Monday, December 10, 2012

Some Questions on anti-aging

Kavita from  had two questions for me .

QHi Dr Bhana.. I have a question regarding botox. If one gets botox done in their forehead, specifically for their frown lines, will they still be able to move their eyebrows and create expression using their eyebrows or is the muscle movement lost? (not sure if I'm using the right lingo but hope you understand what I'm asking)

Hi Kavita - if done properly with a good understanding of art , technique , dosage, muscle movement and anatomy your eyebrows should still be able to move and you should be able to create expression. The aim is to be natural and to avoid the "frozen look". Also each patient needs an individualized treatment plan - there is no 1 size fits all and it also depends on what they want but very few want a "stiff look" . The aim with non-surgical aesthetics is to keep people guessing - to look great and rejuvenated without looking " done". I hope that answers the question?

Q:I also have another question regarding anti-againg products. Many of them are quite pricey so if we're gonna be spending money on them it should be worth it. What are your views on anti-aging creams/products and to what extent do they 'work' or not work and at what age should a person start with anti-aging products.

One of the most important topical anti- aging measures you can employ is the religious,daily use of a broad spectrum (UVA plus UVB ) sunscreen with an SPF of  at least 30 . A bonus is if the Sunscreen product also has anti-oxidant ( such as Vitamin C, Astaxanthin ,pycnogenol)

Ingredients to look out for in anti-aging creams include Peptides, Epidermal Growth Factor , Hyaluronic acid , Retinoids, topical anti-oxidants and alpha -hydroxy acids.Topical skincare is important in your anti-aging arsenal and supports in-salon/spa treatments but not always the most expensive is the best. What age can you start -Between the age of 25 and 30. 

Avoid skin care lines with outrageous claims that tout near instant results. 

Not all anti-aging creams are created equal

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Skin Logic Masques : Product Spotlight

I've tried all these Skin Logic Products except the Foot Peel and I really do like them . My favourite would be the Epidermal Growth Factor Masque as well as the Eye Hydrogel Patches. A great tip is to store your masques in the fridge - extra refreshing to use especially during this terrible heat wave.

Skin Logic is an advanced skin care range developed by dermatologists from the University of Seoul in Korea. These products combine the latest features in advanced skin care with the restorative properties found in nature.

Epidermal Growth Factor Or EGF:

Is a natural occurring substance within the body that plays an important role in the regulation of cell growth, proliferation, and differentiation.
Discovery of EGF is credited to Dr. Stanley Cohen and Dr. Rita Levi-Montalcini who jointly received the Nobel Prize for their work in 1986. EGF is a small protein molecule made up of 53 amino acids. It is the cells natural signaler that stimulates skin (epidermal) cells to grow. Because it is only the signaler, very small amounts of EGF are needed to stimulate cell growth.
In the body, EGF is made naturally by the salivary gland, prostate, kidney, cerebrum and in smaller amounts from other tissues. As people age, the amount of EGF in the tissues of their body decreases, resulting in thin and weak skin.
After the age of 25, your body’s production of EGF starts to wane; as a result your skin begins to get thinner and thinner. Many people, by the time they reach their sixties and seventies, have almost transparent skin on the back of their hands. This is the visible effect of waning EGF production. Crows feet and wrinkles are other effects of this process. Some other factors contributing to thinning and damaged skin are over exposure to the sun, exposure to cigarette smoke, alcohol, stress, and lack of sleep and/or exercise.
Medical studies show that the topical application of EGF speeds the healing of wounds and reduces scarring. If you have seen an injured dog licking its wounds, you have seen the topical application of EGF, as the salivary gland is a potent producer of EGF.


Human skin is comprised mostly of collagen. When collagen is destroyed by age and environmental factors, including sunlight, it is not completely replaced. As a result, smooth, young skin gradually becomes thin and wrinkled over time. As collagen breaks down, certain peptides are released.
By applying peptides to the skin you encourage the skins own natural production of new collagen. Thereby successfully minimising wrinkles and giving your skin a more youthful appearance.

