A dog-friendly hotel in South Africa? Seriously? I’ve watched many old-timey films set in Paris where dogs are allowed into hotels with their owners, but I didn’t expect it to be something I’d ever have the pleasure of experiencing for myself.
That was until, along with my dad Ian Martin (House and Leisure‘s art director), I was invited to spend a night at the new Radisson RED hotel in Cape Town. I couldn’t believe it! All of the staff knew my name upon arriving, making it clear they were expecting me. The ottomans in the entrance area were the perfect height for me to hop onto and lap up a little extra attention from passers-by, who were no doubt surprised to find a handsome welsh terrier such as me in their fine establishment. And I made an NPF (new pooch friend) too! Dexter, a boston terrier, is the Radisson RED’s cool mascot.
A quick elevator ride six floors up led us to the ‘best room in the house’. And boy, it sure was. I had my very own, super comfortable bed and tons of toys and treats. My favourite? You know those crunchy, buttery-smelling things humans always munch on when they watch TV? The Radisson RED makes a type of ‘pupcorn’ for dogs! Perfect for snacking on while people-watching from my window, which boasted beautiful views over the Silo district.
After Ian ordered me a delicious dinner from the special doggie menu, I was itching to explore, so we went for a scenic walk around the V&A Waterfront. I went ballistic taking in all the sights and smells. It was heaven. Initially reluctant to head back to the hotel, my tune changed when I saw the lavish bed I’d be dozing off in, and happily settled in for the night.
Although I woke up drowsy, the biting early-morning air and rooftop pool both nudged me out of my slumber. And I didn’t want to sleep through that breathtaking view, either. After eating breakfast, receiving a multitude of tummy rubs and saying goodbye to my new friend Dexter, it was time to head back to reality. While my stay was short and sweet, one thing is clear: the Radisson RED is here to usher in a new, pet-friendly era. And really, it’s about time.