I have always said that when Volvo changed their exterior design everyone else gave this brand another chance. They have been performing quite well ever since, with their most successful SUV being the XC60 as well as increased demand of the XC40 (apparently Volvo has run out of stock on the XC40 in South Africa). It’s no surprise that they also have to update the XC90 which caters for a different market within the SUV market.
We arrived at the Cape Town International airport for the media launch for the XC90 and we were received with smiles from the Volvo team. We were given iPhones with apps installed and shown how we can unlock, check fuel and have access to the car via the phone. It’s interesting how keys are becoming either smarter or more digital and that’s in a sense of traditional function (you don’t need a key anymore to have access to your vehicle). We drove to the Hazendale Wine Farm which was cool and interesting because we were checking for the updates and how different this model is, compared to the previous model. I like the one with the individual seats because it gives the vehicle that luxury feel and that’s what you want with the XC90. The car is a 6-seater and it’s very comfortable in the middle but not so much at the back as an adult, but that would be perfect for the kids though. For a family of 5 or 6, this is perfect, it works, and it would be great on a road trip as well.
We also test drove the electric version of the XC90 and it’s impressive for an electric car, you also get massage options as well as heated seats and steering wheel. The infotainment screen is easily accessible with all the options a luxury car can give you such as parking assist, cameras and a sound system. The XC90 features a 1 476-Watt Class D amplifier and 19 Bowers & Wilkins speakers. There are three room modes: “Studio” for an excellent, dry and precise listening experience, “Individual Stage” that allows you to control the acoustics and create your own sound using the centre display, and “Gothenburg Concert Hall” which recreates the amazing acoustic experience of this legendary concert hall.
We ended the day driving to the hotel in town and while we were driving, we explored the Volvo on call options which are the concierge option that comes with this car for free I believe. They will help you with directions and they can have access to the navigation system of your car as well. Unfortunately, they can’t make flight bookings for you like the BMW concierge version, but they are very helpful with everything else that you might need with regards to the car. The 2020 XC90 comes with an arsenal of safety features including Adaptive Cruise Control, Distance Alert, Lane Keeping Aid, Run-Off Road Mitigation/Protection, Driver Alert Control, Road Sign Information, Electronic Stability Control, Emergency Brake Light, Brakes with Hill Start Assist and Automatic Hold, Automatic braking after a collision, Roll-Over Protection System, Roll Stability Control, reinforced passenger compartment, SIPS™ side impact protection system, collapsible steering column, side and dual-stage airbags (for the driver and front passenger), inflatable curtain, WHIPS™ whiplash injury protection system and City Safety with Autobrake (which recognizes pedestrians, cyclists and large animals).
We arrived at the Gorgeous George Hotel in Cape Town, let me start by saying that I’m grateful that I get to explore hotels and cars through Marvin and I get to discover gems such as the Gorgeous George Hotel. I have always dreamed of building a Marvin Hotel in the future and I’ve never had a picture of how it would look like in real life. When we get to build that hotel one day it would be like the Gorgeous George Hotel. As we arrived, I joked with the staff that I was called GG at college and it’s an interesting experience now to stay at a hotel that has my name on it. We got a chance to order a welcoming drink as we arrived and I chose hot chocolate which was very nice, it tasted like chocolate. I got to my room and it was well-curated, it had Netflix instead of DSTV, it had a shower with enough room and everything was in place. They had strong wifi, nice tea options and filtered coffee (instead of the same old boring coffee you find at hotels). I tried the tea as well and quite enjoyed it, it was wonderfully packaged and well presented. This is one of the best hotels I’ve been to, as a millennial this hotel got it right.
We went to the Gigi rooftop for dinner and I must say that their food is really, really good as the Fairmont Zimbali food. Honestly, I need more days to explore the Gorgeous George Hotel. We received gifts from Hazendale Wine Farm and also got a wireless charging station for our phones which is something I needed since I recently got a new iPhone, I love gadgets when they are wireless. Thank you to Volvo for the wonderful experience and for introducing me to new things.