Astaxanthin ( This super anti- oxidant is also in Lamelle's new range Nourish)

Is a breakthrough ingredient that has kept a relatively low profile in spite of its momentous promise.
During normal cellular metabolism, environmental stressors such as UV light, smoke, pollution, and even oxygen create damaging by-products, or free radicals that make the skin appear older than it actually is.
Astaxanthin effectively shields the skin and slows down premature signs of aging caused by the environment. In addition it helps reduce moisture loss, promote smoothness, and elicit cellular renewal.
Dr. Debasis Bagchi at Creighton University demonstrated that Astaxanthin can eliminate free radicals 6,000 times more effectively than vitamin C, 800 times more than CoQ10, 550 times more than vitamin E and Green Tea, 75 times more than Alpha Lipoic Acid, and 20 times more than beta-carotene.

Marine Collagen:

Collagen is vital to healthy skin, hair, bones and joints. Reduced levels of collagen are especially noticeable in the skin because the skin loses its elasticity and becomes prone to sagging with age.
Marine collagen maintains skin elasticity and strength by stimulating the synthesis of new collagen and as a result minimising the appearance of deep wrinkles and fine lines. Marine collagen encourages the renewal of cells and minimizes facial muscle contraction; the cause of wrinkles.
As you reach the age of 40, natural collagen synthesis slows down. 

Although this collagen cannot be absorbed through the skin it gives the skin a temporary topical boost

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Some More Exciting Things!

Hi Everyone ! Tomorrow morning at from 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM I will be on SAFM ( 105.1 FM) talking about issues around skin lightening. Please listen out !

 Click here to have a look at a blog post I wrote about the issue

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Filorga GLYKOPEEL® 20 % Review

GLYKOPEEL® is a superficial dermatological glycolic acid peel, with sequential pH variations. It allows a gentle treatment that provides an immediate and visible result without down time. These peels can be repeated at 2-weekly intervals ( even every 5-7 days!).

I've been thinking of doing some Filorga peels for quite some time and since I've been doing Lamelle for some time ( I do their Beta, Beta Plus , Alpha and Lactic Acid Peels) and have been happy with the results from those peels - so I didn't really consider another peel range to offer my patients. 

Rene , the rep from Filorga , kindly offered to do a demo on me so I could get a feel of the peels. We decided to do the 20% Glykopeel on my face,neck,Décolleté and hands.

The actual peel treatment is a 4 step process but before we started she cleansed my face with a Filorga Cleanser and Toner ( which smells rather nice and refreshing and not very "medical") .

Then the Pre-Peel solution was applied (pH 4.5) - just a bit lower than our pH5.5 epidermis. Then the peel (pH2) is applied which was not at all uncomfortable. Glycolic acid peels are time dependent so can be left on from 2- 10 minutes. 

This unique and complete formulation provides the following 4 actions:
PROTECTION – White mulberry, brown algea, glycerin
PIGMENTATION CORRECTION – Kojic acid, bearberry

 Thereafter is is neutralized by a a post -peel solution of pH 8 and then a refreshing remineralizing mist is applied . 

Rene then applied Filorga's Pigmentation Cream and Sunscreen (SPF 50).

The treatment was quick and comfortable . My skin looked amazing afterwards - I immediately looked at my skin in the mirror and I said "wow!" I'd been feeling a bit down about my skin lately as pregnancy can cause a bit of havoc. I've been told I look nice and that I'm "glowing" but I don't really believe it. After the Glykopeel it really was glowing and radiant - I was so impressed.

 I  ordered my peel kits straight away and will be offering these peels alongside the Lamelle peels. 

Later on the Smoo (the hubby) and I went through to run some errands and pick up business cards and what not. A cute little blue-eyed girl around seven kept on smiling and looking at me at the shops . I thought I must look like a shiny, mascara-smudged oddity after the peel. She came past and said - "you are really pretty!". That really sold me on the peel!

