Right in the heart of the Cape Winelands, the 4-star family-friendly Spier Hotel was one of the first farms to be established in 1692, just 30 years after Jan Van Riebeeck founded the Cape of Good Hope.
Apparently, the hotel's design (with features a series of walkways) was influenced by the architecture of buildings in the older part of Cape Town (the Bo-Kaap) and that of Meditteranean villages where pedestrians have right of way.
But apart from its historical heritage, what makes Spier Hotel special is its commitment to sustainability and responsible tourism - the hotel was one of the first to be Fair Trade Certified and both management and staff recognise that in order to produce the best quality product, it is imperative to find a harmonious balance between nature and mankind.
With 155 air-conditioned rooms, guests are spoilt for choice with Signature Rooms, Terrace Rooms (river and garden facing) and Riverside Rooms and Suites.
These are positioned around 6 private courtyards, each with its own swimming pool, and connected to the reception area, lounge, restaurant, bar and terrace by a series of walkways through lush manicured gardens, keeping to the village theme.
Rooms are sun-filled, airy and spacious, furnished with plush, comfortable beds and both rooms and hotel lobby are decorated with original artworks from Spier’s own diverse South African contemporary art collection.
Room decor includes a neutral colour pallet enhanced by bold, vibrant colours, patterns and textures, and most feature magical views of the Helderberg mountains and Eerste River below.
Spier is known for it’s family-friendly stays, with careful thought being given to entertaining and creating a magical experience for children. Some hotel rooms are inter-leading so children can sleep not too far from their parents’ ears.
Added facilities on offer are: child-friendly enclosed gardens (incorporating toy boxes and wooden jungle gyms), a supervised children’s clubhouse offering games and DVDs, as well as baby sitting services.
Guests can also dine on the property at Eight restaurant, which provides farm-to-table al a carte dining or at the Spier Hotel Restaurant.
Why is it Eco?
Spier prides itself on its contribution to responsible tourism. Being one of the first hotels in South Africa to have received Fair Trade Tourism SA accreditation in 2004, plus a string of other sustainability awards, Spier emphasises community and environmental responsibility.
Almost 300 hectares are biodynamically farmed at Spier. The technique of biodynamics recognises that there is a symbiotic relationship between plants and soil and that the health of the soil is imperative to produce high quality crops, which in turn revitalise and increase the health of those who consume them.
Biodynamic processes work in accordance with the planetary influences and lunar cycles. Soil fertility, plant growth and livestock care are treated as ecologically interelated tasks.
Crops are fertilised naturally by the animals (cattle and chickens) that are pasture-raised. The organic vegetable garden supplies Eight Restaurant (a farm-to-table eating experience) and Eight Deli with responsibly produced ingredients to prepare its wholesome meals and picnic baskets.
Meals are made from the freshest, locally farmed produce available, with some meals including Spier’s own grown organic produce and free range eggs. Menus are adjusted according to season and availability and meals prepared by passionate and experienced Executive chef, Charl Coetzee.
Fish is responsibly sourced and has been graded as sustainable according to The South African Sustainable Seafood Initiative.
Planting of indigenous plants is also carefully integrated on the property to maintain biodiversity and balance alongside vineyard cultivation and food production. Where possible, natural materials and resources have been used and indigenous and water-wise plants feature in the landscaping.
All rooms are equipped with energy efficient mini bars and bathrooms with waterwise showerheads, and a hotel-wide water conservation programme is firmly in place, with wastewater being filtered through an innovative greywater system.
Restaruarant decor is unique, eye-catching, energy efficient and recycled! Ten thousand individually-crafted flowers made from recycled plastic milk bottles line the ceiling on the terrace of Eight Restaruant.
These were made by renowned local artist Heath Nash and are lit with low voltage LEDs. Recycled plastic bottles also light up the main area of the restaurant.
Heath has also designed and created a customized chandelier suspended above the tasting counter. This was put together from 334 recycled Spier wine bottles (it weighs a whopping 370 kgs!). Spier even has it's own paper-making facility.
Spier’s Eagle Encounters is committed to conservation, providing the perfect environment for rehabilitation of various birds of prey as well as conservation, education and eco-tourism programmes. Find out more.
Children under 12 are accommodated for free when sharing with at least 1 paying adult.
Check in time: from 14h00. Check out time: by 11h00.
There is a maximum of 2 adults allowed per hotel room.
Guests or visitors can become members of the Wine Club at Spier. This includes special events, along with discounts on wine, hotel and the farm-to-table restaurant Eight.
Other places of interest to visit in the area include Saxenburg Winery, Babylonstoren working farm, Koelenhof Winery, Stellenbosch Botanical Gardens, Dorp Straat Gallery, Stellenbosch Art Gallery, Butterfly World, Rupert Museum, Remhoogte Wine Estate, Dormershire Wine Estate, Toy and Miniature Museum, Drakenstein Lion Park, the Cheetah Outreach Programme at Somerset West and more.
Gordon’s Bay and Strand beaches are just 15 minutes away.
Cape Town Airport is 20 minutes away.
Spier Hotel Quick Facts
Four-star Hotel on one of the oldest wine farms in South Africa, featuring a restaurant, spa and conference facilities.
Situated just outside the historical town of Stellenbosch along the R310 (Baden Powell Rd) and positioned next to the Eerste River.
S 33 58.389 E 18 46.944
Single, couples, families and groups (great conferencing facilities)
Rooms charged from R1200 - R2800
Packages available such as "Food & Wine", "Recharge & Unwind" (including spa treatments), "Golfing" and "Live the Farm Life".
For example: "Live the Farm Life" package for a family includes:
Accommodation in a Signature room for two nights,
Wine tasting for two adults and a grape juice tasting for two children,
Family farm dinner, Picnic,
Eagle encounter day pass,
Ice cream at Eight-to-go for each child (max 2 children),
Creative Block kids art kit.
Other packages include: “Food & Wine”, “Recharge and unwind” (Spa treatments included), “Golfing” package.
Wine tasting rates: Spier Signature Tasting - (R35.00 per person) Chocolate and Wine Tasting - (R50.00 per person) Frans K Smit Tasting - (R90.00 per person)
Wine tasting: Open daily for tastings from 10h00 to 16h00.
Green in Africa Eco-Rating
To be rated
Luxury linen and towels supplied
Yes - in every room
Yes, al a carte dining at the hotel restaurant & wine bar, farm-to-table dining at Eight Restaurant, picnic fare and snacks at Eight Deli.
Wine tasting, sedgeway rides through the vineyards, horse riding, farm tours with Farmer Angus, picnicking in style, Eagle encounters, walks through the farmstead and historical bulldings, art gallery visits and view one of the most extensive contemporary SA art collections in the country (on-site), craft market (where you can support South African crafters and choose from a collection of contemporary and traditional artworks), Camelot Spa treatments and more.
Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
Eco-travel & Lifestyles
Hi, my name is Melissa and I created this site together with photographer Christopher List to help spread awareness about green lifestyles and travel, so everyone can learn how easy it is to live in a sustainable way. Enjoy!
I wasn't sure what a permaculture design course was about, until I read through Melissa's fantastic blog! I've signed up and soon I'll be a PDC graduate too.
Kelly Richardson - Arizona
The link between personal responsibility and preserving our environment is becoming increasingly clear to me. Reading up on simple ways to be more eco-friendly in my life and travels has really helped me practice what I preach.
Dennis Howley - Namibia
I can't wait to follow Melissa and Chris' adventures in the Middle East and Africa. You guys inspire me!