This past weekend we were in Franschhoek as you’ll see from the snaps below – it was so difficult to trim them down to these favourites!
If you’re heading that way, we definitely recommend stopping in at the Wijnland Auto Museum and Butterfly World, and explore the lovely lemony Franschhoek Country House (FCH) and Monneaux…
Wednesday, 16 May 2018: Sunset dins at Doodles on the beachfront
We had a sneaky mid-week dinner out at Doodles and were in awe at the sunset, as seen from various angles.
Friday, 18 May 2018: Meltwater #BizBreakfast at Park Inn Radisson
I rarely get to attend events with colleagues, so it was a treat to spend part of last Friday morning with one of my favourite coworkers. Once we’d gone up 10 floors by lift at the Park Inn Radisson we stepped onto the balcony to admire the view, and what a view it was!
More of the balcony views, also the delicious breakfast snacks and the excellent presentation itself on social storytelling – click here for my full overview if you missed it on Bizcommunity.
We had time for a quick post-event catch-up session with industry friends before heading back to the office.
Saturday, 19 May 2018: Stop at Wijnland Auto Museum, stay at Franschhoek Country House, dine at Monneaux
A sweet moment with Bertie boy before we started all our weekend activities. Love that dog!
First stop – collect parents to drop off at the airport. Once they’d checked in for their flight to Joburg, we had time for a quick breakfast at the Wimpy with views of the runway. See various coffees and the flapjacks with cream and fruit salad.
Next, tim for our weekend away, and what’s a road trip without snacks? It was a cold, grey day so hot drinks were in order. This is a mochaccino and British ‘chocky bickies’ from when we dropped off the doglets at their GrannyGrampa for the night.
We stopped in at the Wijnland Auto Museum (not the main Franschhoek Motor museum you’re thinking of). It’s filled with rusted relics and shiny new vehicles alike. Bonus: You don’t need to make an appointment ahead of time!
The grounded airplane was the main attraction for Husband – he’d seen it from the main road outside and we had to do a capital U-turn to go back and find the entrance. See how he climbed all the way through into the cockpit – you’re allowed to do so.
Autumnal scenes on the road into Franschhoek town.
You’re bound to see the wine tram when you’re in and around Franschhoek. We saw various versions of it in various locations on our way into town and even waved at the happy travelers from the pool later that evening. It’s still on our Franschhoek bucket list!
It was the weekend of the Franschhoek Literary Festival (FLF) so there were book-lovers around every drizzly corner and queues at all the eateries and markets, we felt quite lucky to be staying slightly out of the main hustle and bustle of town. Will tackle the FLF another time!
Franschhoek Country House holds all the lemons and French country charm you could ever want. It’s like a painting.
It’s hard to miss Franschhoek Country House from the Huguenot Main Road, just look for lemon with touches of turquoise and you’re there! There are lemons everywhere you look, from the trees to bowls in every room – even the restaurant powder room – it’s really a delicious sight.
The space we stayed in was just gorgeous. Look at those old-school high ceilings, the plentiful fruit bowl, and even the candlesticks next to the not-to-be-used bath tub.
The doorbell chimed and we were presented with the most wonderful welcome plate of food fresh from Monneaux, along with flutes of bubbly to ease into ‘weekend away’ mode. It certainly did the trick!
Fountains fountains everywhere. Note Husband examining them far off in the distance.
Despite the chill in the air we braved the cold pool, as that makes the slightly heated pool seem a little warmer than it is. Also see the poolside table with the most delicious lemonade, garnished with mint leaves and cucumber slices. So yum!
We’d been told it was ‘happy hour’ on selected beverages until 5pm – add in pretzels and salty peanuts, also the Royal Wedding on TV and we were there like bears.
Sunset over the mountain from various angles, made even more delicious with a cup of coffee and rusk from our room.
M is for Monneaux! The on-site restaurant is definitely worth a visit, whether you’re staying at Franschhoek Country House or further up the road. See here the baked camembert salad, the spicy mussels and the lamb on gnocchi. All the words coming to my full review on Bizcommunity!
