about

A Heavenly Place to Dwell …

Discover a sense of wholeness, of peace, of healing, of happiness. St Andrew’s Retreat near Mooi River in KwaZulu-Natal is ideal to use as a quiet and central base from where you can explore the Midlands, the KZN historic battlefields and the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Mountains, or simply enjoy a restful stop-over en route between Johannesburg and Durban.

The only sounds you will hear will be horses neighing, chickens clucking in anticipation of their next meal, and perhaps, if you are lucky, the occasional cry of a fish eagle, swooping down for a trout.

It truly is a heavenly place to dwell.

Majestic Transformation

Once a beloved community Anglican church dating back to 1901, St Andrew’s has been saved from disuse through insightful restoration and transformation by custodians Paul and Jennifer Hindle. With views across lush pastures to the lilac foothills of the Drakensberg, it offers four beautifully appointed en-suite double bedrooms, a fully fitted kitchen and dining area, nooks and snugs for a quiet moment with a book, fountain-filled gardens for open air reflection, and even a majestic bell tower.

Luxury Comfort

Every comfort for a truly unique and restful getaway is at your fingertips. Perfect for a quiet, soulful retreat, an adventure, a romantic interlude, an anniversary or special occasion, a stay at St Andrew’s is a celebration of tranquility, nature, love and the greatest of life’s gifts and bounty.

Come … and count your blessings.

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Truly unique and restful Midlands getaway

a stay at St Andrew’s is a celebration of tranquility

history

The History of St Andrew’s Retreat

One of the most beautiful churches of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, St Andrew’s was built in 1906 to serve the Anglican farmers west of Mooi River as well as the scholars and staff of Weenen Country College, which moved to a nearby site on the Giant’s Castle road in 1901.

Built in the style of the legendary Sir Herbert Baker, the church echoes the design of a church in Kent in the United Kingdom, the birthplace of Percy Simmons, a prominent farmer in the area who was a central character in the building of the church. St Andrew’s is set on two acres of land donated by John Evan Oates. The church is built of sandstone, laid over two years by a Mr Nelson and his sons of Hlatikulu. The woodwork was the handicraft of the carpentry instructor at Weenen County College, Mr JD Owen. The round stained glass window above the alter was added in 1907 in memory of Mr and Mrs Thompson of Weenen County College, both closely associated with the church-building efforts.

The Right Reverend Frederick Samuel Baines, Bishop of Natal, consecrated the church in 1906, at a ceremony that included 130 people plus the staff and pupils of Weenen County College. Today guests at St Andrew’s can still see a tablet on which are inscribed the names of old boys of the college who gave their lives in the First World War. The little graveyard to the rear of the church is reached through a side road and is accessible for the community.

A soulful place …

How St Andrew’s Retreat came to be

Paul and Jennifer Hindle have been a fixture of the Midlands hospitality industry and active members of the local Anglican parish since moving to KZN in 2003 and starting the acclaimed Indigo Fields Farm House and Spa near Nottingham Road. When they heard that the seldom used yet beautiful sandstone church near Mooi River was to be deconsecrated and sold, they saw it as a win-win solution for all: funds from the sale would be poured back into the diocese to upgrade existing facilities where parishioners were currently worshipping (such as St Mary’s in Bruntville), and the magnificent St Andrew’s would be saved as an integral part of local history and kept within the community.

Both deeply spiritual people, Jennifer and Paul set about transforming the old church in a sensitive manner, laying out new gardens, installing fountains and creating restful places for reflection, and altering the interior spaces into living areas without harming the inherent structure of the church. The result is a holistic celebration of history, harmony, care and passion.

everything-you-need

Accommodation for up to eight guests

Three suites, with an outside annex, each of which can be arranged with either king-size or twin beds

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Gallery

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It’s Not Our Retreat, It’s Yours to Enjoy

We love our historical gem and so will you.

location

Location

St Andrew’s Retreat

Giant’s Castle Road, Mooi River,
KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

033 2666 101 | 083 376 0150 (Mobile)

Email: standrewsretreat@bundunet.com

We would love to hear from you. Please be so kind as to complete the form with details of your enquiry and we will get back to you shortly.

Rates

R600 per person per night

Weekends and Public Holidays require a minimum per night of R1800 (minimum of 3 guests), 50% deposit required to secure a booking. Regret: No children under the age of 12 unless by prior arrangement, and no pets. Check-in is from 2pm and check out by 10am on the day of departure.

St Andrew’s is serviced daily by the caretaker, Thembani.