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ISSUE #

12

JAN/FEB/MAR 2018

Q U A R T E R LY N E W S PA P E R

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food Mussels with white wine, leeks, lemon and cream: the perfect pairing for our award-winning 21 Gables Chenin Blanc.

1692 4

WATER Every drop counts! What we’re doing to tackle the Cape’s water crisis – and how you can help.

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ENVIRONMENT How Spier’s nursery is boosting biodiversity.

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EVENTS From comedy to trail runs: discover what’s happening this quarter.

GOLDEN HERITAGE Raise your glass to more than 300 years of winemaking history. Inspired by our farm’s unrivalled Cape Dutch architecture, the 21 Gables Chenin Blanc 2015 has won the first-ever Veritas Vertex Award for overall champion wine at the 2017 Veritas Wine Awards.

Visit us:

Spier Wine Farm

@spierwinefarm #spiermemories t: 021 809 1100 w: www.spier.co.za b: www.spier.co.za/blog


WINE

SPIER WINS FIRST EVER VERITAS VERTEX AWARD FOR OVERALL CHAMPION WINE A GOLDEN NIGHT AT THE VERITAS AWARDS

Spier’s 21 Gables Chenin Blanc 2015 won the inaugural Veritas Vertex Award at the 2017 Veritas Awards, defeating 1638 other entries to be crowned the competition’s overall champion wine. This adds to Spier’s remarkable achievement of taking home six Double Gold and nine Gold medals from the prestigious awards. The Veritas Vertex Award takes its name from the Latin word “vertex” – meaning “highest point” – alluding to the pinnacle of achievement that the award represents. Paying tribute to Spier’s pioneering winemaking heritage, the 21 Gables Chenin Blanc is a wine of outstanding pedigree. The 2015 vintage was recognised as one of South Africa’s best Chenin Blanc’s through its inclusion in the 2016 Standard Bank Chenin Blanc Top 10 Challenge, and also scored 95 points in Tim Atkin’s Annual South African 2017 Special report. Spier’s other Double Gold winners were the Ideology Chenin Blanc 2016, Signature Chenin Blanc 2017, 21 Gables Cabernet

Sauvignon 2012, 21 Gables Chenin Blanc 2016 and Creative Block 3 2012.

PLATTER’S AWARDS FIVE STARS TO SPIER CWG AUCTION RESERVE

most respected wine tasters. About 900 wines were blind-tasted over three days.

FRANS K. SMIT 2013

“The fact that four of Spier’s six Double Golds were awarded to Chenin Blanc wines – varying both in price and style – illustrates that our decade-long emphasis on the varietal is bearing fruit,” says Cellar Master Frans Smit. Frans’s philosophy has involved sourcing high-quality grapes from lower-yielding, older vineyards in coastal areas that deliver more consistency. IN A NUTSHELL: THE SPIER 21 GABLES CHENIN BLANC 2015

“Picked on five different dates to maximize complexity, Spier’s top Chenin is wild fermented in 70% new wood. It has a little sweetness, but not botrytis, and a very complex, concentrated palate. Peach, patisserie and cinnamon spice are supported by vivid, mouth-watering acidity,” Tim Atkin comments in his Annual South African 2017 Special report.

The 2018 edition of the authoritative Platter’s Wine Guide has awarded a prestigious and much coveted five stars to the Cape Winemakers Guild Auction Reserve Frans K. Smit 2013. Only 600 bottles of this limited-edition wine were produced exclusively for the 2017 Cape Winemakers Guild Auction, which annually showcases the finest and most exclusive wines produced in small quantities by some of South Africa’s leading winemakers. It’s the fourth time that a red blend bearing Smit’s name has received five stars from Platter’s. Now in its 38th edition, South Africa’s best-selling wine guide reveals the very best the Winelands have to offer. In order for a wine to be considered as a five-star champion, the wine had to be rated more than 95 out of 100 by a panel of the country’s

The CWG Auction Reserve Frans K. Smit 2013 is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (52%) and Merlot (40%), with a touch of Cabernet Franc (8%) playing a supporting role. The blend pays tribute to Smit’s great love of wine, his winemaking skills and dedication to the process. “Matured for four years before release, this wine has the makings of a long-distance runner,” Frans says. “The mild season allowed the fruit to mature for longer and develop excellent flavour concentration and well-balanced, velvety tannins. It’s thanks to the terroir, really. The fruit all hails from the Stellenbosch Helderberg by far the best South African terroir for this style of red blend.”

