Birkenhead House: A Five-Star Boutique Hotel in Hermanus

Birkenhead House Hermanus Accommodation

A boutique getaway with all the luxury bells and whistles (and an impossible-to-beat location).

“A luxury hotel promises something all travellers dream of: a lavish break from daily life and a sumptuous journey into an opulent otherworld.” Which is exactly what Birkenhead House is – and more.

Impossible-to-beat location

Birkenhead House Cliffside

Perched on a peninsula overlooking the entire coast of Walker Bay, this elegant hotel’s cliffside location gives some of the swankiest spots on the Amalfi Coast a run for their money. Just a three-minute drive from the bustling centre of Hermanus, it’s perfectly positioned for those who cherish seclusion but also enjoy dipping in and out of the action. No surprise then that it was voted #1 Travel Resort in Africa by Travel + Leisure in 2022!

Restrained elegance

Birkenhead House Superior Bedroom

The 11-room hotel was once the Biden family’s holiday home until they decided to turn it into a boutique escape, with Liz Biden in charge of decorating it. Her eclectic style oscillates between glam-opulence and beachside chic, with pillars and marble floors setting the scene throughout, and deep, white slip-covered couches in all the communal lounge areas. Curling up on one of these ocean-facing sofas, with a G&T to hand, while you watch the whales and dolphins frolic in the bay is sheer bliss.

Private paradise

Birkenhead House Bathroom

Our plush, sea-facing room is the last word in hushed opulence, with a gold-framed headboard on our king-size bed, a leather desk, furry throws, a long sofa and a glam-luxe marble bathroom offsetting the muted palette. Ensconced in our private paradise, we feel totally isolated from the 10 other guest quarters… as if the entire beach belongs to us. However, a site tour earlier reveals that the ocean-facing rim-flow pool, sun deck and dining area are a short stroll away. (The hotel’s other pool is a split-level number that’s quite impressive.)

Above & beyond

Birkenhead House Lounge

Attentive service and cliffside location aside, perhaps the most unique aspect of this intimate lodge is that everything (except cigars, reserve wines and spa treatments) is included in the room rate. All meals, obviously, as well as the freshly baked cakes on the buffet table that tempt me every single time I pass by, and the fully (and I mean FULLY) equipped bar in our room, stocked with an assortment of the classiest tipples in the world (Bombay Sapphire and Johnnie Walker Black Label, to name a few).

Dining with a view

Birkenhead House Hermanus View

The upscale yet laidback restaurant is headed by executive chef Oliver Coetzee, who rustles up small plates inspired by the hotel’s coastal setting in his busy kitchen. As you’d expect from this ultra-high-end establishment, menus and meals can be designed to meet your individual tastes and dietary requirements, and can be taken wherever you desire: on the cliffside terrace, by the pool, in the glass-fronted dining area, or in the privacy of your suite.

Birkenhead House Pool

Cost From R6 900 per night per person sharing (depending on season and type of room; excludes reserve wines)
Where to find it Birkenhead House, Corner 11th Street and 7th Avenue, Voelklip, Hermanus


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The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

Time of publication: 15 March 2023