Some Exciting News and Specials

Hi Everyone! This is my first official newsletter! Exciting news and exciting specials on Chemical peels and a great lip filler offer!

Exciting news :
As some of you might already know I’m going to have a baby soon - in December. I will keep you updated  as you can never plan these things. I should still be available all through November as well as early December. 

In other exciting news I am now at the new rooms in Glenvista  which some of you have already been too– Please take note of the new address
63a Mount Pellan Drive, which is still in Glenvista.

Naturally Lush Lips with Restylane Lip Refresh

Restylane Lip Refresh is a HA (hyaluronic acid) based filler, as with standard Restylane. However, it is formulated to restore hydration and plumpness to the lips, which are lost with age, but without giving extra volume.It is used for restoring hydrobalance and rejuvenating the lips
This new Restylane skinbooster product is developed specifically for the lip. It will give you that refreshed look with improved glow, definition and structure of the lips without the need for a great change in volume.
Restylane Lip Refresh gives an especially soft result and is excellent for treating small lines around lips. Results are good for smokers and those who have had excessive sun exposure. Restylane Lip refresh also helps to treat dry, flaking lip skin.
Restylane Lip Refresh treatment is especially suitable for more conservative clients, who want a very natural look, restoring hydration and volume with no risk of “trout pout” or over-done lips.

Restylane Lip Refresh rejuvenates the lips through emphasized definition and improved smoothness of the lips to generate a glossy look. Just one treatment gives instant, natural results and a fabulous smooth appearance. Treatment is non-permanent and long-lasting.
By comparison, Restylane Lip Volume and Restylane are primarily designed for lip enhancement and adding volume. Specially formulated for the lip area, Restylane Lip Volume “settles” well in the lip area for natural, soft results.

 Other Lip Treatments include:
The Luscious Lotus Lip™ Sculpt and Plump with Restylane or Restylane Lip Volume –
A Great Special On in October – only 4 vials left – R1000 for a lip augmentation
(usually R2700)

The Paris Lip Cupids Bow Hi-definition – to sculpt the Cupid’s Bow

The Malibu Lip – to pump up the Volume

The Lip Smoothie Combination – To moisturise dry, chapped lips without significant volume and also to soften those barcode lines around the mouth . This is done using Restylane Vital Injections and Lip Refresh
The Cinderella Lip
The Lip Refresh
Smoker’s Lines with Restylane Vital

Restylane Skin care only available through doctors who administer Restylane Fillers

Starter Pack ( Cleanser, Day cream and Night cream) available for only R250! Perfect to take on a holiday with you!

Restylane® Skincare has been formulated using technologies which have a natural affinity to the skin. The biocompatible formulations help to normalise skin after aesthetic treatments and build up the skin barrier function. In addition they enhance the bioavailability of active ingredients.
Derma Membrane Structure (DMS)
DMS is a technology that enhances the biocompatibility of cosmetic formulations. The structure of a DMS cream is similar to the skin’s own structure and content and will therefore have a unique ability to strengthen and build up the skin and its protective barrier.
Restylane Skincare uses a technology called KemSpheres. The technology allows the creation of microfine formulas where the particle size is much smaller than the average size in conventional formulations. As the size of the decrease, the surface of the cream that covers the skin increases rapidly.
 NASHA technology – Stabilized Hyaluronic Acid
 Hyaluronic acid can bind large amounts of water and this important property underlies the unique characteristics of Restylane® products. In its natural form in the body, hyaluronic acid lasts just a few days. Therefore, stabilisation with NASHA™ technology is necessary to give the long-lasting results of the Restylane products.
The stabilized hyaluronic acid still retains its natural water-binding properties with superior tissue biocompatibility. Incorporating stabilized hyaluronic acid in the Restylane Skincare creams improves the skin’s water retaining ability

Restylane Day Cream 50ml        R365                                                                                          
Restylane Night Cream 50ml    R365
Restylane Facial Cleanser 100ml   R260
Restylane Night Serum 15ml     R380
Restylane Hand Cream 50ml    R250
Restylane Recover Cream 25ml  R230
Restylane Day Cream SPF15 50ml   R370
Restylane Whitening Cream 50ml   R 465
Restylane Eye Serum 15ml      R460
Restylane Travel Kit (25ml Cleanser, Day Cream, SPF15 & Night Cream)  R250

Monday, September 10, 2012

Will this really Boost your Botox?

