The Best Boutique Hotels in Cape Town

Enjoy an artful blend of industrial tones and Victorian design at the Gorgeous George Hotel, Cape Town
Enjoy an artful blend of industrial tones and Victorian design at the Gorgeous George Hotel, Cape Town | Courtesy of Gorgeous George Hotel / Expedia

Freelance Writer - instagram.com/andrewthompsonsa

On the southwestern coast of South Africa, Cape Town is the perfect destination for a romantic or adventure holiday. And if you are looking for accommodation with as much character as the Mother City itself, check out our selection of the best boutique hotels in Cape Town – all bookable with Culture Trip.

1. Cape Cadogan

Boutique Hotel

A classically styles lounge at Cape Cadogan with a glass coffee table and two all-black sofas
Courtesy of Cape Cadogan / Expedia

The Cape Cadogan occupies a Georgian-Victorian townhouse just off Kloop Street, one of the city’s most lively thoroughfares. Start the day with something from the buffet breakfast, laid out in a dining room opening onto the pool terrace, then ask staff to prepare a picnic for you to enjoy on top of Signal Hill, while feasting on unbroken views of Table Mountain. Individually-decorated rooms let in plenty of natural light through elegant sash windows and the Superior Luxury Suite has its own terrace with a hot tub.

2. Compass House

Boutique Hotel, Independent Hotel

A bali bed sits right by a terrace dipping pool overlooking the sea at Compass House
Courtesy of Compass House / Expedia

All the rooms here feature 180-degree views through floor-to-ceiling windows; they also come with private veranda and direct access to a sea-facing terrace with an infinity pool. Sip a welcome glass of bubbly while overlooking the Atlantic, before checking out nearby attractions such as the Lion’s Head hiking trail (it’s about an hour’s walk to the peak) and Saunders’ Rocks Beach, one of Cape Town’s most tranquil stretches of sand. A concierge will arrange airport pickups, car rental and spa treatments.

3. The Silo

Luxury, Eco Hotel

An antique desk sits by an industrial style window at The Silo
Courtesy of The Silo / Booking.com

This ultra-hip boutique hotel, which towers above Victoria and Albert Waterfront, is spread over the top floor of a former grain silo dating from 1924. Each of the 28 rooms has a balcony and features works by leading African artists. The artworks augment the collection found in the ground-floor Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. Take in panoramic views of Cape Town and the mountains through your room’s diamond-shaped windows, or from the uber-popular rooftop bar where you’ll also find a lovely little pool.

5. Gorgeous George

Budget Hotel, Chain Hotel

An arty lounge at the Gorgeous George Hotel with a red sofa and photos on the wall
Courtesy of Gorgeous George Hotel / Expedia

Created from two beautifully-restored heritage buildings, Gorgeous George is the first in Cape Town to join the prestigious Design Hotels portfolio. There are 32 luxe rooms, whose interiors are an artful blend of industrial tones and Victorian design elements. The rooftop bar Gigi has become one of the city’s trendiest nightspots since opening in 2019, offering breakfast, cocktails, lunch and dinner. The steaks cooked over a wood fire are a must-try.

6. The Grand Daddy Hotel, Cape Town

Boutique Hotel, Independent Hotel, Bed and Breakfast, Hotel

A bathroom at Grand Daddy Hotel with a roll-top tub and wooden ladder holding towels
Courtesy of Grand Daddy Hotel / Expedia

Even though this hotel is located on the lower part of vibrant Long Street, it manages to maintain a sense of calm. Traditional hotel rooms are available but if you want a stay to remember, book one of the seven authentic Airstream trailers perched on the rooftop. Each trailer features interiors around a specific theme. At certain times of the year, there are functions and a cinema on the rooftop, and the glitzy indoor bar is a popular destination for locals and visitors come the weekend.

7. Ellerman House, Cape Town

Boutique Hotel, Spa Hotel

A sun-loungers lined pool at Ellerman House
Courtesy of Ellerman House / Expedia

Ellerman House probably has the best position on the Atlantic Seaboard from which to watch the sun slip behind the ocean. But, there’s much more to this lavish boutique hotel than its spectacular panoramic views. Service at Ellerman House is unsurpassed and there’s an extensive collection of local art and an in-house spa in which to truly unwind.

