Exceptional - Enough Said!
Where to start... From the drive through the gates, through the beautiful gardens to the very beautiful hotel, which used to be a family home. Stunning... The covered patio area where breakfast is served is lovely, the furniture, the layout, the flowers - everything is perfect.
A friendly welcome and glass of champagne on arrival in front of an open log fire and I knew I would love our time at Hartford - our friends had recommended we stay here and I'm so glad they did! My husband spoke to the manager about paying for an upgrade, he showed us two rooms that were available on the lake and both were absolutely stunning. The first being a traditional round building, with a round bed and curved walls with beautiful views through the patio doors and a huge log burner. The other was furnished with dark furniture and had a separate living room - both had plunge pools and beautiful views. We chose the round house, and the manager upgraded us for free!
The house... WOW... The furnishings are stunning, however very relaxed, the ambiance that they have created is a beautiful, relaxed family home. The staff are attentive, efficient, friendly and professional. The tasting menu was brilliant, the small intimate restaurant was again beautifully furnished. The atmosphere was one of excitement about what we were going to be served. All the dishes served were adventurous, stunningly presented, using the finest ingredients. Before each course we were given a description of the dish, how it was cooked and also wine to match. The service again was exceptional.
Breakfast - Wow... Freshly squeezed vegetable juice, beautiful hams, cheeses, fruit and cereal. I chose smoked salmon and eggs (something I rarely find in SA) - exquisite. We had invited my mother in law for breakfast who loved visiting the house as she used to visit the family when it was a family home. She said it was just as beautiful then. When we came to pay the bill as they had not included her breakfast, again the manager waivered the cost and said it was his thanks for us visiting. Amazing customer service touches such as this makes us recommend to friends and will definitely make us come again when we are in SA.
We tried to extend our stay as we loved it so much, but sadly they were booked up. I literally could write forever about this place it is so exceptional. If you are reading this review as you have booked a visit here - I'm jealous. If you're looking at this review to choose a hotel - book here! I can't recommend it enough, and I challenge anyone who has anything negative about this beautiful property, the staff and service.