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Top Billing visits a luxury treetop lodge
Top Billing enjoys luxury on the
After a full morning’s ocean safari in Plettenberg Bay we continued our Garden Route trip by heading West to an age-old, indigenous forest - our home for the weekend.
Tsala Treetop Lodge literally sits in the canopy and was developed with the theme of an imaginary African civilisation lost to history but rediscovered. It used stone from the nearby Robberg quarries and re-cycled invasive tree species culled from the forest, resulting in a truly magical feel once you enter.
The décor is proudly African, drawing on the best cultural design from every corner of the continent. For Manager Karin Webber this beats a penthouse suite anywhere in the world, and the name ‘Tsala’ – meaning elevated resting place- is perfect for this luxurious spot.
This is home for Hunter Hotels CEO Ian Hunter, whose parents opened a nearby Hunter’s Country House forty years ago. This incredible location is dear to the family, who have been coming here since Ian was a young boy.
Located in the heart of the Garden Route, this centrally-situated lodge offers guests 10 beautiful suites and six two-bedroom villas in the treetops, each with a private plunge pool.
A mild, year round climate means the beautiful connecting walkways are always a breeze to navigate and with all the natural screening and sound-proofing of the canopy, each villa is an island of privacy.
The beautiful accommodation is matched by the delicious food on offer, and Harmony headed straight for Zinzi’s, which has been rated the top restaurant in Plett, thanks in no small part to Head Chef Gina Chaplin.
The restaurant lives up to its multi- award winning status by serving dishes like speciality Durban lamb curry and Norwegian seared salmon with chilli and ginger glaze served with cashew and coconut rice. The menu of wines also won Platinum at the Diners Club Winelist Awards.
While the lodge is comfortable enough to spend all your time inside, one of the highlights of the Tsitsikama National Park is Storm’s River Mouth, and Harmony decided he couldn’t miss a unique experience on the river.
Our guide, Zibonele Mdletshe of Untouched Adventures, had prepared more modes of river navigation than we knew even existed, from kayak to lilo and anvil boat.
If calm and cool is more your thing than the action water-sports more traditionally associated with beach holidays – then this is the trip for you, though the optional cliff dive Zibonele and Harmony enjoyed might only be for the brave!
To the bold - or just those in need of escape - this stretch of South African coastline offers no end of reward. Whether it’s the place you stay, where you eat, or how you get your thrill on – when five stars just aren’t enough to rate your experience – you know you’re on The Garden Route!