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Nestled within the gaze of the Slangkop Cliffs that languish behind it and with uninterrupted views across Cape Point Nature Reserve and its surrounding wetlands – Abraça is a gem of a holiday retreat. Located in the rural hamlet of Scarborough, a mere 45 minutes from Cape Town, the pristine and often deserted beach is just a five minute stroll through the wetlands. Designed for small groups of friends or a multi-generational family, this magnificent property has all the requisite factors (tick: remote, rural, rugged, rustic, safe, private yet luxurious and comfortable) that we consider essential to, and for, total relaxation and a restorative retreat. Beloved for its natural bounty of unspoilt beaches, spectacular mountain trails and untrammelled surf breaks, Scarborough is also home to a burgeoning creative and wellness community that encompasses food, art, music, coastal foraging and cold-water swimming, to name but a few.

Accommodating the varying needs of everyone from tweens, teens, singletons, family groups and oldies alike has been effortlessly achieved at Abraça – with generously proportioned bedrooms complete with desk(s), a reading chair, reading lamps as well as all the necessary tech requirements for those who wish to steal away in solitude with their devices. Laid out over three levels, the L-shaped property is divided into a trio of zones with family quarters on the lower garden level that can accommodate four (sharing a spacious bathroom) while a loft suite on the upper level (perfect for a couple or singleton) is afforded a buffer of privacy thanks to the clever addition of a living area beneath it. A further two generous en-suite bedrooms on the ground level near the kitchen and indoor/outdoor entertaining areas conspire to make this a capacious space that can sleep 10 guests with absolute ease.

But then we’d expect nothing less – for Abraça is the private retreat of interior designers Boyd Ferguson and his sister Geordi de Sousa Costa, who as the partners of design studio Cecile & Boyd’s (www.cecileandboyds.co.za), singlehandedly revolutionised the safari aesthetic 25 years ago with their ground-breaking design for Singita’s first lodge. That they have gone on to design every one of Singita’s award-winning lodges to date speaks volumes. So, by staying here, you too can experience the singular attention they give to interiors in the very place that Boyd and Geordi choose to retreat with their extended families.

Allowing for the fact that within a large group of friends or family there may be smaller groups who wish to break away from time to time, the house is designed to be responsive to these needs by way of cleverly considered communal areas. An open-plan kitchen, dining and fireplace snug area on the ground level leads out to a covered outdoor BBQ, pool lounge and a sumptuous rectangular stone pool; while just around the corner is a communal fire pit where classic safari camping chairs are perfect for a spot of stargazing. In addition, the extensive garden is thoroughly connected to the living spaces by way of three large covered verandas that are fully furnished to function as outdoor rooms. And for those in search of a further ‘green’ retreat, the garden has been designed as a series of spaces that beckon one outdoors as they offer the opportunity for play, tranquillity, conversation, contemplation, celebration and community in equal measure.

A double living room upstairs that accommodates both a spacious TV and fireside area, caters to that most essential of holiday requirements – a mini-bar and coffee station – thus ensuring that you need never disrupt the spectacular reverie of wetland, reserve and beach views for something as mundane as a visit to the kitchen downstairs. We recommend the wraparound veranda off the living room for sundowners, as it offers the best vantage point from which to spot herds of eland and ostrich who frequent this part of the reserve, not to mention the elusive Cape Eagle Owl, who is often seen hunting in the wetlands at dusk.

With a calming stone palette indoors and out, Abraça espouses barefoot luxury with a ‘farmhouse meets beach’ aesthetic that is in direct response to the glory of nature that surrounds it. To this end, the interiors – a careful edit of exposed beams overhead and monastic stone and solid oak underfoot – provide the perfect foile for the home’s savvy collection of colourful contemporary art, handwoven fabrics, naive Indian country antiques and the tactile modernity of cane furniture and lighting. Here, everything is intentional and designed to speak to the different ages and tastes of those who may visit, making it the kind of place you’ll long to hang out with all of your favourite people, all at once.

What you need to know…

  • Scarborough Village’s Whole Earth Café is great for breakfast (their flapjacks and mushroom rosti are a must!)
  • Scarborough institution, The Hub, has a sit-down café in their back courtyard, a restaurant upstairs and a well-stocked delicatessen.
  • Every Saturday The Hub holds an organic fresh produce market, as does Camel Rock, a local bohemian institution next door, that does great pizzas.
  • Scarborough is a great starting point for cyclists – The Hub has both Dave Stubbs’ handmade wooden bikes and electric bikes to rent. Ask about the best road and gravel bike routes.
  • There are also plenty of sign-posted hiking trails in and around Baskloof Private Nature Reserve, just make sure that you buy a permit at The Hub before setting off.
  • No trip to Scarborough is complete without a visit to one of Cape Point’s breath taking beaches – we’d advise you get there early as the tourist buses start to line up from lunchtime – followed by tea and scones at The Scone Shack, located at the Lalapanzi Nursery just before the Cape Point gate.

Reviewed by Kerryn Fischer

Facilities

  • 1 x Bathroom
  • 1 x Bedroom (double)
  • 1 x Bedroom (king ensuite bath & shower)
  • 1 x Twin single bedroom
  • 2 x Bedrooms (king)
  • 2 x Fridge & freezer (large)
  • Alarm
  • Apple TV
  • BBQ (wood)
  • Bluetooth speaker
  • Coffee plunger
  • Dishwasher
  • Electric oven
  • en-suite
  • Fridge x 2
  • Gas stove
  • Microwave
  • Netflix
  • Outside shower
  • Pool (no net)
  • Pool loungers
  • Servicing (on request)
  • Smoking outside only
  • Toaster
  • Tumble dryer
  • TV
  • Umbrella
  • Washing machine
  • Wifi

0 / 10

Based on 1 reviews

Guest reviews are written by our customers after their stay at Abraça.

Location
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Staff
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Guest reviews

  • Guest
    2020-09-07

    This house is an upscale beach house, perfect for relaxing and hosting a large group. There are so many outdoor spaces to relax and enjoy. Such a fun kitchen, it was inspiring to cook here, with top of the line everything. There was ample wood to keep us warm in the winter night and we enjoyed cozy feeling of the house. We enjoyed the access to the beach and views from the top level. It's a stunning property, with gorgeous art and inviting spaces.

Scarborough, South Peninsula

Scarborough, South Peninsula  Rustic beach living right in the middle of nature, Scarborough –rubbing shoulders with Cape Point Nature Reserve and itself designated a conservation village – is about as away from it all as you can get on the Cape Peninsula. Just a scattering of houses, mostly laid-back beach cottages, overlook a long white sandy beach

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Rates

R6000 - R18500 per night