thatch house hermanus review

Thatch House Hermanus review: A home away from home

Tucked away on the banks of the Hermanus lagoon, the Thatch House offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

thatch house hermanus review
By Craig Lewis
‘Make yourself at home!’ This is the first message we receive upon arrival at the Thatch House, and one which serves as the as the abiding philosophy at this laid-back, but luxurious property in Hermanus.

Once utilised as a self-catering holiday home, the Thatch House has quickly transformed itself into a unique boutique hotel that aims to cater to the every whim of their guests.

The accommodation is divided into four individually decorated main suites (there is also a garden suite), while guests have access to an expansive garden, two swimming pools, various games facilities and an inviting lounge and dining area.

On a cold winter’s evening, it’s here that we whiled away the time in front of a crackling woodfire, before sitting down for a personalised dinner arranged by in-house chef Chris Papayannes.

With a focus on fresh, healthy and authentic cooking, Chris ticked the every-trendy vegan box by preparing a slow-roasted celeriac dish that even left this meat-eating scribe salivating for more.

Besides the appeal of the fine-dining on offer at the Thatch House, there are also an impressive array of activities available for such an intimate boutique property (albeit covering 1,500 square metres).

Tucked away below the towering Cape Fold mountains, one can find tennis courts, a chipping and putting green, while there are also trampolines in a children’s play area. In addition, the glassy lagoon offers the opportunity for paddling, kayaking and sunset cruises on board the hotel’s private boat.

‘We really just want our guests to feel at home,’ general manager Terry-Anne Smit explains. ‘We’ve aimed to create a laid-back atmosphere where you can relax and unwind, while at the same time offering enough facilities and activities to keep people busy if they so choose. We want it to be a home away from home, where guests are well looked after, but don’t feel as if they always have someone watching over their shoulder.’

With this in mind, Terry and her team remain passionate about creating personalised experiences, which has also seen them team up with Creation Wines from the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley.

Wine tasting

Upon arrangement, Creation will come to the Thatch House to provide a diverse tasting, while in turn, the hotel’s staff prepare a variety of canapés to complement the wines.

Although this unique partnership adds to the in-house options available, it’s still well worth taking a winding drive through the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, which has something to offer around just about every corner.
With limited time on our hands, we couldn’t help but be drawn to the eye-catching La Vierge winery situated on a ridge that offers mesmerising views of the valley, as well as rather aptly named ‘wines of desire’ such as Original Sin, Seduction, and Nymphomane.

Whale watching

However, no trip to Hermanus can truly be considered complete without at least popping past the sheltered cove of Walker Bay in hope of spotting the migrating whales that can so often be seen during the second half of the year.

As it turned out, we hit the luck as we first stumbled across the quirky Bientang’s Cave restaurant, which spills out onto the rocks at Walker Bay. As we settled down for a scrumptious seafood platter, so we were treated to a dazzling display of ebullient breaching from a pod of whales just a stone’s throw away. It was the perfect end to an unforgettable trip to a ‘home away from home’.

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