One of Franschhoek’s best-kept secrets is the fact that winter is just as lovely as summer. In fact, better, some might argue. While hot afternoons by the pool and leisurely lunches under the oaks are what most visitors come to enjoy, the Western Cape’s cooler months are cherished by locals for their very special charm. Temperatures can drop and the odd bout of rain might fall, but inclement weather is always followed by a string of the kind of blue-sky, sunshiny days made for walks through scenic vineyards and cosy afternoons tasting wine beside a roaring fire.
Franschhoek has some of the best hotels and restaurants in South Africa, and colder days lend themselves to really enjoying the world class hospitality on offer: luxuriating in your big, comfy bed while a dramatic storm rages outside; soaking in a stylish bath tub while rain pelts against the window; whiling the afternoon away with a glass of port and a good book. And there is nothing better than a fresh, invigorating walk before sitting down to enjoy a gastronomical feast at one of the town’s world class eateries. Plus, winter is largely windless, regularly sunny and, with far fewer tourists, one gets to have this scenic little gem virtually to oneself.
At Akademie Street Hotel, our focus is on making you feel completely at home, and we pride ourselves on the little touches that make a big difference – a fully stocked complimentary mini bar for those moments on your holiday when what you need most is down-time; your own expresso coffee machine when you need a cuppa Joe now; and a warming selection of night caps for you to savour by the fireside in our award winning Orangerie before heading out to treat yourself to the region’s unique, locally sourced haute cuisine.
So, don’t wait for holiday season to head to this picturesque town. Akademie Street room rates are lower in winter, while offering the same world class services and amenities, and many restaurants offer special winter menus which are perfectly paired with ‘cooler weather’ wines in the Barbera and Bordeaux styles. If you are lucky enough to visit mid-winter, the majestic peaks of the Franschhoek valley mountains will be covered in snow, a rare and gorgeous site for the discerning traveler. Our fire is lit and the wine, opened. We are just waiting for you.