Cheers to dinner at Monneaux! Our table was strewn with white rose petals – we’d seen them being plucked while enjoying our swim earlier that evening. Also see the smoked octopus in dashi stock from the Petit Assiette menu, and the linefish mains topped with a prawn.
Don’t mind if I do take a sip or two… just some of the lovely wines we sampled while dining at Monneaux, all from the Franschhoek valley.
Dessert! See the sorbets with meringue discs; chef’s creme caramel with flecks of vanilla; a delicious cappuccino; the apple tart tatin with blue cheese compote; and the end-of-meal dense chocolate truffles.
The little nighttime luxuries at Franschhoek Country House are so sweet. These range from the ‘I need some me time’ message on the door hanger to a tiny chocolate left on the pillow with the next day’s weather forecast; and slippers left at the turned-down bed. Of course, we also lit the fire and spent a while in front of its warmth – though there’s also underfloor heating, so you may well find yourself sitting on the floor (out of choice)!
This is the selection of ‘gownie shots’ I have to work with. Not easy to come by as gowns are only available by special request from reception, and by the time we took the snaps Husband was done with posing nicely and smiling on demand. Lol!
Sunday, 20 May 2018: FCH breakfast buffet; visit the animals at Butterfly World
Taking in that ‘just been rained on’ view with a quick coffee brewed in the room before heading down for breakfast.
What a breakfast spread! See various cold meats and cheeses, freshly cut fruits, yoghurts, and cereals – I couldn’t resist a scoop of the bright pink Strawberry Pops!
From the hot breakfast menu, we opted for filter coffee and the waffle with bananas, bacon and berries (me); and glasses of juice with the eggs benedict, topped with both spinach and folded ham (husband). Also, look at the tiny bite-size croissant!
Taking a slow stroll back to our room. Note Husband is in long pants and covered shoes during the day here, a rare sighting that tells you it was pretty darn chilly.
Once we’d checked out, we couldn’t resist this road that whispered, “Follow me…”
We made what we thought would be a quick detour to see the Butterfly World tropical garden, but there’s so much more than that on the grounds that we stayed a good two hours. See Husband enjoying a plate of curry and rice while it drizzled.
There’s lots of lush greenery and birdies flitting around along with the butterflies. Also, many interesting take-away trinkets to look at.
We braved the rain (there are clear umbrellas to collect before stepping outside) and you can just see the butterflies drying out.
While the butterflies were lovely, they flitted around so fast we couldn’t take any pics. There are so many sweet rescued animals all around though that before you realise it, you’ve spent hours wandering around in awe at nature.
Look at the little critters! Some were friendly, some were shy, all were precious. We have a video of the birdie scratching it’s way over Husband’s arm and then leaping scarily at my shiny phone.
That’s all, folks! Hope you have a relaxing weekend. Cheers!
*Disclaimer: Our meals and accommodation at Franschhoek Country House and Monneaux were part of our review package. All else came from our own pockets. All enjoyed equally.
Last week was really busy and quite chilly but filled with happy, delicious moments, too…
Wednesday, 4 April 2018: Autumn Risotto Pop-Up Experience at 95 Keerom and Gords’ visit
I’d been invited to review the Autumn Risotto Pop-Up Experience at 95 Keerom on Wednesday afternoon, so of course I accepted the offer. Each bowl was delicious, especially accompanied by Steenberg Wines’ finest.
The food and the drink. Yes, I ate all this. Click through for details and full descriptions in my official review on Bizcommunity.
Gords, one of Husband’s oldest friends from our Joburg days, was in Cape Town on business on Wednesday so we jumped at the chance to see him at Husband’s parents’ house. See various happy moments below – yes, the doggies were there, too.
Husband’s Mum cooked up haggis, chilli con carne, potatoes and various veg in honour of Gords’ visit. See how thrilled Bertie was to greet Gords, also see my Mum with Bassie (my parents popped in for a quick visit, too).
Friday, 6 April 2018: Doggies warming themselves at the fire
The doggies warming themselves at the fire last Friday evening.
Precious little Bassie peeping out from under her blankie.
Saturday, 7 April 2018: Coffee-filled breakfast at The Daily
The Daily at Seaside Village in Big Bay had revamped its menu so we went for a quick taste. As it was first thing in the morning, we started with coffee! See various shots of Husband’s ‘con panna’ (espresso topped with cream) and my latte.
