Moody oceans and purple mountains fringed by fynbos-covered foothills
At Africa's southern tip, where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet in a churning embrace, is a coastline edged with ancient mountains and rolling hills of fynbos. And that's the sight that greets visitors to the Grootbos Private Nature Reserve, a 2500-hectare preserve of unsullied milkwood trees and indigenous flora, with sweeping views across Walker Bay. Grootbos Villa is one of three places to stay in the reserve. Completely private, its six elegant suites sleep up to 12 guests. So if you're looking for a family getaway that offers unadulterated luxury, with your own guide, chef and butler, you've found it!
At the lodge
The villa is large and luxuriously self-contained, with its own staff. Inside, all is light and airy, with huge windows overlooking that dramatic view. On the walls are artworks by world-respected local artists such as Cecil Skotnes, J.H. Pierneef, Walter Meyer and William Kentridge. There's a fully equipped kitchen in which the chef will whip up dishes to suit everyone, two large lounges with satellite TV, a dining room, barbecue areas, pool, media room, fully equipped office, gym, wine cellar and exterior decks.
There are six bedrooms in all. Two are master suites with en-suite bathrooms, and four are classified as luxury bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms. All are spacious, chic and designed to make the most of the views.
Grootbos offers guided walks into the fynbos and milkwood forests, guided drives to admire the local marine and coastal scenery and opportunities to explore on horseback. Enjoy land-based whale-watching tours (June to December), day drives to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost tip of Africa; wine tours or an excursion to the nearby golf course. Alternatively, sit back on the deck with a drink and a calm mind, and count the shades of blue. No? Shark cage-diving can be arranged!