YOU CAN BUY SPIER WINE ONLINE | WE DELIVER TO YOUR DOOR Order your favourites from the comfort of your

Sign up at store.spierwines.co.za/wine-club

armchair – and get them delivered to your home.

or our Tasting Room.

If you buy two or more cases, you qualify to join

T&Cs apply.

our Wine Club which offers a 15% discount on cellar door prices, free delivery and many more incredible benefits.

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FOOD

MUSSELS WITH WHITE WINE, LEEKS, LEMON & CREAM A WORTHY ACCOMPANIMENT TO THE AWARD-WINNING 21 GABLES CHENIN BLANC

Nothing beats the distinctive flavour of fresh black mussels, straight from the beautiful West Coast. Don’t overcook them – they just need a few minutes of hot steam in your pot of wine and leeks. Some lemon rind adds a nice zesty touch. Serve hot with crusty bread to mop up the sauce. This recipe serves four to six people. Prep and cooking time is 30min. Ingredients:

• 30 ml olive oil • 30 ml butter • One small bunch of leeks, finely chopped (white parts only) • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped • Half a bottle white wine (Chenin works well) • 1.5 – 2kg fresh black mussels, cleaned • 125 ml fresh cream • Rind of a lemon, finely grated • Salt and pepper to taste • Chopped fresh herbs, to serve (parsley & dill work well) Method:

To clean the fresh mussels, rinse them under cold tap water. Scrub the outsides if they are a little “hairy”, then pull off the grassy “beard” from the pointy side to the round side. They are now ready for the pot. Any mussels that won’t close before cooking must be discarded. And any mussels that won’t open after cooking, should also be tossed. In a wide heavy-based pot or casserole, heat the oil and butter over medium heat. Fry the leeks and garlic until soft and translucent, but not too brown. Add the wine, turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Add the mussels all at once and cover with a lid. Bring to a boil again and steam for 5-8 minutes until they are open and justcooked. Add the cream and heat through, then take off the heat and add the lemon rind. Season to taste with salt and pepper (some mussels can be very salty already, so be careful). Serve scattered with chopped herbs, with a glass of Spier 21 Gables Chenin Blanc.

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WATER

EVERY DROP COUNTS WHAT WE’RE DOING TO TACKLE THE CAPE’S WATER CRISIS

Spier’s commitment to conserving water dates back to long before the Western Cape’s current drought.

IN 2007, WE SET THE GOAL OF HALVING OUR MUNICIPAL WATER CONSUMPTION. Ever since then, we’ve constantly been searching for ways to improve efficiency and consumption. 100% of our black and grey wastewater is recycled by our own eco-friendly treatment plant. Installed a decade ago, it can process up to one million litres at any given time and produces 50 million litres of clean water annually. It would take a river 350km to purify what the wastewater treatment plant cleans in one day. The water is used for flushing in the estate’s busiest washrooms and to irrigate our gardens and lawns. We have also installed 400 water-saving devices on showers, basins and toilets in our 153-room hotel, conference centre, restaurants and other public spaces. As part of the FEDHASA Cape Waterwise Pledge, Spier Resort Management has committed to reducing our water usage and consumption by 40% over the period of one year, ending on 12/10/2018.

ALREADY, OUR CAREFULLY MONITORED WATER CONSUMPTION AT SPIER HOTEL HAS BEEN REDUCED BY MORE THAN 50% OVER THE PAST SIX MONTHS. From 389L per guest night to 165L per guest night. With your help, we’d like to reduce this even further.

