The Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa, situated on the picturesque Thesen Islands, on South Africa’s Garden Route, with its fascinating mixture of history and innovation, is one of South Africa’s most unusual hotels. Revamped from an historical wood-burning power station, the old turbines and steel pillars of its steamy history now form the hotel’s playfully funky décor.
The 5-star hotel’s accommodation now comprises 26 rooms and suites; the latest addition is the exclusive Canal Suite, situated opposite the main hotel. It is now, along with the Lagoon Suite, one of two spacious self-contained suites offering all the hotel’s standard features including an open-plan kitchen with microwave, espresso machine, fridge/freezer and deck with a view of the canal. The luxurious Lagoon Suite comes equipped with a dishwasher and washing machine, as well as a balcony ideally situated for enjoying sundowners whilst soaking up the serene lagoon vista.
All the hotel rooms are shaped around its beautifully restored industrial interior and each is individually decorated and styled in acknowledgment of Knysna’s rich heritage; each with its own individual personality: the 17 standard rooms feature all the modern essentials; six luxury rooms boast a bar area and microwave – four of them have an extra sleeper couch and some have private gardens or balconies – six of them have balconies with views over Knysna Lagoon or Thesen Islands, and two have baths with a view over the island’s canals, and there is a romantically decorated Honeymoon Suite, with a sumptuous bathroom and a balcony overlooking the hotel swimming pool.
Boasting 5-star facilities, the hotel is an excellent destination for dining, downtime and getting down to business. Popular with locals as well as holidaymakers and hotel guests, the 90-seater Island Café features a terrace and pool deck for al fresco dining and an impressive local and coastal wine list, and the Gastro Pub welcomes and entices patrons with its delicious gastro pub-style fare, craft beer and cocktails. The Turbine Spa, a blissful sanctuary for the ultimate in pampering; while for business visitors, there are two conference rooms and free Wi-Fi. Art lovers can admire or buy the paintings on display in the foyer and courtyard, provided by the Knysna Fine Art Gallery.
Watersports and exploring are the main attractions in the area and there are a host of activities to keep you entertained: whale watching (seasonal – July to November); kayaking through the canals that criss-cross the island or a sunset cruise in the lagoon; deep-sea fishing. Other options include a hike into the ancient and beautiful Knysna Forest, a gentle cycle ride around the area or paragliding from the mountains across the beautiful bays. These are all booked through the Turbine Water Club.
Tel: +27 (0)44 302 5746
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The 5-star Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa is situated on Thesen Islands in Knysna. Intuitive architecture pays homage to the old power station it once was. Accommodation comprises luxury hotel rooms, standard rooms, a honeymoon suite and 2 expansive self-contained suites. Group bookings are welcome for weddings, small conferences and events. The hotel is also home to the Island Café Restaurant with tables overlooking the canals, pool deck or nestled between the original refurbished turbines. The Gastro Pub offers classic pub meals with a delicious twist and lagoon sunset views. The Turbine Spa has a wide range of treatments for day visitors as well as hotel guests and, the hotel’s very own adventure centre, the Turbine Water Club, arranges a variety of water and land-based activities such as lagoon cruises, forest walks, city tours and bicycle hire.