Ricochet News


OCTOBER 20, 2014

Eleven years ago the ruin of the Karroo Hotel in Steytlerville was discovered by current owners Jacques and Mark from Cape Town. Buying it on impulse they fancied the idea of gradually restoring it and turning it into a rambling home with ample space for their large entourage of pets. Judging by the decay into which it had fallen it seemed unlikely that it ever had or would be viable as a Hotel. (Karroo with a double R is the original Dutch spelling).

Built in 1943 on the outskirts of  town, as local church council had prohibited  the sale of alcohol, it thrived, being the only bar and off sales in the entire district. In the 1980’s the prohibition was lifted, adversely affecting business which resulted in eventual closure. By 2003 it stood derelict, stripped not only of all it’s furnishings and equipment, but also of it’s wiring, plumbing and hardware.

Taking on this formidable task meant being prepared to invest a huge amount of passion which was largely sparked by the amount of interest and enthusiasm shown by the townsfolk.

Although the viability was not apparent the decision was made to put the Hotel back on the map by offering a completely unique getaway experience. Boasting a magnificent dining hall it seemed natural to combine elegant dining with appealing entertainment. Jacque’s being a fantastic cook, fashion designer, dressmaker and phenomenal mime artist and Mark being a show pianist with a long past in theatre - what followed was natural. The “Steytlerville Follies” dinner show was born, presented by Freddy Ferrari the pianist and starring the fabulous Karoovian Diva – Dame Leyla Lamborghini.

The Hotel, now known as Karroo Theatrical Hotel, has been lovingly restored and interestingly furnished using a diverse array of collectibles and styles. The accommodation is tasteful, simple and most comfortable offering both standard and superior room options. All meals are prepared by Jacques who specialises in healthy traditional “boerekos” besides also catering for most dietary requirements.

Set on 8 hectares of farmland with well kept gardens and views of the surrounding mountains and nearby village, it is the ideal retreat for those seeking peace and tranquility. Every Saturday evening the excitement begins (enticing atmosphere is set) with guests gathering in Oscar's Bar for a pre - dinner sundowner and snacks. At the sounding of the dinner gong the entourage moves into the candle lit Grimaldi's Dining Hall where dinner is served followed by the captivating burlesque style show. To round of the evening buffet station offers a selection of cheeses and crackers together with a glass of port and coffee.

Jacques and Mark look forward to the opportunity to provide you with excellent service matched with outstanding hospitality.