off TO BOOK VISIT SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY

WWW.SPIER.CO.ZA/HOTEL

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ENVIRONMENT

STEP INSIDE THE SPIER NURSERY HOW WE’RE BOOSTING OUR FARM’S BIODIVERSITY

Planting team - from left: Vuyolwethu Juta, Bulelani Keyizana, Abongile Xandi, Sam Moloi, Wilton Sikhosana, Sithembile Ntyato and Kwanele Nzwana Over one million bulbs, 87 000 trees and shrubs and 6 000 succulents have been propagated and re-planted across Spier’s 620ha since our nursery was established in 2007. The re-planting has attracted a wealth of bird and animal life back into the area. The conservation and rehabilitation of Spier’s natural heritage saw it becoming one of 38 farms in the Western Cape to carry the WWF-SA Conservation Champion label on its wines. The Cape is home to the world’s smallest but most diverse floral kingdom. Of the 9 500 different plant species found here, 70% of these occur nowhere else, making it all the more important that the sensitive ecosystems in which they’re found are protected. Wilton Sikhosana, Spier’s nursery manager for almost a decade, grew up in northern KwaZulu-Natal. When he was a child, his grandfather – a traditional healer – sent him to collect medicinal plants in the veld. Wilton first began flexing his green fingers when he started growing some of these varieties close to home – so he wouldn’t have to walk so far to retrieve them. Almost 180 different indigenous species are growing in the Spier nursery. Wilton and his team collect cuttings and seeds at Spier farm and nearby. Cuttings are nurtured in the cuttings tunnel while in the germinating tunnel, seeds are propagated in trays. There are 10 000 plants growing there.

Outside, three different soil mixes are created, using varying quantities of bark, sand and compost. The compost is made on the farm, using wood chips, grape pips and nutrient-rich organic waste. The mixed soil is placed in bags where the seedlings can be planted. The seedlings are then placed in one of two greenhouses. Containing a total of 30,000 plants, both have 50% shade cover to protect the plants from too much sun while they’re young. Once the plants are big enough, they’re placed outside for a few months for hardening. Wilton studies the ecology of each plant species that he propagates, so he knows which plants should grow where. Spier farm has a variety of different habitats – including its river network and wetlands where bulbs are planted. On sandy, drier patches a variety of fynbos species and trees are planted. There are many areas across Spier where thirsty alien vegetation has been cleared so that water-wise indigenous species can be planted in their place. The newly-planted “nature strips” create diversity surrounding the vineyards and pastures. Combined with the pre-existing patches of endangered vegetation, these protected zones will ultimately form one continuous conservation corridor across the farm. This will minimise the potential localised extinction of species and ensure that the maximum biological diversity is conserved.

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WASTE

RADICAL RECYCLING THE JOURNEY TOWARDS A ZERO-WASTE FUTURE

also created beautiful fashion accessories from waste items – a creative reminder to think twice before throwing items away. “Technically zero is not about achieving zero waste to landfill as much as it is a holistic approach that aims for a change in the way materials flow through our business,” Heidi says. “Our commitment to the final couple of percent means that we are consistently evaluating our purchasing decisions as new items are brought into the stream all the time.”

Princess Mabindisa From June 2016 to May 2017, just 1.75% (5 812 kg) of Spier’s waste – the equivalent to slightly less than six bakkie loads was sent to landfill.

“CHANGING PERCEPTIONS AROUND WASTE IS CRITICAL TO FIND LONG-TERM SOLUTIONS,” says Heidi Newton-King, Spier’s Director of Sustainability.“Each section of our business sorts its waste individually, with waste storage and categories differing before it’s taken to the farm’s sorting facility and sorted a second time to make absolutely sure the waste can’t be recycled and to help us identify any new non-recyclable items in the waste stream.”

Zintle Zivengwa, Eight Restaurant.

“WITH A DRIVING FORCE OF MINIMISING OUR IMPACT ON THE ENVIRONMENT, WE BELIEVE TEAM TRAINING AND EDUCATION IS CRITICAL TO CHANGE PERCEPTIONS ABOUT WHY RECYCLING IS IMPORTANT AND THE BENEFITS OF DOING SO BOTH AT WORK AND AT HOME,” SHE SAYS. All of the packaging and utensils at Spier are either 100% compostable and biodegradable or reusable. Utensils are made from bamboo and corn starch bioplastic – making them 100% biodegradable. With recycling bins helpfully located throughout the farm, we encourage our visitors to help us on our journey towards zero waste.

