The Old Jail in the peaceful farming town
of Willowmore offers a unique experience for tourists, business
travelers and sports enthusiasts seeking quality accommodation
in the Karoo. Flanked by the spectacular Baviaanskloof and Swartberg
mountain ranges, this striking 1880s building is on the edge
of the town and is one of the finest examples of Victorian architecture
in the area.
Registered by the Government in 1895, the
building is built of stone, the walls being half a metre thick
with plaster quions (corners) on the windows, doors
and wall corners. The Old Gaol, as it was then called, comprised
a hospital cell, hard labour cells, awaiting trial cells, a
female cell and kitchen cell.
It ceased to operate as a prison and police
station around 1960 and was sold to private owners. It has changed
hands several times in the past 40 years and remained uninhabited
for almost 12 years until its present owners took posession
and began transforming it into a boutique guest establishment.
Now lovingly restored and renovated, the building is surrounded by attractive landscaped gardens. Although oozing character and retaining many original features, it has now been given a new and less intimidating lease of life as a welcoming B&B and art gallery.
The cells and exercise areas have been cleverly converted into three elegant, air conditioned rooms with modern amenities, high quality period finishes and private courtyards.
We can serve dinner by pre arrangement and are fully licensed so wine and beer can also be purchased from our wine cellar.
Whether you're looking for an overnight stay along the N9 highway or a few days hiking, cycling, golfing, small game hunting or relaxing in peaceful, unspoiled surroundings, The Old Jail is a place you won't want to escape from in a hurry.