Lions at Rattray's
Many travelers familiar with luxury safari lodges in South Africa know of or may have stayed at the Mala Mala Reserve, one of the oldest reserves within the larger Sabi Sand Reserve. The well known reserve fronts a fenceless portion of the http://simonandbaker.com/kruger.
A vigilant kitty at Rattray's
Our team's suite at Rattray's
The family owned property offers accommodations for 54 guests in the Mala Mala Main Camp . Nearby there are exclusive luxury accommodations at Rattray’s, an eight suite fenced lodge for guests 16 and older with a fitness center and swimming pool. Click here to read about our team’s impressions during their most recent visit in a dedicated article about Rattray’s.
Article by Andrea de Gosztonyi and Douglas McRae and photo by Andrea de Gosztonyi
Home to the 2010 Winter Olympics Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada is a city my husband and I like to visit both summer and winter. We find this destination to have urban sophistication as well as satisfying our need to explore the countryside, all within easy reach of our hotel. The climate in Vancouver is mild and temperate, but the region’s mountains are equally renowned for their epic snowfalls. Nestled between the Rockies and the Pacific Ocean, Vancouver has much to offer the active tourist. Gastown, Chinatown, Stanley Park, beaches and the financial district are all within walking or cycling distance.
We enjoy the fine dining, the shopping, the many museums, galleries, parks and entertainment options that abound for visitors of all ages. For our more adventurous days, day hikes are close at hand and for the truly adventurous times the Rockies are only a drive away. Located in the city center, the Port of Vancouver is the home port for cruise ships operating luxury summer cruises from Vancouver to Alaska. The Canada Place cruise ship facility is near hotels, shopping, dining and entertainment. Its distinctive white sail design made Canada Place an attractive start to our Alaskan Cruise. Click here to read an article about Vancouver.
Exterior view of Hout Bay Manor and Pure restaurant
On a recent trip to South Africa our team went to Hout Bay, a coastal village near Cape Town, for the first time. They stayed overnight at the Hout Bay Manor (Baviaanskloof, Off Main Rd Hout Bay, Cape Town, South Africa 7872, +27 21 797 9393, www.houtbaymanor.com), a 21-room newly renovated historic hotel known for its chic and modern style, and dined at the property’s gourmet restaurant Pure.
“As soon as I started to cook, I never wanted to stop and so I switched my apprenticeship to be a chef, and I’ve never looked back!” said Alex Mueller, executive chef of Pure and general manager of Hout Bay Manor. The thought of taking care of such an exquisite place excited me and of course this encouraged me to take up the challenge.”
Chef Mueller was classically trained and believes that every chef should have this base before starting to experiment. He completed an array of specialized culinary courses to develop and enhance his cooking techniques. Some of the courses include pastry, vegetable and fruit carving, ice-cream and desserts as well as artistic sugar and isomalt creations.
Our team liked the lovingly restored boutique hotel and stylish gourmet restaurant. Click here to read more about Pure restaurant.
The Las Vegas skyline seen from the helicopter
On a visit to Las Vegas, Nevada one of our teams went on Wind Dancer, a Maverick Helicopters extended helicopter flight from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon, including Lake Mead and stops at the Grand Canyon and the Skywalk at the Hualapai American Indian reservation in Arizona.
The Maverick seven-seat ECO Star aircraft
The Skywalk at the Hualapai American Indian reservation in Arizona
The day began with an early morning transport pick up at our team’s Las Vegas Strip hotel. They spent the better part of the day on the full flight excursion and returned to their hotel, filled with Grand Canyon memories and with dozens of photos, in the mid afternoon. Click here to read more about their experience with Wind Dancer.