Leisure & Travel
by Aspect County

South Africa’s Leeu Estates

An exclusive 17-room country house and boutique winery in the scenic Franschhoek valley, renowned worldwide for its exceptional food and wine offering.

Leeu Estates, the flagship property of the Leeu Collection, with its 17 luxuriously appointed suites sits just outside Franschhoek in South Africa’s Cape Winelands. It’s an exclusive five-star boutique hotel set in the vineyards of the Estates with panoramic views of the Franschhoek valley. It sits on 68 hectares of vineyards, landscaped gardens, and fynbos (indigenous vegetation), providing the ideal setting for an elegant and sophisticated private hideaway.

Enjoy a rejuvenating massage at the Leeu Spa.

  • Linger over lunch on the terrace at the Manor House, sipping a glass of premium South African wine.
  • Sample Mullineux & Leeu Family wines at the stylish Wine Studio tasting facility.
  • Wander the Bokkie Garden, presided over by Angus Taylor’s imposing Reflective Resonance sculpture.
  • Discover the impressive collection of contemporary art strategically placed throughout the Estates.
  • Build-up an appetite to do it all over again in the 15-metre infinity swimming pool and TechnoGym-equipped gym.
  • Enjoy complimentary use of the Estates’ bicycles to explore the grounds. A complimentary scheduled shuttle service transfers guests to and from the properties in the vibrant village with its art galleries, boutique shops and restaurants.

It all started as a personal journey for the founder Analjit Singh (aka BAS), an international investor of Indian origin. Captivated by the Western Cape’s exceptional beauty and vibrant energy during a trip to South Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, he decided to buy a family home in the Franschhoek valley. However, this soon transformed into what it is today – three historic farms joined to create Leeu Estates, a world-class hospitality and winemaking destination. 

At the centre of this working wine farm is the meticulously refurbished 19th-century Manor House offering superb comfort, fine dining, and platinum service. The contemporary classic, individually styled rooms and suites are filled with customised architectural detailing and tactile textures in a calm colour scheme. Each one features carefully curated artwork and sculptures from various countries, luxurious extras, and superbly equipped marble bathrooms. Many have their own terraces and fireplaces, and all enjoy idyllic vineyard and mountain views. 

Another of the hotel’s attractions is the Leeu Spa, a wellness sanctuary offering expert massages and holistic treatments inspired by centuries-old Asian traditions. Using wild-harvested organic ingredients from remote, untainted regions such as the Amazon rain forest and the Himalayas, the hand-blended product range utilised in the treatment’s harnesses natural healing energy. The spa includes a 15-metre heated infinity swimming pool and a spacious gym, equipped with the latest generation fitness machines, that offers framed views of the majestic mountains.

There’s also delicious and innovative cuisine prepared by the culinary team headed by resident executive chef Oliver Cattermole. At Leeu Estates, food and South African vintages from Leeu Collection’s cellar are served in The Dining Room or al fresco on The Garden Terrace, seating up to 40 people. The Reading Room, with its wide selection of reading material, comfortable seating, open wood-burning fireplace, and views of the vineyards and gardens, is where guests can enjoy some time out. The Wine Studio offers guests handcrafted premium wines from the award-winning Mullineux & Leeu Family Wines.

The Bokkie Garden, an expression of love and close to BAS’s heart, is something unique: an area planted with grasses and hedges that the hotel’s resident herd of bokkies (Afrikaans for small Buck) love to eat. Reflective Resonance’ by acclaimed South African sculptor Angus Taylor, also in the Bokkie Garden, is a powerful piece of art in bronze and Belfast granite that is set to become a Franschhoek landmark.

The Leeu Collection’s hospitality portfolio currently comprises three five-star boutique properties in South Africa. In addition to Leeu Estates, there is Leeu House, an exclusive 12-room hotel in the heart of Franschhoek village, and Le Quartier Français, a romantic 21-room hotel also located in the village, where award-winning executive chef Margot Janse is at the helm of the internationally acclaimed restaurant The Tasting Room. 

Complementing Leeu Collection on the main street of Franschhoek is Tuk Tuk, a craft beer microbrewery in collaboration with The Cape Brewing Company, and an exotic new culinary hub which will be home to Marigold, the village’s first Indian restaurant.

The breathtakingly beautiful Franschhoek Valley is renowned as one of the world’s great wine and food destinations. Settled by French Huguenots in 1688, it has retained its Gallic charm and character. At the heart of the valley is the romantic village of Franschhoek, with its award-winning restaurants, art galleries and boutiques, as well as numerous other attractions. The village lies just under an hour’s drive from Cape Town and its International Airport.