Three centuries of innovation
Hazendal’s history begins when German settler Christoffel Hazenwinkel made his way to South Africa’s Cape. Christoffel Hazenwinkel was a beadle of the Court and worked as messenger for Governor Willem Adriaan van der Stel, who in 1699 granted Christoffel Hazenwinkel 60 hectares of land in the Bottelary Hills of Stellenbosch. It still baffles the history writers what Christoffel did in order to receive this land – as private ownership was only passed as a law in 1704. Inspired by his own name, and the population of Cape hares that inhabited the area at the time, Christoffel named the farm Hazendal, which translates from Dutch to valley of the hares.
In tribute to the history of Hazendal and its pioneering visionary founder, Hazendal has created an award-winning wine range Christoffel Hazenwinkel
Hazendal changed hands quite often until it was bought by Willem van As in 1729.
It was Willem van As and especially his son Joost, that introduced the Cape Dutch architectural style to Hazendal. It is highly likely that Joost built the first homestead in 1781 (Jonkershuis) , which is now housing the Marvol Gallery. The Jonkershuis was converted to slave quarters after the construction of the Homestead in 1790. The Rococco gable of the Homestead shows an exceptional example of this historic Cape Dutch architectural style.
Other historic architectural remnants at Hazendal are The Kraal that was built about 1780, also by Joost van As, and the threshing circle. The Kraal, was originally a shelter for oxen. The Threshing Circle was used for threshing wheat, by having oxens or horses trampling the sheaves to separate the grain from the chaff, ready for winnowing. The historic relic of the Threshing Circle can be seen at the al-fresco dining area of the Babushka Deli.
The Van As family owned the farm until 1813 when it was sold to Hermanus Vermaak. In 1814 Vermaak built the Gateposts that you can still see at Hazendal today. The reason for building the Gateposts was his concern that wagon drivers passing through on the wagenpad (wagon road) at night might set fire to that building (ostensibly from smoking their pipes), or seduce the slave women living in the Jonkershuis next door. He might have had another motive, though, of stopping travellers to buy produce, or stay over at the farm’s lodgings. The gate was challenged by Vermaak’s neighbour, Peter Fischer, who took the matter to court in 1815, declaring that the road had been there since time immemorial and used by the public. Vermaak lost the case and the gate was removed, although the Gateposts remained in place.
In 1831 the farm was bought by Izaak Bosman and was owned by the Bosman family for five generation. During the time of the Bosman family the farm was transformed into a wine producing farm, and Hazendal’s first wine cellar was built. Jacobus Petrus Bosman, the farm’s owner at the end of the nineteenth century, changed the Homestead into a Victorian ‘villa’, only to be converted back to the Cape Dutch style in 1947 by his grandson, Pieter Bosman.
Bacchus, the Roman god of wine, has held a steadfast presence at Hazendal for over 150 years. He was put up by the Bosman family in 1831 as a symbol displaying their commitment to producing quality wines. You can find him immortalised in bronze on the front door of Hazendal’s Homestead as well as on Hazendal’s logo in honour of the estate’s tradition of wine-making excellence.
The Bell Tower is a wonderful architectural structure of heritage value. It was built in 1978 by the Bosmans to commemorate the 1979 Simon van der Stel Tercentenary celebrations. It has stayed almost completely intact and can be viewed on Hazendal’s Werf.
Hazendal was bought in 1994 by Dr Mark Voloshin, the farm’s current owner, and is managed as a family affair. His dream of wanting to preserve the estate’s rich heritage, uplift the local community and create a unique winelands destination, has added a new chapter to Hazendal’s history.
In 2018, after extensive restoration and redevelopment of the estate, Hazendal has reopened as a multi-faceted winelands destination, bringing together the farm’s rich history and heritage with contemporary design, innovative ideas and a Russian flavour.