Denise Slabbert

A good life on the rocks

Time stands still on 
the North Coast when you're watched over 
by Umhlanga's 
two-tone sentinel.

Champers and choppers

Personal butlers, aerial excursions and luxury every which way you look. De Hoek’s suite deals are made of this.

The Parks Winery: Home brew

The Parks Winery may sound rather posh, but it’s actually a space previously known as “Stuart’s garage”.

A distracting destination

Keeping the children and grown-ups equally ­entertained on holiday is almost impossible, but not at this family resort.

In need of a quick wellness fix?

So, you haven't yet tried Tibetan sound therapy at the Saxon Hotel? What about a fynbos exfoliation at The Twelve Apostles Hotel in Cape Town, or an uplifting green tea body wrap at Cybele Forest Lodge and Spa? The fact is that health and wellness tourism is a growing trend both locally and internationally.

The brandy route

We're a nation that drinks more than 45-million litres of brandy a year -- so it only makes sense for us to have our own brandy routes. Our love affair with this popular tipple began way back when, according to Pietman Retief, director of the South African Brandy Foundation, "brandy was already available in South Africa before Jan van Riebeeck."

Growing The Grace

The Grace in Rosebank, one of Johannesburg's oldest hotels, is soon to unveil a new conference venue. Work is under way upgrading the hotel's function rooms, which up until now have only been able to accommodate groups of up to 30 delegates. When work is complete in September, The Grace will offer conferencing facilities for groups of up to 120.

Planning ahead

So you missed the Prickly Pear Festival in the Western Cape last month but worry not, there's a whole 10 months of local festivals and events to choose from. From the Philippolis Witblits Festival to the Calvinia Vleisfees, we've lined up some of your more interesting options.

Bar-hopping in Beijing

Salitun Lu in the Chaoyang district is known as Beijing's "Bar Street". With more than 200 bars to choose from, how do you decide where to go and sip on Tsingtao beer? One suggestion is to flip a coin. Heads means three bars to the right, tails means every third bar to the left. <i>Escape</i> gets a taste of the bar culture that has taken hold of the Chinese capital.

Taking a different turn

Twice a year the Chrissiesmeer shop owners put up signs on their doors that say, "Gone Frogging". Instead of preparing for World Tourism Day on September 27 by publishing a set of platitudes about the most prominent places to visit, we decided to abide by the spirit of these intrepid merchants and prepare a portfolio of the country's more unpredictable and out-of-the-ordinary travel destinations.

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