The Mariner Guesthouse in Simon’s Town overlooks the harbour and naval base and gives one a great overview of the seaside village…

The guesthouse is perfectly situated upon the hill, offering spectacular sea views. Ample parking, a friendly communal lounge area, where a fire was blazing, relaxing background music, a telescope, a computer for checking travel arrangements, access to Wi-Fi…

The Mariner has really done its best to make guests as comfortable as possible. A complimentary glass of sherry makes you feel like you can kick off your shoes and relax at the fireplace.

Staying true to its name, the guesthouse has a nautical theme with designs of battleships on the walls, a porthole-shaped mirror and some fairly earthy tones when it comes to the colour scheme of the rooms.

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Everything you need and more

Using downlights, tasteful décor and quality finishes, the executive room has everything you would need a for lock-up-and-go holiday or business accommodation. A neat desk, a stylish couch, king-sized bed, plenty of cupboard space and a compact TV cabinet, which houses the DStv decoder, a 32-inch flat screen, a bar fridge, coffee, tea, kettle, plunger and cups and glasses to have a warm or cold drink. The design has a slightly masculine edge, softened by artwork by Marie Prinsloo, whose vibrant blue, red and green hues lighten the mood.

The king-sized bed is layered, very comfortable and spacious, there are ample pillows, and the room is equipped with a wall heater for colder nights. The bedside lamps let you get into a book that you may have picked from their mini library and started by the fireplace. The en-suite bathroom has a bath/shower, rooibos shower gel, shampoo and handwash for guests, with all the regular amenities.

During our time at the Mariner Guesthouse, Cape Town was experiencing hail and a much-needed downpour, which was all too welcome following the recent drought and water crisis. The room has a balcony with two chairs overlooking the harbour with a 180° view, for use on sunnier days.

Overcast, with some hard rain during the night, Simon’s Town took on a colder than usual, Scandinavian feel. While one would usually associate the harbour with blue skies, grey skies made it much fantastically dramatic and provided superb lighting for moody photographs. Everything is in walking distance on a sunny day, but it was much more magical driving in the rain to the Saveur Restaurant at the Waterfront Centre.

Spectacular meal at Saveur

Saveur was recommended by a friend and also by the Mariner’s handy guide, and is still quite new in Simon’s Town. Being mostly-vegan with a few other dietary restrictions, it’s often a challenge for restaurants to accommodate my dietary requirements, but the Saveur was more than up to the task.

A menu scan and some helpful advice later, I enjoyed a bounteous custom-made salad to go with my sparkling water. My husband had the Saveur’s classic burger, which he found equally appetising, presented on a wooden board, along with a chip tin and onion rings crowning the sesame seed bun.

Back at the guesthouse, our room was everything you need for a weekend getaway, especially if you’re planning on visiting the nearby attractions.


Boulder’s Bay penguins & famous fish ‘n chips

Having been to Simon’s Town many times, there wasn’t too much pressure to actually visit the town itself, where you can find a number of fine restaurants, curiosity shops, a penguin colony at Boulder’s Bay around the corner, and a beautiful beach amongst other things. For dog lovers, the Salty Seadog is a favourite spot for fish ‘n chips, while it’s fun to learn of Cape Town’s most famous dog, Just Nuisance.

Copyright: pocholocalapreyahoocom / 123RF Stock Photo


Waking up to a beautiful vista of the harbour with the morning light framing the ample curtains, there’s something rather safe and welcoming about the Mariner. Having plenty of time to take breakfast, we slept in, popped onto the balcony for a quick look at the view in between rain showers, and then made our way upstairs to the dining room.

This communal space gives a view every bit as spectacular as those from the rooms, offering a one-story screensaver of Simon’s Town.

The breakfast is a definite highlight

My husband had a full English breakfast, known as the Mariner, to go with his orange juice and coffee after some fruit salad, muesli and a croissant. Having alerted the Mariner to my dietary requirements, they went out of their way to look after me with a delicious and colourful breakfast including a variety of fruit and veggies.

Daleen, the manager on duty, and her team were friendly, approachable and happy to host us. We felt looked after, without feeling under supervision and this made it easy to enjoy our stay, which found us relaxing indoors, enjoying a book at the fireplace most of the time.

The Mariner team demonstrated their class and quality in the worst weather conditions – we enjoyed a beautiful getaway with all the creature comforts you could hope for.

Every room has a lovely view and guests are accommodated on their every need, whether you’re looking for a kitchenette for self-catering or a scrumptious vegan breakfast.

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