IT is not just people who are pampered at uMhlanga’s Oyster Box Hotel – their pets get the VIP treatment too. The famous five-star hotel has a pet-friendly policy and small-to-medium sized dogs and cats can enjoy the same sort of luxury as their owners at the Oyster Box’s superior villas.
Demand for the pet-friendly accommodation is high and celebrities and movie stars like Hilary Swank have stayed at the Oyster Box with their pets.
The hotel’s customary warm welcome is extended to pets, right from check-in. There is a stylish collar, a warm bowl gift set, while the special service also includes dog-walkers and collection and delivery to the parlour.
There are special pet menus of course and the guests’ furry friends also enjoy their own linen and sleeping basket.
The menus include such doggy delights as Woof Waffles (grilled waffles with a large boerewors sausage and gravy) and Meaty Muncha (chunks of steak in gravy served with rice).
Cats get to dine on such offerings as The Purring Feline (strips of chicken breast or fresh salmon, with a side bowl of cream).
Also on the menu is a dish labelled “Strolling the Rooftops” which is a selection of feline foods.
“As one of South Africa’s most distinguished hotels, we have to consider the various needs of our guests and what better way than to include their beloved pets,” said Wayne Coetzer, the hotel’s general manager.
The hotel is of course noted for its own resident cat, Skabenga, the most famous celebrity feline in the country and beyond. He celebrates his own birthday at the hotel in style with a special cake and with dozens of young guests and regularly receives gifts from fans who have made his acquaintance while staying at the landmark hotel.
• The hotel recently held a successful Posh Pooches on Parade when some 65 pets and 150 owners trekked along the beach from the hotel to uMhlali with their animals to raise funds for pet charities, the Durban and Coast SPCA and Animally Haven. Local businesses supplied products, prizes and services.
There were prizes for the best dressed dog and owner and Amri du Plooy and her dog, Ivy, were able to scoop 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes in the category. There were a dozen other prizes in such categories as Best Dressed Group and Best Dressed couple. – Barbara Cole