There are certain bragging rights that come with staying at this luxurious 5-star hotel

Be it the location, the room, the food or even the magnificent sunsets you will encounter, you are sure to make your friends green with envy.

Walking into the lobby of The Houghton (after being processed by a temperature scanner that automatically opens the doors if your temp is fine), is like walking into a 6 or 7 star European hotel.

Elaborate chain curtains and electric sofas, the spiral staircase that demands your attention, and people buzzing around, all contribute to an atmosphere that exudes a soothing, residential air despite its cavernous size.

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What is their story?

The R870 million hotel designed by Boogertman and Partners was finished in 2018, with final construction contracted to Stefanutti Stocks. Built in a park-like setting in Johannesburg’s greenbelt, with close proximity to top retail outlets and major business districts, it has contributed to the hotel gaining entry into the exclusive club of Leading Hotels of the World.

The effect is at once exciting and reassuring: this is a brand new and modern hotel that’s in love with its right to supply luxury and a unique living experience.

One of the factors that boosts the property into accommodation orbit is the handiwork of interior designers DSGN, who cast their brand of South African luxury stardust far and wide.

What is in your room?

The rooms are radiant, with a sense of easy-going opulence. From the moment you open your door (that has a seal to show it has been fogged and sanitised and no one has entered for at least 24 hours), you feel the warmth and welcoming vibe.

All rooms have with a view of either the Signature Jack Nicklaus Golf course or the large swimming pools and lush gardens.

It’s tempting to stay under the covers of the comfy bed and stare at the changing colours of the African skyline all day long or enjoy a good film on the large TV adorning the wall, ordering room service when you feel peckish.

A freestanding bathtub fashioned for frolicking, an imaginative mini bar, a Nespresso coffee machine and here’s the best thing, no prints stuck on the wall. Instead  there’s art in the form of a free-falling canvas piece that gently sways in the breeze when the sliding door is open.

Food and drink

The H restaurant offers a stylish à la carte menu for lunch and dinner with an extensive wine list. Currently closed due to COVID regulations, I am waiting in anticipation for it to open.The kitchen is normally deliciously theatrical, with the Executive Chef scooting around with bold creations.

Nova Deli is the sort of place you want to spend all afternoon – sipping on lattes, especially when staff are on hand to deliver you fresh slices of cake.

This international deli is the perfect location for business meetings and friendly catch-ups. The comfy chairs make it difficult to leave and the strong Wifi connection makes it ideal to sit and browse the internet. Not open for sit down at the moment, they deliver the scrumptious food straight to your room.

The Spa

How do you drag yourself away from the poolside lounges and head off to the spa when you are dizzy with relaxation? It’s a question that’s easy to answer once you have experienced a full body massage from Amani Spa.

Featuring a couples suite with a heated plunge pool, eight multi-functional treatment rooms, a grand Rasul, hair and beauty salon and nail bar, an indoor relaxation area and a unique hot and cold spa vitality pool, Amani is a prestigious spa that adds to the hotel’s overall lifestyle ethos. Can’t wait to book a ladies day out when it reopens.

What I liked

All COVID regulations have been adhered to. Some rooms have been converted into day offices for companies wanting their staff to work outside the office. This 8am to 6pm location is ideal because of the strict sanitising regulations in place, great Wifi and easy to order food.

With travel regulations constantly changing we can look forward to “business travel” becoming leisure travel again – across all provinces.

It’s easy to kid yourself that you are happy to leave, but the reality is after having spent a blissful weekend in a hotel that has phenomenal views and delicious meals, who wants to go back to a gruelling week of work? This peaceful pocket of living is surreal, embracing the style and comfort you have come to expect.

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