There's been a bit of a buzz lately about this - Zytaze ( a supplement to boost the effects of Botox.

ZYTAZE® is licensed to OCuSOFT, Inc., an ophthalmic company. 

It has been noted by many medics over the years since we have been using botulinum toxin for both medical and cosmetic indications that some patients simply don’t achieve the responses to the drug that others can, leading to increased dose requirements and more frequent treatments, particularly in older patients. It was from this observation that researchers started to look at the zinc levels of patients and consider the concept of supplementation.

Each capsule of the patent pending ZYTAZE supplement contains 25mg of zinc citrate and 1500mg of phytase as the primary active ingredients. Phytase is an enzyme which effectively breaks down phytates which are a group of compounds found in certain foods such as whole grain breads, whole wheat cereals, beans, corns, nuts, rice and other foods such as peas and peanuts many of which are zinc-rich as well.  Phytates prevent zinc absorption by the body by tightly binding themselves with any zinc they find in the intestinal tract. By introducing an enzyme which destroys any phytates, it’s expected that zinc absorption would no longer be impaired and the maximum zinc levels could be achieved.

A recent, modified double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, crossover pilot study * of 44 patients (average age of 65 years, with 75% women) conducted by researchers at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas, lead by Oculoplastic Surgeon Dr. Charles Soparkar (he developed the supplement), used ZYTAZE to increase zinc levels for 4 days before botulinum toxin injections in the treatment of blepharospasm, hemifacial spasm (4 patients) and cosmetic procedures for wrinkles (10 patients).

2 patients were treated with Myobloc® (Neurobloc®) for blepharospasm, 3 were treated with Dysport® for cosmetic indications and the remaining 39 were treated with Botox® for various indications.

Patients were given one of following for 4 days before their botulinum toxin treatment; either a lactulose placebo, 10mg zinc gluconate or 50mg zinc citrate and 3,000mg of phytase (the ZYTAZE® supplement). Patients were then asked to keep a daily log of their self-perceived toxin effect, and the degree of effect was then rated on a scale and compared with their pre-study experience. The duration of effect was recorded as a ratio of their usual effect duration, i.e. compared to established treatment intervals before they participated in the trial. This is a very subjective way of recording results, and the study sample is so small. I don't think there is enough clinical data to really prove anything.

The patient-specific change in the duration of the botulinum toxin effect (irrespective of the individual brand used) was compared. When given ZYTAZE a 23.6% change in the duration of action was observed which surprised the researchers, who as yet are unsure of exactly the precise method of action of the zinc supplementation.

They concluded that this study suggests that using ZYTAZE may lead to fewer botulinum toxin injections at a lower dose and with less treatment-to-treatment variability in effect.

The findings are currently under review.

Non-surgical Rhinoplasty

I've been doing a fair bit of this simple procedure lately and patients love the subtle results.
All it takes is a little bit of Restylane Perlane ( Some people use Radiesse but I prefer Perlane) and what a difference it can make. What is fantastic about Perlane is that  is a form of Hyaluronic acid which is naturally found in the human body. Also it is reversible with a simple injection of Hyalase. It is a cost effective procedure and results are immediate.

Ideal Candidate for the Procedure
Patients who wish to diminish the appearance of bumps on their nose.
Patients who have dents, hollowness or indentations, or have noses which look asymmetric.
Patients who have a flat nasal bridge, and wish to create a bridge or augment their original bridge. This is a very common request in the Asian and African American population.
Patients with droopy tips or downward appearing tips who wish to raise the tip of the nose. ( In certain circumstances this can be done with a combination of Botox and Fillers)
Patients who have had surgical nose jobs in the past and are unhappy with the appearance of their noses and are left with irregular dents or bumps.

