The Ibis Lounge: Guest House

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“On our annual long week-end to magical Nieu Bethesda, we discovered this new little eatery, and loved it so much that we ended up having all our meals there!” – Gavin T, Trip Advisor

Some people are drawn to Nieu Bethesda after reading Athol Fugard’s The Road to Mecca. Others have heard of Helen Martin’s Owl House. It could also simply be the fact that the Karoo allows weary travellers the opportunity to slip back into the ease of a simpler, less hectic life where they can find their soul connection. Community spirit is strong here, and so alive and vibrant – it’s like been part of a large, tight-knit family, and Nieu Bethesda itself has become a small tourism mecca in its own right – with a big heart.

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Wander the furrow-lined dirt roads; appreciate that particular Karoo light, the mountains, the air, and the rural atmosphere. Even the cold winters (minus 10°C) offer something special, especially when it snows. During summer, grow pleasantly drowsy in the heat, drink in those sunsets then behold that night sky with billions of stars. Stay over during high season, when the Nieu Bethesda is buzzing or plan your visit for those times when it’s quiet, almost deserted.

Visitors to Nieu Bethesda can discover some of that Karoo resonance at The Ibis Lounge, an eclectic gathering spot on Martin Street that is the place to be, whether it’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner, to pick up something special at the shop or find accommodation.

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Terry Winship has travelled the world, and was inspired to create The Ibis Lounge when she envisioned the perfect place for a decent cup of coffee – something that is mandatory in every country town and city, wherever you go. Sit on the stoep of one of Nieu Bethesda’s number one restaurants and enjoy the dusty Karoo ambience with your meal. If it’s cold and raining, get cosy indoors at the fireplace. Come soak in the Slow Karoo vibe.

The Ibis Lounge serves lamb chops. lamb neck curry, oxtail and daily specials. Try our lamb shank over mash or allow us to tempt you with decadent desserts and marvelous milkshakes. Coffee aficionados can get their fix with their choice of cappuccino, latte, Americano, mocha or espresso – our range is selected from around the world, and we have strong and bitter, sweet medium and mild aromatic roasts to suit nearly every taste.

All our meats are sourced locally, served with organic veggies from our garden, when in season. Our Slow Sundays are a treat when we offer guests a slow roast on selected Sundays from 1pm. Booking is essential as numbers are limited. Banting, vegetarian and vegan options are catered for.

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In need of a little retail therapy? Looking for something funky, fresh and stylish in Nieu Bethesda? Our Karoo-themed gift shop showcases a variety of high-quality handmade artisan goods sourced in southern Africa. Browse through our range of local pottery, clothing, art, soap, t-shirts, glassware, wooden items and more.

Need a place to rest your weary head? The Ibis Lounge’s accommodation offering consists of three bedrooms, all with en-suite bathrooms. Choose between the Karoo, Amore and Happy rooms. Our guests can cool off in our private swimming pool – towels provided. A large stoep boasts a fire pit and our walled garden offers privacy.

Terry, Layton,  Indygo and their friendly staff; Claradene, Deny, Cindi-Lee,  Mitjie and Basil welcome you to Nieu Bethesda and hope that your stay is magical and revitalising.

Credit card and Snap Scan are available.

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