The Most Environmentally Aware Development in the World
|November 1, 2005 - High above the lagoon-side town of Knysna on the
Western Cape’s Garden Route, lies Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa, the newest
luxury resort hotel in Africa.
Officially opened in February this year, the resort is located on Knysna’s Eastern Head overlooking the lagoon and Indian Ocean coastline and takes full advantage of the epic drama of its surroundings.
The luxury property combines an all-encompassing lifestyle brand offering an extensive range of activities in a beautiful setting of rugged cliffs, ancient forests, private beaches, majestic mountains, a sweeping lagoon and natural fynbos landscapes. Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa embraces all things African, from its art, décor and culture, to the surrounding environment. Most importantly, however, at Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa the quality of service and guests’ comfort are paramount.
Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa comprises 78 beautifully appointed suites in individual lodges, (each housing four suites) with stunning views of the mountains or the ocean. All are fully equipped with a mini kitchen offering granite tops, Villeroy & Boch china, a fully stocked fridge and pantry with homemade treats such as cookies, shortbread, biltong and crisps. The spacious bathroom is stylishly finished with marble floors, a calabash style bathtub and a power shower. Luxurious ankle length dressing gowns, enormous towels and fluffy slippers make it a haven in its own right. No luxury is compromised with the inclusion of Egyptian cotton sheets, satellite TV, DVD players and a real log fire that is lit on request.
Throughout the hotel, natural materials such as rough stone and natural woods sit alongside earthy colours, aquas, greens, warm reds and gold, to reflect the surrounding landscape.
The hotel’s restaurant, Zachary’s, is headed up by executive chef Geoffrey Murray. Murray’s previous experience includes opening the restaurant ‘Boom’ in Soho, New York and his role as executive chef at the exclusive Seychelles island resort, North Island. The ethos at Zachary’s is local organic products, global influence and an eclectic yet honest approach to food. Signature dishes include prawn tartlet served with red onion reduction, sugar-cured salmon trout with fennel seed and star anise and white peppercorn crème brulée. The restaurant is complemented with an excellent selection of over 5,000 bottles of both local and international wines.
The resort’s award-winning spa (recently awarded Best Spa in South Africa) is a calm sanctuary that reflects the soul of Africa. With world-class facilities consisting of a superbly equipped gym, indoor 12m heated swimming pool, sauna, steam room, sunbed, nail bar, hair salon, juice bar and nine secluded treatment rooms, Pezula Spa & Gym offers a diverse range of treatments by skilled therapists.
The African theme is continued with the use of indigenous products in the treatments. The Muwuri Body Scrub uses sea salt and essential oils; the Daka Mud Body Wrap combines buchu fynbos, rich in medicinal properties, with clay and essential oils; and the Matombo Massage Treatment uses fynbos body salts. The extensive spa menu is further complemented by a post treatment room, with heated waterbeds that gently massage the entire body.
There are numerous activities available at the resort. The luxury property is home to an 18-hole Championship Golf Course that has already been compared to the likes of Pebble Beach. Signature holes have been earmarked as the 13th and 14th with their breathtaking views over the cliffs and the ocean. The resort’s golf carts are fully equipped with GPS systems, computerised scoring and the facility to pre-order lunch. Other outdoor pursuits include horse riding at the estate’s equestrian centre, tennis, canoeing, hiking and nature trails.
The environment has been at the top of the agenda since the inception of Pezula; only 15% of the estate will ever be developed. A massive rehabilitation programme, the largest of its kind in South Africa, has restored much of the indigenous Cape Coastal Fynbos. All roads and tracks throughout the estate have been carved from original logging trails to avoid disturbing the surrounding wildlife. As the programme progresses, the birds and wildlife are being lured back to the estate. Today over 110 species of indigenous birds have been identified and bush buck, baboons and bush pigs are regularly spotted. There are plans to re-introduce zebra and other varieties of buck.
This year Pezula’s environmental rehabilitation programme won international recognition when Pezula received a gold award for the Most Environmentally Aware Development in the World, at a ceremony in London.
Pezula can be accessed by road along the scenic Garden Route from Cape Town. Daily flights connect Johannesburg and Cape Town to George Airport, just under an hour’s drive from Knysna. Guests can also charter the hotel’s private helicopter or eight-seater jet, which are available to transport guests to nearby attractions, golf courses and destinations further a-field in South Africa.
Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa, Knysna, Garden
Route, South Africa
The luxury property is home to an 18-hole Championship Golf Course, an exclusive private residential estate, a world-class spa and fitness centre, a secluded beach and the Field of Dreams sporting facility.
Pezula is set amongst dramatic scenery, with rugged cliffs, emerald forests and rolling hills protecting a vast array of wildlife, including antelope and bushbuck, caracal, honey badgers, baboons and over 110 species of indigenous birds.
Overview of Facilities
True to its African roots, various elements of African art have been incorporated into different aspects of the suites and core building. Ceilings in the suites are striated in a pattern similar to that found on Sotho indigenous architecture, while door carvings resemble those on certain African artifacts.
Zachary’s offers al fresco dining with stunning views during the day and an elegant, intimate and romantic atmosphere for evening diners.
Signature dishes include:
The Whisky & Champagne Bar offers more than 40 types of whisky, as well as Bourbon and Irish varieties. The Cigar Lounge stocks a selection of Cuban cigars.
Championship Golf Course
The Clubhouse features a terrace, restaurant, bar, private lounge and library, as well as a pro shop and short game practice area.
In 2001 the Course was awarded Best New Golf Course in South Africa. In February 2005 Complete Golfer rated it a Five Star Golf Experience.
Field of Dreams
Daily hiking trails through the forest are run by Pezula’s Wildlife Manager, Dennis Robson, while tennis coaching is provided by Gary Muller, the international tennis coach and Sports Director of Field of Dreams, on one of four superb tennis courts.
In addition, there is a world-class sports oval for cricket, football and softball, a golf academy and driving range, canoeing and fishing facilities, archery, pétanque, birding and Ultimate Frisbee.
Signature treatments include a body scrub and wrap, using the fragrance of the indigenous fynbos vegetation, coupled with 30 minutes of aromatherapy steam. Alternatively the Phumla Massage is an African drumbeat massage using shea butter, which employs long strokes and deep kneading pressure into the muscle tissue to improve circulation and ease muscular aches and tension.
Pezula Resort Hotel & Spa
|Also See:||South Africa Hotels Desperate to Demonstrate Unrivalled Value for Money / December 2004|
|Comparing the Hotel Industries in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa; All Three Have Similar Performance Trends and Challenges / June 2004|