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Caption goes here
  • the manor house
  • the fruit barn
  • the grange
  • peppertree cottage
  • tennis court
Lodge 9.0 Rating
Jan 9.0
Feb 9.0
Mar 8.5
Apr 8.0
May 7.5
Jun 7.5
Jul 7.5
Aug 7.5
Sep 8.0
Oct 9.0
Nov 9.0
Dec 9.0
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is located close to Worcester in the Overberg area of the Western Cape in South Africa.

The property was fully restored in 2013 and now offers superior self-catering accommodation in just five units ...

The Manor House ... is a fabulously beautiful building dating from 1820, which can accommodate up to eight people in four bedrooms and has exclusive use of small swimming pool to the rear.

The Fruit Barn ... is perhaps our favourite unit, for up to four guests in two bedrooms and with a lovely private swimming pool area to one side.

Pepper Tree Cottage ... is the original old 1750 farmstead, set by a large swimming dam at the mouth of the kloof. It too can accommodate up to four guests in two bedrooms and has a small plunge pool in a nice little back garden.

The Grange ... contains two units, East and West, each with two bedrooms and with jacuzzi spa baths in their private gardens.

Shared facilities include a large central building which contains pleasant lounge, dining and kitchen areas, generally only used when guests rent the entire property, in which case a chef can be brought in to cater for the group. The farm is therefore ideally suited for groups of friends and families, perhaps for a special celebration. The beautiful grounds include a tennis court, croquet and boules lawn and the aforementioned swimming dam.

Activities in the area include some reasonable hiking trails up into the mountains behind the property, which are hopefully soon to be extended to provide some genuinely interesting longer treks. The nearby Saggy Stone Beer Brewery makes a good end point for a hike, the staff at Penhill will come and collect you.

Although Worcester is the closest town, it is rather scrubby, so we recommend heading west to Robertson, which is a rather pleasant and interesting Karoo town and is a major centre for wine production in the Cape. It is possible to visit many of the wineries in the area for tours and tastings, most of which are pleasantly low key and personable compared with the more commercial operations in the more popular winelands around Franschhoek and Stellenbosch. There are also olive farms and other agricultural facilities which can be visited. It is also possible to go rafting on the main Breede River, as well as go on longer driving excursions around some of the more remote and lesser visited spots in the region, notably including the quaint settlement of McGregor to the south of Robertson and even far north to the virtually abandoned Victorian resort of Majiesfontein, centred on the famous old Lord Milner Hotel.

The staff at Penhill are exceptional. An older management couple, Klaas and Bev, are super friendly and helpful, whilst their team of around a dozen maids and gardeners are gorgeous and very discreet. Due to the generous layout of the property, you are barely aware of other guests, the whole place feels very private and relaxed.

In truth Penhill is quite a difficult place to build into trips, since the vast majority of visitors to this region prefer to stay in Franschhoek in the heart of the winelands, where there are loads of top lodges and high class restaurants and wineries. The reasons to come a little bit further out to this less popular location are subtle.

For residents of Cape Town, this is an obvious and excellent option for a weekend break.

For international guests we tend to recommend Penhill as a great place in which to simply unwind and relax. If your life feels hectic and all you want is a super-calming place to recover your strength, then it is perfect. Our Greg and Tracey booked the place for three nights at the front end of a trip and ended up staying for nine nights, it is that kind of place. More like a villa rental in France. So it tends to work best at the front end of a trip, land at Cape Town and drive straight out here, stopping in Franschhoek on the way to stock up on supplies, and then simply recharge your batteries with some pool time, gentle hiking, easy local excursions and evening movies, before heading out on the rest of your African adventure.
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Jay Hanson
Jay Hanson, Senior Safari Consultant
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