There’s nothing sweeter than a romantic weekend getaway at a silvery lake’s edge in the verdant Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal. Park off at one of Hartford House’s exquisite Lakeside Suites and you’ll no doubt agree that this is a sweet skipaway in the countryside. (There are, by the way, other suites to choose from too – the Garden, Pool and Verandah Suites – but down by the lake the serenity is just wonderful.)

Let’s introduce you to these divine abodes, each called by name:

Mbulelo (“thanksgiving” in Xhosa) is a gorgeous creation of mud bricks, horse dung and shredded horse bedding, sun-baked to perfection, and local timber, stone and slate. The beautiful doors and shutters hail from India. Mbulelo was built by the talented Zulu staff at Hartford House.

The suite called Inkanyezi (“evening star” in Zulu) was named by by the people who built it. They built with raw mud bricks, and a mud and straw rendering instead of plasterwork. Materials were all locally sourced. One of the particularly noteworth pieces in the suite is an 1820 convent linen press from the former ‘Orange Free State’. The antique entrance door is from India.

Poolside bliss at the Inkanyezi Lakeside Suite at Hartford House

Siyabonga (“we are grateful” in Zulu) is another eco extension to Hartford’s colonial origins. State-of-the art beds in this suite can be adjusted at the touch of a button. This is the pad of choice of His Royal Highness Sheikh Mohammed of the Ruling Family of Dubai, during his visits to the Summerhill Stud at Hartford, where several of his horses reside. The Summerhill Stud makes Hartford House one of its kind – the world’s only top-class hotel on a world-class racehorse stud.

Lakeside Suite Siyabonga at Hartford House

Nhlanhla (“good luck”) is at one with nature and its soft, warm colours, ingeniously created from locally sourced materials. The suite boasts a fine mahogany wardrobe housing the television and mini-bar, imported during the 1820’s. The teak floors were rescued from the the Edward Hotel in Durban, while the front door was brought from India. There’s a gorgeous copper bath in the suite, and super-modern adjustible beds.

Nhlanhla Lakeside Suite at Hartford House

Enhance your stay at the lake’s edge with fine dining at Hartford’s award-winning restaurant; succumb to any number of body treatments, holistic massages and facials at the wellness centre; cast a line for trout and bass (and get some really pro tuition if you need it); and toss all your cares away as you enjoy some horse riding in the countryside. You could also go further afield to do some battlefields tours, or visit some of the nature reserves in the region.

Mail us to book or call 0860 102 907 (local) or +27 21 797-7122 (international).