It's important to note that not everyone is a suitable candidate and some patients may require surgery for functional and aesthetic reasons.

Have a look below at some of the results that can be achieved. 

Blogger Dreamspot

I believe this is somewhere in the Maldives. I would so love to  visit one of the beautiful places in the Maldives

Bloggie Block- Million Mile long Hiatus

I seemed to have taken a blogging hiatus - more like a sink hole. For the life of me I'm not really sure why I stopped blogging but I did and until now felt it may be too difficult to start it up again. I think I just got lazy and demotivated and let other things take over.  Well it won't be easy but I decided that I should get back on the bandwagon and start posting again ( no matter what I write). Also I was prompted to start again after reading Justine Campbell's blog - something about it  just re-ignited the Bloggie Spark and prompted me to start writing again . So look out in the not-too-distant future for some blog posts

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What Have I been Up to Lately

Well I have some news that I'm quite excited about. I recently got asked by the producer of Life N Style (a daily radio show on national radio station Lotus FM, 106.8 FM ) to do a teeny weekly segment on all things related to non-surgical aesthetic enhancement and this week will be my fourth segment - chatting about Mesotherapy. So yay!

I've also recently written an article for the GET it South Magazine  - have a look at it here : Get it South Article

Brotox Boom

.Something to think about as Father's Day is right around the corner. Some stats on the Brotox Boom - According the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the use of Botox Cosmetic by men skyrocketed between 2000 and 2010 -- up 258%. Furthermore, Botox Cosmetic was the most popular cosmetic treatment chosen by men in 2010 -- beating both hair restoration and liposuction -- treatments historically more popular among the male population

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Have you heard of Smart Phone Face?

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons recently reported that chin implants were one of the fastest growing cosmetic surgery procedures in 2011, and many doctors speculate that our smartphones might be to blame. It turns out that staring down at our phones actually shortens the neck muscles and increases the gravitational pull on the jowl area. This results in saggy jowls, double chins and more noticeable marionette lines.
Add to this the squinting that goes with (the so called Smart Phone Squint) the small screen of a BlackBerry which strains the face, especially around the eyes and between the brows. This can actually cause premature wrinkling in those areas.

To prevent “Smartphone Face,” a couple of tips are to enlarge the text on the screen, dim the brightness, and try to spend a little more time away from your phone.

Smart Phone Face? Oh Dear!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Blogger DreamSpot , Java , Indonesia

I've been feeling a bit under the weather today but this picture just lifted my spirits . I love waterfalls and this one is just spectacular (Madakaripura Falls,East Java, Indonesia)-I would love to see it myself one day.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Product Spotlight - Lancome Visionnaire


These Lancome Visionnaire adverts are splashed in all the glossy mags (which I can't help buying) and all over TV. It's also recently scooped a  Marie Claire  Prix d'Excellence de la Beauté award  .   One of the claims on the TV advert was the that "more than 1 in 2 women" who considered an aesthetic treatment postponed it after using this serum. I'm not sure how more than one out of two works (perhaps some of the women have extra arms?)
Since I administer aesthetic treatments I wanted to see if this was true - could this be better than a Restylane Vital SkinBoost? I decided on a whim on our last day in Cape Town to purchase the 50ml bottle (I think it was R895 if not than it was R850). The packaging is amazing. A blinging silver box and on the inside a sleek , turquoise (not the blue in the picture) . From the advert light emerges from the bottle and you imagine angels singing in the background " Laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa (high C note)".
It lasted me about 3 weeks (I probably over used too much) - I used it twice a day. I really wanted to love this product . Perhaps it was my expectations or the hype that was created but my feelings on the product are so so . Also after reading some reviews some people felt that it didn't work at all for them and some touted it as a miracle. As a serum it does provide a nice smooth base for cream or for make-up application but I found that it didn't really decrease pore size (genetic) and uneven pigmentation.  Mind you one skin cycle is 28 days and perhaps I  should have used it for two skin cycles to appreciate a difference but I think the expectations they create are too great. Did anyone else have a similar or different experience with this product? I really wanted to love this product. *sigh*

