This year We Are Africa has once again partnered with some of Cape Town’s top hotels to host our exceptional list of buyers and press. After launching our 2016 campaign, these hotels have wasted no time in accepting the challenge and are on a mission to share how they’re replacing commonly-held stereotypes with stories that are handmade, homegrown, local, diverse and authentic – in other words, the stories Made In Africa (more specifically, Cape Town).

To help share their stories, we’re handing over our Instagram feed to each of the hotels in turn for an ultimate Instagram Hotel Takeover. Every week from mid-March until the show, each of the hotels will get a full day to show us Cape Town through their eyes and prove that Africa is Not One Story. Watch out for more on our social media pages using the hashtag #NotOneStory.

Until then, here’s a snippet of how our amazing Hotel Partners are challenging stereotypes they most commonly receive from first time visitors…



African Pride

What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

International guests are very wary about their security and safety in South Africa and expect to find a country that is incredibly on edge, due to the political and economic information they are exposed to by the international media. However, when they experience the country for all that it really is, their expectations are beyond exceeded with the natural beauty, available activities, culture and the friendliness of the people. Other popular stereotypes include the assumption that wild animals roam our streets and that there is entirely no running water or electricity.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

The genuine warmth, efficiency and sincerity of all Protea Hotel employees captures the visitors’ hearts immediately. We focus on our surrounding areas and the country’s rich diversity and traditional experiences on offer.  In addition to this, our sales and marketing strategy focuses hard on marketing the entire destination alongside our brands and hotel so that people get a fuller picture.



Hotel Exterior


What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

Our visitors often think that all there is to see and do in Cape Town is the natural beauty and shopping at The Waterfront.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

We believe that if visitors have the opportunity to spend time with the people that make up the rainbow nation of Cape Town, their holiday will be that much more authentic and memorable. Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel has created experiences that allow our guests to really get to know some interesting people and some fabulous initiatives in Cape Town. Some of these experiences include:

  • Meeting local sculptors through our annual Summer of Sculpture exhibition
  • Meeting the farmers whose vegetables and salads you are eating at the hotel through our Abalimi Bezekhaya partnership
  • Meeting our chefs and learning all about the provenance of the food you are enjoying at our Chef’s Table experience
  • Using our walking maps of the surrounding areas – including the quirky shops in the trendy Kloof and Bree Streets, and the historic and cultural Company’s Gardens, which includes the story of the origin of our city
  • We also share personal, cultural, relaxation and culinary tips provided by our concierge and key staff.



What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

Guests don’t realise how big South Africa is and how much there is on offer. For instance, guests often think that they can go for a Garden Route tour in one day, which is impossible as there’s just so much to see. People often view the city as being dangerous and are very surprised to find how different Cape Town is from what they assumed an ‘African’ city would look like. They are often scared of drinking the tap water and also think that they can go on game drives right in the city.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

Before our international guests arrive we send them information on all the Cape Town highlights and tours to give them an idea of what the city has to offer. We show them the fun activities there are to do with the kids – like strawberry picking, food market visits, Butterfly World and the Aquarium, which is filled with hundreds of African fish species.

We also organise private tours and try to show all the variety that the city has to offer, from the winelands, to the mountains and all our favourite local restaurants.

We always promote and book our own BMW chauffer service and recommended Taxi company to ensure optimum comfort and luxury.


Pool by night - High Res PORTRAIT-001

What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

Some guests still arrive with the perception that the city is not a safe place to wander, and yet that’s exactly what it’s best for. Regularly voted one of the best travel destinations in the world, Cape Town is alluring from the moment you catch a glimpse of Table Mountain. Cape Town is a very hip and cosmopolitan African city that holds the hearts of many who really get to know her.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

Table Mountain is flanked on one side by pristine golden beaches; rolling winelands on the other; and at its feet lies a small vibrant, modern, cosmopolitan city with enough delights and honest friendships to last you a lifetime. At One&Only Cape Town we help our guests overcome their perceptions by reassuring them that the same international rules of awareness apply when walking around popular places like the V&A Waterfront or shopping at the Biscuit Mill.

