Ocean Eleven Guesthouse, Hermanus

Words: Julie Velosa

Hermanus lures in massive crowds annually for whale watching and because of this, it is a small town that is saturated with B&B’s, guesthouses and hotels up and down every street. It can be hard to sift through the plethora available to find the real gems but Ocean Eleven is one such pearl.

The luxury guesthouse is situated on Westcliff Road, which, if you were standing facing the ocean from the heart of town, would be to your right, towards the new harbour. The entrance makes it look deceivingly small but once you are inside the property you can appreciate it fully. Its Cape Cod style perfectly suits its position, situated literally right on the oceanfront. From the outside pool area, the view looks over scrubby indigenous flora that seamlessly becomes the blue waters of Walker Bay. The view extends right across the Hermanus coastline and is uninterrupted and utterly breathtaking.


The interior of the guesthouse is beautifully decorated with an intimate ambience that makes you feel as though you are in someone’s home, rather than a guesthouse.

Tea is laid on in the lounge area and guests can help themselves to a slice of lovely homemade cake or tart, fresh fruit and rusks. There is a lovely wall of books that lines the lounge, so if you have enough time, you can pick from the selection of novels, curl up on a couch and escape.

Our room overlooked the pool area and once we had settled in we changed into comfy robes and headed out to the deck to relax. One by one other guests had the same idea. The allure of the warm autumn sun and the plushest of lounger cushions was a fatal combo. It took real effort to keep my eyes open to read another page of my book and not to succumb to the lull of the waves and inevitable afternoon nap. It was a battle I eventually lost.

After a restful nap we headed out to Hemel-en-Aarde restaurant, Source, and after a thoroughly delicious meal, we headed back to the guesthouse for a great night’s sleep in perfect quiet.

Breakfast the next day was a lavish spread of fruits, cereals, local cheeses, baked goods and yoghurts and that was just the cold section. A delicious fry up followed that and ultimately what followed that was a return to the loungers for a post breakfast lie down. How indulgent!


Thoughtful touches make your stay at Ocean Eleven that much more pleasant. Sherry in your room for if the weather is cooler, a selection of complimentary snacks plus a fully stocked mini bar and underfloor heating to name just a few.

The team are friendly and unobtrusive and will go out of their way to make your stay as memorable as possible.

Even though we didn’t visit in the traditional time for Southern Right whale watching, we did actually spot Bryde whales and dolphins in the bay, which we could watch comfortably from the pool area. This awesome viewing plus all the special touches make Ocean Eleven the perfect spot for a weekend getaway at any time of year.


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