8. Kensington Place

Boutique Hotel, Hotel

A common space at Kensington Place with sofa seating and a wooden table
Courtesy of Kensington Place / Expedia

The tranquil City Bowl suburb of Higgovale is home to some of the country’s most expensive real estate, with limited hotel options. But Kensington Place is a superb boutique hotel nestled among the trees on a quiet street that ticks all the boxes for an idyllic night’s stay. There are eight spacious suites, each meticulously designed. Balconies offer wonderful panoramic views of the garden, the mountain and the city landscape. Room service is available 24-hours and you’re welcome to have your complimentary breakfast delivered to your room.

9. Dock House Boutique Hotel & Spa

Boutique Hotel, Spa Hotel

A small swimming pool at Dock House Boutique Hotel & Spa with The Cape Wheel in the background
Courtesy of Dock House Boutique Hotel & Spa / Expedia

Most hotels in the Victoria & Albert Waterfront precinct are luxuriously modern but relatively large and impersonal. Dock House is a boutique hotel and spa that bucks that trend and delivers an intimate setting metres from the country’s most visited tourist attraction. The hotel has all the facilities you could wish for, including a spa, gym, pool, and garden, and the 1800s property lends them all an air of historical charm.

10. Welgelegen Boutique Guest House

Boutique Hotel, Guesthouse

The cream-coloured facade of Welgelegen Boutique Guest House with a winding staircase on one side
Courtesy of Welgelegen Boutique Guest House, Cape Town / Expedia

Welgelegen is a luxurious Victorian-style hotel centrally located in the Cape Town City Bowl. There are several popular restaurants and bars within walking distance of the hotel on vibrant Kloof Street. However, when you see just how comfortable this boutique establishment is, you may not want to leave. There’s a pool, library, manicured gardens, relaxing courtyard, a luxurious in-house spa, free wifi and flat-screen television to keep you busy.

11. POD Camps Bay

Hotel, Boutique Hotel, Guesthouse

A seating space at POD Camps Bay covered by a stone roof, with a green dipping pool next to it
Courtesy of POD Camps Bay, Cape Town / Expedia

With space at a premium in the vibrant suburb of Camps Bay, many accommodation options tend to be smaller guest houses or boutique hotels. POD Hotel is one establishment that’s become one of the most sought after accommodation options in the area. The hotel is just a short walk from the beach, but with each modern room offering mountain or sea views, and a small outdoor lap pool, you may find it difficult to venture out into the real world.

12. Derwent House Boutique Hotel

Boutique Hotel, Hotel

A common space at Derwent House Boutique Hotel with a grand, wooden door
Courtesy of Derwent House Boutique Hotel / Expedia

This suburban boutique hotel is located in the trendy residential suburb of Tamboerskloof, on the slopes of Signal Hill. Though it’s just a short walk to some of Cape Town’s top bars and restaurants on Kloof Street, this chic hotel is pleasingly peaceful. It offers two room types and self-catering apartments catering for different budgets.

13. The Glen Boutique Hotel & Spa

Boutique Hotel, Spa Hotel

A shaded outside seating area at the Glen Boutique Hotel & Spa with a dipping pool next to it
Courtesy of The Glen Boutique Hotel & Spa, Cape Town / Booking.com

The Glen is an elegant boutique hotel in the suburb of Sea Point. Its location away from the hustle and bustle of the Cape Town CBD makes this a popular choice for people to relax and unwind. There are several well-appointed rooms, suites, and apartments to choose from, as well as a spa and a restaurant.

14. Cape Heritage Hotel

Boutique Hotel, Hotel

A rustic bedroom at Cape Heritage Hotel with a bare-brick wall and four-poster bed
Courtesy of Cape Heritage Hotel, Cape Town / Expedia

Contemporary chic meets history at the Cape Heritage Hotel. Situated in Cape Town’s fashionable Heritage Square, this intimate boutique hotel dates back to the 18th century. Each room has a unique character, offering a blend of historic and modern features. The property is adorned with original artworks by established local artists and new talent. In the courtyard, South Africa’s oldest known fruit-bearing grapevine provides some welcome shade.

Need more tips? Find style and sustainability in the most ecofriendly hotels in Cape Town, bag yourself a seaside getaway in the best hotels on Cape Town’s Atlantic Coast or get a stylish, central stay in the City Bowl district.

Mark Nayler contributed additional reporting to this article.

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