Giving away your last Rolo, compiling cheesy mix-tapes or building a sculpture of your significant other made entirely from take-out boxes are all subtle ways of showing your romantic side. Stopping your fiancé from getting on a plane by declaring your undying love is far grander. Instead of standing under a window and serenading someone with a boombox, get a romantic one night’s stay for two, including a full English breakfast at Val d’Or Estate for R750.
With more country charm than a cowboy in an Armani suit, the Val d’Or Estate is an idyllic getaway that’s still close enough to civilization to stop you feeling like you’ve decided to take a sabbatical in the wilderness. Less than an off-key kumbayah sing-along from the Franschhoek in the heart of the Cape Winelands, the tranquil Estate is a haven for those looking for a quick get-away from the hustle and bustle of morning traffic and making beds.
Though many people enjoy nothing more than just lazing around their hotel room, cosy-ing up on the couch in the lounge or sipping coffee in the country-esque kitchen, getting away for a while can be a great way to relax. Being famous for its winelands, one of the most obvious things to do in the Cape is a half-day wine-tour for two, almost as good as a romantic stroll surrounded by grapes.
After a delicious three course dinner for two at the cosy nearby Chez d’Or and a glass or two of Val d’Or Estate wine, return to your luxurious room and slip into a complementary robe and slippers. With under-floor heating to warm the icy winter air, or air-conditioning if you need an excuse to snuggle under the blankets, cuddling up and watching two complimentary DVD’s in your room is the perfect way to while away the rest of the twilight hours. If you’re the type that is always on the look-out for square-eyes, you could leave the DSTV and DVD player for home, and watch the beautiful scenic views of the mountain from your private patio instead.
Matching the ease of the night before, a full English breakfast is provided when the country sunlight finally breaks through your slumber. With a cosy breakfast area, enjoy your eggs indoors or outdoors under the shady trees if the sunshine decides to stick around.
if you’re the type that likes to soak up a bit of culture with your escape from dishes and dusting, Franschhoek’s Bastille Festival on the 16th and 17th of July is the perfect way to experience a bit of the French Huguenot heritage Franschhoek is so famous for. With events like Porcupine Ridge Barrel Rolling and Fencing Exhibitions as well as live bands and markets, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. If a rustic, relaxing night away isn’t a grand enough gesture, maybe your significant other just needs a new ‘best friend’ in the form of something shiny from Uwe Koetter or Du Toit Classique Jewellers.
Sleepy Fact: A famous hotel in eastern Malaysia is famous for its unconventional rooms. One styled after an Indian Rice has a rice-paddy instead of a floor and a bed made entirely of wheat-grass. The ‘Brakepad’ room is constructed entirely from used car parts.