Less than 30 minutes’ drive from Cape Town International Airport, between Stellenbosch and Somerset West lies Avontuur Estate, a family-owned wine estate and thoroughbred farm. It is close enough to the city–no long drives needed, yet it still provides that secluded ambiance, with stunning views of Table Mountain from the property.
An early arrival
I did not expect to arrive that early at Avontuur Estate. My flight arrived in Cape Town early in the morning on time, and I was prepared for at least an hour’s drive, assuming that a wine estate and farm property would be far from the city.
I was still taking in the stunning views of Table Mountain from the airport drive, and was just getting more comfortable in my seat when my guide Denver suddenly said, “Here we are, Avontuur Estate.”
I was welcomed warmly by Mathew Tshakuma, property manager of Avontuur Estate. He offered me a cosy proposition:”Your room is not ready yet, but if you can wait at the library, I will make you cappuccino.”
The offer was gratefully taken, and soon I was enjoying the frothiest and creamiest cup of cappuccino I’ve ever had. Less than 10 minutes at Avontuur Estate, and I already have an insider tip for you: request for Mathew’s cappuccino, whether you arrive early or not. This is a must!
As I was enjoying my first cup of South African coffee, I had a good browse of the library collection. Plenty of geographical and African history books. One of them stood out from the rest. “Faith Vision and Courage, The Taberer Family in Africa.”
The Taberer family, whose forefather first came to South Africa in 1862, owns Avontuur Estate. Brothers Philip and Michael Taberer currently own and manage the estate. I am to find out later on from Philip that their father, Tony Taberer, acquired the estate, then a wine farm, in 1984.
Through the years, Avontuur evolved into the prestigious thoroughbred farm and winery that it is known today. With their award-winning wines and successful stallions, the Avontuur’s slogan, “the home of fine wine and fast horses,” is truly embodied by the estate. Though I would personally add as a tagline: “also home of fresh, fluffy croissants, great coffee, and stunning rooms.”
The Honeymoon Suite
Mathew returns to the library to announce that my room is ready. He tells me that this is his personal favourite among all the rooms. I was naturally intrigued, and the moment we open the door to the room, I immediately saw why.
I’m a sucker for all-white / neutral themes, and this suite not only had that, but it was spacious at 52 square metres, and it had views and floor to ceiling windows on 3 sides.
And did I mention that you can see Table Mountain from the room? Stunning suite, stunning views!
Now between the views of Table Mountain and the bathroom, I wasn’t sure which one I liked better.
The bathroom, apart from being spacious, also has windows, which let a lot of natural light in even if frosted.
Avontuur Estate video room and property tour
What better way to show you the entirety of the honeymoon suite and grounds of Avontuur Estate than a video?
Breakfast at Avontuur Estate
I’m not a big breakfast person for two reasons: 1.) I’m just not hungry in the morning, and 2.) I’d really rather sleep in.
Now the Honeymoon Suite’s location is on the second floor of the estate, and there are no other rooms nearby. So mornings are quiet in the suite, perfect for sleeping in. But the smell of freshly baked croissants woke me up so nicely and I let my nose lead me to the breakfast area.
At the breakfast table, we were greeted by Mathew and a some household staff members. I wasn’t able to get a photograph, but the kitchen had a working oven that’s close to 100 years old, I believe. These were the softest, fluffiest and freshest croissants I’ve ever had, served fresh and still steaming from the oven.
And just like that, my golden rules of sleep over breakfast and staying away from carbs were happily forgotten.
You can thank me later, but let me remind you again that when you’re at Avontuur Estate, you must have their cappuccino (made by Mathew) and house croissants.
Avontuur Estate Restaurant
Avontuur Estate has a restaurant that draws crowds on its own. It’s a short walk from the accommodation, and was voted oted Best Date Night Restaurant 2021 and 2022 by listeners of local radio station KFM94.5
It was a bit of a nippy April evening and I was pleasantly surprised to see patio heaters inside (not just outside) the restaurant.
Our server Avril expertly guided and made suggestions from the menu for our dinner.
This was my first dinner in South Africa, so I had my very first go at a traditional South African dish, the Bobotie. It is South Africa’s national dish, considered a comfort food by many locals. It is made of spiced and curried minced meat with an egg-based topping.
It’s kind of like a cross between a minced meat pie and quiche.
I was told that this was a fancy version of the Bobotie, but I still appreciated it and can see how it’s comforting.
I also had wild mushrooms for starters, and I loved it. The mushrooms were fresh, and had a slight crunch to them. It was served with melted Gruyere and truffle oil, so it was richly divine.
For dessert, Avril recommended the almond marzipan cake. We were told it was freshly baked (and it did taste exactly that), and was served with berry coulis and ice cream. A classic recipe done so well.
The grounds of Avontuur Estate
Whether you’re visiting for the day or staying at Avontuur Estate, taking a stroll and exploring the grounds is definitely recommended.
We had the opportunity to be toured by Philip and it was nice to see how his father’s love of horses started all this. You can also see that all their horses are wonderfully well taken cared of, and are happy frolicking or chilling in the estate.
It’s also amazing to know that Philip and his siblings actually lived and grew up on the estate. Avontuur Estate is no ordinary family business–it’s steeped in personal family history so it gives another dimension to the experience.
Avontuur Estate was definitely a great introduction to Cape Town. I left with fond memories of the staff, owners, and most of all, the relaxing honeymoon suite that I enjoyed to myself during my entire stay.
R44, Somerset West, Cape Town, 7135, South Africa
Disclaimer: I stayed as a guest in Avontuur Estate for World Travel Market Africa and ILTM Africa 2022. All thoughts and opinions are my own.