A luxury spring break in a pod with a wood-fired, hot tub? Yes please!

Thoughtfully designed, ultra luxurious cabin in the mountains with view over the sprawling valley below.


Pizza oven, indoor fireplace, stacks of wood.


My very own hot tub to soak in for a whole entire weekend.


There is a lot to say for doing nothing. Especially if your day is usually just go, go, go all the time.

KolKol, just outside Botrivier in the Kogelberg Biosphere, not too far from Cape Town, is a place of rest. A place where you can go for a few days to not see other people (unless you want to) and to close the front door behind you and not re-open it before home time (unless you want to).


The pods at KolKol are built from sugargum, an alien plant that is being eradicated in the area. (Hanlie Gouws)

It has been around for a couple of years, and the log cabins, all custom-built from alien trees, by owner Rudi who runs the lodge with wife Karen. But be warned they are most often fully booked for months, so the new pods are a great addition to the collection.

They are beautifully designed, clearly by someone who had comfort and style in mind. Metal and wood combine in lovely curves and the interior is laid out in such a way that it is warm and cozy, especially with the central fireplace roaring, and yet spacious enough that you will never suffer from cabin fever. Owner Rudi has a BSc in Sports Science, but “has always enjoyed designing things”. Give the man a Bells!


The pods have a modern, curvy design with small, thoughtful details such as the built-out window giving you a view over the entire valley from the bathroom. (Photo: Hanlie Gouws)

“With the pods we went with a contemporary feel, inside and out. The architectural design and interior is more modern [than the cabins on the property],” Rudi says. “And then of course there are the soft furnishings and the addition of copper which is both a touch more luxurious and quite on trend right now.”

He is a humble guy who claims he wasn’t being trendy on purpose.

“It’s just that this blend of woods and copper, black marble kitchen tops and metro tiles happen to work so well together.”

Yeah, but they didn’t combine themselves in there, Rudi!

But I didn’t go just to look. I went to soak.

Of course the best part is the hot tub. I have met people who claim not to go gaga over having their own personal tub to soak off the stress of their daily existence in, but I’d say their opinions can safely be discounted. This is the life!

The patent is Rudi’s (and yes, you can buy the coal box to take home if you fall in love with it like I did) and it is as simple as making a fire and stoking it until you reach your ideal temperature. Then it is a simple as keeping your drinks and snacks close and the woodpile even closer and that is you for the day! Chilling in a warm hug while enjoying the view over the lovely valley.

The pod is designed to keep the stoep area invisible to the neighbours while giving you a more or less 270 degree view. That means you can be as lazy as you want with no judging from anyone!

kolkol, fire

The indoor fireplace is situated in the middle of the pod, warming up the entire space. All the supplied wood is from alien vegetation. (Photo: Hanlie Gouws)

Oh and be guilt-free while you are in there. The wood you use to boil your bath is from the alien eradication project in the Bot River.

I would go again. I am not afraid of a bit of hot water on a hot summer’s day even, but if you are, you can use it as a plunge pool with the same results.

Your soul will thank you.


Clever lighting creates an unintentional work of art on the bathroom wall. (Photo: Hanlie Gouws)

Read more about the pods and how to book at  kolkol.co.za

*Disclaimer: News24 Night Editor Hanlie Gouws was hosted by KolKol for the duration of her stay. 

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