Karoo Gems – Gordonville and the “Kliphuis”


Gracious white walled gates and enthusiastic barking, herald our arrival at Gordonville, a 15,000 hectare Karoo farm, high in the Sneeuberg between Graaf Reinet and Middelberg.

Owner Charlotte Daneel welcomes us into her home – A farmhouse that is a blend of her iconic style, luxurious comfort and pared down simplicity. Her decorating flair has transformed a colonial building into an experience, with extraordinary touches like a stock shed that has been turned into a heated poolhouse, complete with billiard table, bar and lounge overlooking the Karoo plains.

But Charlotte’s real treasure is the “Kliphuis”, a cottage situated on a remote part of the farm.  Resurrected from a ramshackle ruin and now the last word in rustic luxury, the Kliphuis is authentic and simple, but offers plenty of creature comforts.

IMG_0334The three king-size bedrooms are all en-suite with fine linen, down duvets, angora throws and underfloor heating throughout. A chef’s kitchen complemented by fine crockery and cutlery, prepares one for long sociable lunches and starlit dinners, either inside or on the expansive patio. In the lounge, an enormous fireplace dominates, surrounded by a soft sheepskin rug and deep sofas. This is a place to escape from the rat race, write, read, take long walks or simply relax.

The farm is part of the Sneeuberg Nature Reserve conservancy project, which is being developed in order to recreate the pristine environment found in the North East Karoo over 200 years ago by early settlers.

All the fences on the farm have been taken down, because Charlotte doesn’t want to partition off the landscape or create artificial boundaries for the wildlife. The aim is to create an environment where the indigenous fauna and flora will flourish. Already substantial numbers of buck, wildebeest, mountain zebra and other indigenous animals can be found on the land.

The reserve has been located in an area of rugged beauty and its vast terrain ranges from Karoo grassland to riverine gorges and dramatic mountain peaks. Water is abundant in the area – The Sneeuberg mountain range forms a watershed between the Sundays River in the south and the Great Fish River in the east.

To find more about the Kliphuis, or to book your stay contact: www.perfecthideaways.co.za.

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