MY FIRST WINE FARM AFTER LOCKDOWN | HASKELL DOMBEYA



I need a glass of wine…or a bottle…or a winery in Stellenbosch! I still do not know what a wine stopper is for… even during the lock-down! Today I am sharing with you an exquisite wine farm in the Cape Winelands, Haskell Vineyards. I visited the farm at the beginning of the year as part of a scoping visit for my wedding clients. Looking back on my visit to this beautiful farm, I absolutely cannot wait until I can travel again and spend a weekend in the luxurious accommodation on site. The location provides the perfect base to explore one of my favourite wine regions. Haskell Vineyards can be found tucked away in the Golden Triangle (one of South Africa’s finest growing sub-regions) in the Helderberg area.
It is a scenic drive up to Haskell Vineyards, passing rows and rows of vineyards. I was already so excited before I even reached the estate, as I love vineyard weddings! Weddings held in vineyards are one of the most serene and gorgeous weddings that you will ever attend. You will see from the minute you arrive at Haskell Vineyards that this wine estate has everything that you need to create the atmosphere for a fairy tale wedding and a day to never forget.
Barbara, the Operations Manager of Haskell Vineyards and the Longtable Restaurant hosted Fashion Fundi at this niche wine estate. As you approach the entrance of the Longtable Restaurant, you can immediately see the incredible views over the valley that you are privy to from the restaurant. The entrance has elegant black and white tessellating tiles and a stunning tree-root table, that I absolutely loved! The quaint tasting room with the dark slate wall, gives it a dramatic feel as you enter the restaurant, preparing to sip on magnificent wine, grown in the unique terroir of this region.  
The restaurant has large stacking glass doors, allowing you to experience the panoramic views over the outside patio, surrounded by large and established fauna and flora. The modern and simple finishes encapsulate the natural climate and environment, where the views of the breath-taking mountains provide the perfect canvas for a beautiful wedding. The restaurant can accommodate 100 people and is suited for a classy intimate wedding.
The Longtable restaurant is contemporary and the galley wall of plates is creative and a great spot for photos. It has high-end luxurious d├ęcor finishes and light fixtures throughout. I always believe that crockery, cutlery and music contribute to at least as much the enjoyment of a meal as the food itself, highlighted by the stunning selection of hand-made porcelain plates, including my favourite – the matte black design!
There is a private pathway that leads from the restaurant to a grass embankment, which I think would be perfect for the ceremony site and the “I Do’s”. The views from here are outstanding and it is surrounded by a well-established indigenous garden of aloes, succulents and strelitzia, providing a lovely backdrop for where it all happens.
Adjacent to the restaurant is a courtyard with a pond and well-maintained lawns that flow into a classic lounge with comfortable leather couches and Persian rugs that overlook the stainless-steel tanks. This space, I can imagine would be well suited to canapes and live music post the ceremony while the wedding couple go for their photos.
For the bridal party, there is accommodation on site with “The Residence” that has two large rooms and bathrooms and “The Cottage” which is a loft-styled apartment. The Residence, which is in traditional Cape Dutch style is elegantly appointed with large art pieces and a mix of vintage and modern elements, giving it a charming feel. The huge fireplace would make a stunning backdrop for the bridal portrait and the “getting ready” photos. Some of my favourite moments are those captured before the ceremony, and this accommodation will provide a meaningful location for this (making the photographers job even easier!).
Haskell Dombeya has everything you want for an upmarket, exclusive private wedding venue surrounded by beautiful mountain views to create lifelong memories with friends and family.
TC
xoxo

SOUTH AFRICAN SAFARI | NAMBITI HILLS GAME RESERVE



What a crazy time it is in the world! Marc and I came home from the most magnificent safari trip back in March to South Africa declaring a 21 day nationwide lock down as result of COVID-19. Now we are currently on day 100 and something of being in self isolation. Despite this crazy 21st century pandemic, that nobody saw coming, the trip to Nambiti Hills was definitely one for the books.

If you're looking for a small non-commercialised private safari experience, then Nambiti Hills is the destination for you. The lodge host approximately 8 luxury suites, one honeymoon suite and the most beautiful tented spa and wellness area. Nambiti Hills prides itself on offering a fine dining experience, with a three course breakfast and dinner every day. In between these two meals, the lodge offers high tea in the afternoon as well as snacks on both the sunrise and sunset game drives. If you're like Marc and I, who love a hot cup of coffee in the morning with a rusk or two, then you HAVE to visit Nambiti Hills. The homemade rusks, muffins and chocolate chip cookies offered every morning on the sunrise game drive was our absolute highlight of the trip. I know it may seem simple, but isn't it about the simple things in life? 
We had a wonderful game ranger who was solely responsible for taking us on private game drives for our entire stay at Nambiti Hills. The staff welcomed us daily by name and the trip felt very personalised for our needs. On our last evening at Nambiti Hills, the lodge treated us to the most romantic candle lit bath and bedroom set up. We arrived back from a delicious dinner with other guests who we became friendly with and dived into this magical warm bath covered in rose petals and candles. Regardless if you're a hopeless romantic like me or not, Nambiti Hills offers so much for everyone. Our trip to the lodge was at the end of the summer and it felt more like autumn when we were there as it rained our entire trip, which actually was the best for when going to the bush. The animals come out to play and it makes for the best cozy bonfire evenings. Needless to say, Nambiti Hills is also perfect for the summer months, it has the most breathtaking view from the pool that over looks the Nambiti Game Reserve for 100s of kilometres. The one day we sat by the bonfire and had a G&T (as one does in the bush) and a giant bull elephant crossed our path near the lodge. It was so beautiful but words cannot even describe the beauty of being in the wild amongst the big five. Speaking of the big five, we were lucky enough to see 4 of the 5 animals. Unfortunately, leopards are always the trickiest to spot in the bush but we luckily spotted Elephant, Rhino, Buffalo and the king of the jungle, Lion. We also went on a glorious morning game drive and spotted my favourite animal of all, the cheetah. Giraffe and Zebra were of course everywhere you looked and so were the waterbuck, hippos and bush buck. 

It is sad to see how the hospitality industry is suffering so badly due to the corona virus pandemic but once the world gets back to normal, I highly recommend booking a safari vacation at Nambiti Hills Private Game Experience.








TC
xoxo
Professional Blog Designs by pipdig