My simple mind first came up of the word ‘beautiful’ although from that very moment I already knew that using the adjective would be understating further the understatement of the description of The Palace. Thanks to Google, I did not have to stand up to fetch my Thesaurus and Oxford gave me many options but I have chosen the following adjectives The Palace in the Lost City, Sun City, in the North West Province of South Africa.
Regal – This adjective is the most fitting, I believe (thus, the title)
Majestic – You will agree with me when you see the place, or even the pictures
Grand – It sounds like an understatement actually but it is grand all the same
Palatial – It probably suits the place but I feel it is redundant considering that the hotel is named The Palace
Opulent – I have to include it because The Palace is indeed opulent
Resplendent – The word reminds me of Kate’s Leopold (the movie ‘Kate and Leopold’ with Meg Ryan as Kate). Yes, The Palace is Hugh Jackman!
Splendiferous and ritzy – Oxford also gave me these informal synonyms which I will possibly use in future to describe The Palace
Being of humble background, a plebeian in fact, spending a night or a weekend in a 5 star hotel would be an out-of-the-ordinary experience. And I am not talking about the hotels listed on the 10 Most Expensive Hotels in the world. I only refer to the Best 5 Star Hotels in South Africa. I may have spent a night once in One and Only Cape Town Resort but even this hotel only made the list of Best 5 Star Hotels in Cape Town.
Do I need to apologize to Hilton Durban for calling it ordinary seeing that it is one of the best 5 star hotels in Durban (KwaZulu-Natal)? Sorry, Hilton.
In my dream world, where I live in a castle (in the air), I am going to experience all the best hotels in the world. It probably sounds sad because it remains in future tense even in my dreams. In reality, I should have my eyes peeled and ears to the ground at all times to take advantage of those once-in-a-lifetime special offers of the great hotels located in places within my reach, not requiring me to spend an arm and a leg.
And I did! A winter promotion enabled us to spend a weekend in one of the 5 Star Hotels in South Africa. Personally, it tops the other hotels because of its backdrop without the help of the Table Mountain or Camps Bay Beach. We frequent Sun City as it is only a couple of hours drive from home and the resort is definitely an entertainment haven (and heaven) for us as previously blogged here and here, excluding what I have shared so far on The Palace itself and what I still have to share before our next trip in November this year when we will get to enjoy the resort, staying at the Vacation Club, for a whole week just after the Nedbank Golf Challenge.
I did post a snippet while we were there and I showed a bit more of the hotel room itself, sadly over a month after the weekend, so without trying to put in words what the pictures can effortlessly show, here is The Palace of the Lost City, in all its regal splendor.
I apologize for the very rushed last part. Hubby was starting to feel very cold so I had to finish in a hurry. I’ll do better next time. 🙂
What is amazing is that the resort is practically in the middle of nowhere, Africa in its rawness.
My iPhone probably didn’t do justice. Please excuse me, I am not a photographer. Perhaps I should get a proper camera.
Arriving at The Palace, guests are welcomed by absolute beauty. We arrived late afternoon (early evening) so the pictures below were taken only on the day of our departure (although there are a couple or so which were taken the day before). A cold front started on that Sunday and it was pretty cold but I was determined to get as many pictures as I was allowed by my man who was freezing his bottom off, having forgotten to bring warm clothes despite it being winter. I don’t know if I didn’t anticipate the cold front or I had simply forgotten to pack for the little one so she ended up with my jersey. I remember checking the weather and I knew we would enjoy warm weather for most of the weekend. South African winter is nothing like European winter but it is still a good idea to carry a couple of sweaters and jackets, depending on the length of stay of course. The North West Province is also normally warmer than Johannesburg and it can be quite a scorcher in summer.
The Palace deserves its place on the Best 5 Star Hotels in South Africa and this can be seen the moment you enter through the huge doors. Luxury travelers may disagree with me but I was massively impressed, if not in awe. I had been to the Palace in the early 90s but not as a guest so we only took some pictures then. I think it is different when you know that you will be enjoying the grandeur for much longer than a few minutes of pretend photo shoot.
The dining area is as awesome as the rest of the hotel. It invites you to capture its magnificence. If you love movies, especially Adam Sandler, then you are right if you think it looks familiar. Sun City / The Palace is the setting of the movie, Blended, for its African Safari holiday.
I love details and being a frustrated interior decorator, I had to take some pictures other travelers may not. I also am quite particular when it comes to bathrooms and toilets so I have a few pictures of the toilets I wish I have at home. Then again, I don’t really need so many cubicles, do I?
Our trip to the pool was not a quick grab a towel, walk down to the pool and take a dip or a splash. There were pictures to be taken and shared. After all, isn’t the journey as important, if not more, than the destination?
I am not one of the crazy ones to go for a swim in winter. The pool isn’t heated but it was a lovely 24 degrees Celsius, which was warm enough for my toddler. I think that the pool was just too gorgeous to ignore and she had to enjoy it.
I think I was too relaxed here. It was a fabulous weekend indeed.
Don’t forget to take in a little bit more of the beauty of The Palace as you head out to the Royal Bath Pool Area or the Valley of the Waves. We were not on our way to the Valley when these pictures were taken as the area was still closed for winter. These were those pictures I had to take despite the cold front.
One last thing, do climb up the King’s Tower. The view is truly amazing.
By the way, apart from the super fast, uncapped WiFi, the Mercedes Benz that shuttles you around the resort comes to you as soon as you stand by the driveway. It is virtually zero waiting time. This may not be an accurate representation in summer or when there is an event that fills up the hotel and/or the resort.
At the end of our stay, as we drove out of The Palace, I told myself that if and when I find myself with some spare funds, I would not mind missing out on a pair of Jimmy Choo just so I could go back and feel like a royalty again.