When a vision of transforming something old into something new arrives – an inspired, invigorating idea of change – it’s hard to alter that vision and see it in any other form. It stubbornly occupies itself in your imagination until it comes to complete fruition, thanks to its relentless will to be revealed and created. It’s apparent that this was the case for the owners of Langskuur. A dilapidated 1850’s out-building called upon its creative and cultured owners to bring it back to life. What was once a centuries-old sheep-sheering barn on a multigenerational working dairy farm, is now an inimitable, pastoral property to escape to, along the notorious Garden route.
No more 30 minutes equally from the gorgeous beaches of Mossel Bay and the rolling plains of the Karoo, Langskuur – which means long barn in Afrikaans – opens its tall, exposed corrugated iron ceilings, rough wooden beams, raw redbrick walls and white-washed cement floors to reveal a renovation of romance, intrigue, heritage and honesty from farm pillar to post. An expansive space of antique collectables, family heirlooms and commissioned statement pieces of furniture embellish the rustic essence of the barn that’s discreetly partitioned into cosy pockets of placid occupation. A dreamy sleeping area with its soft linens and Malawi cane headboards rests adjacent a reading nook with a swinging rattan bubble chair, that leads into a stunning secluded bathroom, separated by industrial sliding doors. A beautiful farm-style kitchen with an inviting dining table made from repurposed yellowwood floorboards and an enticing reclining space beside a wood-burning stove sits at the other end of the barn.
The ongoing narrative of outlandish romance is retained as you enter the courtyard, where an old watering trough-come-plunge pool trickles away, an outdoor shower tucks itself beside the giant daisies, resident chickens chirp and wander in and out of their coop, leading into the additional bedroom and bathroom that were once old milking parlours. The owner’s well-nurtured secret garden of herbs and vegetables with groves of quinces, figs, pomegranates and almonds border the main farmhouse, beyond the barn, that welcome every eager picker and sampler of its fruits. With its hectares and hectares of farmland, there are endless walking and mountain biking trails to explore, a dam to do a spot of fishing in and a much larger, longer swimming pool at the main house to dip into should the day’s heat call for some respite. When evening arrives and the weavers take to their nests as the owls signal the change in the hour, the still warm air settles around this hideaway like a blanket of blissful farm harmony. The stars are out, the sounds are pacifying, the smells are that of a nurtured nostalgia and the conversation flows around the barn that’s intimately lit up by the French antique bottle dryer-inspired chandeliers. All in keeping with the magnificence of each curated space of Langskuur. A barn that’s been brought to life with bespoke brilliance.
What we love!
- The beautiful flowers and green foliage that adorn the open spaces of both the interior and the exterior of the barn. Softening the rough, exposed textures of the build and weaving in the natural essence.
- There is an endless of flow of natural light and fresh air through the barn doors and windows that engulfs the space, setting the laidback farm-style living tone.
- As well as the resident livestock, the birdlife on the farm is impressive. A lot of avid birders seek this area of the Garden Route for a bit of birdwatching. You’ll be likely to see it all from Blue Cranes to Weavers, Wagtails, Bustards, Larks, Chats and Warblers.
- The owner’s incredible secret garden that’s blooming with fruit, herbs and vegetables for you to pick and eat at your leisure.
What you need to know…
- Langskuur is a 42KM drive to Mossel Bay, should you wish to dip into the ocean. The nearest town is Herbertsdale – only an 8-minute drive away.
- Aside from the farm activities of walking and swimming and mountain-biking, there is also a dam should you wish to do some fishing.
- Jakkalsvlei – the largest private cellar in the region for wine tasting and feasting is only 20KMs from the farm, should you wish to venture out for lunch.
- Garden Route Game Lodge is 30 mins away, for a day trip of wildlife watching.
- As you drive the public road to Langskuur, that borders the game reserve, you are likely to spot the odd giraffe and antelope along the way.
Reviewed by Colleen Ogilvie