Abalone Pool Villas, Paternoster

Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster
Abalone seaside cottages, Paternoster

Picture pristine beaches, luxury seaside accommodation, your own sapphire blue private pool overlooking the ocean, set in a quaint fisherman's village made up of whitewashed dwellings and you have Abalone Pool Villas in Paternoster. I experienced this amazing accommodation through Miles For Style. An online platform in partnership with SAA voyager where you can shop products, experiences and of course accommodation. The cool part? You can use Voyager miles to shop or earn them when you shop! 

Situated a two-hour drive outside of Cape Town this gorgeous fishing village makes you feel as if you have stepped into a simpler time. Everything here moves slowly and a long walk on the beach or a lazy afternoon activity is just what the doctor ordered. 

The villas are self-catering and come with a private butler that will attend to your needs. The stay includes breakfast and can be (on request) set up overlooking the blue waters of the bay. The interior is elegant and the deep blue theme runs throughout the establishment. Each villa sleeps 4 in two bedrooms and has a private pool and braai (BBQ) area.

The bedrooms all overlook the private swimming pool with stack away doors that welcome in the sea breeze. With king size beds, air conditioning and big bathrooms what’s not to love? 

With award-winning restaurants a stone's throw away you will be spoilt for choice should you choose to wander out for dinner and lunch. I made my way down to a popular spot called Gaaitjie (bookings essential) which is on the beach and boasts some of the best views in my opinion. definitely, request a patio seat. 

Be sure to order the seafood as most of it has been freshly caught that morning by the local hardworking fisherman. Washed down with crisp white wine you will feel as if you are sitting in some delicate version of heaven while taking in the views and sunshine. 

With whale watching, beach visits, and west coast park day tours you will have plenty of activities to choose from or take a load off and simply soak in all the relaxation poolside or visit Abalone House & Spa, the sibling boutique hotel of the Abalone Pool Villas. They have a spa for pampering and I recommend a full body massage to work out all the city knots. 

Paternoster is a special place on the west coast and two days will leave you feeling as if you had a full week’s break on an island somewhere in the Mediterranean.

If you do it in the comfort and luxury of Abalone Pool Villas then you cannot go wrong! 

-Melissa 

*This blog post is sponsored by Miles For Style and Abalone Guest house. All opinions are my own. 

A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley

A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley
A night at Bosjes, Breede Valley

A little over an hours drives outside of Cape Town tucked away at the foot of mountains in the breede valley you will find Bosjes Estate. A magnificent property with landscaped gardens and their own architectural feat, the chapel. 

I was lucky enough to visit this gorgeous property and enjoy a night at the homely guest house. With its old Dutch charm the building is welcoming and contrasts the modern design of the restaurant and chapel. 

The interior is chic with pops of colour and rooms elegant with a gorgeous fireplace to keep you warm should you visit in the winter months! The rooms have a large king-sized bed and are fitted with black and white sophisticated bathrooms. The artwork in the rooms are beautiful and you cant but notice the attention to detail throughout. 

The wonderful thing with the guest house is that you can arrange to have a braai (BBQ) set up outside at the pool and enjoy a wonderful evening under the stars with a view of the mountain range. The ultimate relaxation. It is also a wonderful way to enjoy a truly South African experience in ultimate comfort. Breakfast is served bright and early in continental style. 

As a mid-morning treat, go and experience the teetuin (tea garden) which is simply fantastic. The gardens have been so well thought out and the detail is amazing. Each plant has a meaning and each area a plan for long-term growth. You can explore the gardens while sipping on tea or indulge in an over the top milkshake. The Chapel is what Bosjes is most famous for. With its recognizable architecture and its magnificent position on the estate, I am not surprised. It is rather breathtaking.   

The Kombuis is the onsight restaurant and with Kim Cox as the head chef, she has put together a hearty and tasty menu. The food is fresh and based on seasonal produce with a fun bistro flair to it. 

If you find yourself in need of a wedding venue or just a night away then taking a drive to Bosjes will be very worth your while! 

-Melissa 

*This blog post is sponosred by Bojes. All opinions are my own. 

Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park

Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
IMG_6338.jpg
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park
Staying at Pel's Post, Kruger National Park

Picture lying in your bed. Listening to the African bush sing. When I say sing, I mean the sounds of the bush right next to you as if you are submerged in it. Every single layer of insect, bird, and animal all in harmony creating a symphony. It is the ultimate white noise sleep app that offers you perfect relaxation, except, its real. Then add in luxury and comfort, not only do you have a five-star experience but you also have Pel's Post Lodge. 

