Southern Sun set to do major overhaul on The Grace hotel in Rosebank

Southern Sun recently bought The Grace hotel  in Rosebank  for R85m.  They are planning to do major refurbishments to the 73 room hotel and turning it into a boutique hotel targeting corporates, but with an intimate feel.  Southern Sun managing director Graham Wood said it will be Southern Sun’s first “boutique deluxe” in Johannesburg. This will be the first Southern Sun hotel in the Rosebank node, an area Wood says has major growth potential.

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A destination guesthouse: Satyagraha in Orchards

Ghandi’s statue in Ghandi Square Central Joburg

Ghandi’s philosphy of Satyagraha (non-violent non-cooperation) was born in South Africa and more specifically in what was then the Transvaal, in the first decade of the 20th Century.  Ghandi arrived in Johannebsurg in 1893 and stayed at various places during the 12 years he was in Johannesburg. For more on this see Eric Itzkin’s excellent book Ghandi’s Johannesburg.  One of the places where Ghandi lived in Johannesburg has been restored by a French Travel Company as a guest house and heritage resource – a really wonderful example of adaptive re-use and sustainable heritage.   The Kraal at 15 Pine Road in Orchards was built by the famous architect Hermann Kallenbach who was a great freind of Ghandi’s. C ompleted in 1908 Gandhi and Kallenbach lived there until the end of 1909.  

Free tours of the house are available, with or without lunch. It is open from 8am to 5pm, Mondays to Sundays. Book a 45-minute tour on 011 485 5928. 

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Congratulations to 2 restaurants in the Parks region of Joburg

Emilio Coelho receives the American Express Fine Dining renewal reward for Osteria Tre Nonni

La Cucina di Ciro, set in a delightful old house off 7th Ave Parktown North, and Osteria Tre Nonni in Grafton Ave Craighall Park  (5 minutes from Liz at Lancaster Guesthouse),  have both  had their membership renewed for the 2012 American Express Platinum Fine Dining Awards.  The prestigious programme has strict criteria relating to quality, cuisine, decor, service, creativity, ambience, wine list and acceptance of American Express Cards.  The judges of the 2012 awards were the well-known Johannesburg-based writer and food critic, Victor Strugo, who has been a judge since the inception of the programme in 1999, and Cape Town-based ‘foodie’  Tamsin Snyman.   These 2 restaurants are amongst 78 around the country who meet the strict standards of the programme.   Congratulations to them both – more fine dining expriences on offer in the Parks area of Joburg.

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