Stylish Safe Stay: Lanzerac

You can make new memories at Lanzerac.

You can impress, delight, and restore someone’s spirit with a visit to the grand, leafy expanse of this luxury 155-hectare working wine estate in the Jonkershoek Valley.

Sure, they smoothly nail things like style, reasonable comfort, and convenience as many hotels at their level also endeavour to do.

Air conditioning, Satellite Television, uncapped and fast Wi-Fi, 24-hour reception and room service availability, and a generator that kicks in when needed, are just some of what ensure the creature comforts from home, are never missing from your travels.

Lanzerac though (merely a 45-minute Uber ride from the bustling Cape Town and drawing fame as a quality gourmet destination) proves to go further. Their titillating 2023 events calendar alone (including Horse Riding adventures in Stellenbosch), for example, is fit to explore come weekdays or weekends.

They have subsequently set themselves up as one of the hottest stop-ins to get in on early!

But more than that, Lanzerac’s knowledgable and attentive teams are a unit operating with one mind and one purpose: to produce a singular sumptuous experience for every individual that walks through their doors.

You will feel welcome. You will feel their warmth. And you don’t have to look a specific way to get a seat at the table.

Best of all: At the 331-year-old Lanzerac, you will enjoy the truest sense of (crowd-free) 5-star hospitality in the embrace of this stunning property and its amazing team.

Welcome to Lanzerac

The kind of traveller you are sets the tone for how your Lanzerac itinerary will look.

You could be spontaneous! Or, you can allow Lanzerac’s in-house experts to guide you on how best to maximize your stay for the better.

I did.

The Lanzerac team proceeded to curate a weekend itinerary for me, with a single-minded focus which appealed to my taste (i.e: bubble baths, plush beds, hearty food, and decadent interiors), and also unburden me of the exhaustion that comes with being a high-voltage Digital Nomad always on the go.

I felt rejuvenated to go on, and that’s priceless!

Perks of being a guest at this efficient and attentive luxury hotel also include a complimentary transfer service between the Hotel and Stellenbosch town at set times, and even turn-down service daily, which includes bottled water.

This level of meticulousness already sets this hotel apart, and you haven’t even checked in yet.

Lanzerac is at home in a charming university town (with none of the ruckus near the estate) called Stellenbosch.

With a chic, shop-lined town centre, you can live like a small town local for an afternoon, shopping proudly South African artisanal works, goodies & brands, as well as just meandering, as part of your Lanzerac stay.

With safety and hygiene still a chief priority for solo travellers with health on the mind, as well as families, groups, and business travellers, Lanzerac begins its protocols with a well-secured gate & guard to field people to their correct destinations on or off the estate.

With buildings close enough to walk to on the estate, but not so close as to feel claustrophobic, the segmentation allows guests to have their privacy, as well as allowing the housekeeping to move discretely through spaces, cleaning and securing them for your pleasure.

Rooms and suites have really secure doors only keyed to that guest, and not even a strong yank or shove of the handle will get someone in once it’s closed. Rest easy!

A dust, and dirt check across door frames, art frames, behind faucets, beyond bed covers, under couches etc. also proved cleanliness is a priority here.

In addition, hand sanitiser remains available on the premises – in your room or suite, as well as at reception and the restaurants upon request.

The hotels’ locale also puts visitors close enough for any medical attention where and when needed.

Whether you’re high profile or seemingly ordinary:
Should you be a guest of Lanzerac, you can rest assured of your peace, dignity, and safety.

Remodelling hotels can either go very right or very wrong.

And in the case of “luxury”, people can sometimes misstep in their interpretations, which results in ostentatious gilded furnishings, and about zero class.

Lanzerac though, proves why sticking to your brand DNA and being in harmony with the leafy and oak-studded suburban locale, can yield rewards for all!

You won’t find minimalism, Art Deco, or neo-Regency bling here.

Bringing this 17th-century Cape Dutch retreat to new life, is a medley of more modern fixture changes, original artwork, manicured landscape adjustments, and cohesive textile mixes in their roomy yet cosy 53-bedroomed hotel.

Guests can book into en-suited classic or luxury rooms, as well as generously spaced suites (including interleading ones with groups and families in mind).

The changes to them, have invigorated what could have been a tired rendition of the whitewashed gables of the Cape Dutch cottage and Farmhouse aesthetic.

