Self Catering Home Stay Santa Rosa
Santa Rosa is a three bedroom self catering home situated in a 10 hectare private nature reserve bordering on the False Bay Park World Heritage site. The house is situated in a sheltered depression surrounded by beautiful forest and has magnificent views of the Lake St Lucia from the garden and sundowner deck.
The Spanish style Hacienda home was built in the 1960’s by an eccentric adventurer and author by the name of Hein Wicht. Hein penned several books from the little upstairs study with its view of the gardens towering Coconut palms and Lake St lucia. In 2020 after years of neglect the home was purchased by Gavin and Bridget Dickson who saw the potential in restoring what was once an authors bush paradise back its former glory as a relaxing and soulful retreat. Every effort was made to retain the original structure of the house and Santa Rosa now has three en suite rooms each with Queen size beds making it ideal for 3 couples.
There is a main terrace that is accessible off the main lounge, an ideal place for barbecues and el fresco dining under a towering Torchwood tree. A spacious lounge with a dining area set off to one side forms the heart of the home and has a fireplace for winter evenings and cold snaps.
The small farmhouse kitchen is fully equipped with all the necessary equipment and cooking facilities that one would need to prepare a delicious meal.
Peter Mfuleka is your smiling host at Santa Rosa, who will meet you on arrival and show you around the house and familiarize you with all the facilities. Peter will put out tables and chairs in the outside area of your choice (the courtyard is great for entertaining on a windy evening) set up barbecue equipment, service the rooms, wash dishes and generally keep an eye on all areas of the house during your stay.
The viewing deck and swimming pool is located on the highest point of the garden. When Gavin and Bridget first looked at the property it was decided that a viewing platform of sorts would be a pre requisite, somewhere to indulge in the age old tradition of sundowners with a magnificent view of the lake. The old water resevoir and pump house was identified as the structure most suited to a refurb for this cause and there is no doubt that many hours will be spent by guests with morning coffee, lazy sunbathing and evening sundowners on the pump house.
The Coconut Palms in the garden are over 50 years old and were planted by Hein Wicht. Hein wrote a book name The Palms of Southern Africa.
The Torchwoods in the garden are amongst the tallest trees in a Sandforest and name indlulamithi (Giraffe in Zulu) by the Zulus because of their height and the convoluted stems that have the appearance of a Giraffes neck
Hein Wicht had an English mother and German father. He was known for always having a sundowner in the evening dressed in a cravat and camberband.
Santa Rosa is also home to 10 hectares of sand forest. The owners are particularly fond of indigenous trees and regard it to be a huge honor to be custodians of such a beautiful and highly endangered botanical environment. The construction of a walking trail, tree tagging and the removal of invasive plants is a current and ongoing project that Peter and Gavin are working on. Sandforest attract several endemic and near endemic birds and it is a wonderful opportunity for visiting birders to see how many of these ‘specials’ they can see during their stay. Whilst Santa Rosa can keep the dendrologist and birder busy for days there is of course False Bay Park within walking distance away. False Bay Park is a 3000 hectare game reserve that borders Santa Rosa and straddles the western shore of Lake St Lucia’s Wetland Park World Heritage Site known as iSimangaliso. Isimangaliso is the Zulu word for miracle and indeed it is a remarkable area with unparalleled diversity in marine, terrestrial fauna and flora.
From the viewing platform at Santa Rosa one can cast your eye across a sea of sand forest, lake St Lucia, the wetlands of the eastern shore and the coastal dune forests from Sodwana to Cape Vidal, a most remarkable view!
View from Santa Rosa
Hluhluwe River Lodge