From the unusual design to the picturesque location, there are many reasons to stay at the unique power-station-turned-boutique-hotel, The Turbine Hotel and Spa in Knysna. Here are five top reasons to put The Turbine on your itinerary when travelling along the popular Garden Route in the Western Cape.
The unique factor
Originally an old power station built in the late 1930s/early 1940s, the now-boutique hotel certainly ticks the unique factor when it comes to accommodation. Where else will you see lifting hooks and chains hanging from the ceiling or steel pillars and pipes by your bedside? However, don’t let the thought of industrial parts and machinery lead you to believe the hotel is cold or uncomfortable, on the contrary, the remaining old power station features are painted in bright, bold colours and cleverly offset by lush furnishings and bold art supplied by the Knysna Fine Art Gallery, which good to note, is all available to purchase.
Each of the 26 rooms is uniquely themed and styled on an aspect of Knysna history or attractions, such as the Seahorse Room, which is styled around the endangered Knysna seahorses found in the neighbouring lagoon or the Schooner Room, which includes paintings of ships on the walls, polished wooden floorboards, a seafaring chest and a porthole-like mirror. You are spoilt for choice when it comes to views as the rooms either overlook the Knysna Lagoon, Thesen Islands or the island’s canals.
What they all have in common are all the features that make for a comfortable stay, such as large showers and separate baths, fluffy robes, tea- and coffee-making facilities with an espresso pod machine, a fully-stocked mini-bar, free Wi-Fi, an iPod docking station, a DVD player and more.
The Turbine is located in the pretty Cape Cod-style and affluent Thesen Islands in Knysna. The Knysna lagoon, cute cafés, designer clothing and homeware stores being a major drawcard. And what better way to explore the quaint area and lagoon than by boat, kayak or bicycle? The Turbine Water Club, just adjacent to the hotel, offers sunset Champagne cruises aboard motorised pontoon barges, kayak and bike hire and other activities such as hiking and whale-watching in and around the area. Highly recommended:
A sunset/bubbles cruise of the Knysna lagoon, which takes you past Featherbeds and the iconic Knysna heads. As well as hiring a bike to transport you to the ever-popular île de païn
restaurant and artisan bakery for inspired and healthy breakfast and lunches and delightful take-home pastries.
Although you will want to schedule at least one meal at île de païn, you are also in great hands when it comes to dining options at The Turbine. Choose from craft beer and craft gin-on-tap and light yet decadent pub fare at the relaxed Gastro Pub or full sit-down meals at the Island Café, both restaurants offering inside and al fresco dining. Due to Covid-19 regulations, the buffet breakfast option, as well as other hot breakfast items, such as omelettes and eggs benny are currently all ordered à la carte.Highly recommended:
The intriguing craft-gin cocktails and sweet and sticky pork belly and truffle chips at Gastro Pub.
The eco-friendly initiatives
The Turbine Hotel strives to incorporate eco-friendly initiatives as much as possible. Eco-friendly features include solar panels on the roofs to heat the water as well as hotel and rainwater collection used to irrigate the gardens. While local and seasonal ingredients are utilised across the menus.
The small but well-equipped spa offers top-to-toe treatments such as facials, scrubs, manis and pedis and full-body massages to help you recover from jet lag, get into that holiday frame of mind or massage weary muscles after experiencing the more strenuous activities on offer. The spa features single and double treatment rooms, a dedicated nail area and a Rasul steam room and is currently running a 50%-off special on selected treatments until 31 January 2021. Highly recommended:
The Knysna Journey, a 90-minute treatment, which includes a foot scrub and foot massage, followed by a body massage of your choice.
If you’re heading to the Garden Route, make sure to make a stop at Knysna and The Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa for unique accommodation and experiences! The Turbine Hotel is currently offering a host of accommodation, restaurant and spa specials for more info or to make a booking go to www.turbinehotel.co.za.*Ruth Cooper was a guest of Turbine Hotel