After the war,
the site under the rock became the quintessential beach hotel with wild stories of dancing and merriment. In the sixties the hotel was a haven for fishermen and divers. Students flocked to the hotel during weekends and holidays to enjoy the quirkiness and freedom that the hotel offered.
To this day people from all walks of life return to the hotel to reminisce and share stories of first loves, ghosts, scandals and the eccentric characters that used to hang out (some still do!) at the hotel.
A. van der Vyver and Lorette Luckett bought the property in 1997 whilst living in London. For several years Paula and Madeleine van Bosch managed the hotel on behalf of the two owners. Paula and Madeleine oversaw renovations to the hotel and also started a new tradition – music events, with well-known artists such as Anton Goosen, Koos Kombuis, Valiant Swart and Karen Zoid all drawing big crowds. Local favourite band Akkedis used to rehearse at Plankies on regular basis.
Just over 10 years ago the landmark site was put up for sale by Van der Vyver and Luckett. Word reached them in London that a prospective buyer intended converting the hotel into private property. They were so shocked by the possibility that the hotel with its magical mountain, vivid views of the milky way and extraordinary sunsets all year long would be closed to the general public that they immediately took the hotel off the property market.
Subsequently Henry Roux and his team rented the Hangklip Hotel for 10 years. Henry had a great passion for the hotel, and brought back some much-needed
glory. Lawns were planted, the chalets spruced up and the Hangklip Hotel became a popular setting for special events.
Lorette returned to South Africa ten years ago, but decided against becoming involved in the hospitality industry. She says she prefers painting people to working with them.
In 2016 Van der Vyver, or A, as he is called, returned to South Africa. He is a connoisseur of the theatre and ballet, and is an art lover who managed an art gallery in Notting Hill at one stage during his 33 years in London. He also attended a culinary school and is now resident chef at the hotel.
Both A and Lorette are keen to pursue their original vision of the Hangklip Hotel as a hub for music, theatre, visual arts and conversation – a place where young as well as established talent would be welcomed and nurtured. In order to realise their vision, A and Lorette decided to bring in two new partners. Both of them are well-known in Pringle Bay – Liza Schaap and Ali Croucamp.
Liza has been associated with the Hangklip Hotel since 2003, when she joined the staff of Mrs. Van der Poll who rented the Hangklip Hotel at the time. Her passion for Plankies is legendary. Liza’s experience, great memory and love for the Hangklip Hotel and its guests make her a valuable addition to the management team.
Ali moved to Pringle Bay in 2003 and ran the successful pizza/music/theatre establishment PeriGators until a few months ago when her lease agreement was not renewed. Her pizzas and live music drew audiences from near and afar. Her migration to the Hangklip Hotel is one of the most exciting developments in our area.
The partners are in agreement that the character of the Hangklip Hotel should remain intact, even though extensive renovations will be carried out in the course of the next few years. Hopefully the imminent tarring of the road to the hotel will make the hotel more accessible to the public, and the heightened activity will generate some of the funds needed to realise the owners’ vision of the Hangklip becoming a destination that caters for foodies, music and art lovers, hikers, bikers, star gazers and lovers of the good life.