Non-recyclable items are mostly multi-film packaging (such as coffee bags and tea sachets) as well as surgical gloves, hair nets and pot scrapers. Recently Spier invited crafters based at its Craft Market to transform non-recyclable waste from Eight, Spier’s farm-to-table restaurant, into works of art. Eight staff members

SEASONAL PICNICS The Spier Farm Kitchen is the collection point for

Order at least 24 hours in advance at

pre-made picnic baskets ordered online. These are

www.spierpicnics.co.za.

made with fresh, seasonal ingredients sourced from

Going Green: In keeping with our commitment to

the farm and nearby. Options include vegetarian

sustainability, all packaging and utensils at Spier

and children’s baskets.

Farm Kitchen are biodegradable or reusable.

PAGE 6


EVENTS

JANUARY

19

SPIER TWILIGHT TRAIL RUN

febrUARY

06

febrUARY

SPIER TWILIGHT TRAIL RUN

Our 5km and 10km trail races take you past Spier’s pastures and vineyards against the backdrop of the majestic Heldeberg mountains.

Our 5km and 10km trail races take you past Spier’s pastures and vineyards against the backdrop of the majestic Heldeberg mountains..

Time: 10km – 18.00; 5km – 18.05 Place: Registration and start is in front of

Time: 10km – 18.00; 5km – 18.05 Place: Registration and start is in front of

the Hoghouse on The Werf. Cost: 10km: R100pp for pre-entries, R120pp for late/on-the-day entries. 5km: R60pp for pre-entries, R80pp for late/on-the-day entries. BOOK: https://entrytickets.net/spier

the Hoghouse on The Werf. Cost: 10km: R100pp for pre-entries, R120pp for late/on-the-day entries. 5km: R60pp for pre-entries, R80pp for late/on-the-day entries. BOOK: https://entrytickets.net/spier

27

14

COMEDY IN THE VINES: STUART TAYLOR

OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHTS: PRETTY WOMAN

Kick off your shoes and have a chortle on the lawns under the stars while Stuart Taylor casts his special brand of magic and mystery over the Werf audience at Spier.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day at Spier! Feast on a picnic while watching the classic romantic comedy, Pretty Woman, on a big screen in Spier’s historic Werf.

Taylor’s award-winning formula of a meticulous fusion of comedy and magic earned him recognition as South Africa’s Comedy Magic Champion.

Time: Gates open at 18.00. Movie starts at 20.30 Place: The Spier Werf Cost: Movie ticket – R95/adult & R70/child

His uncanny ability to cast spells of unbridled laughter will have you rolling in your picnic blanket. Time: 17:00. Show starts at 18:30

Duration: 60min (no interval) Place: The Werf at Spier Cost: R170 per person BOOK: www.webtickets.co.za

FOR MORE EVENT DETAILS VISIT OUR WEBSITE: WWW.SPIER.CO.ZA/EVENTS

(includes pop-corn on arrival). Add a prebooked picnic basket for R700 (serves 2 adults, and includes a bottle of Spier Secret Sparkling. Does not include movie ticket). BOOK: www.webtickets.co.za

24

MARCH

COMEDY IN THE VINES: MARC LOTTERING

Lottering will help you remember how good laughter is for the soul. Prepare to crack up over a glass of wine and one of Spier’s generous summer picnics. One of South Africa’s icons of stand-up comedy, Lottering will do a special performance on Spier farm after a touring his 2017 show Hashtag Lottering! – a show that covers a broad range of topics, ranging from how to successfully live in debt, to the dangers of a WhatsApp family page!

24

Feast on a picnic on the lawns of Spier’s historic Werf whilst watching the spy thriller film, The Tailor of Panama (2001), on a big screen. Time: Gates open at 18.00. Movie starts at 20.30 Place: The Spier Werf Cost: Movie ticket – R95/adult & R70/child

(includes pop-corn on arrival). Add a prebooked picnic basket for R700 (serves 2 adults, and includes a bottle of Spier Secret Sparkling. Does not include movie ticket). BOOK: www.webtickets.co.za

In this show at Spier, Lottering will be sharing his all-time favourite stories.

easter at spier

Whether you join us for lunch in our courtyard, enjoy a picnic on the lawn, or tuck into an Easter-inspired a la carte brunch at Eight, Easter at Spier is sure to be a memorable one. There’ll also be an Easter egg hunt for the kids. Visit spier.co.za/events for more details

