Lodges

Leeu Estates

Enjoy life's finer side amidst the stunning vineyards of the Cape Winelands

Leeu Estates

The newly founded Leeu Collection is taking the Winelands by storm, and we can see why. Inside the walls of Leeu Estates, just outside Franschhoek, you'll find decadent accommodation in a selection of pretty cottages and elegant houses, top-notch fine-dining and an impressive art collection, all surrounded by stunning gardens and overlooked by the towering Dassenberg Mountains. And that's not all - there's an award-winning spa, heated infinity pool and contemporary wine tasting studio and, if you can drag yourself away, complimentary transfers into nearby Franschhoek village. We can't think of much else that would make it better...

At the lodge

The hotel

The communal areas of the hotel include the heated infinity pool, a good gym, and a spa that offers a full range of dreamy treatments. In the renovated 19th Century Manor House, you'll find the restaurant and the well-stocked library, perfect for snuggling into on a cold evening. Wander across the vineyards or the beautifully manicured gardens - dotted with bronze sculptures and a small resident herd of bokkies (antelope) - to the winery, the wine studio and the cellar, which look out over the farm's dam.

The rooms

You've got a few options when it comes to accommodation, with the smallest bedroom being a palatial 42m²! There's the one bedroom, totally romantic Pomegranate Cottage, three bed Max House, and six individual bedrooms in the Manor House (two within rolling distance of the spa). All exude elegance and style, with chic colour palettes, softer than soft carpets, and marble bathrooms with enormous rain showers and underfloor heating. The executive suite has its own lounge/study area and fireplace, while the cottages have private terraces, lounges and courtyards with private gardens.

On safari

Experiences

Leeu Estate sits at the base of Dassenberg Mountain with the Franschoek River running through it. There are various nature trails that wind their way through the vineyards, along the river and on to the mountain that are perfect for hiking, jogging or cycling (the hotel provides mountain bikes for free). But chances are, you came here for the wine and cuisine, so you won't be disappointed to know that there are over fifty wine farms and nearly as many restaurants in the Franschoek Valley. The village is just a fifteen-minute walk away, and you'll find a variety of interesting attractions from art galleries to the Franschhoek Monument on the way.

When to go

Cape Winelands by month

January

Season: Dry
  • The weather is consistent with plenty of sunshine, a handful of rainy days and the potential for stronger winds.
  • Enjoying tastings and pairings with the picturesque vineyard backdrop.
  • The perfect month for outdoor activities, explore the countryside by foot, car, horse or tram in the Franschhoek region.
  • The end of January welcomes the Delheim Start of Harvest Celebration, a unique experience at a working wine farm, with grape stomping and al fresco dining.
  • The outdoor market is on every Saturday amongst the vineyards of Stellenbosch, explore the local artworks, homemade delectables and of course a wide variety of wines.
  • Avoid any disappoint and book restaurants and activities early, during this period.

February

Season: Dry
  • This is the hottest month of the year in the Winelands, with little to no rain expected and occasional winds.
  • A great time of year for eating al fresco with postcard perfect views of the vineyards and surrounding countryside.
  • Take advantage of the clear sunny skies and enjoy a hike through the Winelands hills.
  • The Stellenbosch Wine Festival is a day of music, fresh foods and of course locally produced wines.
  • The Franschhoek Summer Wines Festival takes place on the Leopard's Leap Family Vineyard, a picture perfect setting for wine tasting and some fun in the sun.
  • Avoid any disappoint and book restaurants and activities early, during this period.

March

Season: Dry
  • In this month rain is unlikely with long hours of sunshine and hot weather expected.
  • Enjoy ideal conditions for wine farm explorations, picnicking and al fresco dining.
  • Comfortable conditions make cycling, hiking and horse riding popular outdoor activities.
  • Hot air ballooning provides a unique and beautiful perspective of Paarl's vineyards and countryside.
  • The Eikendal Weintaufe Harvest Celebration in early March is a festive occasion, with grape stomping, leisurely walks among the vines and wine tasting from the barrel.
  • Avoid any disappoint and book restaurants and activities early, during this period.

April

Season: Dry
  • Temperatures are comfortable at this time of year, with the first rains of the season falling in the form of occasional showers.
  • The last of the sunny days provide the perfect setting for wine tastings and pairings in the immaculate countryside of the Western Cape.
  • Late April is a staggeringly beautiful time to visit this region, Autumn is setting in and the leaves on the vines turn bright reds, yellows and oranges.
  • The South African Cheese Festival take place on Stellenbosch's Sandringham Farm, an estate transformed with the delights of culinary excellence and wine perfection.

