ARTIST’S RETREAT

Size of Erf 1,630 m2;  Size of house 275 m2; size of cottage 65 m2

Rates: R 5,730 per annum

With great respect to the typical streetscape of the traditional Karoo houses in the picturesque town of Prince Albert at the foothills of the Swartberg Pass and using the utmost discretion and restraint, Skewe-huisie, was transformed in 2000 into House Sally, a colourful contemporary artists retreat.

Proving it possible to successfully marry conservation with modern spatial sensibility and convenience, this special home with its unpretentious exteriors of whitewashed facades, accentuated only by the blue timber shutters of authentic vertical proportion, surprisingly reveals a dynamic high-volume interior with terraced open plan living rooms connected by a ramp to the artist’s studio upstairs bringing in the brilliant Karro sunlight and the breathtaking mountain scenery beyond the tall glass doors and high windows. 

Situated in the ‘Bodorp’ within walking distance of the town centre and the private Albert College which offers excellent tuition and International Cambridge school leaving certificates. Prince Albert also boasts fine restaurants, an art gallery, 150 seat art deco theatre, local dairy, stargazing with local professional astronomer and a healthy country environment with fresh mountain water running along street frontages in historic furrows. 110km from Oudtshoorn, 160 km from George Airport and the Indian ocean with beautiful white sandy beaches.

The wow factor when you walk through the front door, with the light flooding in will lift your spirits.The barn-like structure is comforting to live in, neat spaces with soft landing areas in-between and the Karoo minimalism mix of old with new European refinement clearly influenced by, not only well known architect, Prof. Derrick de Bruyn, but also the current owner, herself an internationally recognized fine artist and designer.

The house also hosts adjacent self-catering accommodation, “The Artist’s Cottage”,  a 100 year old brakdak house. 

  • Entrance hall
  • The living and dining room with a wood burning fireplace are designed in an open plan layout with the kitchen on a split level. Tall glass windows and doors with huge wooden door shutters open wide to the garden.
  • Mezzanine artist’s studio or TV lounge leads out to
  • Roof terrace covered by a timber pergola with two large wind/sun blinds and shade cover – surrounding panoramic mountain views
  • The family room or study which could be used as a third bedroom also has French doors opening onto the courtyard garden and pool
  • Kitchen with an enclosed pantry is semi open plan to the living area, with white cabinetry, stainless steel double sink, cement work surfaces and includes a gas hob, plus a glass top electric hob, under counter oven and space for a dishwasher and washing machine
  • The master bedroom with double doors leading out to the courtyard garden has an en-suite bathroom featuring a large mosaic tiled circular bathtub/shower in a corbelled archway and his/her laboratory basins, toilet and bidet
  • Second bedroom has double glass paned doors opening out to the garden, a tiled walk-in shower as well as a walk-in cupboard/storage room. Both bathrooms have heated towel rails.
  • Private courtyard surrounding a salt water lap pool is shared by both the main house and the cottage
  • The large established indigenous garden is punctured with tall graveyard Cypresses, shade and olive trees yielding a good crop each year, automatically controlled irrigation system for lawns and drip system for flower beds
  • The Cottage, which provides good additional income,  has its own street entrance, a small kitchen, living and dining room, one double bedroom suite with long tub and walk in shower,and heated towel rail, two garden terraces, one with floor length shade blinds. Includes air conditioning.
  • Separate laundry with staff toilet and hand basin
  • Double carport constructed from wooden poles, shade cloth lined sapling walls, heat reducing Cromodek roofing. 
  • 2 m2 lockable storage at rear on raised cement base
  • Rainwater tanks (no Water Board rights on property, but servitude for water furrow) Cost of Municipal water for garden (December to March) approximately R700 per month
  • Plans for additional en-suite 2 bedroom block on open courtyard end – will need resubmitting as 2 years have lapsed since approved by Municipality.
  • Ame Jacobsen ‘Vola’ (Danish) and Grohe (German) fittings throughout the main house
  • Cement screed floors with under-floor heating in living room and main bathroom
  • 200 litre solar water geyser in main house, 14 solar panels for off-grid system also serving guest cottage/Eskom link. Heating costs (June-August) Approx. R1,500 in total
  • Reed and beam ceiling in both houses and outside laundry
  • Linked alarm and owner/artist custom designed burglar bars 
  • Wooden shutters on all doors and windows
  • Owner/artist designed security gates on the cottage

‘We are torn between a nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and strange. As often as not, we are homesick for the places we have never known.’

– Carson McCullers