To eat we went with old favourites – toasted chicken mayo in white for me, eggs florentine for Husband. See shots of how they were served on the left and after we’d doctored them with sauces on the right.
After a fair deal of weekend admin we decided on an early dinner at The Orient in Eden on the Bay that evening. See various hand rolls, sashimi and maki consumed by Husband, and my cashew chicken dish bottom left.
Sunday, 8 April 2018: Coffee at Reload, breakfast at Tables at Nitida, liquid treats at Pakalolo
We were up earlier than necessary on Sunday so stopped for a fancy coffee treat first thing. The outside seating area at Reload in Parklands is inviting.
See my peppermint-chocolate latte and various weekend newspapers. Sunday morning bliss.
As we’d not seen them the day before, we met Husband’s parents at Tables at Nitida for breakfast. It’s such a pretty spot!
Love the mosaic tables at Tables (lol) – also see my Milo shake;, the general ‘bacon-eggs-mushrooms-tomato’ brekkie ordered by Husband’s parents; my brioche French toast with jar of scrumptious caramelised bananas and nuts; and Husband’s Italian-style chorizo-pepper-feta-spring onion open-faced omelette. No wonder their tagline is ‘For the love of food!’
Tables at Nitida always makes us feel welcome. “May all who enter as guests leave as friends.”
After we’d ‘left as friends’, we stopped in at Klein Rosboom for a look around. The entry table is just so pretty. Insert heart-eyes emoji.
Some of the lovely sights at Klein Roosboom. We found ‘die hang gat’, where you can sit in a swing chair while tasting wine. Such fun!
You can see us peeking into another of the tasting room ‘caves’ at Klein Roosboom in the mirror here.
Much later that afternoon, after lots of manual labour in the garden, we stopped in at Pakalolo on the beachfront for a liquid treat. It was a frosty Castle Light draught for Husband and raspberry virgin daquiri for me. Delicious!
You can just make out Husband behind my virgin raspberry daquiri here. Lol.
Ahh. That’s how you spend a Sunday afternoon. Sipping daquiris and staring at sea views.
Mum outdid herself with homemade gnocchi and a crunchy salad for lupper that eve.
Wednesday, 11 April 2018: Overcast fiery skies at night
Overcast sunset sky at night…
Thursday, 12 April 2018: ‘Feel better’ pastries from Trescatelli Bakery
Cloud-flecked sunrise sky in the morning.
There was a bus strike on Thursday and I wasn’t feeling 100% so worked from home that day. Day made when my parents popped in with delicious pastries! See huge mug of coffee with chocolate and vanilla-cream cannoli from Trescatelli Bakery here. Mmm.
That’s all, folks! Have a delicious weekend 🙂
Last week, our dear doggie boy Bertie turned 8. So despite us both having full plates of work, we made a plan to include delicious food and quality time with our furry children, too…
Thursday, 1 March 2018: Bertie’s 8th birthday
Aww! When we got home from work, I showed Bertie some of the birthday messages he’d received from friends and family on Facebook. He loved them, as you can see.
Teehee. This was the best option from a number of ‘birthday hat’ poses, I promise.
Friday, 2 March 2018: Coffee meet at Red Sofa Cafe
Did someone say ‘Friday coffee meet at the Red Sofa Cafe’? I was there like a bear, mirrored sunnies and all.
As it was breakfast time, I went for the flapjack stack. Brimming with blueberries, marscapone cheese and honey, it was delicious!
I tried the cheeseburger with sweet potato fries from the Bread Cafe downstairs for Friday lunch, once back in the office.
Saturday, 3 March 2018: Cup & Cake buffet breakfast
Husband was working again on Saturday, so I had a breakfast date my my parents at Cup & Cake at Eden, which has just moved to new premises. See some of the cakes and views here.
Also see my gingerbread latte, the sweet birdie sugar cup and more.
Table shot of all our eats and drinks at Cup & Cake.
We headed to Husband’s parents’ house for dins that eve, once he got home from work. Bassie was very affectionate with her dad.
