You have no doubt heard the saying that you “shouldn’t mix business with pleasure”. Well, we disagree. The problem lies not in the fact that you do it but in how you do it. You should mix business with pleasure – but when you do it, be sure to do it with style. How?
Get down to business at The Leonardo
When next you travel to Johannesburg on business, stay at The Leonardo. Bring your family too. And your colleagues. Let them bring their families too. The sumptuous suites range from one to three bedrooms, so there is room for everyone. They are spacious and so well equipped that the comforts of home will not be missed. There are also other reasons why this is an excellent idea.
Location, location, location
The Leonardo is situated in the heart of Sandton, South Africa’s premier business district. A 30-minute drive in a luxury shuttle or private limousine will get you from O.R. Tambo International Airport to this luxury all-suite apartment hotel.
Sandton is the financial epicentre of the country. It hosts the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, major investment banks as well as other financial institutions. Many of South Africa’s corporate giants rub shoulders with the A-grade offices of leading legal and accounting firms. This prestigious commercial centre is also within easy reach of Rosebank, Bryanston and Hyde Park.
While you and your colleagues are negotiating contracts, closing deals, or attending a conference at the hotel’s Isabella Conference Centre or the nearby Sandton Convention Centre, your families can take advantage of the world-class shopping and entertainment to be had at nearby Nelson Mandela Square or Sandton City.
Fun for the families
The Leonardo has so much to offer that your families may choose not to leave the hotel at all.
The Leonardo Spa is one of the best in the city. Treatments range from massage, body and facial therapies to a series of signature aesthetic treatments.
From browsing the shops with unique yet sophisticated merchandise to taking a guided tour of the 50 artworks that line the walls, ceilings and floors of the hotel, from leisurely lunches at the poolside to workouts at the gym, there is plenty to keep them occupied until you join them for sundowners at Africa’s highest urban bar, Alto234.
On the 57th floor of The Leonardo, Alto234 is the best place in the city from which to savour the glorious Highveld sunset. Be sure to stay long enough to see Johannesburg transform from a man-made forest into a cityscape of magical fairy lights, then make your way to Aurum Restaurant for a dinner you won’t soon forget.
Pleasure at Elephant Point
There is no better way to conclude a demanding business trip than with a few days of rest and relaxation. Elephant Point is just the place to get plenty of both.
A quick 45-minute flight on Airlink from O.R. Tambo International Airport brings you to the iconic Skukuza Airport in the Kruger National Park. A 20-minute transfer (that may also segue into an impromptu game drive) takes you to Elephant Point, situated just outside the Paul Kruger Gate of the Kruger National Park.
The lodges overlook the Sabie River, which forms the natural border between Elephant Point and the Park. Every one of the 22 lodges is unique. Ranging from two to five bedrooms, the beautifully appointed lodges each offer a private swimming pool, a boma with a fire pit, indoor and outdoor dining areas, a comfortable lounge and a fully-equipped kitchen.
Should you prefer to self-cater, your grocery shopping will be taken care of before your arrival. Other dining options include a private chef to prepare meals in your lodge or dining at the River Deck or Boma.
As the sun sets over the Sabie River, you huddle closer to the firepit. Two elephants are foraging along the riverbank, and a hippo honks loudly at the dying day. You savour this moment with your fellow adventurers. Sipping sundowners, everyone clamours to share anecdotes, reliving a remarkable day in the African bush.
From a blow-by-blow recap of the early morning game drive in the Kruger National Park, where a nursing hyena cub and a baby elephant stole the show, to the hilarious retelling of how a curious Impala played Peeping Tom while someone took an outdoor shower, every story reinforces the notion that this is how life is meant to be lived.
The chef summons you to the table, and as everyone gathers around, wine is poured, and glasses are raised. You drink a toast to celebrate everything that this place is: an oasis in the pristine wilderness, where deeply considered comfort, effortless style and impeccable service come standard.
After enjoying a delectable meal prepared just for you, you retire to your bedroom, where you open your doors to the sounds of the bush.
Another day dawns. It is peaceful, yet not quiet at all. The low rhythmic notes of doves and hoopoes, the trilling of frogs and the higher pitched calls of cuckoos and kingfishers form part of the dawn symphony.
Some members of your group enjoy an early morning walk along the nature trails, while others enjoy a round of golf nearby. Brunch at the River Deck is a generous affair – the cappuccino is excellent; the Eggs Benedict is rich and creamy, and you all agree that indulging in lunch in a couple of hours may be taking it a step too far.
Back at Ubuntu Lodge, everyone goes their separate ways. Some of the men gather to watch a match on the telly. One of the women curls up on a couch in the Boma to read her book while another does her best to capture the view, the décor, the flora, the fauna, and the very essence of this place with her camera. Someone splashes in the pool. And you? You surrender yourself to the bliss of an in-room full-body massage.
Obviously, this is how. This is how to mix business with pleasure, with style.
Book business with pleasure
Why not test our theory? Book your business-mixed-with-pleasure trip at www.legacyhotels.co.za
How to get there
Airlink operates direct flights from Cape Town and Johannesburg to Iconic Skukuza Airport in the heart of the Kruger National Park. Explore more
Book direct on www.flyairlink.com, the FlyAirlink app or your Travel agent.
Both The Leonardo and Elephant Point offer transfers to and from the airports.
Both the villas at Elephant Point and the suites at The Leonardo are for sale. Contact Legacy Hotels for more info.