luxe - Hotel Polana, Maputo

Attention: open in a new window.  E-mail| Print | Bookmark Added: 27.09.2012, 17:23

Known as one of the ‘Grandes Dames’ of Africa, Maputo’s Hotel Polana is celebrating her 90th birthday, but continues to hold her own among a list of the world’s finest hotels.


The Mozambique capital is a cultural melting pot where a strong Bantu and colonial Indian Ocean heritage was enriched with Arabian, Indian, and Chinese influences. As befits one of the greatest historical institutions of this fascinating city, Hotel Polana celebrates all facets of Maputo’s cultural mélange.

The Polana was built in 1922, in the fashionable ‘palace style,’ by the English architect Sir Herbert Baker. This Lourenço Marques (as the city was known) gem was the talk of the international glitterati everywhere from Shanghai to Chicago, and refused to tip its hat even to the likes of Singapore’s Raffles and the Paris Ritz. During World War II the Polana gained further romantic notoriety as one of the world’s most colourful hives of espionage, before slipping into a period where she slumped into a sort of mild decadence.

Entrance of the Polana from the 1920s

In 2002, extensive renovation began and the ‘grande dame’ of Mozambique has now received a very respectful and sensitive facelift, courtesy of a team of local craftsmen and artisans funded by the Aga Khan Foundation for Economic Development. From the smartly tunic-clad doormen to the manicured waterfront lawns, this regal 142-room hotel has now been blessed with all the accessories of a world-class luxury hotel. While the classic ambience has been preserved with the use of traditional fabrics and Indo-Portuguese-style wood-carving in the rooms, guests also benefit from such modern conveniences as iPod docking stations, free 24-hour Internet access, state-of-the-art business and conference centres and a wonderful range of restaurants.

The Maisha Mind Body and Spirit Spa and gym – and one of Africa’s most spectacular swimming pools – are the perfect place to work off some of the pounds that would otherwise be an inescapable result of fine dining, Polana style.

The old ‘grande dame’ of Mozambique provides all the inspiration you could need to stay in sprightly trim into your nineties.



Maputo, Mozambique
Distance: 6,025 km
Flight Time: 10 hours, 35 mins
Frequency: 3 flights a week via Johannesburg

> Book Now
Hotel Polana
1380 Avenida Julius Nyerere 
Maputo 00100, Mozambique
Tel: (+258) 21241700
Write comment

Write the displayed characters:

security code
smaller | bigger


Oryx Magazine March 2015

Oryx Cover March 2015

View the Oryx eMagazine archive

Oryx Premium March 2015

Oryx Premium Cover March 2015

View the Oryx Premium eMagazine archive

Oryx Updates

If you would like to be notified
when the magazine is updated,
please click below

Email updates

Latest Features

  • Kathmandu - Gateway to the Mountains

    You don't need to be super-fit to enjoy many of the stunning walks around Nepal. Photojournalist Steve Davey... 
  • The Best year-round skiing

    It’s March, and the mountains of the northern hemisphere are poised on the edge of spring. Sunlight is melting... 
  • Amsterdam - Awash with the riches of history

    Amsterdam is a place where history, culture, and a good dose of the bohemian combine to create one of... 


Copyright © 2009 ORYX Digital Magazine. All rights reserved.

Powered by Agency Fish   |  Endorsed by Qatar Airways