* This article first appeared here in VIEW Magalogue
Plettenberg Bay has for a long time been the playground of those looking for a classy garden route stay, and with a plethora of accommodation options, on a recent visit, I decided to visit one of Plett’s newest editions – Athina’s Cove. There’s something to be said for being the first-ever guest…
This enticing 13-sleeper home is tucked away safely in the Whale Rock Estate – the bonus of a security estate is never having to worry about locking doors and children can roam about freely. Of course, waking up to the sound of the ocean and knowing that Plett’s award-winning beaches are a mere minute’s drive away is a complete bonus.
The garden route town has long been synonymous with laidback luxury and Athina’s Cove fits right in. This brand-new home has been fitted out with a rustic French-meets beach cottage styling. There are three spacious en suite rooms and a separate fourth single room. Upstairs a loft provides the perfect kid’s hangout den with a further six bunk beds and an open-plan TV lounge.
The house is designed for entertaining with large and inviting living spaces. With an outside bar with an ice machine and drinks fridge, it isn’t hard to picture those perfect summer evenings spent outside with friends. The patio also connects to the infinity pool, boma and then a tanning deck with loungers and umbrellas. With no less than three dining spaces, meals can be enjoyed both indoor and alfresco weather dependant.
For those interested in the name, the Athina was a Greek ship that ran aground in 1967. Due to conflict in the Middle East, the Suez Canal was closed and upon making the trip around Africa, the Athina hit Whale Rock at the tip of the Robberg Peninsula – a collision that would be her ending. The wreck is still visible in clear conditions and provides for an interesting discovery for divers.
Despite having visited Plettenberg often enough, I’ve never actually been to Robberg Nature Reserve. With the reserve literally on our doorstep, we just had to go exploring. After paying your nominal conservation fee the magnificent Robberg Peninsula is yours for exploring. Take the shorter circular walk to ‘The Gap’ for an easier walk at 2.1km, and if time and fitness allow, make the 9.2km Point Circuit Trail distance (taking an estimated time of four hours).
When in Plett, it’s become a tradition for me to pop into the classy five-star Old Rectory Hotel. The chic lodging is still a fairly new addition to the Rare Earth property portfolio and is a tasteful renovation of the town’s oldest building. A slow breakfast on the outside deck should be a frim feature on every Plett itinerary. Makes sure to try their muesli – possibly the best I’ve had in the country, and Champu – the hotel’s sister property’s bubbly.
Athina’s Cove is the latest offering to Plett’s allure, and with mythically beautiful scenery on your doorstep, it’s a must-visit. You can book your stay through athinascove.co.za and likewise, be one of the first to experience the magic.