21 Aug, 2015
Imagine a cruise ship shaped Art Deco hotel perched on a peninsula jutting into the aqua waters of Vilanculos bay. This is the gorgeous Dona Ana Hotel. More than sixty years ago, Señor Alves built and named this hotel for the love of his life, Dona Ana. A woman famed for her glamour and gracious hospitality. Today this grand old building has been restored to cool candy Deco perfection while continuing to reflect the personality of its namesake. The exterior is bedecked in fresh sugared almond pastels complete with a low-key illuminated sign that feels very South Beach, Miami. Swooping curving architecture delivers the cruise-liner inspiration. As I gazed from my balcony at a 270degree sea view, I felt a fleeting Kate and Leo moment sweep over me before turning back for “mais uma cerveja”. The interior design cleverly incorporates the hotel’s Deco-era heritage, it’s Portuguese history and it’s place on the east coast of Africa. This mélange of cultures is mixed in an entertaining and harmonious style. The luxury liner influence becomes ever more overt at the fabulous poolside bar where to refuse a cocktail seems foolish. Happily refuelling and hydrating are a quality priority at The Dona Ana. Lunchtime saw us horizontal on the loungers teaming 2M beers with beef koftas, crab samoosas and prawn spring rolls. Breakfast is a bespoke affair. Quaffable coffee is delivered in satisfyingly massive plungers. Eggs are made to order with the fluffy generously overfilled omelettes being a highlight. Humberto and Madallah made sure we left over fed after having devoured just one more homemade pastry or two.
Even if you spend very little time in your sleeping quarters, they remain a treat at dawn, dusk and during the wave-kissed night. Suites and rooms are dressed in tranquil white and mink tones making a fitting backdrop to the real star of the show. A sea view to indulge the senses, soothe the stresses, defy the possibilities of blues and fill gigabytes of memory cards.
The Dona Ana Hotel is situated in Vilanculos which is less than two hours flying time from Johannesburg. This is the perfect platform from which to launch or finish your Mozambican holiday.
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