Pel's Post is an exclusive use eco-friendly lodge situated in the northern Kruger National Park. Bordered to the north by the Limpopo River and Zimbabwe and to the east by Crooks Corner and Mozambique.  This vast wilderness is a slice of paradise that seems virtually untouched by man. You can fly into Johannesburg international airport and rent a car. The drive will take about 6 1/2 hours and boasts beautiful landscapes scattered with ancient baobabs. Once at the Parfuri gate it's a short drive to the lodge. 

The lodge is tucked away in the bush on the hills,  overlooking the Luvuvhu River. You will find your way to your room along gorgeous wooden walkways that wind through the environment. The rooms are spacious, modern and based on an open plan design. So much so that several of the walls are screens that you can roll up via remote and sleep with nature on your doorstep. 180 degrees of the uninterrupted African bush. Don't worry - there is a magnificent mosquito net that will make anyone feel that they are on a romantic getaway. All the rooms have large king size beds with a bath, an inside and outside shower and all the amenities you would require. I must admit I jumped right in for the opportunity of a shower whilst overlooking the valley. 

The food is five star and well thought out by a private chef catering to all your needs. A light breakfast of fruits and cereals is provided before your morning game drive along with your much-needed coffee. Once back a light fresh brunch welcomes you while sitting on the deck overlooking the flowing river. If you are lucky an elephant might come by to take a much-needed drink or to have a splash in the midday heat. The lodge caters for all food choices whilst embracing local cuisine served with a fresh twist. You can enjoy lunch next to the shimmering pool if you prefer. In summer months the temperatures soar and a cold gin and tonic will be most welcome. Dinner is a three-course affair with a wonderful selection of wine. 

My favourite part of any bush experience is the game drives. Your wake up call is at 5:30 am (the only time I don't complain about waking up early.) Waking up to the sunrise over the valley and river with open blinds was simply spectacular. Your biological clock just tunes in and waking up with the bush environment is magical. If experiencing the game drives is not on your agenda then you can enjoy a game walk or relax at the pool and bird watch. Visiting the fever tree forest counts as one of my favourite experiences and if you find yourself visiting make sure it is a request! Driving and spotting the animals felt like driving through the garden of Eden. A moving experience on every level. 

With a private chef, exclusive vehicle and personal guide, your experience is tailor-made for luxury. The surroundings and service allow you to slip into ultimate relaxation whilst connecting with your loved ones. 

There are few places I have visited where I left a piece of my heart behind. Pel's Post - I will have to return to make my heart whole again. 

-Melissa 

*This blog post is sponsored by Rare Earth Properties. All opinions are my own. 

 

 

Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay

Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay
Staying at The Old Rectory Plettenberg Bay

Picture walking into a historic building dating back to 1777 that has been fully refurbished with a timeless decor, original fireplace and stone walls. 

A stone’s throw away from world famous serene beaches that are home to the pretty pansy shell welcome to The Old Rectory, the latest addition to the exquisite Rare Earth collection. 

The property is situated in the picturesque town of Plettenberg Bay. A six-hour drive from Cape Town out on the N2 highway along the famous garden route. It's a gorgeous drive that show cases South African country side at its best. Passing towns that have some of the most breathtaking views and neat little restaurants and shops, it’s definitely a pilgrimage that you need to do at least once. I recommend tackling the 6-hour drive over two days with an overnight in Swellendam so you are able to soak up as much of the trip as possible. 
Each coastal town offers something unique and is worth exploring. 

The hotel's heritage building dates back to 1777 and was used as a rectory by the Anglican church until the current rectory was built in 1939. It has been restored to its former glory paying homage to the old with sections of the original stone walls exposed beneath glass panels, and a breath of fresh air in the modern interior design. The hotel still uses the original fireplace where you can sit and enjoy a glass of red wine while the fire crackles away. 

For the more festively inclined, there is a gorgeous bar area where you can enjoy cocktail hour on the perfectly appointed chesterfield couches. 
The patio has a wrap around deck and a pristine swimming pool that looked very inviting, albeit it winter.
The main affair happens to be the dining hall. This is the property’s heritage building and there is a strong sense of times gone by in the air. 

The rooms are well thought out with great attention to detail. Each room has a mini bar, coffee and tea station, tv and a king size bed. The bathroom is a gorgeous design feature that has under floor heating and a huge open shower accentuated by bright blue walls and cement floors. The interior is sleek with a neutral palette and perfect pops of colour. 

Dining at The Old Rectory is a classy affair. The food is simple and well-executed. The menu has something for everyone and is vegetarian-friendly. If you find yourself eating there - do try the gnocchi, it was my favourite paired with a glass of crisp white wine! 

