As a food (and travel) enthusiast, pretty much everything on my bucket list is food and travel orientated. Eating a hot dog while staring at the Empire State building, eating crisp calamari and garlicky skordalia in Santorini, drinking cup after cup of coffee while eating buttery pastries in Paris. That is what you will see should you ever get a look at it. Closer to home, many of my South African bucket list items have been ticked off but there was one that I still had to accomplish. Visiting The Oyster Box hotel in Umhlanga, Kwazulu Natal. It almost doesn’t seem like any place can be that beautiful. The pictures almost look fake, they’re so beautiful.
Then a few months ago the lovely people of the Red Carnation group got into contact with me and invited me and my family to come spend a weekend at The Oyster Box. Say what now? As a blogger I have many perks but being able to experience something as magnificent as The Oyster Box with my three favourite people? How lucky can one person get? So last week, off we went to beautiful Kwazulu Natal which is around a 6 hour trip away. And then we arrived.
You guys, I’m such a hotel hussy. I love the luxury and the friendly staff and the fact that I’m made to feel like a VIP even though I’m so not. We were greeted with bubbly and pink lemonade for the kids. As soon as we reached the front desk the kids had already been given a goodie bag filled with a fishing net, bucket and spade and sweets. We were then escorted to our family suite and as we walked through the hotel, I fell in love with the Colonial style of the interiors. Once in our room we proceeded to go straight into relax mode. We lazed on the king-size bed listening to the waves crashing into the beach not even 100 metres away while the kids played on the lawn in front of our suite or watched TV in their very own room which had been stocked with sweets, crisps, dried fruit and yoghurt for them to enjoy. This is pretty much how the rest of the weekend went. Lazing around, playing on the beach and eating. Oh, the eating.
Breakfast saw a buffet the size of a small country filled with fresh fruit, cheese, charcuterie, fresh oysters, gravlax and pastries to make any carb-addict go weak at the knees. Then you move onto the hot breakfast area where a full English breakfast awaits as well as a pancake, crêpe and waffle making station. Wash all of it down with perfect coffee and as much bubbly as you can handle at breakfast time.
We also ate at the beautiful Ocean Terrace restaurant both nights of our stay and loved every minute of it. Their kids menu is well planned with options like spaghetti with tomato sauce, mac & cheese, crisp fish nuggets and steamed vegetables on offer while adults can indulge in their famous curry buffet. And indulge, we did. Everything from butter chicken, Singaporean fish curry, traditional lamb curry and beef vindaloo. All served with poppadoms, roti and fresh naan with an array of condiments and sambals. We ate until we could eat no more. Also, when you are eating with kids there are times where they behave like absolute angels but unfortunately for our waitress, Portia, neither of those nights went down like that. The kids were tired from long days spent on the beach or aquarium and they were indecisive, difficult and bratty. Of course, we were very proud. *not* She handled them with such professionalism. Never once giving us the judgey face we so deserved but instead offering them other options and generally just being a darling.
That’s the thing with The Oyster Box. You are staying in the lap of luxury but your kids (and pets) are just as welcome. It’s like everything I had every dreamed of and more. I would urge you to experience this, even if it’s just for one night. You will not regret it. And if you’re planning on visiting South Africa any time soon, you can NOT (and I mean it) miss out on this gem. The view, the staff, the beds, the food. It’s all top class and you will leave there (very reluctantly) feeling well rested and pampered. Well, we did anyway.
The Oyster Box
2nd Lighthouse Road,
Tel: +27 (0) 31 514 5000
Disclaimer: We stayed at The Oyster Box as guests of the hotel. All opinions and photos are my own.