Picturesque views form the backdrop to this open-air Oude Libertas theatre. It’s just waiting to host you and your family for a night of delight
Good, Unique and Unexpected Function Venues in Cape Town
A special selection of spaces in the Mother City perfect for hosting private parties, social soirées and corporate events
Last updated: 4 December2017
Life is full of occasions. There are birthday parties, baby showers, Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, board meetings, conferences, workshops and weddings. And the truth is that while it’s usually fine to host these to-dos at home or at the office, a space with a little more pizazz, space, professional decor and preparedness might add a lot in the way of making hosting an event easier and more exciting.
There’s a whole plethora of function venues in Cape Town, from dedicated hospitality establishments to small restaurants that are available for private hire. To bring a few of these options to your attention, we’ve compiled an overview of small-, mid-, and large-sized events sites that would be perfect for anything from a formal business affair to an intimate family celebration.
FUNCTION VENUES IN CAPE TOWN
True Italic on lower Bree St.
Though primarily an authentic Italian restaurant that specialises in handmade pasta fresca’s, traditional mains and antipasto platters piled high with imported cured meats and cheeses, True Italic can also easily morph into a brilliant venue space. There are two options available. The first is to hire the main eatery and have exclusive use of the cosy 200-year-old building; for those keen on dancing, the True Italic team can clear out all of the tables, chairs and restaurant décor. There’s also a large projection screen on hand and seating for from 10 to 150 guests.
Those who are looking for a smaller and more intimate space can choose the Canteen Tavernetta dei Poeti, which can host a maximum number of 40 patrons. This elegant downstairs area has its own sound system and bar and is decorated in such a way so as to transport your mind to Italy. Both choices include the option to have the chef sit down with you to conjure up a ‘made with love’ menu to suit any budget. Contact the restaurant to enquire about hiring costs.
Best for: intimate birthday parties, affordable anniversary dinners and wild dance parties.
Capacity: 10 to 150 guests (main venue); 10 to 40 guests in their private dining room (Canteen Tavernetta dei Poeti)
Includes: tables, chairs, cutlery, crockery, glassware, service staff and clean-up. Food can be arranged in-house.
15 Bree Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 418 7655
Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Foreshore
Based smack in the heart of Cape Town’s CBD and just a stone’s throw away from several business headquarters, the Park Inn hotel is a particularly convenient location for corporate meetings. The slick, sophisticated property has a state-of-the-art 125sqm conference room that can be split into two if need be as well as a smaller 30m.sq boardroom for exclusive to-dos. Function planners can also arrange to make use of the 11th-floor sunroof terrace. Harald's Rooftop Bar and Terrace is an ideal spot for pre-event mixers as well as or post-workshop/conference cocktails.
Best for: corporate functions, like small board meetings, brainstorming sessions and mid-sized seminars or workshops. The rooftop bar works for all social occasions, whether formal, semi-formal or casual.
Capacity: up to 120 people in the conference centre and around 12 guests in the boardroom. Harald's has a capacity of 100 guests
Includes: depends on the package chosen, but options are food, drinks, serving staff, a data projector, a screen, high-tech audiovisual equipment and free high-speed Wi-fi.
29 Heerengracht Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 427 4800
Two Oceans Aquarium
Aside from being a thrilling day visit for kids and adults alike, this underwater wonderland at the V&A Waterfront is also a great out-of-the-ordinary option for hosting events of all kinds. For large parties or functions, organisers can hire out the entire aquarium, and for a slightly smaller do, there’s the option to rent one of four unique spaces, three of which look out onto kelp forests; ragged-tooth sharks, stingrays and turtles; the Tranquility tank with large fish swimming through a slow-swaying kelp forest; or small exhibits of spider crabs, jellyfish, anemones and more. Venues can be adjusted to suit specific needs, and the environment will ensure that guests are completely immersed in this marine nirvana.
Best for: all types of functions: cocktail parties, private dinners, weddings, conferences, board meetings, year-end parties, product launches and more.
