best.

A top favourite on the sweets front is the 70% dark chocolate fondant, which is made with locally-sourced bean-to-bar Afrikoa chocolate. Served with a malt crumble, dark chocolate sorbet, brown buttercream and fresh citrus, this delectable dessert really warms the soul.”

#4 There is a rooftop bar (with a turreted swimming pool!)

Yet another rooftop bar, yawn right? Nope, not this one. Imagine the scene: views over the ticking clockwork of the inner city. A partly-covered pool that swims into a turret with hand-painted murals and a sky-view oculus. Lush greenery and space to spread out.

Renowned in-house mixologist Jody Rahme serves signature drinks that have been created to match the GG vibe. The Gorgeous George bar is a place to let loose and indulge and a great spot to experience local wine and get a taste of the lively local gin scene.

We’ll venture a guess that this is where you’ll find the Cape Town cool crowd camped out 24/7 during the summer months.

Parties. Shindigs. Banquets. Bashes. Trailblazing art. Oh-no-they-didn’t performances. It’s all going downtown at Gorgeous George.

Take it from us – this place is going to be hot, so make a plan to get over there soon if you want to stay ahead of the curve.

Writing: Anna-Bet Stemmet | Photography: Gorgeous George

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