In the fine company of the galleries and shops around St Georges Mall, Gorgeous George is a glorious layer cake of original Victorian details and thoroughly modern African artistry. Industrial touches such as exposed pipework and raw concrete contrast cleverly with unique South African artworks, hand-painted murals and eye-catching textiles in generously proportioned rooms and suites. Its bold interior design extends to lavish lounge spaces, festooned with quirky objets d’art. Discerning city dwellers head straight to the restaurant on the roof to share small plates and long cocktails on shaded terrace sofas.
Get this when you book through us:
A Gorgeous hamper including a bottle of wine and a personalised gift.
11am. Earliest check-in, 2pm. Both are flexible, subject to availability.
Double rooms from £198.36 (ZAR4,700), including tax at 15 per cent.
Rates include breakfast.
Gigi Rooftop restaurant offers in-room private dining by arrangement. Gorgeous George’s South African interior designer Tristan Du Plessis is also the creative force behind the Italian capital’s Chapter Roma.
At the hotel
Rooftop pool and restaurant, lounge bar, free Wifi. In rooms: smart TV with free Netflix, Marshall bluetooth speaker, drinks/snacks cart, mini fridge, cafetière, kettle, free bottled water.
Our favourite rooms
With thoughtful design touches and ample proportions in every room, there are no losers at Gorgeous George. The two-bedroom suites win by a nose, if only for their two ensuite bathrooms, apartment-like layout and the addition of a record player and vinyl.
Made for dipping not lapping, the petite rooftop pool has raised glass sides and is a pool of two halves, cinched midway by a stuccoed folly, the interior walls of which are decorated with bold, botanical murals. There’s no lifeguard and no changing area alongside, but robes and slippers protect room-to-pool modesty.
There’s no communal spa here, but you can choose from a menu of in-room treatments including massage, reflexology, meditation and sound healing. A free gym pass for facilities nearby is available.
Hepburn-style headscarves for windy trips to Robben Island and Table Mountain; a bounty of bikinis or swim shorts to rotate for daily dips in the rooftop pool.
Housed in a Victorian-era building with stepped access, this property is not suitable for wheelchair users.
Little Smiths are welcome in two-bedroom suites and cots can be provided in all rooms.
Suppliers to hotel restaurant Gigi Rooftop are local and environmentally responsible wherever possible. Seasonal ingredients are the starting point for all Gorgeous George menus. Fruit and veg are organic, meat is free-range and traceable; all fish is local and line-caught; chicken and eggs are free range only. Cleaning products are eco-friendly and hotel waste is recycled as local services allow.
Bench-lined tables by the terrace's sloped windows stole our hearts. For drinks only, nab the orange-velvet sofa at the top of the stairs. Chef’s table, with its banquet-worthy table and Ron Gilad ‘spider light’, promises conviviality for larger parties.
Light and floaty threads suit the restaurant’s casual-style dining and won’t look out of place while you’re sipping cocktails beside the pool.
Gigi Rooftop is a destination restaurant in its own right, attracting locals as well as hotel guests, especially on weekends when there are often DJ sets. Indoors, the plant-draped dining room, lined with chesterfield leather banquettes, is a quieter spot to enjoy sumptuous mains such as water-flower gnocchi and Karoo lamb chops grilled over a wood fire. The brick-tiled terrace – covered in winter, open to the sky in summer – has a mix of dining tables with chairs and low seating alongside coffee tables, reflecting the restaurant’s emphasis on sharing plates and canapés to graze on, complemented by an ever-evolving cocktail menu.
Enhancing the pool-party vibes of Gigi Rooftop, mixologist Leighton Rathbone likes to stir up the extensive cocktail menu seasonally, inviting you to try CBD-oil based cocktails and delicious soft spritzers.
Breakfast is served from 7.30am–9.30am; lunch, 12 noon till 2pm, and dinner, 6.30pm–9.30pm.
No staid selection of salads and sandwiches here… Available during restaurant hours, the menu reflects what’s on offer at Gigi Rooftop. If you prefer your room service with table and chairs, opt for in-room private dining.
On a pedestrianised mall not far from the Company’s Gardens, Gorgeous George is city central. Here you’re surrounded by markets, shops and restaurants, with the better-known delights of the Waterfront just a short cab ride away.
Cape Town International Airport is just 20 minutes from the hotel by car. The hotel can arrange transfers from SAR550 each way.
No trains cross the border, but services that alight at Cape Town from Johannesburg and Pretoria include superyacht of locomotives, the Blue Train and refined rail outfit, Premier Classe trains. Cape Town station is a five-minute taxi ride from the hotel.
The hotel has free valet parking, so there’s no need for you to negotiate the car park’s narrow entrance yourself. Larger vehicles are parked at an alternative, secure garage.
Cabs are the easiest, cheapest, safest way to get around this sprawling city by the sea.
Worth getting out of bed for
Live like a Capetonian from your city-central base on pedestrianised St Georges Mall, home to food stalls and within walking distance of the city centre’s shops and galleries and neighbouring district, Bo-Kaap. Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront is a 15-minute walk or five-minute cab ride away.
Clarke’s Bar & Dining Room on Bree Street has wood-lined walls and bare lightbulbs that look more Copenhagen than Cape Town. An expansive menu of burgers, hot dogs and salads are its mainstays, although the toasties and pastries on offer during the day look equally tempting. Fine dining in a dark wood-lined, double-height dining room comes courtesy of Fyn Restaurant. Here you’ll find unusual flavour combinations in delicate Japanese dishes such as Iberico Pork Den Miso with aubergine, lime and walnuts and sweet-potato tataki with Japanese-style vegetables.
Cheese toasties and coffee fit for a baristo top the bill at Molten Toffee on Kloof Street. They also have fine bagels. On Regent Road in Sea Point, Kleinsky’s is a New York-style deli that does all the bagels and pastrami you’d expect and is a blissful spot to people-watch over brunch.
Max Bagels by day is Leo’s wine bar by night – a diminutive den of counter stools and café tables out front, where you can sample the grape and the good of South African wines. There’s an old-fashioned charm to drinking spot The Power And The Glory , which has a wood-lined bar and spirits in glass-fronted cabinets, all housed in a stained-glass fronted art deco-style building. Go for the beers on tap – stay for the DJ sets and lively atmosphere.
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this artistically attired hotel in the Western Cape and unpacked their bottles of Amarula and rooibos tea, a full account of their coastal city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Gorgeous George in Cape Town…
A bronze pig on stilts stands sentry by a hand-painted tile map at reception. Sculptor David Brits’ graffiti-like wall art adorns the adjacent stairwell. There is coloured netting on the ceiling – statement floral Moooi carpet underfoot. The moment you step beyond the primly stuccoed exterior of Gorgeous George, it’s abundantly clear that this hotel is a captivating treat for lovers of art. Not that the treats are restricted to cultural connoisseurs. Lovers of space will enjoy the roomy proportions of its studios and suites. Lovers of food will enjoy lingering on the terrace at Gigi Rooftop, sharing plates of seasonal food that celebrates ingredients such as Karoo lamb and Franschhoek trout. Close to the Company’s Garden, the hotel sits at the heart of the city. Take the five-minute walk to vibrant neighbourhood Bo-Kaap or explore the touristy delights of the V&A Waterfront, just a five-minute cab ride away.