Tourists needing escape from Johannesburg’s lively bustle will find close-by solace in AtholPlace Hotel, a five-star urban oasis in the leafy, exclusive Atholl suburb. Originally intended as the private residence for Sumari Kridge, the property’s interior designer, AtholPlace is now a contemporary Relais & Chateaux hotel featuring nine supersized, stylish suites. Privacy is top priority, as most of the well-appointed amenities — including a library, heated pool, manicured gardens, and gym — are for the exclusive use of overnight guests.
AtholPlace’s suites feature king-sized beds outfitted with Frette percale linens, and Kridge combines African elements with smoky, neutral-hued furnishings for a muted and modish effect. Each suite has a private balcony sitting area facing the hotel’s lush “backyard” lawn, with a pool area bordered with swaying palm trees. With such paradise-like comforts in a tranquil setting, guests often have to remind themselves they are still amidst a buzzing South African metropolis.
The hotel also packs a one-two punch as both sumptuous sanctuary and foodie find, as their AtholPlace Restaurant boasts an exceptional modern menu and remains discreetly advertised as open to the public (via reservations only for non-staying guests). Chef Wynan Van der Watt leads the breakfast, lunch, and four-course, daily-changing dinners — think prawn and crab lasagna entrées, and pan-fried sea bass with butter curry and ratatouille-style vegetables for the mains.
For travelers — and Johannesburg staycationers — seeking luxurious, homely accommodations close to the action, AtholPlace is your premium retreat.