Bertie ripped open his presents with a little help from his dad, and was delighted to meet his new TV-viewing companion, Seal. Bassie was happy to share his fancy doggy biscuits, too.
Bassie joined me while I had my post-dins coffee outside, just before the sun set. She wasn’t so sure about including Bertie in the photos, LOL.
Bertie snuggled with his seal on the couch that evening.
Teehee, he really loves his birthday seal!
Sunday, 4 March 2018: Breakfast at Village Place Cafe, Black Panther at GrandWest Casino
We all met at the Village Place Cafe for breakfast first thing on Sunday.
My Sunday cappuccino at Village Place Cafe.
Some of the food we ate. See Husband’s poached egg on a stack of sorts, as well as brother-in-law Spec’s more traditional plate of eggs, bacon, toast and tomato, with my banting flapjacks and mum-in-law’s mushroomy toast plate.
Later that morning, Spec met us at GrandWest Casino as we’d booked tickets to watch the latest Marvel movie, Black Panther. All had a fun time, as you can see 😉
Monday, 5 March 2018: Doggy snuggles on the couch
Bassie having a snuggle with her dad on the couch after another tough day at work.
It seems we interrupted an important conversation between the siblings when we snapped this photo of the doggies.
That’s all, folks! The weather looks quite chilly at the moment so perhaps we will give the beach a miss this weekend.
This past week took an age to get through. Perhaps because we’re finally in February and January’s always the longest month, what with transitioning back into ‘work mode’ after the end-of-year break.
Here’s what we’ve been up to since my last update…
Friday, 26 January 2018: Meltwater webinar presentation
Look at me, looking nervous/excited/relieved with Philippa Dods, Meltwater’s amazing marketing coordinator for India, Middle East & Africa last Friday, after a successful PR webinar presentation. No need for FOMO if you missed it, just click on this link to the recording so you can catch-up!
Saturday, 27 January 2018: Sweet treats at Sweet Loaf, brotherly dins at Catch22
We started our weekend at Wimpy in Bayside as we had a few weekend admin chores to do while there. And surprise, soon after we ordered my parents also ended up there for breakfast! I enjoyed my regular Wimpy coffee and toasted cheese on a stick. Husband had the streaky bacon breakfast with extra cheesegriller (as did Dad), while Mum went for the avo-toast. A good start to the day!
We also did some motorbike-gear pricing at Sable Square and stopped at Sweet Loaf for a quick treat – everything sells for R11, whether you want a cappuccino, can of Cola, mini-cake load or palm-size pie.
Aww! Little Miss Bassie was such a happy girl when we popped in at her grandparents’ house that evening for some tech assistance.
Bertie was also eager to share his affection with his dad. Big licks!
Spec was spending the night with us so after a quick unpack at our house we headed off to Catch22 for dins. See Husband enjoying his glass of red top-left, my gingerbread latte top-right, Spec with his Amstel bottom-left, and Husband and me in front of the tropical paradise painting outside bottom-right. T’was so bright, we needed to wear sunnies.
And the food? Oh boy was it good! See group photo top-left, full table of food bottom-left, that day’s specials in the middle my buccaneer beef burger topped with bacon and cheese top-right and Husband’s baby kingklip with veg bottom-right. Spec went for the linefish with calamari special. All delicious!
Later that evening we walked down the beach to see the kite-surfing competition in action – it was suitably windy!
Sunday, 28 January 2018: Husband’s family birthday lunch at Bossa
The little ones were happy to pose with me on the couch as my coffee was in a doggy-patterned mug so they felt right at home. As they should, as they were at home. Teehee.
For the first time in many years, we all live in the same city so could do a combined birthday lunch for Husband. See the eisbein with roast veg with parents shared top-left, the pizza me and father-in-law ate top-right, dad’s strong flat white bottom-left (and he had a Black Label draught before that, so his placemat was accurate), with a full family shot bottom right.
Once we’d had time to digest lunch, we stopped off at Husband’s favourite sea-swimming hole for his weekly dunk.
We stopped in at Table Bay Mall for a spot of birthday shopping and a treat in the form of Milky Lane ice creams, mmm! Husband’s is plain vanilla with caramel topping and assorted syrups, mine is the berry-meringue whizzer.