Capacity: it depends on the room you choose and the function type. The number of guests you can host here can be anywhere from 10 for a small party, to 800 if you decide to hire the entire aquarium for an extra-big cocktail party!
Includes: catering, staff, basic decor, cutlery, crockery, tables, chairs, audio-visual equipment (in some venues) and access to the aquarium (only for day functions).
Dock Road | V&A Waterfront | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 418 3823
Tobago’s Restaurant at the Radisson Blu Waterfront Cape Town
Most will agree that life is better by the seaside. With the waves crashing against the shore, the salty sea breeze blowing through your hair and a view of the expansive ocean, you will be lost for words. Let the Atlantic Ocean be the backdrop for your birthday-, engagement-, farewell- or cocktail party. Five-star hotel Radisson Blu’s flagship restaurant, Tobago’s, provides a picturesque vista of the surrounds from its terrace. Don’t miss the view from inside either, the elegant eatery has grand floor-to-ceiling windows so you can make the most of the coastal location even when the weather dips.
Best for: Brunch on the weekend, a power lunch, sneaky sundowners, and intimate dinners with a loved one. Because this eatery is in such a prime location you’ll want to spend every possible moment taking advantage of the view and the impressive menu.
Capacity: This will all depend on whether you want to utilise the terrace exclusively, the indoor dining area, or if you want your guests to amble freely throughout the restaurant.
Includes: The restaurant has an extensive food and drinks menu. If you want to plan a special event, Tobago’s staff are happy to work with you on a personalised menu of canapes or a sit-down meal.
Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel | V&A Waterfront | Beach Road | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 441 3414
There are very few places in Cape Town that can successfully entertain the young and old, professionals and nonprofessionals. HintHunt is a guaranteed fun time as the games are designed to test your wit, intellect and imagination. The live action ender’s game has teams of three to six people, placed in a room where they must solve a set of riddles, codes and conundrums to ensure their freedom before their allocated 60 minutes run out. With six rooms that can hold a team of up to six at a time; groups can choose to play in the Submarine Rooms, solve CSI type mysteries in John Monro’s Office or get to the bottom of a robbery in one of the Zen Room.
The interactive space also houses a fully functional boardroom space and a fully licensed bar. With dedicated staff willing to cater make an event that you will enjoy, whether you’re looking for an action-packed afternoon or a trendy spot to host an event; this place will work for you.
Best for: team building outings, birthday parties, bachelor and bachelorette parties, as well as informal/formal business events.
Capacity: gaming rooms can cater for 24 players. Boardroom and bar area has a 100 person capacity.
Includes: different packages depending on the nature and size of the event. Be sure to call and organise your personalised event with the pleasant and helpful HintHunt staff.
373-375 Albert Road | Woodstock | +27 (0)21 448 9864
Aquila Game Reserve
Just two hours out of the city centre of Cape Town, Aquila Game Reserve in the Klein Karoo offers a marvellous experience of corporate regrouping and revitalisation. The lovely labyrinth outside which fulfils the role of a main conference centre, will get the creative juices flowing within minutes of arrival. As part of the corporate functions package, Aquila offers a four-star overnight conference package as well as a Back to Basics teambuilding programme which is facilitated by an outsourced company, in collaboration with the game rangers of Aquila. Interactive Drumming is also on offer by Bevil Spence from Drumba. Aquila also serves as the ideal gala dinner venue, at the Boma Bush Venue where delegates are afforded the opportunity to dine under the stars.
Best for: Corporate functions and team building.
Capacity: The conference centre can accommodate up to 90 guests in total.
Includes: Complimentary arrival drinks and tea, coffee and fruit-infused mineral water throughout the session, plus a selection of snacks, buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner, access to the conference centre with a high-resolution projector, screen and sound, pens, notepads as well as complimentary Wi-fi access, a Big Five safari game drive, which will last approximately two to three hours, complimentary star gazing safari and a 10% discount on any spa treatments!