Breakfast was delicious and some of the best-scrambled eggs that I have ever had! The offerings included stewed fruits and a preserve selection that was utterly delicious along with freshly baked home made bread (which no sane human could resist) 

The area is full of activities on offer, whether wine tasting is your thing (if so stop at Kay and Monty) or your preference is hiking and whale watching. Plettenberg Bay has several animal sanctuaries that are wonderful to visit. They have rescued many animals from circuses and zoos and have given them a home that is much more humane and a lot wilder than what the animals have experienced before. It is also home to one of the biggest bird aviaries in the southern hemisphere. 

If exploring isn't your thing and you would rather stay in then don't be shy, there is a Spa on site that will take care of all your relaxation needs.

The question isn't should I visit The Old Rectory, the question is simply, how long for?

-Melissa 

p.s press play below to view my first youtube video. A huge thank you to Lauren-Leigh Livesey for your collaboration! 

*This blog post is sponsored by Rare Earth Properties. All opinions are my own. 

 

 

 

 

Coast to City with the Cape Collection

Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection
Coast to City with the Cape Collection

I have been dying to take a road trip and just get out of town recently. When the offer came up to do one I just had to jump at it!

Taking a trip from city to coast was the theme and my first stop, Hermanus. 
A small town about two hours outside of Cape Town famous for the magnificent Southern Right whales that visit every year. 
The town is quaint and is an absolute must-visit for tourists and locals alike. 

Adorned with sculptures by local artists and look out points at every turn; I couldn't help but keep a look out for a whale (even though I know they only arrive in winter around June/July)

If you find yourself in Hermanus and are looking for luxury accommodation, then One Marine Drive is for you. Part of the Cape Collection, this property boasts several rooms all with arty design elements.

Their immaculate attention to detail is what makes the establishment stand out. The rooms are spacious and come standard with an iPad to browse the internet or listen to music. 
As if that wasn't enough, you are also supplied with a cell phone containing local numbers and emergency numbers in case the need arises.

The staff are wonderfully helpful and assisted with whatever query or need I had. 

They advised on some great walks that I could go on, which places to dine at and always had an anecdote or two to share about their (not-so-little) town. 
The pool is nothing short of inviting and a must visit for a sunny relaxing moment with an ice cold drink in hand. As I enjoyed some R&R time I could feel the stress melting off me! 

I took a long walk along the shoreline with a friend of mine and we did a spot of whale scouting (again they are currently in Antarctica but a girl can dream) 

I stumbled upon a local spot called Dutchies which is great for a light meal and good glass of wine. They are located right near the beach; where you only need to take a short walk through the local forest and pop out right on the B-Spot (that’s the equivalent of the G-spot for a sun worshipper). 
Watching sunset offered me the opportunity for some mindful breathing and introspection...Something I rarely get time for. 

On the itinerary for dinner was Origins. I highly recommend them if you are looking for an elevated five-star dining experience that will leave you more than satisfied.

Make sure you have the pear tart - You can thank me later! 

With a happy heart and my appetite satiated, retreating to my accommodation was a welcome treat.
With a fully stocked tea station, peppermint tea was on the agenda to accompany my current read before a night of sweet sleep. 

After a night at the coast, it was time to return to the city lights. Blackheath Lodge was my destination and in almost every respect, not at all what I expected. 
Upon arrival, I was met with gracious hospitality and a glass of wine. I found my way to the gorgeous swimming pool and enjoyed a quiet break taking in the sound of the flowing water. Blackheath lodge is an oasis. Quiet and peaceful yet close to everything you could need! Tucked away in the city of Cape Town this beautiful house is an old victorian design that has been transformed. With gorgeous wooden floors and high ceilings, the rooms are comfortable and elegant with the same attention to detail as One Marine drive. The Cape Collection has truly thought of everything to offer their guests comfort. 

Book private tours of Cape Town from the comfort of the guest house where the staff is more than willing to talk you through any questions you may have about local attractions. 

I always feel proudly South African when I can hear a foreign couple at the next table talking about how spectacular their stay has been and how the attractions have blown them away. I wasn't surprised when I overheard a British couple at dinner saying that their accommodation was a treat and a true haven of peace and quiet in the city. 
That night, I decided not to venture out of my oasis in search of dinner but rather stay in and try the on-site fare. On the menu was their famous Bobotie (a traditional Cape Malay dish made of curried mince) and for dessert, Malva pudding (a traditional baked dessert of Cape Dutch origins). 
A true taste of local cuisine. 

After a perfect nights sleep and a fresh enlivening breakfast, the time came to say goodbye. 

All in all an incredible two-day road trip experiencing what is on offer with the Cape Collection. 

I’m definitely a fan.