It was a particularly warm Winter’s weekend that greeted our circle of friends as we decided to settle down on the porch around the fire pit. The encompassing view takes in the meandering river, rolling hills and forest, as well as the railway along the edge of the valley.
Picture this! You find yourself dreamily walking through orchards of fruit trees with a bubbling brook curling indolently around the grassed bends of field. It conjures up images of verdant grass and leaves with a fragrance rambling along with a lazy breeze.
Now picture it in Winter. I know, my mind always trundles after the greenery too. But The Orchards is no less lovely in Winter than it is in Summer, Autumn and Spring. It is just lovely for different reasons. That you have great pros throughout all seasons of the year speaks volumes for a destination. Especially one that is known more customarily for being a wedding and events venue than an accommodation destination.
Accommodation for the whole group
The Orchards accommodation and venue are located in the Caversham area of the Midlands with a chapel, a more intimate venue called Stables and the larger main venue. In addition to this, a bride is guaranteed exclusive use of the property on her special day and can also book the accommodation for pre-arrangements and the day of preparation. The main house oozes charm and old-school elegance and provides lots of opportunities for a photographer to get creative with a bridal party.
All sorts of succulents and indigenous plants decorate the paths and paths with views out across the rolling pasture lands, which are enough to help you breathe easy and enjoy the healthy country air. It is true, life does move at a different pace in the Midlands (the Capetonians would be so proud of us), but it doesn’t mean that things don’t happen as organised.
From having the accommodation luring you to come to visit, being able to organise pre-packaged meals from the notorious and wonderful Jen of The Farmers Daughter to idling on couches and the carpet in the lounge in front of a wide fireplace that exudes warmth throughout the house, the staff at The Orchards are there to help you enjoy your stay with them while keeping all your organising running smoothly.
There are four double rooms in the main house, along with another three in the cottage, comfortably sleeping a team of people in comfort without allowing anyone to feel cramped. The beds are made for Royalty and allow for a restful, revitalising sleep making sure that the world-weary feel better after a night here.
Orchards Venue Facilities
The paved deck area leads your eyes over a beautiful swimming pool to breath-taking views of the valley. The room is enclosed with glass stack doors that help you drink in the views from indoors. The venue is decorated in subdued shades of grey with screed floors and a generously proportioned stone-clad fireplace. The “barn like” venue adapts itself to any bride’s tastes.
Orchards venue is fitted with the following features:
- A stocked Bar.
- Fitted Kitchen.
- Male, Female and Disabled bathrooms.
- Crockery and cutlery needed for up to 200 guests.
- A room specifically for the bride and retinue.
- Extra storage space.
Converted stables provide the perfect setting for those post-wedding refreshments. the glass stack doors allow the outdoors in with the soft landscaping providing a warm and intimate ambience to spend time settling into the festivities before the main celebrations of the evening begin. The wood fireplace along with the exposed beams and brick feeding troughs adds character and talking points for your guests while the photographer captures the moment with the newly married couple.
A gorgeous stone and wood chapel sits beautifully on the Orchards grounds, providing stunning views over the pastoral hills of the Midlands Meander. Large wooden windows, set into the hand-laid stonework give a vintage feel to the chapel while having all the convenience of a modern venue.
The chapel seats 140 people on pews, with extra seating available and standing room at the rear, allowing for ample space for your family and friends to witness the start to your new journey.
The meadows around the property are extensive, offering areas to relax alongside the thatched double-storey home and cottage, alongside the venue, the plateau adjacent to the river and the outdoor chapel amongst the trees with the river softly bubbling around it.
This also provides a rustic meadow setting through a tree-lined walkway where betrothed couples can tie the knot outdoors with a river alongside them. 160 Family and friends can be seated on sun-kissed benches as they watch the bride enter through baby blue barn doors supported by wooden logs from the surrounding forested areas.
My friends and I came to The Orchards to have a quiet weekend in the country and found solace in reading, talking, walking around the meadow and along the river, while also relaxing around the magnificent fireplace at night.
There are so many areas to sit and read a book, or do some art. The welcoming lounge, the dining area with its multiple tables, the chaise lounge scattered throughout the house or in the garden surrounded by the countryside in all it’s splendour.
There are also plenty of nearby attractions on the Midlands that can provide coffee, meals and entertainment.
Everything about The Orchards invites you in to enjoy the beauty of the country and the peace it provides. You will be planning your next visit to this comfortable destination as you exit their gates.
If you want to take a look at more pictures of this accommodation and venue you can do so on Instagram or Facebook or if you want to book your spot for a stay or visit for a viewing of the wedding or events facilities, you can contact The Orchards here.