R46 | South Street | Touws River | +27(0)21 430 7260
African Pride 15 on Orange Hotel
Taking the location into consideration, it is no surprise that The African Pride 15 on Orange Hotel also flaunts the fact that it is a prime location for ‘bleisure’ (business meets leisure) guests, catering particularly to business events. Its conference centre boasts five state-of-the-art boardrooms, four large meeting rooms, and a gigantic conference room which can seat up to 200 persons. Natural light filters into each of the air-conditioned rooms. Each option can be tailored to suit specific business needs, again proving the point that at the helm of 15 on Orange’s impeccable offering is a five-star service experience.
Best for: all things business.
Capacity: up to 200 people (if you choose the conference room)
Includes: 38 display screens, Audio visual equipment, wireless internet connectivity and even secretarial services.
Orange Street | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 469 8000
With a large, open interior with various connected sections, this slick Century City smokehouse is ideally set up for functions of all kinds. The industrial-chic aesthetic of the American-style diner will lend an air of relaxed sophistication to an event, while the staff do everything they can to ensure the occasion goes off smoothly. The family-friendly restaurant offers two-course and three-course set menus (the signature smoked BBQ baby back ribs are included) for a minimum of 12 people and caters to those with allergies and halaal requirements. Anything from intimate family celebrations to large corporate events are welcome, and there’s a semi-private side room for up to 45 people. While the restaurant does not charge a venue hire fee, it does specify a minimum spend so it is helpful to send them the necessary queries before you host the function.
Best for: birthday parties, end-of-year office functions, baby showers, bachelorettes, bachelors, product launches, wine tastings – essentially anything.
Capacity: between two and 200 people.
Includes: cutlery, crockery, glassware, food (set menus), fully stocked bar, service staff. The staff at Knife will also go out of their way to organise other aspects of the event in collaboration with their clients.
Crystal Towers | Corner of Century Boulevard and Rialto Road | Century City | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 551 5000
In addition to providing family-friendly fun in Cape Town, this adrenaline-inducing theme park is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting places to host a function in the Mother City. With everything from the African-themed, riverside Bundu Café to the colonial aesthetic of the Ratanga Officer’s Club to the state-of-the-art MegaVu theatre and the expansive and versatile Walled City, Ratanga Junction is great spot for corporate events, cocktail parties, product launches and more. The parks events team, Bridgeways, will be on-hand to transform any space and ensure that the event is tailor-made. Not to mention, for an exclusive, all-access experience, there is the option to book the entire funky theme park for a day. This is ideal for corporate family days, fundraisers or even community development projects. Ratanga can accommodate up to 5000 guests at a time.
Best for: all types of functions: cocktail parties, private dinners, weddings, conferences, board meetings, year-end parties, filming and photoshoots, product launches and more.
Capacity: depending on the venue, anywhere from 60 to 5000 people.
Includes: catering, staff, basic decor, cutlery, crockery, tables, chairs, audio-visual equipment (in some venues) and access to the park (make sure to check this when you book).
Century City | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 250 0900
Rick’s Café Américain
Classy and trendy at the same time, Rick’s is an ideal spot for a get-together. The Casablanca movie-themed spot is a deceptively large space (it is housed in a 100-year-old Victorian building) has many different nooks and three flame-roaring fireplaces interspersed between diners. Not to mention, guests can look forward to a hearty Moroccan- inspired menu and an extensive beverage list (the hotspot has over 35 varieties of tequila!), which means a good ol’ time is most certainly guaranteed. What’s more, should the rooftop space be hired, a private cocktail bar will be supplied.
Best for: intimate birthday parties, anniversary celebrations and small year-end office functions.
Capacity: up to 60 guests for cocktail soirees, and a maximum of 30 people for dinner parties.
Includes: cutlery, crockery, decor, catering, service staff and clean-up. Be sure to give the restaurant a call to discuss specifics and to check out their function requirements list which can be found on their site.