In terms of aesthetic treatments , hyaluronic acid injections into the dermis , non-ablative fractional laser and chemical peels are definitely very effective and I'm not sure I would postpone any of those treatments or this serum could replace those treatments. What is your take on the product - do you agree or do you disagree?

Visionnaire ‘s  breakthrough in this product is a molecule dubbed LR 2412 - it has an affinity with water and oil and, therefore, is very bioavailable (can easily penetrate and be absorbed by the body).  It could be the ingredient adenosine -
 This is a molecule that carries energy and it is an anti-inflammatory or it could be the jasmonic acid.
It also contains jasmonic acid: sodium tetrahydrojasmonate and tetrahydrojasmonic acid.Jasmonic acid is a “jasmonate” and one of its major functions is to protect a plant under stress.  Put a hungry caterpillar on a leaf and the plant will start to produce jasmonic acid. It is actually a kind of hormone and when it senses that the plant is under attack, it inhibits growth. Another thing that jasmonic acid is big on is stimulating tuber formation; jasmonic acid is the main reason a potato becomes a potato
 Lancome maintains that this ingredient is a molecule “designed to propel through skin layers” (only upper layers though which I assume is the epidermis) As it does so, it “triggers a cascading series of micro-transformations.” Sounds like a magic wand for your skin, doesn’t it? And Lancome’s constant reminder that this ingredient is protected by 20 patents makes it seem even more remarkable—but a patent has nothing to do with efficacy; it is only about a unique way to use any ingredient. A patent can be obtained simply by presenting an idea, not proof that the idea actually works.

Friday, May 4, 2012


I'm sure many people have heard of #firstworldproblems - a topic that once trended on twitter (is that correct grammar?) . Like your smart phone not being able to retrieve tweets , brushing your teeth and immediately wanting some orange juice, Facebook "friend" updates of their busy gym schedule annoying you, BBM not working , buying a R10000 tablet and having to pay 99 U.S cents for apps and other small silly issues.

Below find some amusing First World Joys to make you feel all warm and fuzzy
Source: via Leandro on Pinterest

Saturday, April 28, 2012


Ahhhh Autumn is upon us and Winter is swiftly sweeping behind it. This means  heaters and hot,steamy showers (where we contemplate life and our day for a good 30 minutes and lather up and rinse for the last 2 mins).  Winter also means desert-dry skin for many of us.

To help my skin along I make a little mixture - warm Bio-oil and mix with raw honey with a little organic brown sugar (glycolic acid) to make a super moisturising body scrub for the last bit of your shower. Try it - your skin will feel fantastic! Remember you don't have to scrub very hard and make sure the sugar is soft,brown sugar. You can also try the scrub without the scrub without the Bio-oil.

It is well known that honey has strong antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and it has been used as a treatment for wounds and other skin problems for thousands of years. The first mention of honey being used on the skin was found on a Sumerian clay tablet dating from 2500BC. It was widely used for a very long time to dress wounds and burns in hospitals and the home, but it became unfashionable when antibiotics were developed in the mid-1900s

Honey in its natural, raw, unfiltered state contains 2 predominant natural sugars (fructose and glucose) 11 enzymes, 14 minerals, 21 amino acids, all the vitamins that nutritionists consider necessary for health A,D,K, Ruin, Nicotinic acid, B vitamins, Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, Antithetic acid, Pyridoxine and Biotin as well as Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C). It's important that the honey is unprocesssed and raw.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Mount Grace Blogger Weekend

I was recently invited to a "blogger's weekend" with a partner (the hubby) by Ian Manley of Manley Communications. I've heard so much about Mount Grace (only good things!) from so many people who had been there so I was super excited  to experience it myself.

