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NNestled quietly and enviably against the slopes of Table Mountain, and separated from its lower reaches by the world-famous Kirstenbosch Gardens, is one of Cape Town’s most prestigious suburbs, Bishopscourt – or if you will, a 4000sqm piece of heaven.
Steeped in history dating back to European settlement at the Cape of Good Hope, Bishopscourt started out as Van Riebeek’s farm, Boscheuvel (‘Bush Hill’) in the early years of his arrival. The farm, boasting imported grape vines and a variety of fruit and nut trees, was primarily used as victualing stop for the Dutch East India Company in 1652.
AA few years later, Van Riebeek planted a wild almond hedge along the borders of Boscheuvel to protect the cattle of the Cape colonists from the Khoikhoi. Together with a series of thorny shrubs they formed a defensive barrier from the mouth of the Salt River, along the Liesbeeck River, up Wynberg Hill to Kirstenbosch. Remnants of the hedge are still visible today.
WWhat’s in a name?
Throughout the years, ownership of the land changed hands quite a number of times. As Mr. H. Maynier’s property, it became known as Protea Estate before the Anglican Church bought it 1849.
Used as the official residence for Anglican Bishops and Archbishops of Cape Town, the property was befittingly named Bishop’s Court. Leah and Desmond Tutu were also among the residents, and it was in their home Nelson Mandela spent his first night of freedom after 27 years of imprisonment in 1990.
The following day, Mandela (and his fellow comrades) held his first press conference at the estate’s garden, before acquiring his own home in this lush, green and leafy neighbourhood a few years later.
TToday, the highly sought-after residential enclave is dotted with pristine homes owned by The British High Commissioner, the US ambassador, business executives, family buyers and other various local and international personalities.
Immerse yourself in the beauty, tranquility and splendour of Bishopscourt
You too can treat yourself to the quaint ambience, well-kept oak tree-lined avenues, lush valleys and sweeping panoramic views that Bishopscourt has to offer.
Plus, there’s plenty that you can do around the area, such as hiking through charming trails - including The Skeleton Gorge and Nursery Ravine - chasing waterfalls, or taking a free guided-tour of the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden.
But now, one thing stands between you and this dreamy experience: accommodation.
Luckily, a number of gorgeous villas await your arrival.
The Western Cape was the first place that Europeans settled in the country, in 1652 when Jan van Riebeeck’s three vessels landed at the Cape. As employees of the Dutch East India Company, they had come to establish a halfway station for ships travelling to and from the East. Their influence is evident in the buildings, some of which are 350 years old, and culture of the Western Cape.
Experience music, dance and food from across the country, as well as Tsonga crafts and Zulu beer-brewing; and don’t forget the magical clicking language of the San people.
The first shebeens in South Africa were local bars and taverns where mostly working-class urban males could unwind, socialise, and escape the oppression of life during the Apartheid era.
Prepare to be enchanted by whitewashed fisherman’s cottages, seasonal wildflowers, seafood fresh from the sea, and wines with complexity and conscience.
The old official residence of the president of South Africa, Groote Schuur, is the very place where the country’s bright, new future first came into being.
Inland from the Cape’s famous Garden Route, over breathtakingly beautiful mountain passes, magnificent red rocks and the wide open spaces of the Klein Karoo, you’ll find Oudtshoorn – once known internationally as the ostrich capital of the world