The quiet, stylish guest house in the heart of Oranjezicht combines old with new, offering superior executive apartment suites
The guest house has a total of 12 rooms, 5 standard rooms and 7 superior rooms all with bathrooms en-suite.
This historical Cape Colonial building dating back to 1852, is oozing with history
Built on the original farm of the lower slopes of Table Mountain called “De Hoop”, the original De Hoop farmhouse was situated where the Gardens Shopping Centre is now and the current homes were part of the farmlands.
Olaf Bergh, one of the founding forefathers of well-known South African families at De Hoop, was the first owner of the farm De Hoop and an original burgher of Table Valley.
Before current owner Michelle Whitehead bought it, the building was used as an old age home from 1974 until 1996. The quiet leafy suburb made it an ideal location for the elderly to soak up the sounds and smells of nature. In November 1996, two elderly women went to visit Michelle, who had turned it into a guest house called Georosme Mansions in early 1996. They wanted to see what she had done with the building, because this was where they had met their husbands when it was a boarding house during the Second World War. It had housed airfield men and the adjoining house was home to their wives and families.
Just a 10-minute walk from the Company Gardens, I was super excited to set out on my first day and have some fun while feeding the resident squirrels.
The Company Gardens’ cultivation began around the end of 1652, and the master gardener was Hendrik Boom. It gradually grew and took shape by 1670, expanding in the direction of Table Mountain. Up until 1679, the garden was used exclusively to supply needs to visiting ships for fruits and vegetables, but with the arrival of Simon van der Stel, change occurred. So much food was being produced by the free burghers that Simon van der Stel converted it into a botanical garden.
Entering the park, a slight breeze rustled the leaves as they crunched underfoot. The air was warm and rays of the sun sneaked through the narrow openings of heavy branches. Pathways were lined with deciduous trees and garden beds thick with foliage. Surrounded by such beauty I stopped and took a deep breath in and I could taste the autumn in the air. Satisfied that I had spent time with the scurrilous squirrels, I headed back to the guest house looking forward to my comfy room.
The King Protea Room offers an extra-length king-size bed sprinkled liberally with fluffy cushions and an en-suite bathroom with a shower and bath. Each day I enjoyed sinking into the chair at the window and indulging in a good novel which I had found in the library out in the passageway. The carefully preserved antique pieces in the room pay homage to the historical Cape charm found in this tranquil, inviting atmosphere. This isn’t just any room, it’s a home.
Lounging at the swimming pool in a peaceful garden setting, with the iconic Table Mountain as a backdrop, is the ultimate in relaxation.
The highlight of my stay was the wine evening hosted by Rickety Bridge Wines (established in 1797). Swirling the wine in my glass, breathing in the fragrance, this was a moment to savour. Allowing the fluid to sit in my mouth for a while before swallowing, I sat listening to the joyous sounds of the guests around me. I realised that a guest house is not only for tourists, but also a place for the local community to gather, support each other and chat.
The following morning I woke up late, (it could have been attributed to the fine wine evening the night before). Feeling hungry, I slid into my chair in the dining room. I was immediately served a scrumptious platter of food. Enjoying the aroma of fresh coffee, I read the morning paper in-between bites.
It wasn’t just the house steeped in history that was so exciting for me. Michelle is the personality of the manor. The day I walked into reception I had a good feeling, and I was right. The cozy atmosphere was welcoming. I could imagine the fireplace filled with logs, flickering with flames in winter. Michelle’s warm smile and years in the industry shines through. Eager but not overwhelming, she is available at all times to assist the guests.
I can’t wait to return.
PS: Mountain Manor is proudly part of the Ubuntu Beds initiative that we love so much!
(021) 461 7200