An Ocean-side Es­cape

SLOW Magazine - - Contents - Text: Paula Whit­taker Im­ages © Strand­loper Ocean Bou­tique Ho­tel

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.strand­lope­r­o­

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