2 Park Road | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 424 1100
The River Club
Conveniently located on the corner of Liesbeek Parkway and Observatory Road, this centre offers eight venues for conferences and functions. For example, there’s the stunning Tugela Room that leads to an enclosed patio that overlooks the lush practice golf course; the self-contained Limpopo Room, which boasts its own built-in bar, restroom and televisions; and the Liesbeek Boardroom, which displays stunning views of the club’s driving range. Not to mention, the River Club has a dedicated events management team that can assist you with everything from décor and entertainment to dietary requirements and audio-visual set-ups. If you’re having a team-building day or end of year event they’ve got a line-up of games and activities they can organise for you, such as the Amazing Race which features the Obstacle Challenge and Golf Fun for Everyone.
Best for: intimate birthday parties, weddings, private lunches, product launches, team-building events, exhibitions, breakfasts and even braais!
Capacity: 10 to 450 guests, depending on the venue.
Includes: ample parking space, decor, food catering, service staff and clean-up. Bonus tip: If you book a year-end event with the Club before 30 September, you get 10 percent off your banquet menu package cost to use as a bar tab. So if your package costs R10 000, your party will be given a free bar tab to the value of R1000!
Cnr Liesbeek Parkway and Observatory Road | Observatory | Cape Town
+ 27 (0) 21 448 6117 | +27 (0)81 249 7549
Kleinevalleij Wedding and Conference Estate
Set away from the hustle and bustle of Cape Town’s urban centre, this premier venue just outside Wellington is perfect if you’re keen to host a private or corporate event amidst the peace and tranquillity of pretty Winelands surrounds. The lush estate flaunts dramatic views of mountains and vineyards and is home to a large dedicated function space that’s housed in a refurbished Victorian manor. For more intimate affairs (like baby showers and kitchen teas), guests can also make use of the historical house’s foyer or the outside veranda, as well as the on-site Festa restaurant. Whatever the affair and size, the staff go out of their way to cater to clients’ unique requests.
Best for: weddings, conferences and birthday parties.
Capacity: up to 400 guests in the main venue and up to 120 guests in the restaurant.
Includes: cutlery, crockery, glassware, tables and chairs. Food catering, décor, projectors and other conferencing equipment can be organised at extra cost.
Bainskloof Road | Wellington | +27 (0)21 873 0075
Suikerbossie Restaurant and Function Venue
Perched at the top of Victoria Drive overlooking the breathtaking Hout Bay valley, this charming events venue has earned itself a reputation as the place to host a memorable function with a view. Suikerbossie claims an upstairs space with a bar and deck for intimate dos and a larger fully equipped downstairs area for bigger affairs. Not to mention, verdant lawns spread out in front of the venue (perfect for outdoor ceremonies and pre-drinks), and there’s also a kosher kitchen on site to cater for Jewish celebrations.
Best for: weddings, corporate events, birthday parties, graduation balls, Bar Mitzvahs and Bat Mitzvahs.
Capacity: between 50 and 70 guests in the upstairs room and between 120 and 300 in the downstairs arena.
Includes: the venue’s in-house team will arrange every aspect of the event, from catering, flowers and music to photographers, data projectors and screens. For weddings, the garden can be used at no extra charge for ceremonies, and chairs, a gazebo, umbrellas and a sound system can be arranged by Suikerbossie.
1 Victoria Drive | Hout Bay | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 790 1450
Aside from being one of the nation’s oldest wine farms, the Stellenbosch-based Spier is a magnificent site to hold a function of almost any kind. Private and corporate event organisers can pick from a giant conference centre, an outdoor courtyard, the old wine cellar, the historic manor house, the hotel boardroom and many other spaces as the site for their affair, and they can look forward to running their do in an environment that is both serene and stunning. What’s more, hosts can take comfort in the fact that their events are ethically operated as Spier holds the principles of responsible tourism close to its heart.
Best for: weddings, large conferences, executive board meetings, private celebratory dinners.
Capacity: depending on the chosen venue, as little as 10 guests or as many as 430.
