Perfect Hideaways: Explore Lemuria, Betty’s Bay
Escape to the seaside at a wonderful retreat in the beautiful coastal town of Betty’s Bay in the Cape Overberg region. Here you’ll find a special place for families – Lemuria available through Perfect Hideaways.
Fact or fable there’s a story about a lost continent once existing in ancient times, that sank beneath the ocean floor and disappeared into oblivion. The discovery of lemur fossils in Madagascar and India suggested a land bridge between Africa and the Middle East, being the ancestral home of mankind. As mythical and mysterious as the tale tells, the theory is considered obsolete with geophysicists and meteorologists having their say about plate tectonics and continental drift and other scientific stuff. And so the hypothesis of the lost land of Lemuria has been buried, alongside its forgotten continent.
At least until you drive the winding coastal road of Clarence Drive, into the rugged wilderness of the Koegelberg Nature Reserve, and arrive at the seaside hamlet of Betty’s Bay. Discreetly cushioned into the thicket of the Cape fynbos shrub and emerging from the soil as an exposed, slender slab of charcoal, Lemuria reveals itself as an ancient, hidden land of natural treasure, upon a secluded stretch of shoreline.
A nature-inspired hideaway
Set on one vast level of open-plan living, dining, reclining and entertaining spaces, this hideaway seamlessly marries the raw elements of nature with the magnificence of exuberant colour, vintage accessories and art pieces, and ingenious design.
Four beautiful bedrooms – one of which is located upstairs, overlooking the ocean and up towards the rugged mountain range – flank the helm of the home and the Mallorcian-inspired cobbled courtyard.
Every space has been sensationally styled and consciously considered to allow nature’s narrative to prevail. The blues of the sky and water, the greens, the greys and the gold of the landscape, bounce back inside, onto the walls, into the individual pieces of art and bespoke furnishings that have been collected and nurtured during the family’s years of travel and work abroad.
A rich cultural delight
Rough concrete ceilings and raw screed floors are embellished by the kitchen’s vibrant up-cycled antique milk canisters serving as barstools beside an Eastern European work bench. A cerulean built-in antique door frame from India, some old handmade French sporting props in the bar and a vintage wooden Indian ice fridge. Unique antique linens and prints from the Middle East alongside family heirlooms and traditional African art all speak of a curious lost land, long forgotten.
Just as the interiors escort you through passages of time, seducing with style and satiating an appetite for free-flowing sea air, so do the outdoor spaces invigorate and pacify as they introduce an escapist’s eden. You’ll start your day with the sun, as it rises and rests on the deck, with the light reaching the living spaces that are open to all of the elements. A hot brew on the lovely deck bedside the swimming pool watching the black oyster catchers dart around the fynbos, then off to explore the beaches and little pathways to secret rock pools with kelp forests and boulders covered in mussels.
Being under marine protection, the sand’s awash with seaside jewels of shells and little creatures. When you’re done with the salty, sandy garden it’s back to the hammock, or the lazy loungers beside the pool, or that little cool spot with the view and a book. As the afternoon sun begins to settle and the breeze begins to shift up a notch, the courtyard beckons. You’ll dart like the oystercatchers between the bar and the wine cellar, the front deck and the kitchen, catching the light as it continues to change from golden to dusky pink.
A little oasis
Vaya con Dios is wafting from the stereo, drifting through each space as the chicken roasts on the braai, the Chenin chills in the bucket, and the kids bellow out bursts of laughter from down the corridors, in their little secret hang-out coves. It’s apparent, as the night sets in and the breeze settles and the stars blanket the darkness, that this hideaway in Betty’s Bay has become your own little oasis of bliss.
Your secret continent of beautiful things, where you and your favourite people gather to build beautiful memories, beside a beautiful stretch of shoreline.
Images henrique wilding