BEST BUSINESS HOTEL It is said that almost all the business deals done in Maputo are done within a 50m radius of the Southern Sun Maputo’s lounge and bar. This busy, well run hotel is the favoured haunt of business locals and travellers. Think elegant North African interiors, luxurious rooms, breakfasts looking out across the ocean and fine dining in style. tsogosun.com/southern-sun-maputo
BEST LUXURY STAY Where else but the grande dame of Maputo, the Serena Polana? Designed by Sir Herbert Baker and built in 1922, the Serena Polana is iconic with extraordinary sea views. The hotel was legendary in colonial days, and during the civil war, apparently the only place you could get a decent drink. It’s now owned by the Aga Khan and naturally it’s popular with film stars, presidents, business travellers and European tourists. Expect sumptuous rooms, world class cuisine - and pop your head into the unbelievably glitzy ball room. serenahotels.com
BEST LONG TERM EXECUTIVE STAY The Rani Towers (Torres Rani) that rise up out of the central business hub. They’ve completely changed the Maputo skyline. One tower is residential with luxury apartments; the other is a state of the art business space. You’ll find all the right Lifestyle Amenities as they’re dubbed: a gym, swimming pools, restaurants, business lounges. radissonblu.com/en/hotel-maputo
BEST WAY TO SEE THE CITY Dana Tours will tailor make executive trips to see the city and its highlights. They’ve been around for over 17 years and take the hassle out of sightseeing and general business and corporate travel. Choose between full and half day, the tours generally include a visit to the famous fort, oldest building in the capital, dating back to 1765), the National History Museum and the historical Caminho de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM) railway station. Voted by Newsweek as one of the ten most beautiful train stations in the world, the wrought-iron roof dome was designed in 1910 by Gustav Eiffel of Paris’s Eiffel Tower fame. danatours.net
BEST COCKTAIL BARS Head for the Radisson Blu with its achingly cool Scandinavian décor and extraordinary Indian Ocean views. This spinnaker and mirrored glass building is the most modern of the five star hotels in the city. Try the Oceano Pool Bar which is colourful and cool with global clientele, or the Vivo Pool Bar which is ritzy yet relaxing with amazing views by day and night, of the ocean beyond the infinity pool. Yes there’s a cigar bar. radissonblu.com/en/hotel-maputo
BEST RESTAURANT TO IMPRESS CLIENTS Definitely Zambi, which is an upmarket and popular spot on Avenida 10 de Novembro and has all the right ingredients for a successful lunch. The building was designed by avant-garde Portuguese architect Pancho Guedes in the 50s. Dine indoors or on the terrace. Try the prawns, fresh fish, calamari; definitely the starter of clams in white wine sauce with garlic bread. Excellent menu, impressive wine list. You can also hire a private dining room. +258843392624. zambi.net
BEST WORKING LUNCH WITH VIEWS Fiamma restaurant is an elegant, open-plan, glass walled space with wide views of the ocean and Catembe Bay. The restaurant is part of Hotel Cardoso, the second oldest after the Polana. Fiamma has an excellent lunchtime buffet offering seasonal seafood fare and salads, using the freshest ingredients and offering a taste of the Mediterranean, Asia and the East. hotelcardoso.co.mz
BEST SHOPPING Polana Shopping, a high end boutique mall on the main high street Julius Nyerere Street, with a range of stores selling imported products, designer clothing, a specialty delicatessen, a florist, a nail parlour and chi-chi coffee shops.
AN HOUR TO KILL Check out the $300 million MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events) hub that is being developed in the capital. MICE is a key growth sector and the hub is centred round Southern Sun Maputo, the newly opened AFFEC Gloria Hotel( with a 2 500-seater conference centre), the Rani Radisson, the iconic Rani Towers and the newly completed Joaquim Chissano Convention Centre which can cater for over 2000 delegates. cicjc.gov.mz
BEST PLACE FOR PLACE FOR GIFTS The Dhow Café near the Hotel Cardoso, an utterly stylish art gallery and gift shop combined with a boutique bistro with harbour views. Choose from fine art, photographs, fabrics and homeware. Dhow Café is also an excellent place for a quiet business conversation or just an hour’s escape. www.dhow.co.mz
BEST PLACE FOR A PAMPER Undoubtedly the best pampering in the capital is at the Maisha Spa at Serena Polana . Moorish in feel with decorative tiles, fountains and a long pool, you can get de-stressed, restored and rejuvenated. serenahotels.com
BEST WINE LIST Taverna in Avenida Julius Nyerere is a convivial restaurant with the most impressive wine list. There are over 800 wines displayed on an iPad, and listed under country, region, cultivar and even vintage. Taverna serves cozinha tipica: typical Portuguese food, seafood, steaks, trinchado, slow-cooked lamb, skewers of meat. +258 84 444 5550
BEST WEEKEND ESCAPE Hop on a helicopter and head for White Pearl in Ponta Mamoli, gem of the lagoon coast in southern Mozambique. Exclusive, luxurious and with sublime beach frontage, White Pearl will pamper and delight. Enjoy long beach strolls, diving or snorkelling and private dining overlooking this glorious stretch of coastline. whitepearlresorts.com
MOST HAPPENING LOCAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT The 60m high and three kilometre long Maputo Catembe bridge which is set to change the face and flow of the city by connecting the two shores of the Bay of Maputo. – and should be completed by the end of this year. The US$725million bridge is being built by the China Roads and Bridges Corporation (CRBC) and will be one of the biggest suspension bridges in Africa.