Sun International’s legendary Sun City in the North West province is in the throes of an R800-million refurbishment to revitalise its iconic appeal and ensure that it retains its rightful place as South Africa’s entertainment mecca and one of the most exciting leisure destinations in the world.
“Sun City is the jewel in the crown of Africa’s largest tourism, leisure and gaming group. It has a special place in the hearts of the millions of people who visit the resort each year. Its re-invention is to ensure that it stays at the cusp of experiential entertainment and leisure experiences. This substantial investment is part of our promise to give our guests a place, and unmatched experiences, to create lasting memories,” says Mike van Vuuren, managing executive at Sun City.
Each of the resort’s four hotels, as well as the entertainment zones and food and beverage offering, will be revamped. The 382 luxury self-catering apartments at the Sun Vacation Club have already been upgraded, and trusted family restaurant brands, Spur, which opened recently, and Ocean Basket, to open soon, are on board to enhance the timeshare family appeal.
Sun City’s Cabanas hotel is currently undergoing a holistic refurbishment which includes a refresh of the guest rooms, reception area and restaurant. This is the first major upgrade of the hotel since 2007 when the rooms were restyled to mark the hotel’s 25th anniversary. The refurbishment started in January 2015 and is scheduled for completion towards the end of November 2015. The entrance and reception area are being remodelled for a more contemporary and modern feel, while still reflecting the hotel’s friendly character. The reception area is spacious with a balconied foyer overlooking the hotel’s restaurant which is in the process of being remodelled. Guests can look forward to a rejuvenated restaurant with a fresh and modern interior.
The Sun City Hotel, at the heart of the resort, is also being repositioned to provide an “always on”, Vegas-style party zone, complete with night clubs, burlesque clubs and restaurants. Just opened at the Sun City Hotel is Mugg & Bean. Offering the reassurance of familiarity and the generosity and warm service for which the brand is renowned, Mugg & Bean at the Sun City Hotel offers visitors a place to meet, eat and connect at any time of the day, right at the centre of it all at Sun City. The soon-to-open Legends will be an upmarket restaurant night spot showcasing memorabilia of celebrities who have stayed at Sun City over the years. Open until late, with entertainment and a great vibe, Legends will keep the over 18s rocking ‘til the wee hours.
At the five star Cascades hotel, Santorini has made way for an upscale restaurant, Bocado which pays homage to the vibrant culinary dishes of the Mediterranean, giving foodies a chance to explore classic and new flavours from the region.
Presiding over the resort is The Palace, already famous as one of the Leading Hotels of the World. This hotel offers a new exclusive, ultra high-end casino, The Palace Villa and Salon, while its restaurants, Plume, and the Tusk Bar and Lounge, are also to be refreshed in the coming months. The refurbishment of the The Grill Room will be completed by the first week of November.
More thrilling entertainment
Already offering an unprecedented choice of thrilling outdoor and entertainment activities in one place, Sun City has bolstered its offering for teenagers and adventurers with the recent launch of an adventure hub, Adrenalin Extreme. Adrenalin Extreme offers heart-pounding, adrenalin-pumping outdoor activities including Drift Trikes, Hovercrafts, the Human Sling Shot and a quad 4×4 challenge.
Now underway is the expansion of the Valley of Waves water park to offer new exciting rides and new food offerings. Changes at the Valley of Waves include the recent opening of a microbrewery-themed gastro pub, The Brew Monkey, which offers spectacular views over the tidal pool, with a choice of sitting indoors or outdoors on the deck. The menu boasts a selection of hunger-busting bar tins, light meals, gourmet burgers, snack boards and craft beers. The Valley of Waves also boasts a new, expansive and fresh fast food eatery, Food Factory, with a range of affordable choices to suit every taste.
Soon to come is Sun Park, a multi-purpose facility for hosting lifestyle events, music festivals, product launches and other experiences. Ample and versatile, Sun Park will offer the support services of an indoor events venue with the flexibility of an outdoor space.
The 2016 phase of the grand scale upgrade of Sun City will see the ambitious reinvention of the Entertainment Centre as an encompassing Experiential Centre. It will be home to arcade games, lazer tag, ten pin bowling and other fun-filled activities for visitors of all ages. The Experiential Centre will also house a South African Hall of Fame honouring the country’s sportspeople and performing artists, as well as an optimised Convention Centre on the upper level.
Until the reengineering of the Entertainment Centre next year, visitors can explore recently added offerings such as the pop up restaurants, Harvest Grill & Wine and Calisto’s, Smooch and the Sun City Collections store.
During the upgrade of the Entertainment Centre, conferences will be accommodated at the Sun Sky Village, a temporary but fully-equipped facility near Sun City’s front entrance car park.
The redevelopment of Sun City will reach full fruition by the end of 2016. The upgrades to the Sun Vacation Club restaurants, Cabanas and Sun City Hotel are scheduled for completion by December 2015.