Friday, December 24, 2010

The Rosendal experience is more than just another country retreat.

It is indeed necessary to post a selection of images, visual experiences encountered during my recent weekend-away at Daniel van der Merwe's Rosendal country home. The pruned tree and seeds sown recently have flourished under the incessant spring/summer showers, transforming Rosendal and it's surrounding areas into a most spectacular visual experience (visit link to Rosendal's facebook page for up-to-date insight into happenings). Google earth map of Rosendal town.
This is in sharp contrast to the images posted on the previous blog entry - taken towards the end of the winter season. Even the gravel roads provided creative inspiration; the sand shaped and formed by the gushing waters that rushed down the resistance-free grid of town-planning lanes. 

The local bird life and pets; geese, ducks, the rooster and its submissive hen, including the exhilarated city cat (Daniel's Yeoville based pet) enjoyed the hot sun baking down on the rain soaked and brightly coloured landscape. The vast array of flowers, although an endearing feast to the eye whilst enlightening the soul, also provided nourishment for the two beehives on the property. The two armies of bees provided its unfair share of excitement - sending the arms of the locals swinging as they tried to fend off possible bee stings.

The trip down had been an anxious one; dark-clouds looming with more pending rain,  making the roads slippery and the water-filled potholes an even greater threat on this, the shortest, yet scenic route to this remote location. However the favourable weekend weather forecast and intermittent bright-blue sky patches provided a comfortable and safe journey there and back. The weekend was fabulous with lunches and dinners at homes with spectacular, priceless and unhindered views of the green-veldt, sandstone mountains and farm-dams. 
Ons kuier op Wessel van Huyssteen se stoep
This is an idyllic part of the country that is unspoiled by development, the only eyebrow-raised constructions is that of the architect Daniel van der Merwe. He designed a number of eye catching Green homesteads using alternative building materials - situated on the north-east-side of the town (visit link to Visi images and text). There seems to be a reluctance amongst the local residence in support of development, even though there is a readiness to want to capatalise on every extra cent to-be-spent. Local designer-makers have eagerly established themselves in carefully considered homesteads and trend-setting galleries and or period-based trading stores. 
Daniel van der Merwe in the gallery
Turksvy Trading

The history of Rosendal and the region is captured in every object imaginable, displayed to maximum effect in recreated structures reminiscent of years gone by. Dahla Hulme, Meerkatkolonie, and Sandra Lemmer, Turksvy Trading, have created local arts and craft including furniture outlets that truly inspires the heart and soul. Buy a piece and add meaning to your life - objects that will imbue your home with true happiness (to refer to Alain De Botton's phrase - cited in his book titled Architecture of Happiness)

The Rosendal Hotel
If you are looking for a quiet in the country bygone-era experience, then Rosendal is truly it. The new hotel, The Rosendal, offering the comfort and lazy option experience without the over exposed Clarence glamour of being seen wining and dining. If the eye is the window to the soul, then Rosendal in all its present summer splendour, is more than just another country retreat - offering the soul a revitalizing experience; an authentic festive season getaway from the buzzing city life. 

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