May

Season: Wet
  • Expect some rain over the course of a lengthy stay, with daylight hours shortening and temperatures remaining mild.
  • The mixed weather provides a welcome variation of outdoor activity and fine dining by a crackling wood fire.
  • The onset of autumn presents a picture perfect setting, the leafy vines burst into colour with yellows,oranges and reds, painting the countryside.
  • There are many festivals in and around the Winelands during this month including Hartenberg Estate's annual Feast of Shiraz and Charcuterie, Delheim Wild Mushroom Hunt, the Elgin Cool Wine and Country Festival and Riebeek Valley Olive Festival.

June

Season: Wet
  • The wet season is at its peak with a one in three chance of rain, temperatures are dropping and evenings becoming quite chilly.
  • Take advantage of the low number of tourists and explore the wine paired culinary delights of this region.
  • Early to mid June before the vines have dropped their bright red, yellow and orange leaves, provides a beautiful period to visit the region.
  • The Durbanville Winelands play host to the Soup, Sip and Bread Winter Feast, a festive occasion with broths, chowders, artisanal breads, live entertainment and above all quality wines.
  • Pack warm clothing in this month.

July

Season: Wet
  • The wet season experiences colder temperatures and rainfall on a third of its days.
  • An ideal time of year for foodies, enjoy world class cuisine and wines overlooking the undulating hills of the Winelands region.
  • Indulge in the unique wine and food pairings on offer, including chocolate, cheese and charcuterie.
  • Bastille Day in Franschhoek provides a festive occasion with wine tasting, music and fun for all.
  • Pack warm clothing in this month.

August

Season: Wet
  • It is still the wet season, with high chances of rainfall, lower average temperatures and cold nights.
  • Enjoy the romantic Winelands setting in this month, crackling fires, international cuisine and a mouth watering variety of wines.
  • Day tours provide a great method of exploring the nearby wine regions, enjoying wine tastings and pairings as you go.
  • The Robertson Slow Food and Wine Festival is a unique and intimate event, enjoy slow cooked menus paired with wines by the winemakers themselves, in an idyllic vineyard setting.
  • Pack warm clothing in this month.

September

Season: Dry
  • The weather begins to shift, with less rain falling and a slight rise in average daytime temperatures, evenings still have the potential to be chilly.
  • The mixed weather provides a welcome variation of outdoor activity and fine dining by a glowing wood fire.
  • Day tours are a great way to explore the surrounding wine regions indulging in tastings and pairings as you go.
  • Franschhoek Uncorked Festival is a celebration of local heritage, with traditional braaivleis (barbecued meat) and plenty of locally produced wine.

October

Season: Dry
  • Enjoy the first days of the warm dry summer, temperatures climb and the last of the seasonal rains fall in the form of sporadic afternoon showers.
  • Capitalize on the change in weather dining outside with rolling views of the surrounding farm lands.
  • Outdoor explorations are back on the table, spend your time hiking, cycling and horse riding in the countryside.
  • Get to know South Africa's wines with the Robertson Wine on the River, Wellington's Pinotage on Tap and the Durbanville Wine Valley's Season of Sauvignon festivals, Known for good food, great entertainment and exceptional wine.

November

Season: Dry
  • In this month the days are warm and sunny with periods of wind and little to no chance of rain.
  • One of the best months to visit the Winelands, enjoy all the perks of high season without any of the crowds.
  • Outdoor activities are a must, with hiking and cycling trails through the hills providing expansive views of the countryside.
  • La Paris Festival in the Valley is an annual event based in the Franschhoek Winelands, indulge the senses with an assortment of market stalls and local entertainment before enjoying some of the region's award winning wines and cuisine.
  • Avoid any disappoint and book restaurants and activities early, during this period.

December

Season: Dry
  • Enjoy ideal weather with hot sunny days, very little rain and the potential for short-lived gusty winds.
  • Revel in picture perfect days, venturing from one wine farm to the next.
  • Outdoor activities are a must in this month with hiking and horse riding always popular methods of exploration.
  • Hot air ballooning provides a unique and beautiful perspective of Paarl's vineyards and countryside.
  • Franschhoek Cap Classique and Champagne Festival is a sophisticated affair with high end tastings and cuisine to match.
  • Avoid any disappoint and book restaurants and activities early, during this period.

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