The flight service was well organized, mostly punctual, and overall a great deal more convenient and significantly more pleasant than the alternatives of driving from Johannesburg or flying to an airport near the reserve and driving or being transferred from there to the properties.
Our stay at The Munro, a five room boutique property in Johannesburg, South Africa, was memorable as much for its luxury features and amenities and stunning city views as for the superlative and warm service we received.
A different designer was tasked with the decor of each of the 10 suites. Our suites had sleeping and living areas separated by a wall, a half bath near the entrance, a stocked minibar, air conditioning and a private balcony. The bathrooms had separate bathtubs and steam showers, amenities often only available in large properties and chain hotels.
As I arrived at the 420 square meter welcome lounge for The Blue Train at the Pretoria, South Africa train station, steps away from the entrance to the popular mass transit Gautrain railway, I saw a sea of expectant and excited faces and heard a variety of English accents. Among my fellow passengers I met South Africans, expat residents of South Africa, and American, Australians and New Zealand tourists. Despite the early hour, 7:15 a.m., we were enthusiastic about riding the train together. More than a mode of transport from the Gauteng Province south to Cape Town The Blue Train was a medium for many of us to meet and share quality time in a private luxury vessel while enjoying Five Star service and amenities.
For two days it seemed we were in an Agatha Christie novel. From the two story private train station owned by Rovos Rail in Pretoria The Pride of Africa Shaun, our antique style train with a steam locomotive, set a leisurely pace toward the heart of Cape Town. We departed in the late afternoon on a Friday and arrived at 6 p.m. in the coastal city a little worse for wear though satisfied in the pleasure of the shared luxury train ride.