Pink places to lap up la vie en rose
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Psychologists say the colour pink has comforting qualities, it’s often associated with hope and positivity. “Think pink!” exhorts Maggie Prescott, the fashion magazine publisher and editor in Funny Face to the iconic Gershwin tune. Those who have had the good fortune to be in Japan during sakura season or have visited the Pink Sand Beach in the Bahamas and Pink Lake in the UAE will appreciate the palliative effect of being surrounded by this most calming super-colour. But what of other candy-coloured environments? Here are some of our favourite pink architectural temples and Pepto Bismol-coloured homes.
Mount Nelson Hotel, Cape Town
With 198 rooms and suites, Mount Nelson was repainted 103 years ago to celebrate the end of the first world war, and has since become a historic landmark noted for its rosy glow. Flanked by Table Mountain and Lion’s Head mountains, the hotel is perfect for lovers of the outdoors, with two tennis courts, two heated pools and impressive gardens, as well as a restaurant and a spa. “Guests cannot believe that the property has nine acres of flowering gardens and lawns when it is located right next to the centre of The Mother City,” says the manager, Willem Du Toit. 76 Orange St, Gardens, Cape Town, South Africa; belmond.com
The Beverly Hills Hotel, California
Built in 1912 and painted a rose pink in 1948 to further the country club aesthetic of the hotel, “the Pink Palace” is designed to make its guests feel like celebrities, from the red carpet stretching through the lobby from the main entrance to the private cabanas that surround its famous pool. “The Beverly Hills Hotel is perfect for anyone looking to experience the utmost glamour and revel in legendary history,” says general manager Edward Mady. 9641 Sunset Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA, USA; dorchestercollection.com
Amanjena Marrakech, Morocco
The salmon-coloured Aman hotel may be notable as a location for Sex and the City 2, but this palace-hotel is a tranquil sanctuary featuring 40 guest pavilions and maisons, all with their own private courtyards and some with private pools. Designed by Ed Tuttle, Amanjena was inspired by his trips to “southern Spain to see the Alhambra palace, and across Morocco to numerous mosques and the 12th-century Menara Gardens”. Manager Sven Van den Broeck says that the architecture is a nod to “ancient Moorish heritage, with pisé-de-terre walls, vaulted ceilings and decorative arches that echo the style of a sultan’s palace.” Route de Ouarzazate km 12, Morocco; aman.com/resorts/amanjena
Craigievar Castle, Aberdeenshire
This blush-coloured home is said to have inspired Walt Disney’s Cinderella Castle. The 17th-century tower house has remained virtually unchanged since its completion in 1626 by William Forbes, with the last owner asking them not to place even artificial light in the upper floors so that the historical artefacts could still be seen as would have been appreciated in their day. “Photographs don’t do it justice as it nestles amongst the trees and is much taller than you’d think,” says James Henderson, National Trust for Scotland Operations Manager for Aberdeenshire South. “Also, the pinkness is never really reproduced in images nor can they see the detail of the carvings.” The house was privately owned by the Forbes family until the 1960s when it was opened for public tours. While guests cannot stay in the castle overnight, they can stay at the surrounding cottages with views of the castle, and the castle is available for hire for weddings and other events with up to 100 guests. Craigievar, Alford, Aberdeenshire, Scotland; nts.org.uk/visit/places/craigievar
Il Mezzatorre, Ischia
Among Moorish architecture, Il Mezzatorre is the last to shy away from concentrated pigment; its contrasting bone-white parapets both complement and intensify the rosy paintwork. Perhaps what makes this place special besides being coral and cliff-bound is its air of extravagance achieved through nature – there is a sapphire swimming cove, saltwater pool and thermal spa powered by volcanic waters. CEO and creative director of Pellicano Hotels Marie-Louise Sciò calls this former 16th-century Aragonese watchtower “magical, whimsical in a way, fun and elegant without being pretentious” and “everything an Italian seaside retreat should be”. 80075 Forio, Ischia, Naples, Italy; mezzatorre.com
The Wallace Restaurant, London
An extension of The Wallace Collection, the French brasserie is a glasshouse-styled courtyard and sculpture garden that prides itself on simple pleasures. “I’ve worked at The Wallace Restaurant for 15 years and new guests always say the same thing: that our restaurant is the best kept secret in London,” says general manager Lorraine Watson. It’s is the ideal spot to catch up with friends over lunch and having whet your appetite you can explore the art collection, which features pink-toned beauties such as Les Hasards Heureux de L’Escarpolette or bubblegum pink 18th-century French crockery made by the Sévres factory. The Wallace Collection, Manchester Square, London; wallacecollection.org