Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Great Constantia

Groot Constantia is the oldest wine estate in South Africa and a national monument. Since we live in Cape town, on the doorstep of the Great estate of Constatia we felt it our duty to visit!
Groot Constantia was established in 1685 by the Dutch East India Company Governor of the Cape of Good Hope Simon van der Stel, and was used to produce wine as well as fruit, vegetables and cattle.

There is a huge lawn in from of the house with a oak-tree lined road leading up to the front door.

The ancient oak trees provide shade to visitors. The children play on the lawn while the adults enjoy a wonderfull lunch at the Jonkhuis Restaurant.
Back to the trees, they are magnificent...

They seem to recicle themselves in a never ending cycle of life and death. :)
In 1925 the manor house was severely damaged in a fire. From 1927-1952 the house was restored and refurbished under the supervision of the architect F. K. Kendall, and with items donated and bought solely for this purpose by the art collector A. A. de Pass.

I can only thank these great protectors of history! We were not allowed to take any photographs inside the house, but i can reccommed a strowl through this beautifull manor.
The Cloete Cellar, the original wine cellar, dates back to 1791 and houses a Wine Museum, exhibiting various wine making equipment and especially wine storage and wine drinking vessels. The beautiful pediment gable above the cellar is one of sculptor Anton Anreith's masterpieces.
The views all around the estate is breathtaking. You can hire a picnicbasket from any one of the restaurants and enjoy a sunday afternoon lunch on the lawn.

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