What do you do when you need to get away – out of the humdrum of everyday life, the emails, the to-do-lists, the endless chores – but you don’t have the time or the budget to travel to an exotic overseas locale? I’m happy to say I think I’ve found the answer: you take yourself to the secret garden of the Vineyard Hotel, a seven-acre riverside garden estate in Newlands that feels a million miles away from everyday.
Feast your eyes
I had been to the Vineyard before, of course, for afternoon tea and to visit the spa. But I had never explored the depths of the hotel – the beautifully serene suites, with their tasteful decor and outdoor deck looking on to Table Mountain and the vast swathe of green in front. And it’s this expanse of green that really sets the Vineyard apart, because it is a garden that is both wild and manicured at the same time: wonderfully cared for but filled with leafy nooks and crannies that feel as if nobody has ever discovered them.
Wine, dine, unwind. Repeat.
A stroll around the grounds – past the famous giant tortoises and along the riverside – before dinner at The Square Restaurant is a delightful way to end off a day of relaxation and unwinding. And dinner continues this theme, with an extensive sushi menu or a five-course wine pairing meal (which we felt obliged to dive into!) In fact, they’ve just launched Tastes of 2016, which pairs their elegant fine dining fare with a top wine estate twice a month… Be sure to check out their calendar for your favourite wine farms as you’ve never tasted them before.
Breakfast is another meal to write home about, an abundance of sweet and savoury, cold and hot that is as far from my everyday bowl of yoghurt and fruit as it is possible to be. We may only have spent one night at the Vineyard, but by the time we left I felt as if we’d been away for a week: refreshed, revitalised and ready to head back over the mountain and into real life.
021 657 4500
Words: Bridget McNulty | Images: Supplied