There’s no denying that tourism industries globally have had a tough time of late. But now that things are cautiously starting to look up again, naturally stunning countries are making their way on tourists’ must-see list. Wedged between the magnificent Table Mountain and the sparkling Atlantic Ocean, there are few places as sensational as Cape Town. The surrounding Winelands alone are enough reason to visit, not to mention its cool urban edge and transformative restaurant and design scene, which in recent times, like any good South African wine, has really come into its own.
“The Cape Town design scene has started to mature over the last few years and is now beginning to have its own unique narrative in the larger international design community,” says Tristan du Plessis, the designer who is behind some of the country’s sultriest hospitality spaces. “There is such a strong voice coming from local designers and makers who are not only creating unique designs but also executing at a level of sophistication not previously seen.”
Leading the charge are du Plessis’s creations for Gorgeous George—the city’s newest design hotel, which blends 18th-century grandeur with Cape Town’s raw, industrial edge. What’s more, FYN is a cutting-edge restaurant from chef Ashley Moss, with seductive interiors that are just as slick as the food.
Yaniv Chen, founder of Master Studio, meanwhile, has been busy imprinting his warm, minimal, and textured style with projects like MRKT and Pauline’s intimate standup coffee bar. Elsewhere, Chen highly recommends both Moro Gelato and Between Us. The former, which, according to Chen, serves ‘the best gelato in the country,’ features shades of pistachio, peach, and antique cream. Between Us is a lovely eatery from twin sisters Jesse and Jaime Friedberg, whose unfussy, flavorful dishes extend to the interiors to feature custom-made ceramics and kiaat wood furnishings by local company Versefeld.