Heritage is not compromised here.
It’s embraced with glamorous country elegance – if there is such a thing!

The updated bathrooms rich with both contemporary and antique furnishings amazed and delighted me – particularly the elegant standalone bath which looks out to the estate’s vines and the suite terrace (a feature present for all Lanzerac rooms and suites).

Even the ‘coffee station’ impresses, with its elegant and no-fuss setup:

  • A secreted-away mini fridge holding complimentary drinks refreshed daily
  • A countertop decorated with my personal Tea favourites (TWG brand tea)
  • Locally-produced candies and snacks
  • And, of course, a Nespresso machine right next to the mini kettle.

If you’re asking yourself what else could make a hotel 5-star and luxurious, trust me: The Coffee station counts!

I’ve seen some pretty sad ones in my time, and the choice of products really matters here, folks!

Design and decor have to be chosen with more than aesthetics in mind, and the lounging areas of Lanzerac’s suites and even public spaces, prove decadent to languish the day and night on – watching television, reading, or watching the meandering people beyond you.

  • QUALITY OF SLEEP: 10/10 after I got the on-duty team to send an electric blanket my way! Winter in the Cape Winelands is no joke to the colder-blooded, folks.
  • QUALITY OF PILLOWS & LINEN: Exceptional; And with a pillow menu available, guests can order their perfect fit for a night of restful slumber.
  • QUALITY OF WAKEFUL LANGUISHING COMFORT: 10/10 would lazily lay about again!

Roam, roll, or be guided about Lanzerac if you so choose.

You could be listening to your thoughts, or have your headphones in for a Spotify playlist or podcast, but just don’t miss out on the opportunity to traipse across lush and fragrant green lawns, under leafy canopies, and between green-lined walkways towards vines, wines and vistas.

I will be returning in the summer season for the Pool Bar, for sure!

In a setting even Wes Anderson would love, the perfect lines of the pool bar building match the large outdoor pool glittering blue in the African sun.

Sunloungers dotting the light bricked poolside, make it perfect to while away the hours there.

There’s also the second outdoor pool on the estate, that’s a little closer to the main Lanzerac Manor building, and smaller in size, but no less inviting!

Lanzerac’s grounds stretch for miles around, and the fit & able can take walks, hikes, runs and cycle the lay of the land. After all, this estate is celebrated for being part of many a sports events and celebrations, as well as promoting trails and routes the active traveller can experience year-round.

I prefer taking it all in from the comfort of my patio, or an antique chair facing the vines.

There is a reason Lanzerac is famous in various circles, including cycling, luxury travel, as well as the food & wine sector.

The estate is impressive for notably having three restaurants (including Taphuis, popular for its pub-style supper), a pristine cellar, and a whiskey bar.

Hotel guest’s complimentary Lanzerac Winery cellar tour run daily at 11am.

Whether foodie newbie, random traveller, wine connoisseur, day visitor, touring from Cape Town proper, or on a business trip, Lanzerac is choice to not only fill up, but to settle in for a tasting or meal medley made more with fuel, comfort, and meaning in mind, than what is often the trappings of lesser fine dining experiences.

At Manor Kitchen for example: From sun up to sundown, it’s just good food, made well, with local & seasonal ingredients, and surprisingly plated like culinary inspiration – even breakfast!

Choose from their fresh and traditional buffet breakfast stretching down a long rustic table facing the aforementioned Manor Kitchen, or pick yummy breakfast options from the hot a la carte breakfast menu.

The dining room there is vast for a usual hotel dining room, with comfortable seating, and the most lively view being of the kitchen at work.

With a dinner menu that currently includes Smoked Pork Terrine, Beef Carpaccio, and even Venison Wellington and Braised Beef Cheeks, as well as gluten-free & dairy-free dessert options, Lanzerac’s Manor Kitchen gets that the intrepid traveller comes with their own individual lifestyle choices, and thusly presents culinary simplicity which satisfies – whether carnivore, pescetarian or some other such “-arian”!

Even if you don’t hit up Manor Kitchen, one of the other eateries on the estate will likely also deliver on tasty food, and even ambitious, vegetable-focused dishes.

If for no other reason, secure a spot at Lanzerac Tasting Room for the wine tasting at least.

*PRO TIP: Ask for Merlin when you do your wine tasting!

