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The Groote Schuur Estate

The Groote Schuur Estate

Named after part the Granary that was built on the estate in 1667 by the Dutch East India Company, De Groote Schuur (The Big Barn) was to become far more important to South Africa than the Trading Company that had it built. In 1870, over 200 years after it was built Cecil John Rhodes arrived in Natal - South Africa. He was sent from England to School, hoping the climate would improve his health. Well the move certainly improved his wealth, he became a businessman, mining magnate (founder of De Beers diamonds), and the politician who founded the state of Rhodesia. A man of much influence CJ Rhodes took out a lease on the property in 1891. In 1893 he purchased the property and had the "Big Barn" in Rondebosch, on the slopes of Devil's Peak, converted by architect, Sir Herbert Baker, into the Cape Dutch building we would recognize today. He spent as much time on the surrounding estate as he did on his home, in 1897 he had cages built on the upper slopes to house lions, but soon the slopes of Devils Peak were filled with antelopes, zebra, eland, wildebeest and ostriches. The house itself was surrounded by bright luscious gardens filled with roses, hydrangeas, cannas, bougainvilleas and fuchsias. CJ Rhodes died on the 26 March 1902 and his final will left a large area of land on the slopes of Table Mountain to the South African Nation.

The land was divided, the upper campus of the University of Cape Town took part, another became the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, while much became part of the important conservation area the Cape Peninsula National Park under the care of The South African National Parks.
Part of the estate also became home for The Groote Schuur Hospital in 1938, this was the home to the first human heart transplant conducted by South African surgeon Christiaan Barnard

The Groote Schuur Residence however was the Cape Residence for the Prime Ministers of South Africa from 1910 to 1984 and then continued as the presidential residence up until FW de Klerk and the formation of the "Government of National Unity" (President Nelson Mandela never used The Groote Schuur as a cape residence, but opted for the Westbrooke, now known as The Genadendal building.)

One of the ironies of The Groote Schuur was a party thrown in May 1956 for South Africa's Nationalist Prime Minister Johannes Strydom in which speeches were made encouraging the continuance of "White Supremacy" in a country where they were clearly the minority. On 4 May 1990 The Groote Schuur made world wide headlines again, but this time it was the signing of the "Groote Schuur Minute" between Nelson Mandela of the ANC and F.W. De Klerk, the then President of South Africa.

Today The Groote Schuur stands as a monument of the past struggles of the South African people, and to the historical reformation that those struggles led to.

No Longer a presidential residence, the building and its grounds are open as a museum to the public but only by appointment.
For more information and bookings contact +27-21-6869100

Nearby Listings

Koornhoop Manor House

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation in Observatory

0.9km East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Koornhoop Manor House provides bed and breakfast accommodation in Observatory in the Cape Town City Bowl. We're an owner-run guest house in the leafy suburb of Observatory, Cape Town - below the towering Devil's Peak as it runs down to the Liesbeek River.

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Knightsbury Guest House

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation in Rondebosch

2.0km South East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

There are 4 tastefully decorated rooms with en-suite bathrooms. Each is fitted with all the amenities necessary to making sure their guests' needs are attended to. The Knight's are an impressive double act at breakfast, which is indulgent with ...

Instant Booking
Sleeps: 4

Rondebosch Place

Self Catering Apartment, Flatlet Accommodation in Rondebosch

2.7km South East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Rondebosch Place is a two bed-roomed, one bathroom self catering flat situated on the 5th floor in a secure apartment block in central Rondebosch with wonderful views, it is a spacious and light and bright flat.

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Graded:
Sleeps: 12 in 4 units/rooms

Sandown Lodge

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation in Rondebosch

3.0km South East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Sandown Lodge is a charming 19th Century Georgian House, centrally situated in picturesque surroundings directly opposite Rondebosch Park.

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Graded:
Sleeps: 2
From R 450,00
Per person, per night sharing.
* Rates may vary according to season

Thatchwood Cottage

Self Catering House, Cottage, Chalet Accommodation in Pinelands

3.5km East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Thatchwood Cottage is situated in Pinelands which offers a self contained cottage with its own entrance and secure off street parking. There is a swimming pool and tranquil garden where guests can relax.

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Sleeps: 4 in 2 units/rooms
From R 650,00
Per unit, per night.
* Rates may vary according to season

Mayfield Cottages

Self Catering Apartment, Flatlet Accommodation in Rondebosch

4.0km South East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

MAYFIELD COTTAGE is a spacious and sunny north facing self-catering unit which is situated in the leafy and historic suburb of Rondebosch. It is a flatlet which adjoins the main house in a tranquil, lush garden.

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Graded:
Sleeps: 2
From R 540,00
Per unit, per night.
* Rates may vary according to season

Etafileni Studio Flat

Self Catering Apartment, Flatlet Accommodation in Vredehoek

4.2km South West of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Etafileni Studio Flat provides visitors with self catering flatlet accommodation in Vredehoek, Cape Town City Bowl. Helen & Richard welcome you to Etafileni, an open plan self catering fully furnished studio flat in Vredehoek, nestling at the foot of Tabl

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Graded:

Fernwood Manor

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation in Newlands

4.2km South of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Fernwood Manor is an elegant colonial style home in the leafy suburb of Newlands surrounded by lush greenery with wonderful mountain views.

Instant Booking
Sleeps: 4

1604 Cartwright's Corner

Self Catering Apartment, Flatlet Accommodation in Cape Town CBD

4.3km West of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

1604 Cartwright's Corner apartment offers self catering accommodation in the Cape Town City Bowl. This luxury 16th floor, 2 bedroom (1 king-size bed each), 2 bathroom Manhattan style apartment in the city centre provides stunning, panoramic views of Table

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Sleeps: 4

Keurboom Cottage

Self Catering House, Cottage, Chalet Accommodation in Claremont

4.3km South East of center of The Groote Schuur Estate

Keurboom Cottage is a self catering cottage and holiday home situated in the leafy suburbs bordering of Claremont bordering Rondebosch. Sleeps 4.

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