Luxury Eco Travel at Mosaic Private Sanctuary, Hermanus

Words: Julie Velosa

Mosaic Private Sanctuary is one of those rare tucked away gems, and unless you’ve specifically been made aware of it, you may not even know that it exists. And that is definitely part of its charm. Located on the Hermanus Lagoon (just outside of the town itself and actually closer to Stanford) it is a fully inclusive eco-lodge hidden away amongst the indigenous fauna.

Getting to Mosaic Private Sanctuary

Don’t trust google maps to get you there like we did, you’ll end up on the other side of the lagoon looking across at where you’re meant to be (Google doesn’t account for the fact that you would need a pontoon to get you across with its directions). Rather travel to the charming village of Stanford, go right through it, along a dirt road and you’ll find your way there.

Lagoon Lodge and Mosaic Cottages

Mosaic Private Sanctuary is divided into two sections –the Lagoon Lodge and Mosaic Cottages (bigger self-contained houses/cottages for families and groups) located further down the road, also home to The Lagoon Café at the historic 1892 Spookhuis.

Lagoon Lodge, where we stayed, is made up of five private and beautiful stone bungalows with private patios, connected by wooden walkways. What we loved about the design is how it seems to have been built around the flora and trees, rather than on top of them.

The buildings incorporate beautiful tree and stone elements, some of which have been built around the trees as they grow.

The theme is carried through in lamps, furniture and other elements that also use reclaimed branches and stumps.

Lagoon Lodge Bungalows

Our spacious stone bungalow had the benefit of a stunning view of the lagoon, framed by trees and bushes, just private enough to enjoy without disturbance from other guests. A canopied four-poster bed is the central feature and gives the room a romantic and magical feel. A private balcony is a perfect place to enjoy a sundowner gin and tonic or glass of wine.

The room features a spacious bathroom complete with modern tub, indoor shower and outdoor shower (def for summer only!).

What to do at Mosaic Private Sanctuary

Because of its remote location – on 1000 hectares of conservated land – Mosaic Private Sanctuary caters for every whim of staying guests, right down to keeping you busy with daily activities.

You’ll be assigned a guide when you arrive who will give you the rundown of all that’s available to keep you entertained. During whale season, you can take a 4×4 trip over to the beach to see Southern Rights up close and personal in the bay – something everyone should experience. You can also opt to try your hand at SUPping, quad biking, hiking and more.

mosaic private sanctuary

We were fortunate enough to have absolutely crystal-clear weather – ideal for a leisurely kayak. The lagoon is like a mirror reflecting the mountainous surroundings and the scenery is literally breathtaking. With all the gear needed on hand, we enjoyed a beautiful row – it was the perfect way to counter all the calories of a tasty lunch enjoyed earlier at the deli.

Dining at Mosaic

The Lagoon Café is situated in and around the 1892 Spookhuis building – the centre of the story of the ghost of Agnes Stroud, one of the original residents of the property.

Legend has it that after Agnes died, her daughter Henrietta, fed up with her remote life on the lagoon, crossed to the town of Hermanus by boat, leaving the homestead behind forever. Over the years there have been sightings of a lady with a parasol around the Spookhuis (her original home). With the venue being so beautiful, we can imagine why Agnes still wants to wander the shoreline…

The Spookhuis mosaic private sanctuary

Ghosts aside though, you can enjoy traditional café style food and friendly service from the team, seated at the tables under the ethereal Milkwood trees.

If you are staying at Lagoon Lodge, then your dinner and breakfast will be served in the main area of the lodge and set menus make it very easy to just enjoy your meal without having to think much.

Relaxing at Mosaic Private Sanctuary

If you’ve had your fill of busy outdoorsy stuff, then we highly recommend booking in for a treatment at the Rain Milkwood Spa. The intimate space is geared to ease muscle pain from all your activities and transport you to a peaceful and restorative state.

I had one of the best massages I have had in a while from the lovely Chupo and the aromatic Rain oil was perfect for skin that was feeling particularly dry from the winter cold.

Switch Off and Relax

One of the best parts about a place like Mosaic is the fact that a lot of the thinking is done for you by the team, which allows you to really take a break and rest. No TV’s and limited internet access make it easier to switch off and disconnect from the real world and immerse yourself in nature.

mosaic private sanctuary

If you want to get out and about, there are plenty of things to do and the team are adept and figuring out just what will work for you – from visits to the nearby big cat sanctuary – Panthera, to sunset beach picnics and wine tasting at local venues. If you want to simply relax and enjoy the gorgeous surroundings with a book and peace and quiet, you can do that too.

How you choose to make the most of your stay is really up to you.

The team are a genuinely lovely group of people who will help you have exactly the kind of break you envision for yourself.

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