Includes: banqueting, serving staff, cutlery, crockery, tables, chairs, and audiovisual equipment.
R310 | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 809 1100
Bennett Street (formerly opulent superclub Trinity) is a go-big-or-go-home sort of events venue. With state-of-the-art lighting, one of the best sound systems in the country and a professional team that’ll coordinate every facet of the affair, this huge space is your go-to option if you’re looking to a host a big high-end function that goes over with a bang. Aside from boasting a large, high-tech function room with a mezzanine level, the building is also home to the plush GOLD Opulent Restaurant, which can be used for private or corporate events too.
Best for: anything large-scale and lavish (big end-of-year functions, gala dinners, awards ceremonies, fashion shows, live music shows and product launches, for instance).
Capacity: 250 people seated in the function room and 500 people seated in the whole venue (including GOLD Restaurant). Not suitable for parties of less than 80 guests.
Includes: sound, lighting,DJ box and equipment,projectors,screens, a stage and a bar. All other details can be organised by the Bennett Street team.
15 Bennett Street | Green Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 418 0624
Considering that Kleine Zalze is one of the Western Cape’s leading Winelands destinations, it’s no great surprise that this lush Stellenbosch property also moonlights as a hot events venue. With a large function room that peers into the winery and barrel maturation cellar and that boasts brilliant views of the adjacent golf course and distant mountains, the farm is a top choice for a breathtaking wedding (photographs can be taken on the vast lawns) or a not-too-corporate conference. Plus, smaller events, like board meetings or sit-down dinners, can also be accommodated for in a converted luxury suite at the on-site lodge.
Weddings can be arranged indoors or as al fresco (outdoors) affairs, where the views of the Helderberg and Stellenbosch mountains add to the beauty of the ceremony. The venues can be set up in a range of different styles, and Kleine Zalze’s function co-ordinator will work with hosts to plan the occasion and organise extras.
Best for: weddings, year-end parties and conferences.
Capacity: 40 to 100 people in the main venue (120 without a dance floor); 15 in the small suite spaces.
Includes: for conferences: tables, chairs, linen, markers, flip charts, notebook and bottled water; for weddings: tables, chairs, linen, cutlery, crockery, glassware and staff.
Die Boord | Strand Road (R44) | Stellenbosch | +27 (0)21 880 0740
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden
Supposedly one of the most beautiful gardens in Africa, Kirstenbosch is internationally acclaimed as one of the planet’s great botanic gardens. It’s huge open lawns somehow manage to stay lush and green all year round and in spite of droughts Cape Town experiences increasingly often and rest right below the overlooking Table Mountain. Luckily for us, Kirstenbosch has various venues dotted within its sublime grounds for people to gather for special occasions.
There is the large concert area, Old Mutual’s Conference and Exhibition Centre, the Moyo restaurant, the Marquee Lawn, and the Old Manor Guesthouse. Weddings can also be held in the Garden, and the Manor is a romantic and popular spot to hold wedding receptions and has a number of guest suites and cottages. All venues can be organised through Kirstenbosch’s contact details below; however, Moyo restaurant as a separate entity within Kirstenbosch needs to be contacted directly should you want to book them. You can call Moyo on +27 (0)21 762 9585.
Best for: just about any event you can summon up with your imagination - the venues are versatile, and there are certainly a lot to choose from. Note that the Marquee Lawn does not allow amplified music into the venue if you’re looking to book a party or concert.
Capacity: needless to say, the outside areas have a flexible possible capacity, whilst the indoor venues’ capacities range from 75 guests at the Manor House to between 600 and 1000 guests in the Marquee Lawn.
Includes: the inside venues are all wheelchair-friendly, there are catering options for the Manor and self-catering in the Marquee Lawn and Old Mutual Conference Centre. The Old Mutual Centre is fitted with kitchen facilities, audio-visual equipment and air conditioning along with the Manor, which additionally has Wi-fi.
