By PAUL DUNCAN & HELEN UNTIEDT
This is the second volume of PERFECT HIDEAWAYS IN SOUTH AFRICA. It’s a book about holiday homes that inspire their users because they’re unexpected and remarkable. It features a range of them that, by virtue of the peculiarities of their locations, offer varieties of different experiences.
No book like this would be complete without the requisite stone-built Great Karoo farmstead. In fact it features three of them – two near the Sneeuberg and another near Middelburg. There are straw-built cottages in Calitzdorp in the Klein Karoo, and there’s a sandstone Victorian mansion in the Free State which provides all the romance you’d ever need in a skillfully restored country house. The historic Eastern Cape town of Graaff-Reinet gets a look in, as does a farm among the wheat fields and olive groves around Piketberg. And a book on South African holiday homes has to feature seaside homes. From a contemporary, architect-designed house in Plettenberg Bay to a hi-tech ‘tree house’ and a simple fisherman’s shack, both at Scarborough, you’ll find places that invite you to do nothing at all but sit and gaze into the stupendous view. You could be a million miles from anywhere. Clifton, Langebaan, Simonstown, Vermaaklikheid and Dwarskersbos are also visited, and there are houses in Hout Bay and KwaZulu-Natal’s Dargle Valley. The latest addition to Babylonstoren near Franschhoek is here too, featured because, invested with the passion and personality of its owner, it’s the most unexpected of all