I’ve only encountered two other wine-tasting experiences in Western Cape which were so delightful, informative, tempting to buy even more into, and wholly speak to the brand and the individual tastes establishing a rapport.

The award-winning Lanzerac Wines have their best introduction with the Wine & Chocolate pairing on offer. But even a glass at lunch or dinner results in a phenomenal marriage of the estate’s best in homegrown ingredients.

It’s just a really fun tasting experience, in a relaxed setting, and with no pressure to know more than you do.

The fact that I went home with two Lanzerac red wines, despite wholly favouring white wines usually, is a testament to exactly my incredible Chocolate & Wine Tasting, with the all-knowing Merlin at the helm!

With an understanding of how indoor/outdoor design can add to the holistic spa experience, Lanzerac’s Spa seems pretty innocuous from the outside, based on its water-lined entry path to the nondescript front door.

Inside the spa, is unpredictable design from one corner to the other.

The elegant spiralling staircase sitting in the middle of the spa foyer towers and obscures the view of what lies beyond.

As access is only to Spa booked visitors, as well as hotel guests anytime, seeing beyond the staircase requires checking in with the black-clad cheery gatekeepers of wellness. They’re an efficient and pleasant hoard flittering in to welcome you, offer you a crisp glass of complimentary bubbly to start off your visit (though water is also on offer), and a form to ensure your health necessities and wellness goals are accounted for.

It’s more than just asking you if you’re aching anywhere specific, and there’s comfort in knowing they’re at that level of prepared.

The Spa Menu is honestly as tempting as the Lanzerac restaurants design their menus.

Gorge yourself on everything from facial therapies to a full body scrub or try ancient Rasul rituals; Sort you and your companion(s) out with a mani/pedi at the five manicure and pedicure stations, or pick a fat-burning treatment using cutting-edge technologies.

My own Swedish full body Massage worked my body, releasing my tension, moisturizing my skin, and reminding my body I still cared about it.

It was a pleasant hour best toasted with another glass of bubbly…just saying!

Your spa journey doesn’t stop after your treatment has concluded. They don’t quickly shepherd you out of the sunny first-floor – complete with private treatment rooms as well as a leather lounger waiting area, and all-white nail salon space overlooking Lanzerac’s vines.

Visitors are encouraged to make use of the hydro facilities on the premises, for example.

Along with the steam and sauna rooms, are:

  • The heated indoor spa pool you’re welcome to dip into
  • The jacuzzi that’s at home under a sunroof,
  • A fully equipped fitness room
  • Sun loungers to luxuriate on.

At sunset, the Spa’s deck is honestly the best location to be at on the entire estate!

At Lanzerac Estate, good hospitality is second to nothing else. This is the kind of hospitality people write textbooks on, marking the measure of excellent staff training, anticipating guest wants & needs, and being dependable and consistent in delivering travel luxury that makes more than an impression.

South Africa is rich in more than just cultural experiences and life-changing vistas. It’s a country rich with hospitality that proves its mettle when you choose the right stay.

  • At Lanzerac, they’re quick about dealing with issues too – no excuses!
  • They adapt to your wants & needs where possible – even if it’s just moving around a dinner reservation.
  • And they never make you feel bad for asking for what you want – at all hours, they’re just there for their guests!

Lanzerac reveals its elite status as a traveller (and locals) bucket list destination, beginning and ending with a, frankly, outstanding hospitality experience that leaves echoes of pleasure in your mind, and if you visit the spa, definitely the body too!

Verdict?

Rating: 5 out of 5.

There’s no replicating or comparing the restorative magic of Lanzerac Estate.

Stunning 155-hectare Stellenbosch location aside, they’ll never be an iteration quite like it.

It refuses to be upstaged by the varying guests that darken their doorways, and welcomes every calibre of visitor with the same excellence that’s made it a stalwart 5-star hotel for many years.

Whether fireside, on your side in bed, strutting along a vine line, or astride a pool lounger, there’s only joyful escape here – ready to leave you refreshed and awed at nature and the quiet decadence of traditional and modern hotel luxury.

By My Recommendation: LANZERAC

Lanzerac Road, Stellenbosch, 7600, South Africa

lanzerac.co.za

Tel:+27 (0)21 887 1132

info@lanzerac.co.za

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