MARCH SPIER TWILIGHT TRAIL RUN

Our 5km and 10km trail races take you past Spier’s pastures and vineyards against the backdrop of the majestic Heldeberg mountains.. Time: 10km – 18.00; 5km – 18.05 Place: Registration and start is in front of

the Hoghouse on The Werf. Cost: 10km: R100pp for pre-entries, R120pp for late/on-the-day entries. 5km: R60pp for pre-entries, R80pp for late/on-the-day entries. BOOK: https://entrytickets.net/spier

APRIL

01

Time: 17:00. Show starts at 18:30 Duration: 60min (no interval) Place: The Werf at Spier Cost: R170 per person BOOK: www.webtickets.co.za

09

OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHTS: TAILOR OF PANAMA

28

OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHTS: AUSTIN POWERS

Feast on a picnic on the lawns of Spier’s historic Werf whilst watching the spy action comedy film, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997), on a big screen. Time: Gates open at 18.00. Movie starts at 20.30 Place: The Spier Werf Cost: Movie ticket – R95/adult & R70/child

(includes pop-corn on arrival). Add a prebooked picnic basket for R700 (serves 2 adults, and includes a bottle of Spier Secret Sparkling. Does not include movie ticket). BOOK: www.webtickets.co.za

Photo credit: Peter Kirk Media

Photo credit: Peter Kirk Media

PAGE 7


6

7 Artisan Studio

Craft Market

2

8 Eight Restaurant

9

1 Werf Cellar

Segway Tours

3 5 Spier Mosaic Kraal

12 Manor House

13

Wine Tasting

Eagle Encounters

4 11 Hoghouse Bakery & Café

14 Old Wine Cellar Conference Centre

15 16 Amphitheatre

21

Spier Hotel

Spier Hotel Restaurant & Wine Bar

19

Wastewater Treatment Plant

17

18 Spier Spa

Spier Shop

20

10. THE WERF

menu includes flavoursome grass-fed beef, pork, lamb and free-roaming chicken supplied by Spier’s Farmer Angus, perfectly paired with Spier wine or Hoghouse’s craft ales. Contact: +27 (21) 881 3174 or howdy@hhbc.co.za

Wine Collection Point The Werf

6. CRAFT MARKET

Surrounded by beautiful Cape Dutch Buildings, Spier’s historic farmyard - the Werf - has been meticulously restored.

14. OLD WINE CELLAR

Spier Farm Kitchen

10

1. EAGLE ENCOUNTERS

11. SPIER FARM KITCHEN

The 1822 historic Manor House has been extensively restored and three different meeting rooms are available. The building features artworks from the Spier Collection - one of the largest collections of contemporary South African art in the country.

In 2007, Spier installed a pioneering centralised wastewater treatment plant which is the embodiment of our approach to waste management. It recycles 100% of our wastewater, treats it using only environmentally friendly methodology and the clean water is then used to irrigate the garden and grounds.

17. WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT

Spier has an open air venue hosting artistic and corporate events with a capacity of 1100 people.

16. AMPHITHEATRE

Conferencing includes an auditorium that seats 430 people and three breakaway rooms, which can be used separately, or combined, to seat 250 people. Conference rooms are adjacent to the Eerste River and have views of the Helderberg mountains. Contact: Conference@spier.co.za

15. CONSCIOUS CONFERENCING

Spier’s Old Wine Cellar is South Africa’s oldest dated cellar building (1767), and is used for conferences & private functions.

From fridge magnets to masterpieces, the Spier Craft Market, right next to our Tasting Room, offers a wide range of art and crafts, made with a diverse range of materials, including mosaic, beads, textiles and ceramics.

7. ARTISAN STUDIO The Spier Artisan Studio welcomes guests to see mosaic and ceramic artisans at work as they create artworks in collaboration with South African fine artists.

Eight is a farm-to-table eating experience in a beautiful setting next to the Eerste River. Like its name, the restaurant is an expression of balance, cycles, harmony, infinity and abundance. The produce used at Eight is either grown on the farm or sourced from nearby farmers. Natural and organic ingredients are preferred and combined to create nourishing, healthy, and delicious food. Contact: +27 (21) 809 1188 or at eight@spier.co.za.

