Cape Town is facing a serious water crisis, with Level 5 water restrictions in place. Because of its commitment to water saving, Village N Life (VNL) is working hard to put in place measures to make its properties water wise.


Water Crisis Awareness: Water for Wine

VNL is taking a proactive approach to creating awareness with visitors to Cape Town.

First, one of VNL’s most exciting initiatives is the Water for Wine programme. Guests who feel inspired to save water can share this with the hotel and be given a complimentary glass of wine.

So far this has been an educational opportunity. Sesi Sibanyoni, host manager rooms division of The Bay Hotel says:

“People come to me and ask ‘What’s the water crisis about?’ and I say, ‘Let me tell you about it over a glass of wine.’”

In addition, VNL has placed beautiful signs about the Water for Wine programme in all rooms, as well as infographics on the water crisis at reception.

Water wise awareness is key for not only overseas guests but also many South African guests who do not know about Cape Town’s water crisis.

The Water for Wine programme at The Bay Hotel already having success after a few days.

Reducing Water Usage

Besides awareness, the VNL properties now feature water wise lounger cushions. Previous to these new lounger cushions being introduced, the pool side loungers had a towel-like covering, which needed to be washed and replaced after each use. Consequently, in season these covers were being replaced up to four times per day. In contrast, the new lounger cushions do not need to be removed. As a result, the new lounge covers are saving an estimated 6000L of water per day.

Similarly, the VNL reduced their laundry order by having their restaurants switch from cloth napkins. As well, pool covers are put on at night or on extremely hot days to reduce pool evaporation.

In addition, The Bay Hotel removed bath plugs from the rooms to encourage guests not to have baths and therefore save water.

The new lounger cushions are saving Village N Life a lot of water. 

Water Source: A Mountain Spring

Most importantly, Camps Bay Retreat has an excellent resource for being water wise. Running through the property’s private nature reserve is a mountain spring. This spring feeds 4000 litres per hour naturally. Flowing down from Lion’s Head and Table Mountain, the water previously ran straight into the ocean. Luckily, Camps Bay Retreat diverts and filters this precious freshwater resource for use in the property’s irrigation and swimming pools.

The spring will not only be useful for Camps Bay Retreat, but Village N Life’s other Cape Town properties as well.

Water truck delivers spring water to Waterfront Village from Camps Bay Retreat.

The new water wagon can deliver up to 2000L of water to Village N Life’s Cape Town properties.

Village N Life recently invested in a 2000-litre water wagon to be able to deliver the spring water to The Bay Hotel, The Glen Apartments, Stone Cottages, Camps Bay Village for their pools and irrigation for their gardens where needed.

Also, the water wagon provides water to Waterfront Village, helping all the properties to use municipal water wisely.


Future Planning 

Village N Life is exploring the feasibility of installing a reverse osmosis water filtration system for Camps Bay Retreat’s mountain spring water. Though an enormous investment, the new water filtration system would allow Camps Bay Retreat to become completely off the municipal water grid. As a result, spring water would be the only water used throughout the hotel.

For now, Village N Life is strongly committed to doing all it can to be water wise.






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