8 East­ern Cape The Vic­to­ria Manor Ho­tel


South African Country Life - - Country Escapes - Juli­enne duToit 048 881 1322, info@tu­ishuise.co.za, www.tu­ishuise.co.za

In al­most all the his­toric pho­to­graphs of Cradock, two build­ings are im­me­di­ately recog­nis­able: the Moed­erk­erk and the Vic­to­ria Manor Ho­tel, built in 1848. The Vic, as it’s fondly called, is a dou­ble-storey beauty that has sported var­i­ous ar­chi­tec­tural ac­ces­sories dur­ing its 170-odd years of ex­is­tence – in­clud­ing elab­o­rate broekielace and bal­conies. But its out­line, with peaked roof, is al­ways recog­nis­able. It would have been a fa­mil­iar cen­tre of so­cial life to lo­cals like writer Olive Schreiner, li­on­catcher Toger von Abo, as well as hunters, ex­plor­ers and gold and di­a­mond seek­ers. Dur­ing the An­glo-Boer War, the ho­tel was cap­tured and used by Bri­tish forces, and a cel­lar turned into prison for cap­tured Boer sol­diers. By the 1980s, the ho­tel had sunk into near-dere­lic­tion, but Tu­ishuise owner San­dra Antrobus bought it in 1994 and has lov­ingly re­stored it to the charm­ing hostelry it once was. To­day it has 16 en suite rooms, a justly fa­mous ta­ble, gra­cious re­cep­tion rooms filled with pe­riod pieces and an­tiques. Th­ese days, the old prison cel­lar is a charm­ing bar and lounge, of­ten used for spe­cial oc­ca­sions.–

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