The five star Mount Grace Country House and Spa is a luxurious yet unpretentious countryside hideaway perfect for jaded city slickers that function at a break-neck ,feverish pace who are in desperate need of a relaxing and pampering break. Or for that romantic get-away - it's a perfect place for couples to rekindle a romance.

I was really excited to meet the other bloggers as well. I'd been following Hasmita's and Bailey's blogs for a while and was so excited to finally meet them. The other bloggers and their partners were awesome and so friendly . I love checking out their blogs now too. Check them out : Spiced Weasel - also from the "souf" , Derek, Alida's, Arja's , Sam's,Michelle's , Tanya's and Shahil.

A week before the much-anticipated get-away we were sent this itinerary :

Saturday. 21 April , 2012

12h30 – 13h00: arrive at Mount Grace and meet at the front patio of the main lodge

13h00 – 14h30: wellness inspired lunch at the Mount Grace Spa Restaurant
14h30 – 17h00: spa treatments booked at the Mount Grace Spa for the bloggers

14h30 – 17h00: blogger partners check-in to accommodation and have the afternoon at leisure to relax by the pool

18h30 – 19h15: meet for pre-dinner drinks at the main lodge verandah

19h30: gourmet dinner paired with Dog & Fig micro brewery beer at the Rambling Vine Restaurant

Sunday, 22 April '12

07h00 – 10h00: breakfast at leisure

10h00 – 11h00: morning walk with Chef Franc Lubbe (optional)

11h00 – 11h30: check-out of accommodation

12h30 – 15h00: Sunday Lunch at Twist Restaurant at leisure

Welcome Spritzer - Cranberry with Cucumber Essence. Taking in the magnificent views

The healthy yet substantial Spa Lunch. Sushi! Imagine nomming while a small stream gushes past outside - this place is
so idyllic and peaceful

Me, Alida, Bailey, Hasmita and Samantha

Oops a Spa dessert picture sneaks in. We had an amazing full body , knot -pummeling Swedish massage at the spa. I also got some goodies - they stock some lovely high end products like OPI, Spalicious (love their scrubs), Babor and the iconic Mama Mio Range. The ladies at the spa were super knowledgable and helpful when it came to choosing the correct product.

The massive treatment room with it's own shower and bath

The view from outside the Spa

Part of the expansive manicured lawns on the property. This is in between lush forest, small waterfalls, streams and gorgeous bushveld. Truly amazing.

Part of a common lounge

You can even take a ride around the property

Taken from the door of our luxurious suite

The hubby (Kamal)  being  a poser on the super comfy bed

The lounge area

Our very own private heated plunge pool!

The suite is comfortably large and warm. It's all about detail and everything is well thought out in the suites.

We couldn't resist ! This was before the 6 course dinner. After dinner we came back and got in again. Really "romantical"
and dramatic watching the lightning fracture the dark sky * thinks back and sighs*.

Lol, think he'll kill me if he saw this pic.

We were a bit nibbly so we ordered some room service

Ian, Cathy (from the Dog and Fig) and the bloggers and their partners met for some pre-dinner champagne before being treated at The Rambling Vine where Chef Frank Lubbe and his team had prepared a 6 course meal carefully paired with beer from The Dog and Fig Brewery microbrewery (check them out on Facebook) . These  high-quality exclusive , niche beers can only be found at select establishments such as Mount Grace.
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The Rambling Vine Restuarant (
The award winning Rambling Vine restaurant features quarterly seasonal menus and an award winning wine list. This fine dining experience for 50 diners, is “where people go for a spoil”, the Rambling Vine has achieved one of the highest marks ever for a South African restaurant, in the history of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs and its wine list has won a Diners Club Diamond award three years in a row.

Hasmita and Pratika

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Shahil (made the night so fun) and Alida

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Bailey and Alida

Fresh , warm bread with rich,salty butter - who could resist?

