From the moment I arrived at Tintswalo I knew it was going to be some kind of magic. Actually, that isn’t entirely true, you see the magic started long before the trip began.
Let me explain. I was lucky enough to win a prize, just a simple ‘name in the hat’ draw at a travel industry function… one of the benefits I guess of working in the travel industry. The prize had a number of luxury land and air elements contributed by a few different South African suppliers, so I was a lucky girl indeed.
Once the heady excitement of winning had been replaced by a ‘right, let’s do this’ attitude I got to planning and booking this Southern Africa adventure. My dealings with the property, via their agent, were faultless and highly professional giving me a small insight into the magic that was about to come.
Magic! How right I had been, when upon arrival we were greeted with a just nicely (not too over the top) ornate gate with the Tintswalo logo, a security guard, a parking spot with an outstanding view and a shuttle transfer to the property, this gave me the feeling of being completely taken care of from the get go.
“Tintswalo is a Shangaan expression meaning ‘the intangible feeling of love, gratitude and peace bestowed upon someone offering you a meaningful and worthy gift.” Believe me, I was feeling that!
You see, Tintswalo Atlantic is set in Table Mountain National Park. This chic remote lodge with Atlantic views is 6.1 km from the Cape Town suburb of Hout Bay so the drive there alone, soaking up the scenery, is enough to get your senses take notice.
Wedged between Table Mountain and the Atlantic Ocean at the base of Chapman’s Peak, overlooking Hout Bay’s iconic Sentinel, lies this completely enchanting 5 star boutique lodge.
Quiet charm infuses the hotel from the moment you arrive, beyond the gate and carpark that is! The décor, light and quaint architecture complement the Atlantic Ocean waves crashing on the pebbled beach a few metres below. With the ocean rolling in as if to literally embrace the lodge, you are left with the distinct feeling of having arrived in paradise.
We were offered welcome drinks and a chance to soak up the environment while pleasantly chatting to our host before being escorted to our rooms.
The ten luxury suites are individually decorated to mirror the personality of ten beautiful islands of the world, ensuring every guest a unique experience. We were told each suite is afforded the same hypnotising view across the Bay and out over the Atlantic Ocean.
There were such girly squeals of joy once our host had shown us (and left us) to our very own suite, knowing this was ours and ours alone for two whole nights, especially with the knowledge that this magical place has been described as the most dramatic destination in Southern Africa. Tintswalo Atlantic is certainly the perfect location to relax and rejuvenate body, mind and soul, away from the stresses and distractions of daily life.
One tip I can give, however, is to arrive with a very empty stomach! The food is sensational and seemingly endless.
My travel buddy and I ordered a gourmet picnic lunch basket for an excursion to The Cape of Good Hope - an enjoyable day trip from the property - to find that the basket was not only delicious but plentiful.
On returning from our outings each day we enjoyed a sundowner on our private deck lapping up the sounds of the ocean at our feet and the sights of a sunset bursting with colour and mood.
It’s a shame we couldn’t stay longer, to give us more time to venture out to Hout Bay Harbour and Seal Island, or visit the world-renowned Cape Winelands and explore Cape Point Nature Reserve even more.
If we weren’t feeling so damn decadent, which is truly what this place leans to, we could have walked from the lodge through the magnificent ‘Fynbos’, regarded as the worlds’ richest floral kingdom, along one of the many paths and walkways within the Table Mountain National Park. Tintswalo Atlantic is the only accommodation establishment in the entire National Park.
When it came time to leave we were both given a small coloured rock, collected from the beach below the lodge, with our names written on them. It is then ceremony to stand with the sea to your back, make a wish and throw the rock with your right hand over your left shoulder, or was it left hand over right shoulder? Either way, the fun and uniqueness of this ceremony solidified our experience and connection to Tintswalo.
The Tintswalo Property Group is a mother/daughter run business with three other luxury properties in South Africa - Tintswalo Safari Lodge, Tintswalo Manor House and Tintswalo at Waterfall - all places I for one can not wait to experience.
Rest assured if you decide you can only fit in Tintswalo Atlantic I can guarantee you will enjoy exclusive accommodation in a breath-taking setting, 5-star fine dining, warm family-style hospitality and a host of unexpected pleasures in this gem on the Atlantic Coast only a 30 minute scenic drive from Cape Town. Just magic!