Another year, another work function.
I really look forward to our annual work functions. I get the opportunity to visit unfamiliar places in my own city and get to know new things about my familiar colleagues. The previous year our year end function took place at the chilled Lagoon Beach Hotel and the year before that was the eco-friendly Hotel Verde.
We were booked for a 2-day conference at the Zewenwacht Wine Estate. I took the drive towards the picturesque Kuils River. The drive was exciting. It’s not everyday you see a man walking towards his car with a huge snake. Apparently, the snake was in the road! I thought about stopping to help for 2 seconds but figured my screaming wouldn’t help anyone. I don’t have a snake phobia or anything but I double checked my belongings for a few days after that.
I got a little bit lost as Zewenwacht is pretty big and I’ve never been there before. We were up in the clubhouse for the conference. The venue was decent for the meeting. We had lunch overlooking the vineyard.
The senior staff were booked into the hotel and the rest of us were booked into the vineyard cottages. It took a while to find the vineyard cottages – things are a bit spread out at Zewenwacht. Once you figure out the circular road, it’s pretty easy though.
While my colleagues enjoyed their free wine tasting, I was trying to get into my cottage. For some reason, I really struggled with the door. I shared the cottage with 2 of my colleagues but luckily, the en suite rooms were completely private. We had a shared kitchen and lounge (that was never used).
The room was not particularly luxurious but it was more than adequate for the night. I found a complimentary bottle of wine, biltong, nuts and sweets. I ate the sweets as fast as I could manage (I was hungry) and gave the wine to the first colleague that asked.
Eating at Zewenwacht
We had our staff dinner at the beautiful, historical and swanky Zewenwacht. It’s a lovely old dutch style house. We had a set menu. There was some confusion around some of our dietary requirements. I’m not sure if the hotel never received the information. Anyway, I opted for vegetarian food as they couldn’t cater halaal. The dessert was wonderful.
For lunch (on our second day) we were all booked picnic baskets to enjoy on the grass at the venue, overlooking the tranquil water. Once again, the dietary requirement information must have gotten lost along the way. A few of my colleagues are diabetic, some are vegetarian and a few of us only eat halaal. The manager (?) didn’t seem to have any idea what halaal meant. I felt she dealt with the situation in an unnecessarily hostile way as on our side, everyone was patient and understanding. We waited very long for the vegetarian picnic boxes and even longer for our drinks to be served. The picnic boxes were wonderfully packed and for the price, I would expect it to be!
Zewenwacht is a very pretty place. The views of the city on my morning run was incredible. However, I found some of the staff that we dealt with to be a bit cold and unfriendly. On the other hand, some of the staff were wonderful.
I hope that I can get to try out the spa there at some point. And the cheesecake, definitely the cheesecake.