A place where time stands still. I was heading for burnout. I’d had a lot on my plate, both work-wise and in my private life. I needed some time out. And I knew just the place…
By Alan Samons
We’d been going to Quiet Mountain Guest Farm for the past twenty-five years and in that time, nothing, and I mean nothing has changed. That’s the charm of the place. Most hotels and guest houses redecorate, add extra rooms, and often change completely. But not Quiet Mountain. Personally, I think that’s their charm. From the lowing of cows and clucking of chickens in the background, to the farm-style guest cottages decorated with furniture and artwork that anyone of my age would find familiar – it reminds me of my gran’s house and their farmer friends we used to visit when I was little.
But don’t, for one minute, think Quiet Mountain is stuffy. Far from it! The decor is old fashioned, but it is also tongue-in-cheek. It’s like stepping through the looking glass into a world where simple elegance reigns. It is the perfect spot for a quick weekend away. Or a midweek breakaway. During my visit I met a lovely lady who, it turned out, was an academic and had spent a week in the upstairs library working on a book. It’s the kind of place you could do that. Or just spend the whole time in your room with your new beau. Or go walking for miles. Or, in my case, spend some alone time pondering a new phase in my life.
It is a working farm with a land stretching all the way to the Magaliesberg Mountain range to the north, so perfect for long walks, if that’s your thing (I prefer a more sedentary lifestyle – I’m a human being, not a human doing). The most active I have ever gotten at Quiet Mountain is to sit by the pond enjoying the black swans gliding around on the still green water, imagining I’m at Giverny, Monet’s fabulous garden. But as sedentary as I am, when the bell is rang at mealtimes, I have an extra spring in my step. Meals are just fantastic. Terrence is the opposite of his partner, John, (yes, the place is gay owned) and is always around, especially at mealtimes. He’s a wonderful cook and host. Quiet Mountain is typically frequented by regulars, and he has a memory like that of an elephant – he remembers family connections and stories years after the fact. A great raconteur, he often has guests in stitches recounting stories of, and in my case, the mischief a returning couple had gotten up to years before. Much as mealtimes are the highlight of the day here, dinner time is the ultimate and is encouraged to be enjoyed at leisure and, to me especially, utterly enjoyable.
For those who need to gad about, there is tons to see and do around the farm. There is the Wicked Food Cooking School, Van Gaalen’s Kaasmakerij and you are smack in the middle between Magaliesburg and Hartbeespoort, so you can explore to your heart’s content.
You haven’t lived if you haven’t stayed over at Quiet Mountain Guest Farm. It won’t break the bank, considering three meals are included in your daily rate and I would put my head on a block you’d be back. There really is nothing like this hidden gem anywhere in the country. At least not that I’ve discovered, and I am a rather well-travelled individual.