Monday, 29 January 2018: Husband’s 38th birthday
Here’s the first batch of ‘kisses with the birthday hat’ photos. The doggies were keen to join in but seemed shy once we started taking the pics.
These are our attempts while sitting on the couch. If i was licking Bertie’s head in the bottom-left pic (I’m not, I’m blowing Husband a kiss but Bertie angled himself in such a way that it looks like Bass is licking my hand, I’m licking Bertie’s head and he’s licking his dad’s chin.) Crying with laughter!
Tuesday, 30 January 2018: Office donuts and owlie mugs
When clients cancel Tuesday meetings and send through apology donuts (from Dunking Donuts, else they’d be ‘doughnuts’), we share. Also, meet my new hipster owl office mug – disinterested deer has bitten the dust.
T’was also the day I did a video interview in the Barclays Rise space in the Woodstock Exchange. I’ll share the link to that interview next week. For now, see the interesting surrounds.
Wednesday, 31 January 2018: Waffles on a stick at the Big Bay Summer Market
It’s been a while since the last ‘I love Big Bay’ food and craft market, usually held at the Big Bay Lifesaving Club at Eden on the Bay on the last Wednesday of every month. It was a very windy day so we didn’t stay very long.
Various shots of me with my waffle on a stick, also see my potato wedges topped with paprika and parmesan top-left. Yum!
Look at the choices! All were fresh and chocolate-y but I went for the ‘Astronaut’, as it was covered in mini-Astros and looked like an edible Christmas tree. Yum.
Thursday, 1 February 2018: #NespressoOnIce pop-up shop at work
The NespressoOnIce truck is conducting a road trip across the country and stopped in at our office on Thursday afternoon. We were thrilled to try a few of the iced coffee options as it was a very hot day.
That’s all, folks! Have a relaxing weekend 🙂
Last weekend was so sunny that even though we’re desperate for a bit of rain in the Cape, we filled it with delicious outdoors-y moments…
Saturday, 13 January 2018: Breakfast at On the Rocks, lupper at Moyo
We’d tried to breakfast at On the Rocks twice over the December holidays – the first time it was completely closed, the second time it was hosting a private function – so we were pleased to find a table outside when we popped in last Saturday morning.
Various snaps of the front and back of On the Rocks.
Aaah. Cappuccino, fresh sea breeze and sunshine? Yes please! Best way to start the weekend.
Husband soaking up some of that sunshine.
Husband chose the breakfast pan, I had the French toast with berry compote. Lip-smackingly good!
We did a brief walk to work off some of that food. Sunny selfie on the sea shore.
After some weekend admin it was time to venture out into the sunshine again. T’was quite windy so we sat in the sheltered section at Moyo in Big Bay. See Husband enjoying his wine and me having my face painted before starting on my coffee-cashew smoothie.
See my dukka-spiced burger (with cheese and bacon) and side of thick fries, as well as Husband’s lamb-shank linguine, and Husband with a chip on his shoulder. Literally. 🙂
Second beach selfie of the day, but you can’t quite see my face-painting in the bright light…
So Husband took a quick snap before I wiped it off, while resting on the couch with Bertie.
Little Bassie proved she’s also always a pretty girl, even without face-paintings.
Sunday, 14 January 2017: Sea swims and coffee in a cone
We breakfasted at W Cafe in Table Bay Mall’s Woolworths. See Husband’s super-tall cappuccino and eggs benedict on mushroom, with my vanilla-cinnamon latte and coconut loaf topped with pineapple cream cheese and coconut shavings. Yummy!
Husband contemplating his weekly dip in the sea.
I really felt for coffee in a cone as my Sunday afternoon treat, but most places where I’ve had it before were now out of stock. Luckily we found it at Cup & Cake in Eden on the Bay. If you drink out the coffee, you’re left with warm, melty-chocolate in the sugar cone.
Mum had made weather-appropriate food for lupper that afternoon – chicken curry that we scooped into French loaf to make mini bunny chows, with dessert of ice cream, watermelon and mixed berries.
