I was planning to have a fabulous night out at the brand spanking new The Ritz Hotel as a fitting end and the last item on my Cape Town 2018 to-do list. The Ritz is an institution in Sea Point, Cape Town having been built before I was born. It was always known for its revolving restaurant at the top of its 23-floors which offered panoramic views of mountain, city and sea. My impression of it at was that it was marketed to the older, well-healed crowd, so I had yet to go. But after its R120 million refurbishment last year, it re-opened in December 2017 with a younger, trendier look including a jungle-themed lobby with bright neon pink signs. Think of some of the flashier hotels in Miami. So, because of the refurbishment and the fact that I have become a Sea Point local, a drink at The Ritz made its way onto my Cape Town to-do list 2018. I had planned to go there as the last item on my list as we headed into summer to celebrate the successful completion of another Cape Town to-do list.
Sadly, however, this last item has been put on ice because I discovered that The Ritz is currently closed due to a rental agreement dispute since 2 July 2018. It is shocking to me that after all that refurbishment money was spent that it would ever be closed so soon after the re-opening. They must be haemorrhaging money every day. But that’s the thing about lists and plans, life is unpredictable and there are so many things beyond our control that we can’t get to attached to them happening.
And so, I have contacted a friend who is super fabulous and had already been to The Ritz a number of times, to suggest another trendy spot for drinks that we can organise for a group. It will still be a celebration of sorts. She was the one who told me about it closing, because I am so out of the loop. The ticking-off- of-a-list person in me will have to let this go although inside it’s somewhat killing me. It also may be an opportunity to discover a fresh new spot that not everyone has been to. I had about 6 months to visit The Ritz before it closed and so it’s also a life lesson in trying to live in the moment, do things when you can and to not put off things unnecessarily.
But I have realised that, for the most part, fun outings just don’t fall into my path. Instead I have learnt to organise the adventures for myself and invite friends to join me. I have had an absolute blast this year ticking off my list from the Crystal Pools hiking trail, to running Biskop Trappies, to exploring Smitswinkel Bay, to a Sweat 1000 class, to visiting the Zetiz Mocaa museum and many more. Although I have had many adventures outside of the list, the list also gave me structure and formally writing it down motivated me to make it happen. For example, it took almost 6 months of organizing to plan our hike to The Ledges because I had to find an appropriately qualified guide, good weather conditions and a date that suited a number of people. But I persisted with dogged determination and finally made it happen.
So, I have made a promise to myself that if The Ritz re-opens I will go in the first month of the re-opening. No matter what. Even if I have to go by myself. I will still do some drinks with friends in a fabulous location to celebrate this year. And I will start thinking about my new list for 2019.
*Apologies for the dramatic click-bait title. The Ritz hotel in Sea Point certainly didn’t ruin my life. But not being able to tick off a well-planned and executed list does hurt me on a fundamental level to the core of my being.*