My hubby started taking pics with his BB (unfortunately my battery just died).
This pic is from Hasmita's blog. Our first course a
Sweecorn Fritter served with Madagascan Vanilla Pod Ice cream paired with the Fruity Baldadige/Boisterous Buchu Beer

Another one of Hasmita's pics. The Chicken
and Wild Mushroom  consommé . In the syringe there was a mixture of truffle oil, agar-agar , thyme and cream. The was also a jug of  consommé. We poured the consommé over the rehydrated mushrooms and then syringed the creamy mixture in that to create a delicate noodle. Very interesting - art, entertainment and food all in one. As Alida said it's very " Heston Blumenthal".

The hubby's pic

Then came the Waterzooi -a light seafood stew of Scottish salmon and prawn steamed in a fish cream and was paired with the Wafferese Weiss ( West, the sommelier said it was the "Kama Sutra" of beers - perhaps because it is flexible and can be paired with may dishes)

Hasmita and Kamal , from their facial expressions, clearly did
not like this bit. Chef Franc did say you either like it or you don't. Alida's
husband Chris likened it to herbal vaseline. Well it was an experience.

I loved this little palate cleanser - it was so yummy. An apple sorbet delicately placed on an apple, cardamon (elachi)
saffron chutney with a razor-thin, sweet apple crisp to top it off. Soooo Nommie!

  Grilled Giant Scallop and Foie Gras on top of Brioche with Raspberry cavier  which  was paired with the Aardige/agreeable ale - it has a fruity aroma but has a dry taste. Kamal  who has had  Foei Gras before says it's excellent with brioche and blueberry jam. I just couldn't do it so I gave him mine to nom

Just wanted to emphasize the nommie-ness of the palate cleanser

This was followed by Beef shin braised in Stewige Stout served with homemade Puff Pastry and Wild Cepes and served with Stewige Stout

The non-beef alternative. The pastry was pure Puff Pastry Perfection.

Three layered Caramel Bavarois served with Raspberries, honeycomb and liquorice foam. This was paired with the Sluwe Saison. We were all impressed with the arty aspect of the dessert. Note that the quill is made of dark and white chocolate. In the middle of the Bavarois (a delicate cream dessert) was an oozy,rich surprise of liquid caramel. Shahil exclaimed that it was "bleeding" and was so upset that I couldn't finish my dessert (I was stuffed)

All the pics with Bailey's name tag are from her blog Vanilla Blonde
pop over and have a look

After a lovely dinner and super fun evening we made our way back to the room , took a last plunge into the pool and then drifted off to sleep in the warm,comfortable bed. Ahhhh , heaven.

The next morning it was difficult to drag ourselves out of the snug,soft bed. We made our way to breakfast with a scenic buggy ride - winding its way on pathways through pristine forest, perfect lawns and a waterfall feature.

Twist is the ‘fun’ restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner.Unlike usual restaurants where food is prepared in the kitchen, Twist brings the kitchen into the restaurant with an unusual buffet style offering. You will find everything from waffles to sushi on the menu, and their Sunday lunches have developed a following of its own in recent years. Have a look at Bailey's Blog , Vanilla Blonde, for some great pictures of her lunch

The Breakfast spread is massive with almost everything imaginable. Everything is freshly prepared and of a high quality and tasted so delicious !Can't remember when I've had such fabulous croissants. The waffles were a nice treat and so scrummy - wish I had space for more.

The view from our breakfast table. Just  lovely

A Freshly and perfectly made waffle - so scrumptious!

Hubby and I took a little walk afterwards. Mount Grace is so peaceful and beautiful. A weekend stay is like a soothing balm for our usually frenetic lives

A lovely end to a fabulous weekend - we'll defintely be returning to Mount Grace Country House and Spa. Thank you to Manley Communications and Mount Grace as well as to all the lovely bloggers and their partners for the fantastic weekend.
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