Monday, 15 January 2018: Office birthday cake
It had been Biz managing editor Sindy’s birthday over the weekend, so she treated us to an assortment of crisps, sweeties, fruit, cupcakes, marshmallows and amazing chocolate-caramel-coconut swiss roll when we got to work on Monday. Best way to start the week!
The selection of sweets and treats I munched on throughout the day.
Thursday, 18 January 2018: Seventh #digitalmarketingLIVE lesson at Red & Yellow
Thursday was the first #digitalmarketingLIVE session of the year – there’s only one to go before I’ve completed all eight! ‘Seth Rotherham’ of 2OceansVibe Radio shared his first-hand experiences with running a business on digital and social media.
I sat with Su Little and we took a few versions of this snap to properly include Wesley, the Red & Yellow staffer photobombing us, here. #digitalmarketinggeeks
That’s all, folks! It’s set to be another scorcher of a weekend, stay cool.
It feels like we’ve been celebrating it for months already (well, we
have been), but last Friday was finally our 10th wedding anniversary. Though we both worked on the day, we had the opportunity to spend the weekend in sun-drenched Tulbagh – what a treat it was, as you’ll see below…
Saturday, 26 August 2017: Roadrip to Tulbagh and Oakhurst Olives
A roadtrip selfie is a must, especially if you’re passing bright canola fields just before the start of Spring, as we did…
The crops of canola appear out of nowhere and are so very pretty, it’s like someone spilled bright yellow below and blue above.
The first stop on our schedule was Oakhurst Olives, just a little bit out of town and well worth a visit. We did olive oil shots (yes really – quite the experience!) We also dipped the most delicious bits of freshly baked bread into it and smeared a tasty olive tapanade on the rest. You can buy all their products right there, so we did.
Once you’ve climbed the stairs you marvel at the view outside.
If you have the time, take a little wander around the property. There are lilies and ponies and not-so-wild horses roaming the grounds.
Like this guy! He came running over to say hi when he saw us. Such a friendly horsey. Loved having his nose and neck rubbed. The dark one in the bottom right wasn’t quite as keen.
Next stop, check in at the Tulbagh Heritage Boutique Hotel. There were beautiful Proteas everywhere we looked, and just look at those rooms! A ginormous royal bed, bright fluffy gowns that put the usual scratchy white ones hotels offer to shame, and the fireplace downstairs in the restaurant.
Some of the outside scenes. The stairway up to our room, a quaint water feature, big chilly pool, and the bar that was packed to sardine levels just before dins that evening with McGregor-Mayweather preamble.
First up at the hotel, lunch! We seated ourselves beneath the shade of the tree on the terrace where Husband enjoyed a BBQ chicken butterflied burger while I made a go at the ‘Schuster’ (there’s a pizza on my terrace) – crispy based with rocket, peppadews, feta, avo and slices of biltong, it was enormous – we took the rest up to our room to snack on later.
I had ample opportunity for coffee with a view here. See the Olive Terrace below our room, an inviting bench and the must-dunk rusks in our room.
Late-afternoon is just the right time to take a quick tour of the town, as the setting sun gives the light a magical quality.
A walking tour of Historic Church Street is highly recommended. There are guided tours, but we ventured out on our own and had a wonderful time reading up on the various beautiful old homesteads and appealing coffee shops.
The cemetery is peaceful and sunny if you’re not freaked out by things like that.
The botanical gardens grounds were open so we soaked up some sunshine, and also popped in to the Paddagang to see their interesting decor.
Tulbagh really is an undiscovered gem of a town. Everyone greets you in the streets and you see sights like this almost every which way you turn your head.
We were back in time to watch the sun set from our balcony.
The rooms are bright, airy and beautifully decorated. Plus, little bite-size nougat treats are left on your pillow! Such a nice touch.
We sampled some truly delicious dishes for dinner in the completely booked out Olive Terrace restaurant that evening. See my Frangelico Hazelnut Mochaccino, the Cape Malay Lamb curry Husband enjoyed with sambals and popadoms, while I went for the spicy Mexican bean soup with nachos and guacamole, and ended off with the coffee creme brulee and an unpictured whisky dom pedro for Husband. No wonder this has been voted the top restaurant in Tulbagh on TripAdvisor for three years running!