13. THE HOGHOUSE BBQ & BAKERY

8. EIGHT RESTAURANT

9. WERF CELLAR

12. MANOR HOUSE

Witness our winemaking team in action at the Spier Werf Cellar as they handcraft Spier’s first estate wine, made from organic vineyards that grow on the Spier farm.

The wood-fired oven and bakery kitchen, located in the historical Jonkershuis on the Werf, serves fresh bread, pastries and treats – which can also be pre-ordered 48 hours in advance. Chef PJ Vadas’s barbeque-focused lunch and dinner

The Spier Farm Kitchen offers everything visitors need to make their own tasty farm picnics – as well as a delicious array of locally sourced and made produce to take home. Help yourself to nutritious, farm-inspired food and linger on the stoep overlooking the Werf with a glass of wine or relax nearby under one of the Werf’s giant oaks. The Spier Farm Kitchen is open 7 days a week, including public holidays, from 10.00 to 16.30 daily.

At the Eagle Encounters raptor rehabilitation centre, get up close and personal with birds of prey, and find out how these magnificent animals keep the Spier farm healthy and balanced.

2. SEGWAY TOURS The Segway PT (Personal Transporter) is a two-wheeled, self-balancing electric vehicle. The tour is a beautiful glide through the farm to the vineyards with some interesting facts about Spier’s farming practices and wastewater treatment plant on the way. Contact: 021 809 1157 or visit www.segwaytours.co.za.

3. WINE TASTING Our Tasting Room on the banks of the Spier dam pairs our award-winning wine with delicious snacks. Relax in the airy lounge area, or take your glass outside onto the patio which has stunning views of the Helderberg mountains. Contact: 021 09 1143/7

4. WINE COLLECTION POINT 5. Mosaic kraal The country’s first permanent outdoor exhibition of mosaic features the works of 16 contemporary South African artists – all crafted by the Spier Arts Academy.

DISCOVER SPIER. PAST & PRESENT.

Download the VoiceMap app and listen to our two audio tours on your smartphone:

• Walk the Farm: an exploration of the estate and our sustainable approach to farming.

(Starts at the Hotel entrance)

(Begins at the Tasting Room)

• Gables: a fictional journey based on the historic reality of 19th century farm life.

A list of instructions is available at our reception desk.

18. SPA AT SPIER

Our spa offers an indulgent array of massages and facials that will ensure you leave rejuvenated and relieved of stress. Contact: thespa@spier.co.za.

19. SPIER HOTEL RESTAURANT AND WINE BAR

Enjoy a glass of wine or a cocktail on the terrace with bar snacks, or breakfast, lunch or dinner at the Spier Hotel restaurant. Both the restaurant and wine bar strive to source the freshest available produce for the menus from a range of local suppliers and our farm. Contact: +27 (21) 809 1100

20. SPIER SHOP

A carefully curated selection of products both for the home and for the body is available in the shop adjoining Spier Hotel’s reception and at the Tasting Venue, allowing you to take home a piece of the Spier farm life.

21. SPIER HOTEL

The 4-star Spier Hotel is next to the calming waters of the Eerste River. The rooms are situated in village-style buildings grouped around six private courtyards, each with its own swimming pool in a design reminiscent of the Bo-Kaap or Mediterranean villages where pedestrians have right of way. Contact: Reservations@spier.co.za

ART - The spaces of the Spier Hotel and conferencing rooms are adorned with art from the Spier Collection - one of the most extensive collections of contemporary South African art in the country. Spier believes that the visual arts can provide both guests and staff with new insights, and challenge us to take a fresh look at our world and environment.

WALKS AND TRAILS - Stroll around our peaceful water-wise gardens or visit the River Walk on the Eerste River’s south bank, which showcases our national flower. Download the VoiceMap app and listen to our two audio tours on your phone: Walk the Farm (which starts at the Hotel entrance) and the historic Gables tour (which begins at the Tasting Room). 5km and 10km running route maps are available from the Spier Hotel reception.

Spier Newspaper 12  
Spier Newspaper 12  
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