We give our guests time to get used to being in a different environment  and patiently reassure them of their location. One of the services we offer is a complimentary walking orientation of our surrounds. It is a one-on-one guided walking tour of the Waterfront shopping area to show guests where banks are located, how to find the food market hall or the Watershed for craft shopping and where to purchase tickets for the best ways into the city like the Hop-on Hop-off Red bus or how to enjoy a sunset cruise.  These walks put guests at ease and offer them confidence and perceptive.

We also offer a complimentary car service in and around the Waterfront so that guests can get their bearings until they feel relaxed enough to walk. Also, for guests who want to explore the Western Cape, Jarat tours (who specialise in private tailor-made tours of Cape Town) are based in the resort and are one of the most reputable in Southern Africa for their brilliant guides.

We also make sure that our local concierge is available 24/7 to arrange excursions and make insider recommendations on Cape Town’s ‘in-the-know’ experiences.


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What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

Most people who visit Taj Cape Town have the misconception that staying in the inner city is cold and boring.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

The hotel is located in the heart of the what is popularly known as the Mother City. We put efforts into highlighting the best the city has to offer, from its opulent decor to its mouth-watering eateries. Just a short walk around the corner from our hotel are the city’s most popular streets, where there are over 100 restaurants to choose from, as well as beautifully iconic sights to take in – namely the Iziko Museums, the Bo-Kaap’s colourful houses and the luscious Company’s Gardens, to name but a few. Locals know that the weather in Cape Town changes on a daily basis, which has ensured that there is always something on, regardless of the seasonal changes.

Taj has found that highlighting the location of the hotel and its proximity to all the sights and sounds of the Mother City is the best way to deal with breaking these stereotypes. Taj Cape Town aims to enlighten potential visitors to all the activities and attractions they can explore while staying in the CBD.




What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

For those visiting the The Table Bay for the first time they often are completely unaware of  the depth and diversity of the extraordinary experiences available to them. They don’t realise that Cape Town is a place of endless possibilities. Its diverse cultures and landscapes offer a plethora of experiences not found elsewhere in the world. The Table Bay itself is where cultures, commerce, and all things Cape Town converge. It is where the quintessential South African experience is promised, where the ordinary – and expected – becomes extraordinary and exceeds all expectations.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

With utmost poise, our gracious hotel continues to set its own standards in service, underpinned by our promise to deliver the quintessential South African experience through unique experiential offerings that can only be enjoyed from The Table Bay. These bespoke, interactive experiences are designed to open our guests’ eyes and hearts’ to the spectacular possibilities to explore Cape Town in ways they never expected. Amongst these are our foraging experience, where guests (under the guidance of our Executive Chef, Jocelyn Myers-Adams) discover indigenous and wild plants to experiment with in the kitchen, and our wine blending experience, which gives wine enthusiasts the opportunity to explore the art of winemaking with a renowned local winemaker, Rikus Neethling, in the surrounds of the exquisite Stellenbosch winelands. For us it is about surprising and inspiring our guests with homegrown experiences that instil lasting memories to live on in their hearts.



What stereotype do you commonly receive from international visitors to your hotel?

Many first time travellers feel that they need to stay in the city centre and often miss the natural beauty of what Cape Town truly has to offer. The most common perception we get is that the city surrounds are not easily accessible.

How are you helping create authentic, homegrown stories for them?

We always recommend the little hidden treasures, we create bespoke tours and uncover hidden gems in conjunction with our specialist partners, Escape and Explore.

We usually take our guests on a mountain trail, which starts in the Hotel’s very own back garden. We also recommend authentic local experiences accessible within 12 minutes from The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa – such as the 
Constantia Winelands, Hout Bay Market, Stand Up Paddle Boarding in Hout Bay and 
all the amazing Camps Bay Restaurants. The hotel is positioned as ‘The Gateway to Adventure in Cape Town.’


Make sure to keep a watch on our Instagram feed for our Hotel Takeover and remember to use the hashtag #NotOneStory.

John Segar

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