Tummies purring, we stepped outside again to see the blue-lit tree after dins and took our customary ‘gownie snap’ once we’d settled in for the night.
Sunday, 27 August 2017: Breakfast at the Olive Terrace, ziplining with Ceres Zipslide Adventures
Breakfast! Yes, this was to be our third meal at the Olive Terrace, and we were the only ones to brave sitting outdoors as there was a slight chill. The cappuccinos were strong and the food just what we were after – the homemade granola was sweet rolled oats baked in local vanilla and honey, topped with toasted seeds and fruit from the Tulbagh region, as well as thick, unsweetened Greek yoghurt with a side jar of honey to drizzle to your heart’s content. Being a benedict-man, Husband went for the eggs royale, served on sweetcorn-pumpkin fritters. Yum!
After a quick checkout it was time for a very short roadtrip. Fields of pink blossoms lined the way into Ceres.
Just 20 minutes later we were harnessed, helmeted and ready to zip our way through the Ceres valley with Ceres Zipslide Adventures! Quite the different experience to when I first went ziplining along the Acrobranch obstacle course earlier this year, click here for a reminder…
This is a screenshot of the Ceres valley ziplining area from one of the videos Husband filmed.
Wheeee! Off I go! You zip across 1.4km over 8 different sections. It’s a wonderfully exhilarating activity, definitely a reason to add Ceres to your Cape travel itinerary.
There are fields and hills and vales and peaks to explore as you slowly make your way home again – thanks for a wonderful time, Tulbagh!
*Disclaimer: Obviously our meals and accommodation at Oakhurst Olives, Ceres Zipslide Adventures and the Tulbagh Boutique Heritage Hotel were part of our review package. All else came from our own pockets. All enjoyed equally. Watch for my official review on Biz!
I can’t believe I managed to cut down the endless stream of pics we took this past week into the following, hundreds were left on the ‘cutting room floor’. It’s not usually this big of a task, especially when the bulk of the pics are not from the weekend itself. But this week was special as we had a few days to celebrate an ‘early anniversary’ at Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House in Franschhoek, and it was possibly one of the nicest breaks we’ve had. Ever. See for yourself…
Saturday, 8 July 2017: Very belated post-Father’s Day breakfast at I ❤ Melkies
We’d not seen my in-laws for a while so decided to meet up for breakfast at I ❤ Melkies. All went for cappuccinos to start and various savoury meals, apart from me…
My own breakfast was a little sweeter – a regular cappuccino like the rest, as well as a single bacon marscapone waffle with strawberries and drizzle of syrup. Just what the doctor ordered.
News Cafe on Marine Circle was calling our names on Saturday afternoon. We heeded the call, opting for the happy hour strawberry daquiri and long island ice tea (just R39 each) as well as the ‘fired up’ beef and haloumi avo chicken burgers.
We snapped a few pics across the road at sunset once our bellies were purring. Lol at the variety of expressions Husband pulled – love that face!
Sunday, 9 July 2017: Soup for lupper
Sunday morning saw us starting off the day at the Netcafe at the Netcare Blouberg Hospital, simply because it’s just up the street and we’d heard the food is good. And so it was – see Husband’s brekkie top left and bottom right, along with my caramel latte and pepper toastie with sweet potato fries. Really yummy.
It was a fully rainy day, so we had authentic German pea-and-ham soup with cheesy breadsticks for starters at Mum’s that eve – note the fingerless glove/mittens, a sure sign that things had turned Wintery for the weekend.
Monday, 10 July 2017: Night away at Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House, Franschhoek
We started off our ‘holiday’ with breakfast at All in the Kitchen – a special treat as it’s not open over weekends and closed by the time we get home in the evenings, so rare for us to sit and take in the goodness. And it sure is good – see some of the breakfast menu bottom right along with our flat whites, as well as the Omega Me Crazy salmon-y breakfast Husband opted for, and my delicious chicken mayo on brown – such a hefty portion that I took half home with me as ‘padkos’.
Yes, ‘padkos’ means road tripping! The weather played along and treated us to one of those rare Cape winter Goldilocks days – not too cold, not too hot, not too cloudy, not too windy – it was just right.
