New hotel springs from old building in Cape Town
One of the oldest buildings in South Africa has been transformed into a new lifestyle hotel with the opening of Labotessa in Cape Town.
Originally built in the early 1700s, the intimate, seven-room property is a former congressional church and is the debut project in the Labotessa portfolio by hoteliers Jan Fourie and Johan du Plessis.
The South African founders were inspired by the opportunity to meld heritage and old-world elegance with visionary new world design.
Johan du Plessis, Labotessa’s founder and owner, said: “We are delighted to begin our foray into hotel ownership with one of South Africa’s oldest buildings, which has been a true testament to the country’s rich history and heritage.
“Labotessa is a culmination of our affinity for exceptional design, relaxed hospitality, and our connection to the city of Cape Town.”
Situated in a restored landmark structure in the heart of the city, Labotessa is the only hotel on the historic Church Square in Cape Town.
The lifestyle property blends luxury and personal service with the independence of residential living, with each of its seven spacious suites featuring private elevator access, Juliet balcony and sweeping views of Lion’s Head and Table Mountain.
On the ground floor, guests and locals can enjoy the newest outpost of Starling’s, a beloved local café that utilises organic and ethically-sourced ingredients. The café leads into the hotel’s Boutique at Labotessa, the first non-high street and department store exclusive fragrance boutique in Cape Town.
The boutique will sell high-end products such as Diptyque – the signature product of the hotel – Dr. Vranjaes, Comme des Garcons, Vilhelm, L’Artisan Parfumeur and more.
An antique balustrade guides guests to reception on the mezzanine level, with views of the property’s classic fireplace, original chandelier and plush velvet armchairs.
The founders conceptualized every design element in the hotel to evoke 17th-century grandeur fused with a relaxed atmosphere. Commissioned works by local artists and antique pieces weave a narrative inspired by the city’s European influences. Each guest room is unique in its design and configuration.