Location: Grootbos Private Nature Reserve, Hermanus, South Africa
No of rooms: Forest Lodge: 16 luxury suites. Garden Lodge: 6x One-Bedroom Luxury suites, 3x One-Bedroom Classic Suites, 2x Two-Bedroom Luxury Suites. The Villa: 6 x Suites
One Stop Reason To Go: The Villa is a dream house.
What’s the difference: Grootbos is a huge tract of private pristine reserve which offers so much in the way of activities and options – ride, walking or drive around the reserve, have meals on the beach, whale watch from the beautiful hills. The wild flowers here are also exceptional as is the food.
The Luxury Safari Company Award for: Most unique and dreamy property on the Garden Route.

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Grootbos Private Nature Reserve is situated half an hour outside of Hermanus; on the Fynbos and forest clad hills, overlooking the whale-watching haven of Walker bay and Gansbaai. The two-hour drive from Cape Town provides for a spectacular scenic route along the Cape Whale Coast. With its 5-star luxury accommodation, scenic beauty, unique flowers and abundant marine life, Grootbos truly provides everything the Garden Route and Western Cape have to offer. The luxury designed lodges and exclusive Villa offer breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean, breaching whales and ancient forests, with activities to satisfy even the most ardent nature lover. Come to Grootbos and feel momentarily humbled by what has been described as one of the most idyllic locations on Earth, a pristine piece of wilderness hidden away at the Southern Tip of Africa.

Forest Lodge, part of the Grootbos, consists of a main lodge with restaurant, bar, spacious lounge area, gallery, infinity pool and conference centre as well as 16 luxurious, freestanding suites built on the edge of the forest. Volumes of space under slate roofs are framed by glass, steel and natural brick to maximize the sweeping views across the Fynbos and dunes to the ocean. The individual luxury suites beneath the overhang of Milkwood trees provide the ideal blend of privacy and supreme comfort. Each is furnished with rich textures, romantic canopy beds with the finest linen and down quilts, spacious tiled sunny bathrooms, separate lounges with cosy fireplaces, mini bars and tea & coffee making facilities. From each suite’s private deck guests can soak up exquisite ocean and mountain views and watch the sun disappear from a flaming sky into the Atlantic Ocean. There really is no better way to toast another unforgettable day at Grootbos!

Garden Lodge: This is the original Grootbos Lodge and is surrounded by three hectares of indigenous Fynbos and forest garden. Accommodation is in 11 luxurious, freestanding suites in a spectacular nature setting. Totally refurbished in a manner that reflects stylish and contemporary inspirations, its charming private suites feature romantic canopy beds, spacious en-suite bathrooms, separate lounges with welcoming fireplaces, mini bar, tea & coffee making facilities as well as wooden decks with simply breathtaking views. Facilities include: 6x One-Bedroom Luxury suites, 3x One-Bedroom Classic Suites, 2x Two-Bedroom Luxury Suites. Restaurant with terrace, bar, lounge, swimming pool, Beauty Salon, stables, children’s play area, library, an entertainment room as well as an ecological interpretation and research centre for those wanting to know more about the fantastic area they are staying in. Garden Lodge offers laundry service, centralised telephone, fax, e-mail and postal service – and is also family friendly and does accommodate children.

The Villa: The latest addition to the Grootbos portfolio, this luxury villa is hidden in the natural wonderland of the reserve with six elegant suites, a private butler, chef and guide – with the added true luxury of incredible views of the whale-watching haven of Walker Bay. The villa is for exclusive use only, and is truly one of the most sumptuous villas in South Africa.

Grootbos offers a wide variety of experiences for guests to enjoy during their stay. Specialist guides lead 4×4 drives and walks through the Fynbos and forests of the reserve, trips to the nearby coast to view the Southern Right Whales from land, walks along deserted beaches, visits to archaeological and cultural sites, boat-based whale-watching trips, as well as boat tours to a nearby seal island to view penguins, seals, dolphins and great white sharks. Nearby in the Hermanus area, guests have numerous opportunities to immerse themselves in the many exciting things this most exciting of areas has to offer from Great White Shark Cage Diving and Surface Viewing to flying over Walker Bar; there’s sea- kayaking in Walker Bay Sanctuary or wine tours in the amazingly beautiful Hemel ‘n Aarde Valley – weather permitting. Guests can go horse riding through the Fynbos, sand boarding down the big dunes at Betty’s Bay, try tandem Paragliding or take a Township Tour around Zwelihle with Willy, a friendly, local township elder – a real insight into the ‘other’ South Africa. In short, the Grootbos is one of the world’s hidden gem places to stay.

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