We had a some drama on the way to the Retreat with two flat tyres at the base of the Swatberg Pass (one more than we had spare, unfortunately) with extreme heat and a two-year-old and our dogs with us. We phoned Grant in a bit of a panic and he had organised a tow truck, new tyres and was on his way to us within minutes. We really could not have asked for a more accommodating welcome and continued help as it took us the next few days to sort out the situation.
The Retreat is, as the name suggests, remote, with at least 20km along a gravel road to reach the guesthouse. But it is well worth the drive through the quaint farms and lovely mountains - we even saw giraffe, hartebeest and zebra on our drive in. Once at the Retreat, is a pleasure to have your meals organised and have nothing to worry about except how to while your time while you are there. Grant and Marie have really put their heart and souls into the place and it shows. They show and old school hospitality that is a nice change from some of the more stuffy modern places. As others have said, the rooms are not "white linen with air conditioning" fancy, but the hosts' hospitality more than makes up for it. It was lovely to share nice farmhouse meals with our fellow guests, who were all interesting. As it was very hot while we were there, the dam and pool were wonderful to cool off in. It felt very much like a farm. It was also nice to be able to bring our dogs and feel welcome. We will definitely be back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This award winning destination, a nature reserve, 20kms from Calitzdorp, adjoining the Swartberg World heritage site, offers simple luxury, friendly service, and a relaxed ambience, with delicious, wholesome meals and caters for vegetarians and food intolerances. Evenings are spent in the company of fellow guests and friendly hosts. In this haven of tranquillity enjoy birding, walking trails, relaxing in the lovely gardens, at the dams, river or pool, or do day outings to attractions in the area, such as ostrich farms, Cango caves, Swartberg pass, and others. ... more less
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