Luxurious South Africa

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The 12-day tour begins with four nights in Cape Town at the five-star Table Bay, a 239-room Victorian beauty situated on the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront straddling the antique breakwater with the majestic Table Mountain hanging like a masterpiece as a backdrop. Rooms are spacious and furnished in understated Victorian elegance with an honor bar, writing area, telephone with private line, fax and modem and, of course, a butler station.

The Spa promises aromatherapy massages and holistic treatments. There’s a separate workout facility with sauna, as well as a saltwater pool with a deck and jacuzzi. The property also promises exceptional dining at the Atlantic Grill or The Conservatory, with The Lounge offering light snacks, drinks and, of course, high tea.

Tour highlights in Cape Town include a city tour to all the local sites, plus a visit to a diamond workshop, a trip to the Cape Peninsula and a trip up the funicular for a look at the whole of False Bay and the Boland Mountains. There’s also a Winelands Tour with visits to wine estates in the Stellenbosch area amidst some of the most charming towns and villages in South Africa.

Next, clients fly to Mpumalanga via Johannesburg for game drives and a 3-night stay at the five-star Sabi Sabi Little Bush Camp in Kruger National Park on the Msuthu River. In addition to exquisite dining and unparalleled game viewing, six luxurious suites overlook the riverbed, all fully equipped and featuring contemporary African design complete with air conditioning, double beds, en-suite bathrooms, indoor and outdoor showers, and a private viewing deck. Thatched roofs and draped mosquito nets complete this exclusive lodge.

After a flight back to Johannesburg, clients are driven to the fantasy resort, Palace of the Lost City for a 2-night stay in an environment of incredible jungles, cliff-tumbling gardens, sparkling streams, waterfalls, swimming pools and entertainment areas, and the only sub-tropical water adventure park—the Valley of Waves. The huge, sprawling property offers 338 rooms and four deluxe suites, two world-class restaurants and a variety of elegant bars and lounges. “I think what’s really nice and topical about the Palace of the Lost City is because that’s where the ASTA Conference is going to be held in March,” Smith points out. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for American agents to actually experience it themselves.”

Finally, before heading home, clients fly to Livingstone in Zambia via Johannesburg for a 2-night stay at The Royal Livingstone, located on the banks of the Zambezi River overlooking the magnificent Victoria Falls. The hotel’s 17 colonial-style buildings are set amongst indigenous trees and plants in the Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Wildlife Park. The property’s interiors were built to capture all the opulence of a bygone era. The bedrooms are 2-story clusters inspired by grand estate houses. Each cluster comprises 10 air-conditioned rooms with private balconies and terraces. Each room offers large shaded verandahs and open spaces cooled by swirling fans and tall shutters. The travelers’ bar and lounge with its comfortable armchairs and low ottomans is a place to enjoy impeccably served high tea or to linger longer over some fine port or a cigar.

Call for rates, which are subject to change, and tell clients intra-country flights are not covered.

south african airways vacations South African Airways Vacations has some incredible value-ridden programs in the Cape Town area. ”We have our Spectacular Southern Africa, which uses Table Bay Hotel in Cape Town, which is spectacular. We also use the Jackalberry Safari Lodge, The Michelangelo and The Royal Livingstone,” explains Stacey Kartagener, product manager. “And that’s actually a great price because this year it starts at $3,999, air-inclusive. That’s four nights at Table Bay, two nights at the Jackalberry Lodge, one night at The Michelangelo and two nights at the Livingstone. That’s a phenomenal price.”

After four nights in Cape Town and touring around the area, including the Winelands, clients fly to Hoedspruit for two nights at Jackalberry Lodge, situated within the Thornybush Private Game Reserve, still another one of the world’s premier Big 5 game viewing areas. The majestic Drakensberg Mountains provide a spectacular backdrop for this intimate camp, offering magnificent views and understated luxury. More than 60 species of wildlife can be found in the immediate vicinity, including lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino, hyena and cheetah. Jackalberry is also a paradise for birdwatchers, where more than 280 species have been recorded.