Owner-run, located in Plettenberg Bay, Eastern Cape, on the Garden Route, Emily Moon River Lodge is a small and beautifully managed luxury lodge.
Situated inland, on the south side of Bitou River, overlooking wetlands, Emily Moon River Lodge is a stone, corrugated iron and thatch build consisting of a main lodge and 9 sleeping rooms. The main lodge includes reception, a restaurant, bar, veranda and pool(s). Set in a terraced and succulent heavy garden, the lodge is beautifully thought through, its outside spaces divided between open lawns, pretty walkways and a wealth of shaded seating areas, its interiors characterised by polished wooden floors, open sides and a mix of seating – lightweight, slumber and dining. Marked by arched doorways, animal skins, found skull and horns, intricately carved panelling, photographs framed in stressed woods, a mix of air and the cheek-to-jowl, the style is a fine fusion of African, Arabic and European, the overall feel calm, welcoming, relaxing.
Feedback with regards to the food and service at Emily Moon has been unreservedly excellent. The restaurant, which spills out onto the main veranda, and looks over the river, is the main lodge’s focal point, the tension that can come with serving high cuisine dissipated by a family like atmosphere, and by the fact that the food really is that good. A cool little sushi bar provides options away from the three courser. A range of wines, beers, spirits and cocktails is available, pretty much anytime of the day.
Unashamedly urban, the sleeping accommodation at Emily Moon presents a sharp and stimulating contrast to the main lodge. Each possesses a double bed, private balcony, en suite bathroom and seating area. Sleek, clean and characterised by white, black or brown, the lines here are much more severe, the comfy sprawl of colour and shape replaced by the mathematics of a carefully placed artefact, a metro-celebration of the object in itself. While possibly not to everyone’s taste, it is different, efficient and exciting. The bathroom’s equally fine, a resin encased piece of ultra-efficiency – and beautiful with it. A hugely stylish sleep. Please be advised that one of the rooms has two bedrooms and will comfortably accommodate a family of four; and that one is the honeymoon suite.
Activities at Emily Moon include mountain biking, canoeing, excursions to the beach or into town, bird watching and golf.