by SAVIOUS KWINIKA
VANDERBILJPARK – THE recent reopening of the tourism sector, following months of the coronavirus (COVID-19) forced lockdown, did not only bring relief to the sector.
It also brought joy to multitudes of holidaymakers.
One such place that was greatly missed is the Stonehaven Restaurant, which is located in the Vanderbijlpark, not far from the Vaal River, the second longest river in South Africa after the Orange river.
The place, which is full of life, nature and always filled with relaxed and charming ambience cobbled pathways that lead through the quaint herb garden with over 1 000 rose bushes and the mature gardens and lawns that sweep down to the Vaal River, is the place for those that love peace and a relaxed environment.
Though the place does not offer accommodation, the Stonehaven provides holidaymakers the friendly, generous reception, entertainment of guests, hospitableness, warm-heartedness, kind-heartedness and visitors the much sought cordiality.
The Stonehaven is jointly owned by the famous Cloete-Anderson Family, Rex and his wife, Ross Anderson. The place opened its doors in 1994, with 10 acres of beautifully tendered gardens nearby the ever busy Stonehaven Harbour with a fleet of 4 Cruisers to choose from for holiday makers.
Vaal Today publication caught up with Rex at the restaurant, the Stonehaven.
“We have been running for 25 years,” Anderson told Vaal Today.
“We have a restaurant, we have got a bar, we have a garden restaurant, we do functions, conferences, birthday parties, weddings……any event where you want to socialise and have fun with your friends and compatriots.”
There are also boats for cruising.
Rex said the largest boat takes 200 people, the middle one takes 45 while two other boats take 12 people each.
“On these boats you can do what you want. In other words, you can hold conferences, birthday parties, any functions, tailored to your needs. There are bars on board, which supply the food on board and going down the river, especially in summer is just a unique experience,” Rex said.
On-board, the boat offered dining, caters for from breakfasts, brunches, braais, spits, smorgasbords, picnics, buffets, seafood extravaganzas and cocktail snacks.
The Stonehaven hosts a regular Sunday Cruising Buffet aboard one of the luxurious cruisers.
The “floating restaurant” is also called the “The Spirit of Jen”.
The casual 50-minute cruises also take place on both Saturday and Sundays.
A tour of the place revealed that the Stonehaven on Vaal hosts many different kinds of functions, such as 21st birthday parties, stork parties, gender reveal parties, kitchen teas, engagements, weddings, christenings, anniversaries, graduation parties, children’s parties, corporate conferences, corporate team building, year-end functions and 2020 kick-off functions.
The Stonehaven restaurant operates from 08h00 until 22h00.
“The place is not five-star……it is a four star. We are here to make customers feel good,” Anderson said.
Besides the 10 acres of beautifully tendered gardens, there is the busy Stonehaven Harbour with a fleet of four cruisers.
Stonehaven boasts a variety of dining options such as the Dining Terraces, which offers an attractive spot for summer meals overlooking the Vaal river as does the garden and lawns where holidaymakers enjoy dining under a gazebo.
There is also dining around the swimming pool while children would enjoy a dip, which is also a perfect way of enjoying relaxed family dining.
Customers would enjoy winter in the sanctuary of Stonehaven’s cosy River Pub with its roaring and crackling fireplaces enhanced by Stonehaven’s many antiques and nautical ornaments and memorabilia.
– CAJ News