Out destination for the night – the five-star Angala Boutique Hotel and Guest House. It was pure bliss. Here’s why…
Once you’ve stopped exclaiming over the gorgeous vistas and natural beauty, you notice there are little ‘fairy’ touches dotting the grounds, hidden under bushes and tucked into unexpected corners – hearts, cherubs and angels all adding to the sense of love and the feeling that ‘you can relax here’.
And relax we did. A sign of its focus on complete wellness and that overwhelming sense of tranquility, one of Angala’s most unusual features is the eco pool. Echoing Mother Nature herself, all natural filtering takes place, and without any harmful chemicals, it’s just brimming with life – you can expect to hear frogs croaking and birds singing songs of joy as they swoop in for a sip. This is also the spot to sit and take in the view. See below.
The most inviting recliners at the eco pool. As they’re swathed in terrycloth dressing, taking in the view from there is like nestling in your comforting bathrobe.
Water is one of the main elements of healing and it features strongly at Angala, so us Aquarian water babies were quite literally in our element. Here you can see the cold pool in front of the infrared sauna below the main deck, with the hot pool hidden in this shot – it’s just in front of the garden umbrellas.
Cold pool on the left, hot pool on the right. I dipped a toe in the cold pool and decided the hot pool would be my home for the next few hours. We stayed in until the stars came out and it was time to get ready for dinner, so we trotted back to our suite, pronto.
Just a selection of the tasteful bedrooms we saw at Angala. All plush, fresh linens and soothing tones, each with its own distinctive personality. Ours was the bottom right, but I think the bed in the next pic was my favourite…
This photo just screams comfort, luxury and ‘room with a view’. Absolutely gorgeous.
A few examples of how your every comfort is taken care of at Angala – not just a handful of coffee sachets but the full complement of Nespresso pods, as well as sherry in every room, a well-stocked mini bar – make that ‘bar cabinet’ – that’s also completely complimentary including local wines, beers, soft drinks and milk for all that coffee.
Coffee cup filled with aromatic java and a view of the sun setting over the mountains is my idea of magic.
Dinner was so good I had to stitch together quite a few pics. Note my beetroot tart tatin starter, the wine Husband sampled and enjoyed so much he is looking out for a bottle to buy, his trout starter, his linefish mains (kingklip) and my lamb mains. Full descriptions on my review on Biz soon!
More dinner snaps – the standard ‘bread and menu’ shot, and dessert. That’s my lavender panna cotta topped with syrupy figs and tart berries, as well as Husband’s impressive cheese and nut board. Impressive as he enjoyed every single cheese on the board, including an unexpectedly soft, sweet slice we couldn’t get enough of. Plus a cappuccino of course, just visible in the shot of me with my candle-lit purple hair, bottom right.
We returned to our room to find something better than the customary ‘chocolate turndown’ – instead, a mini bottle of Amarula cream and glass on our bedside tables. We promptly hopped into our gowns and slippers and enjoyed it while sitting on the couch in front of the fire, that had also been lit before our return. Truly delightful!
Yip, you guessed it. Another of of my favourite winter creature comforts is fire. There are fireplaces everywhere at Angala, each with piles of wood stacked nearby and adding a natural warmth and happy glow to your stay.
Tuesday, 11, July 2017: Outdoor showers and breakfast at Angala
More focus on water with the simply stunning baths and outdoor showers. Husband was brave enough to give the outdoor shower a brisk go, but we didn’t run a bath as water’s so scarce in the Cape at the moment. Just imagine a soak with those gorgeous views though…
Breakfast is included in the overnight rates at Angala, so we took full advantage, ordering the Angala Rarebit off the hot menu and also plating up from the continental buffet offering. Lip-smackingly good.
Before we knew it, the time had come to check out and make our way back home, much more relaxed and peaceful than when we’d set out. So much so that I was told I looked ‘so serene’ when I returned to the office on Wednesday. We’ll definitely visit Angala again!
*Disclaimer: Obviously our meals and accommodation at Angala were part of our review package. All else came from our own pockets. All enjoyed equally. Click here for my official review on Biz!