Kirstenbosch Gardens | Rhodes Dr | Newlands | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 799 8748
The Royal Cape Yacht Club
Ahoy there, events planners! Whether you’ve got sea legs or the thought of standing on a swaying deck on the deep blue makes you squeamish, the Royal Cape Yacht Club is sure to impress you with its selection of venues. Situated by the Foreshore docks, the Club was formed to promote yachting in Table Bay and to provide facilities to its members, who are unsurprisingly yachtsmen (and women) and sailing enthusiasts. There’s an air of a proud sailing heritage, with trophies won by its members over the years displayed in cabinets in its Main Hall, one of the venues.
Other venues that can be chosen are the Visitors Lounge & Chartroom, private dining area The Galley, and the largest of the venues, the Regatta Centre.
Best for: 21st parties, weddings, auctions, exhibitions, dinner parties, conferences… the Club seems to cater to all occasions.
Capacity: depending on the room you let out, anywhere from two people to 250 can be hosted.
Includes: glassware, cutlery & crockery, chairs with covers, tables and basic white linen. All catering is done by the Royal Cape Yacht Club - outsourced caterers may be used with permission from the Club, except for bar services. The Main Hall has air condition and a projection screen so is particularly suitable for conferences, weddings and even 21sts.
Duncan Road | Table Bay Harbour | Foreshore | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 421 1354
Landtscap Stellenbosch Venue
Here, in the beautiful open spaces of the Cape Winelands, guests can live out their fairytale wedding fantasies or, if it’s a conference, be at work whilst in a flawless natural landscape setting, away from the humdrum office. This is extremely well-like as a wedding venue due to its stunning setup and views, and excellent food, with a menu that is healthy and organic. There are also many services included when you book the venue, which is also wheelchair-friendly.
Best for: weddings, other celebrations and conferences
Capacity: 160 people with a dancefloor in the venue, and 200 without.
Includes: catering, bar, a ‘Plan B’ for rainy days, a basic setup (tables, chairs, crockery and cutlery - note that linen is not included, however), porters, venue manager throughout the event, use of the lawn and deck, basic setup for wedding receptions, furniture for outside and inside use, parking marshals.
Devonvale | Stellenbosch | Cape Town | Take the entrance from Bottelary Road (M23) and then Blumberg Dr | +27 (0)21 300 0299
EXTRA TIPS FOR THE PERFECT FUNCTION
So now that you have a few venue ideas, consider these suggestions for other aspects of your function:
ENTERTAINMENT: Now that your function venue is sorted, your next step is entertainment, and we have just the man for the job: Ricky Botsis. With a strong passion for swing music, this crooner broke into the professional world of entertainment in 2008 and has since then performed at countless (corporate, private, weddings, birthdays, shows, launches, conferences and restaurants) events nationwide. Described as the “local version of Michael Bublé” or dare we say a young Frank Sinatra (less pop, more swing), Ricky’s enchanting voice is perfect for every occasion and is a sure crowd pleaser. Although Ricky primarily prefers swing, he can belt out any genre of music (as long as it in within his range, of course). What’s more, should you want something that may not be on Ricky’s song list, just request for it in advance and provided he can get the music, a plan will be made!
Interested to hear him live? Catch Ricky’s Swing Show every Tuesday night at Headquarters (HQ) Restaurant for their #DateNight special. Email Claire at email@example.com, or call +27 (0) 83 375 4450 for more information, quotes or availability.
INTERACTIVE FOOD THEATRE: The Oyster King is an events company that adds a unique twist to any kind of occasion by offering an interactive food theatre experience. Choose to be entertained and treated to specialty eats by a dedicated person who dresses up in theme and goes around dishing out a culinary bite of your choice to guests at the party. From oysters, sushi and biltong to macarons, cake pops and fortune cookies, almost any kind of delicacy can be chosen to make sure that a function is truly memorable.
Booking info: +27 (0) 860 697837 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for ideas specifically for 21st, 30th and 50th bashes? Consult our guide to special birthday party venues in Cape Town.
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