Travel review: Gourmet getaway at Vineyard Views Country House, Riebeek Kasteel, South Africa, November 2020
|Destination: Vineyard Views Country House Where: 59 Main St, Riebeek Kasteel, Swartland, 7300 Country: South Africa- about 60 mins from Cape Town Description: luxury country house– four rooms- with en-suites Website: http://www.vineyardviews.co.za/||Reservations: email@example.com 082 456 2682 or https://www.nightsbridge.co.za/bridge/book?bbid=21897 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vineyardviews/ Instagram: @vineyardviewscountry Kids: No under 12s Facilities: Includes off street parking and excellent Wifi|
Exquisitely appointed interiors in a glorious setting, impeccable hospitality with gourmet food is what we were treated to at Vineyard Views Country House, Riebeek Kasteel.
Vineyard Views Country House is a new build – purpose built to the specs of the owner/operators: Gareth Dewar-Pienaar and Grant Dewar. Heritage buildings can be charming but they can be dank with creaky floors. Vineyard Views Country House was built and conceptualised around a contemporary intimate country house. Everything works. It is well insulated and there is a seamless flow between interior and exterior spaces.
The town is about 60-90 minutes from Cape Town –depending on departure point and traffic. We were in Riebeek Kasteel to attend Covid Moons, the launch production of RATA’s Summer 2020/21 theatre season. Riebeek Kasteel is nearish to Cape Town to drive there and leave after the show but it is a lot more relaxing to enhance the theatre experience with a stay-over in the town. The season in the amphitheatre (outdoors) is perfect for Covid-19 and lockdown. It makes sense to combine theatre with accommodation and great food and wine. RATA’s artistic director Mark Graham-Wilson raved about Vineyard Views Country House. The luxury country house has become known for its beautifully appointed rooms (only four) and its food. The establishment has been highly rated by TripAdvisor and other sites. The ratings are well deserved.
First up the food. As you can see from the featured image on this post – pistachio, almond, orange and rose water cake- is centre stage at this establishment. On arrival, we were welcomed with orange drizzle cake, exquisitely plated and served with tea and coffee (I wanted both) on the patio, overlooking the vineyards. It is called Vineyard Views because there is a view of vineyards on the adjacent property. Cows meander in the distance. After the drive from Cape Town, we sat and breathed in the air and savoured our cake. Knackered after a hard week, it was off for a siesta in our room. Each room/suite at Vineyard Views Country House is bespoke furnished with original artworks, antique and contemporary furnishings, top grade white linen, mohair blankets on beds. There are lovely touches and details- for example a single beautiful rose in the bathroom.
It was supposed to be a siesta, but of course I had to check my email. The Wifi is fast and connections were seamless. Wifi can be iffy at country hotels which is frustrating for digital nomads but Vineyard has that all sorted. While in downtime mode, we nibbled chocolate, mint pistachio biscuits in the fridge (and finished them- delish). Everything is home made by Grant and Gareth.
After siesta, we headed for afternoon canapés and a tipple, on the patio. Vineyard Views Country House has become known for its late afternoon canapés and one can see why. Our canapés included gazpacho soup, salmon and crostini. Vineyard Views Country House is a bed and breakfast establishment. There is no restaurant but there is dining room and meals are served by arrangement. On the night we stayed the elegant dining room was kitted out for a private dinner party. It was a sense of FOMO – fear of missing out as we gazed at the beautifully laid out table.
We worked up an appetite for breakfast and were rewarded with mini quiches with truffles. There was also home-made granola, full cream plain yogurt, fruit salad, croissants, breads and side platter each – mine included smoked salmon, avo, cheese and the #surfertrvaleguy’s platter included cold meats. I cannot begin to explain the detail in each food offering – from the ingredients to the plating and presentation on a mix of platters, ramekins and serving utensils. There is a mix of old and new. Water was poured from a family heirloom silver jug from Ceres. Every piece at Vineyard Views has a story. A chandelier made from wine glasses has its roots from a bequest from an aunt in Zimbabwe.
Is this a biased review because we were guests? No. #Surfertravelguy always cross references Trip Advisor, Hotels.com and bookings.com whenever we are looking for accommodation, plus a few others. Always looking for that sweet spot of great reviews on at least three sites. It is extremely rare on TripAdvisor to find any place that has a 100% “excellent” rating, unless they are new and have only had, like, three and a half friendly reviews. Vineyard has had 113 reviews on TA: Out of 113 that have been posted for Vineyard, every single one rated as excellent. On bookings.com there is a rating of ten out of ten. Five out five from hotels.com. That says a lot.
A great deal of time, effort and thought has gone into this operation. Grant says: “Set within a Colombard vineyard and bordering working wine farmlands, there could not be a more apt name for this splendid guest house offering. Vineyard Views Country House was a 10-year in the making project. We spent several years scouring the countryside outside of Cape Town for the perfect location to launch our dream hospitality property. We looked at several options including, Franschhoek, Stellenbosch and Paarl, but ultimately spotted an opportunity in Riebeek Kasteel to launch the type of paired down luxury establishment we wished to operate. In the short space of only 18 months we became the Top Traveller Rank B&B in Riebeek Kasteel according to TripAdvisor. We believe our unique offering of home-style comfort and food is what set us apart. Guest’s feel relaxed, pampered and at home in Vineyard Views Country House.”
|Vineyard Views Country House –good to know: |
Wifi: High speed internet access with Wifi throughout Vineyard Views Country House.
Plug points: Each room has a minimum of two plug points that are able to accommodate three and two pin plugs. International adapters are available – on request.
Mini bar fridge: In each room with homemade sweet treats, bottled water and fresh milk (not the boxed kind).
Coffee in-room: Nespresso coffee machines and tea facilities (range of teas) with homemade biscuits or rusks.
Bathrooms: All rooms have en-suite bathrooms and walk-in showers (ie no ledge to trip over), Molton Brown toiletries, shower cap, mozzie spray, hand sanitizer.
Room amenities: Bath robes, slippers.
Facilities: Swimming pool, gardens, patio, lounge and dining room. Netflix in lounge and DSTV (South African pay TV) in rooms. Magazines and books in lounge.
Canapés: Signature attraction at Vineyard Views Country House. Do not miss.
Parking: Secure off street parking- secure gated parking.
Specials: Check in directly with website for special deals -may not be available on other portals.
❇TheCapeRobyn was hosted by Vineyard Views Country House, Riebeek Kasteel. Featured image: supplied. Other images as credited.