Need to know
15, spread over two farms: the Village (for families) and the Lodge (for ages 12 and above).
11am, but flexible (subject to availability). Earliest check-in, 2pm. Luggage storage is available.
Double rooms from $240.93 (ZAR3,565), excluding tax at 15 per cent.
Rates include a farmhouse breakfast of home-made breads, rusks, jams, local cheeses, fruits and charcuterie. Eggs, bacon and more are cooked to order and eaten family-style at a communal table. The minimum stay is two nights.
Interiors at the two farms are immaculate throughout and created by two different South African designers: Sarah Ord’s style is bright and playful, best seen in La Clé Village; while local boy Jacques Erasmus leans towards refined and understated in newer La Clé Lodge.
At the hotel
La Clé Village offers boules and croquet; La Clé Lodge has a putting green, rugby field, two swimming dams and a tennis court; in-room spa treatments are available at both, plus free bicycles, laundry service and WiFi. In rooms: snack basket and bottle of wine on arrival; free bottled water; kettle, tea and coffee; black-out curtains; Naturel bath products made from ingredients in the Franschhoek Valley.
Our favourite rooms
Check into thatched-roofed, green-shuttered La Clé Lodge for a refined take on farmhouse life in Franschhoek. Of the five bedrooms in this house, the Courtyard Room was our favourite for its opulent bathroom. At La Clé Village, the various rooms are spread between three village houses (Manoir, Grange and Colonial), plus a private two-bedroom villa (the Galerie). We fell for the large Garden Suite in Manoir, for its lively atmosphere in La Clé’s main building.
Water babies are well served by a stay at La Clé. Between the Village and the Lodge, there are no less than five pools, including the main pool for all guests at Manoir (in La Clé Village); an adults-only pool at the Grange (also in the Village) and another at La Clé Lodge, for adults and over-12s only. Whichever you choose, you’re guaranteed dramatic views of Franschhoek’s crenellated mountains, which glow red at sunset.
Swimwear is essential for the six months of South Africa’s spring and summer (September–March), especially in Franschhoek where life revolves around the pool and backyard braais.
There’s no special provision for wheelchair users.
All ages are welcome at La Clé Village; over-12s only at La Clé Lodge. There are free cots for two and under, roll-away beds ages two–12 (ZAR1,500.00 a night). Board games, books, puzzles, DVDs, baby bedlinen and more available.