Caroline Phillips


Caroline Phillips
“Caroline Phillips is a tenacious and skilful writer with a flair for high quality interviewing and a knack for making things work.”

Caroline Phillips


All 2019 articles

The Weekender: 48 Hours in Cape Town

Country & Town House | 30 Dec 2019

The joys of Cape Town are legion: from its jaw-dropping setting below Table Mountain — one of the world’s natural wonders — to the Atlantic crashing beside it. With its virtually untouched coast that goes on forever (visitors are spoilt for beaches), thriving art and foodie scenes, winelands and buzzy energy, who cares, says Caroline Phillips, that it’s famously windy and grittily edgy, a dangerous city with a brash attitude?

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Review: My Brilliant Friend at the National Theatre

Country & Town House | 9 Dec 2019

There are few more satisfying ways to spend five plus hours than in watching parts one and two of My Brilliant Friend, the stage version of Elena Ferrante’s publishing sensation, the Neapolitan Novels. April De Angelis has deftly condensed over 1500 pages into this two-part play (one book, one intermission, another book…twice) spanning nearly 50 years. Melly Still’s production combines a study of a close and complex female friendship with the backdrop of post-war Italy.

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Your family history on film

The Luxury Channel | 1 Nov 2019

I’m sitting surrounded by a pile of 31 of my mini DV camcorder tapes and 15 VHS ones. Bear with me. I know this doesn’t sound fascinating. But I am almost crying, actually. I’m the least techie person in the world. I do know that video is no longer, that it doesn’t exist, that it has gone in a puff of smoke to techie hell. And so I’ve lost access to hours of much-loved films of my kids in nursery school nativity plays, end-of-term concerts, my children at their first to 13th birthdays, that first swim, first tooth out…. You get the gist.

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The Weekender: 48 hours in South Africa’s Winelands

Country & Town House | 10 Oct 2019

The mountainous territory inland of Cape Town — known as the ‘Boland’ or ‘Uplands’ — boasts sandstone peaks, verdant rolling hills and beautiful valleys. It’s dotted with over 200 vineyards, producing globally renowned bottles. The Winelands area and its historic towns – Stellenbosch, Paarl, Tulbagh and Franschhoek, the self-styled culinary capital of South Africa – are known for a high concentration of stunning accommodation, from historical Cape Dutch through to sleek and contemporary. Its restaurants are among the world’s best, stellar eateries serving inventive farm and forage-to-fork cuisine.

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Escape to South Africa’s vineyard hotel

The Luxury Channel | 27 Sep 2019

In the foyer, there’s an antique copper consommé pot large enough to please the most exacting cannibal. The patio flooring is the ballast from a shipwreck and the bar is made of wood salvaged from another wreck. Everywhere there are antique nick-nacks and curiosities. ‘Brass navigational divide 1740’ and ‘Brass taps 1830’ are just two of the curios in the display cabinets.

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Market Street Hotel Edinburgh

Our Man on the Ground | 24 Sep 2019

There are people doing a ‘silent walk’ wearing headphones, gesticulating wildly and singing Freddie Mercury songs in Edinburgh’s city centre. They’re pretending or believing that they’re on stage with Queen. Nearby there’s a man in a kilt playing bagpipes and someone else vying for airspace by strumming flamenco love songs on a guitar.

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Escape to The Park in New Delhi

The Luxury Channel | 17 Jul 2019

‘Do not spit here’ and ‘Carrying tobacco products is prohibited,’ read the signs. This is the Gurdwara Bangla Sahib temple, New Delhi, India; a peaceful Sikh temple with acres of white marble and a gigantic holy bathing pool. Originally it was a bungalow for an important military leader of Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb. It’s as close to my hotel as, say, just 100 turbans rolled out end to end: call it half a mile. But let’s rewind. I’m staying in a hotel known for being Anything But Ordinary. There’s coconut juice, candies, comics and Wi-Fi in the hotel transfer car from Delhi airport. A welcome in the lobby by a sari-clad lady — with a dish of red powder on a rose-petal strewn copper tray — who places a marigold garland on me and a decorative Hindu bindi mark on my forehead. A lift with clouds on its walls and mirror on its ceiling: sort of Alice in New Delhi Wonderland.

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Escape to The Park Hotel Chennai

The Luxury Channel | 6 Jul 2019

Think of a place of dreams that transports the viewer. Imagine its being in the erstwhile location of Gemini Studios, a leading Indian movie studio. Then picture somewhere that has cinematic themes incorporated in its décor. This is the five-star art-concept THE PARK hotel, Chennai (Madras). Its grand atrium is like walking on set, with its ‘stage’ the seating area — as if guests are part of the performance — plus there’s a huge screen onto which movie images are projected silently as dusk falls.

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All aboard Fingal, Scotland’s first ship turned hotel…

The Luxury Channel | 6 Jul 2019

It’s not often that I get to sleep in a floating hotel. Especially not one that HRH the Princess Royal has been out to sea on. Nor one that’s a former Northern Lighthouse ship, once used for maintaining lighthouses and transporting their keepers and equipment through treacherous seas. And particularly not one that’s based adjacent to the former Royal Yacht Britannia. Welcome to Fingal, Scotland’s first ship turned hotel. Where once she was stationed at Oban, she’s now in the Port of Leith, Edinburgh.

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A Guide to 48 Hours in Delhi

Country & Town House | 18 Jun 2019

D for ‘daring’, E for ‘exciting’, L for ‘lovely’, H for ‘habit-forming’ and I for ‘immense.’ That’s D-E-L-H-I. Where else can you walk through history, visit one of 100-odd gardens, listen to performances by the greatest Indian classical musicians, go to museums, then bag some silk, bells, sequins and handmade lace in a market —after having your hands painted with mehendi (henna)? Delhi boasts the ruins of many cities: forts, majestic residences, churches, towers and ancient tombs. It’s where you’ll hear the sounds of the muezzin alongside temple and church bells and honking horns. And you’ll rub shoulders with Hindus and Buddhists to Islamists, Jains, Christians and Baha’i folk. It’s a city that’s buzzing with people, traffic and throngs doing politics, charity (lots of NGO’s), business and shopping.

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Review: The Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition 2019

Country & Town House | 5 Jun 2019

“And on the left there’s a fake customs booth. It’s got ‘Customs Arrivals from the EU’ and ‘Keep Ou…’ written on it, with the ‘T’ missing,” says a guide, leading a man with a white stick around the galleries. We’re at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. The sightless man, it turns out later, is blind artist David Johnson. And the customs booth is a Banksy, about which more later.

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