With travel restrictions easing and people in Jozi looking to get out and about, travel and do what they can to escape the cabin fever that set in during lockdown, it turns out you don’t have to travel far (literally 20 minutes or less from areas such as OR Tambo as well as Fourways) to experience much needed R&R with a staycation at The Houghton Hotel!
First impressions give the feel that the hotel is geared towards business travellers but on further inspection, you discover it’s filled with amenities and activities that cater for leisure travellers as well as locals as a lifestyle destination. Although the hotel only opened its doors 2 years ago, it has quickly risen to the top having been voted Africa’s New Leading Hotel 2020 by World Travel.
Offering a selection of 60 suites (furnished by DSGN interior designers), seven penthouse suites, and five two-floor penthouses, The Houghton Hotel accommodates corporates, VIP’s, leisure travellers, honeymooners and special occasions in style and unparalleled comfort.
So what are some of the many things you can do and experience at The Houghton Hotel?
- Well for starters and highly recommended is choosing a treatment at its world-class spa and wellness facility. The menu offers an extensive range of treatments but I opted for the head, neck & shoulder as it’s one of my favourites. As of 1st March, you can even get a Vitamin IV drip so put that on your to-do list when you visit and feel revitalized and stress-free.
- You can relax or take a dip in one of the 5 crystalline swimming pools situated around the property, perfect after a relaxing massage.
- Want to stay disciplined and dedicated during your staycation? No problem, use of the FitBar Gym is available for all guests and features some of the latest equipment and most experienced personal trainers to fulfil your training needs.
- Go for a round of adventure putting with family or friends or for the more serious golfers, bring your A-game to the signature Jack Nicklaus 18-hole Golf Course.
- Grab a coffee at Nova Deli and read a book or catch up with your partner in one of the many private lounges.
- Grab some of the best sushi and cocktails in Joburg at the poolside Pebbles restaurant, trust me, their signature sushi and piña coladas are deliciously good, just don’t get addicted…you have been warned.
- Enjoy sundowners on the deck outside Séjour with picturesque views of the golf course.
- Fine dine at Séjour with head chef Freddie Dias at the helm, tantalizing your taste buds with a selection of unique dishes such as West Coast Oysters with a forbidden rice dressing, Fillet & Oxtail main, which is a unique combination that works phenomenally well and then save the best for last, a chocolate Séjour S’more which literally melts in your mouth. Freddie’s passion and love for cooking and his vast experience which includes award-winning The Pot Luck Club ensures you are in exceptionally capable hands.
- Wake up to a room with a golf course or poolside view and enjoy quality coffee and homemade pastries served to your room or on the Nova Terrace, perfect for sunny Joburg mornings.
The Houghton Hotel has launched an inspirational and fantastic initiative during the COVID-19 pandemic to help the tourism and hospitality industry. In partnership with Afrika Tikkun Services, The Houghton Hotel Hospitality Academy was born as an industry-focused training programme for underprivileged youth.
Successful candidates will be enrolled into a 12-month programme at The Houghton Hotel where they will not only gain experience by receiving training in different environments (front/back office, food & beverage, housekeeping, finance & administration and finally sales & marketing) at the hotel, but they will also be economically compensated offering a sense of independence and support for their family.
The initiative is spearheaded by The Houghton Hotel CEO, Arnold Forman & Afrika Tikkun Services CEO, Onyinye Nwaneri who share a mutual dream of bringing education and empowerment to the previously disadvantaged of South Africa. This is a very well thought out initiative and we were fortunate enough to meet one of the candidates, Zinhle, who is now employed full time at the hotel in the finance department after successfully completing the Academy.
All I can say is The Houghton Hotel really did make me wonder why we sometimes feel we need to travel so far to experience a weekend getaway or special occasion when it literally can be a 15-minute drive or less from some of our suburbs…not to mention that you already have a head start on stress levels with not having to worry about the travel time.