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Reviving Hotel Legends

The KwaZulu-Natal South Coast is well remembered by many through their childhood memories of warm sunshine, sandy feet, family hotels, the charm of seaside resorts and the sound of seagulls calling for their souci, writes Nikki Tilley.

Fast forward to 2015 where the old seaside legends such as the ever-popular Blue Marlin Hotel are being revived.

The Blue Marlin Hotel in Scottburgh on KwaZulu-Natal‘s (KZN) South Coast, was officially re-launched on Friday 10th April, following the completion of a R 35 million renovation programme, that began two years ago. The renovations have seen a total transformation of all rooms and outdoor areas, making this property the only resort of its kind on the KZN upper south coast.

This now provides a new good quality, affordable, relaxing destination for both South African and international tourists and business people, especially considering the wealth of excellent golf courses nearby and being right on the doorstep of one of the top ten dive sites in the world (with Protea Banks, also on the South Coast, mere 40 minute drive further down south).

And of course, the South Coast is not just about beaches. Take a drive into the hinterland and meet the Ingeli Forest Lodge, nestled below the Ingeli Mountain range near Kokstad, still one of the best kept secrets around. Built in the 1960’s, it was a regular stop for travellers en-route between the Transkei and Durban. Extensive renovations began two years, which has resulted into what can only be described as a little piece of heaven.

It is surrounded by breathtaking indigenous forests, which has become home to many events including the breathtaking Ingeli Skyrun, held in April each year, attracting participants from all over South Africa. Here you can experience some of the very best outdoor activities including the best mountain biking and trail running routes, as well as great hiking/walking, birding and exploring opportunities. You will be spoilt for choice with forest, natural bush and mountains right on your doorstep. Also geared for younger kids, Ingeli have gone out of their way paying attention to every detail and putting on a brand new 18-hole Adventure Golf course, jungle gym and play area, supervised Playroom and Pump Track.

The rooftop Skybar at DesRoches Hotel and Conference Centre in Margate.  Reviving Hotel Legends 16 Hospitality SCT Skybar

The rooftop Skybar at DesRoches Hotel and Conference Centre in Margate.

And just few months back, Margate saw four star DesRoches Hotel and Conference Centre being opened. Previously a `fun world’ with ten pin bowling, this magnificent new addition to the skyline is something to see for yourself. The owners have stopped at nothing. With everything that shuts and closes, private dining rooms, the glorious rooftop Skybar, spas and kid friendly areas – who would have thought this possible only a few years ago?

So why all this investment into property on the south coast? Because clearly it’s worth it. And facts and figures are starting to show just that.

I guess it’s time then to revisit a legend and discover the new.

For more information visit www.tourismsouthcoast.co.za

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