One word: amazeballs. Two words: holy shit. Eleven words: I wish we could afford to stay here all the time. Starting our honeymoon in an environment of such opulence as The Oyster Box Hotel, Umhlanga was a splendid idea, if I say so myself. Everything is just so pretty. And clean. And it smells nice. Everyone says hello. Everything is complementary (as in, inclusive). There is a turn down service with different treats on different nights, and nothing is ever too much trouble. (Believe me, I overheard other guests complaining about things that should definitely have been too much trouble).
After a smooth journey – although I think I may have failed at the first hurdle of marriage as I fell asleep and left Hubby to drive on his own for a good hour and a half – we sailed into reception, were shown to our room (#13, next to the Presidential Suite) and had just enough time to change into something girly (me, not Hubby) to head back down for afternoon tea. Oh the extravagance! Every kind of sweet and savoury delight you could imagine, on offer buffet style. We slowly ate ourselves into a sugar coma.
The weather was a bit bleak but rain or no rain, we were walking on the beach dammit! However, in the end there was no rain and no walking on the beach as we sauntered into town instead. Bought some necessities – like Steers cheesy chips – and headed back to the hotel room for the United vs Liverpool match. A wonderful idea; I fell asleep 15 minutes in.
The Oyster Box breakfast buffet – worthy of a blog post all of its own – is something to behold. Imagine it and they have it. For breakfast. Champagne and oysters seemed a popular choice (when at the Oyster Box and all…) but we went a good old fashioned three rounds of continental to start, then full English, finished off with waffles and pastries. As one does – when they are on holiday and breakfast is included.
Then it was off to the spa. Holy crap. All other spa experiences pale in significance. The rooms were shinier, the robes were softer, the slippers actually fit and they gave me a choice of body butters. The masseuse knew exactly where to really work my muscles and where to go easy, without me even needing to tell her. The hour flew by. I would have spent all day there if I could afford it, but I can’t and so we headed back to the room to do some chilling. By this time the sun was out and so I optimistically went outside to read. I swiftly came back in for a hoodie. Then I came back in to escape the wind. Still, beats a day at the office.
By now it was time for lunch (also inclusive in our package) and suddenly the assault on the breakfast buffet didn’t seem like such a good idea after all. But the burgers were superb and would not be denied. We waddled down to the promenade afterwards with ambitions of working off some of what we’d eaten. The wind had picked up and was blowing us about all over the place. We managed a ten kilometre walk but didn’t make it onto the beach as the tide was out and the waves were rough. Day two and still no sand in my toes – my parents would be so disappointed.
To end off our Oyster Box experience we meandered down to their 24-seater cinema to watch Deadpool, with complimentary (inclusive) popcorn and sweeties. I fell asleep about an hour in, but fortunately we had seen it before so I didn’t lose too many points.
As an aside though, I need to do something about this falling asleep thing. I can only blame sea air for the first half of the trip!
Another night’s sleep in a million thread count sheets on a bed bigger than the floor space of our entire bedroom at home, followed by another buffet breakfast, and I left Umhlanga with only one thought: I never want to see food again. Of any kind. Ever.
Distance Travelled: 579.5km
Defining Soundtrack: Music from Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby
Next Stop: Umzumbe, KZN