The appetising welcome platter of salmon-topped crackers and macaroons was just a teaser of the delectable dinner that was awaiting us. Later that evening, we indulged in a five-course tasting menu tailored to our dietary requirements - creamy tomato soup with parmesan tuilles, seared scallops with butternut puree, kingklip with mushroom risotto, sesame-seared salmon fillet and deconstructed apple tart. The food was delicious, the plating was attractive, and each dish was an innovative ode to its usual counterpart. The dimmed lighting and candles created an ambience that made us want to linger longer and we did exactly that as Clive and the other waiters fussed over us –without being intrusive. The following morning, the breakfast was just as good, with Salmon Eggs Benedict and a colourful open omelette for my husband and I, and French toast with whipped cream and strawberries for the kids.
Tucked away in the leafy suburb of Rosebank, is a cozy little boutique hotel called Clico . It has just expanded, renovated and relaunched its exquisite eatery. The acclaimed restaurant features panoramic floor to ceiling glass doors that are left open or closed depending on the weather, giving one the impression of dining al fresco while still indoors. It is a favourite with Joburg foodies and I finally got the opportunity to experience it too. The menu focuses on fresh, seasonal ingredients and creative haute cuisine and changes daily.
The five-star Clico Boutique Hotel was opened in 2006 by Jeanette Schwegman to cater for discerning leisure and corporate guests. Many are frequent return guests. Originally a guest house, it was upgraded to five-star boutique hotel status after fine dining, and small conference and function facilities were added on. The hotel has won a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence award for 2014 and is one of TripAdvisor’s highest-ranked hotels in Johannesburg. It is easily accessible and ideally located within close proximity of the Rosebank Gautrain Station, the newly refurbished Rosebank Mall and Rosebank Clinic.
The Cape Dutch building offers just nine en-suite rooms furnished in warm, earthy browns and soft greens. The rooms on the ground floor have sliding doors leading out on to the inviting pool or garden – or both – while the rooms on the upper floor have balconies overlooking the pool and garden. Each room features a mini-bar, safe, underfloor heating and free wi-fi. The extra-long beds are fitted with orthopaedic memory foam toppers to ensure that you have an ultra-comfortable sleep. The bathrooms contain generously-sized Charlotte Rhys amenities and also have a heater.
I stayed at the hotel with my children. A joyous birthday celebration was in progress when we got there. We were welcomed by Jo-anne then taken to Room 9 and made comfortable. The room was located on the upper floor of an outside building next to the main house. It was spacious enough for the children to play in without feeling cramped as they often do in hotels. We were given a rollout bed for my daughter and the king-sized bed was large enough to accommodate my son and us comfortably. Our stay was short but sweet and we left Clico Boutique Hotel somewhat heavier than when we arrived.
If you are looking for a home away from home in the city, with personalised service and great food, or an exclusive and intimate eatery in Rosebank with the option to stay over, then this is your place. Be sure to book in advance.
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