An Ocean-side Escape
If relaxation in a pristine place is what you are after, then the beach is often the ideal location in which to start your accommodation search. In the Western Cape, you do not need to travel far in order to reach gorgeous shores of white sand beaches. One such seaside gem is the quaint fishing village of Paternoster, just a 90-minute drive from Cape Town.
One of the oldest fishing villages on the West Coast, Paternoster features cosy cafés, both fine dining and homely restaurants, hiking trails, a nature park, and many kilometres of unspoiled beaches.
Driving into Paternoster, there is a Santorini aesthetic thanks to the white walls of the small buildings with their blue accents, mirroring the ocean which many still rely on for their livelihood.
In a secluded area of the town (away from the “hustle and bustle” of the one main road of Paternoster) is the five-star Strandloper Ocean Boutique Hotel. This is a place where you forget about your cellphone and the work you left at home, and focus on unwinding. After going through the reception area to the restaurant, the ocean view immediately lures you to sit outside in the sunshine and admire the crash of the waves just metres in front of you. Leeto Restaurant, run by the acclaimed Chef Garth Armazan, is minimally and contemporarily decorated in light wood and white accents – the view takes care of the rest.
This minimalist aesthetic is also carried through into the 14 rooms and suites. There
are three accommodation types from which to choose: Courtyard Rooms, Ocean Suites, and the Nature King Suite. While they all feature different views, what they have in common is the focus on the outdoors. Large glass doors open up to gorgeous views of nature, and deck chairs and loungers allow for guests to unwind in comfort outside. A pod coffee machine and well-stocked minibar with fresh milk (replenished daily) add to the comfort of the rooms. The Ocean Suites offer guests striking views of the beach, while the Nature King Suites look out onto the natural greenery of the area, and the Courtyard Suites feature more privacy. Even if guests do not have an ocean view from their suites, the beach is just a few steps away, and breakfasts and lunches at Leeto Restaurant affords guests the opportunity to enjoy their meals while taking in the superb beach view.
Seasonal, local ingredients take centre stage when dining at Leeto. For breakfast, fresh fruits served alongside yoghurt and homemade muesli and a full English breakfast are scrumptious options. Make sure to ask your server about the special of the morning – often, inspired by seasonal ingredients, there will be something out of the ordinary on offer.
To toast to a morning well spent by the time the afternoon rolls around, order a bottle of bubbles and a few tapas and spend some time enjoying the sunshine on the deck of Leeto as the waves lap the white sand in front of you. A selection of cheeses, charcuterie, fruit, and homemade bread will add to the delight.
Although there are many other great restaurants in Paternoster, you simply cannot miss out on the opportunity to have dinner at Leeto. As darkness falls outside the large glass doors, the interior is lit with candles, creating an intimate glow in the restaurant. Chef Garth takes local and seasonal ingredients and creates flavourful dishes that are authentic, unpretentious, and pay tribute to the beautiful West Coast. West Coast mussels cooked in Sauvignon Blanc, herbs, and cream, as well as freshly shucked West Coast oysters both immediately command attention on the menu. For mains, the (sustainably caught) fish of the day with asparagus, broccoli, potatoes, lemon butter sauce, and a touch of chilli for some heat should not be missed. The dessert options are fine-dining versions of South African favourites, and an international favourite with a South African influence: Malva pudding and Kahlúa crème brûlée.
If a relaxing, ocean-side escape is what you’re after, the quaint village of Paternoster, along with the luxury of Strandloper Ocean Boutique Hotel, is there to welcome you.
For more information, please visit www.strandloperocean.com.