Famous South African artist Beezy Bailey’s family home is completely hidden from view down a long driveway in the upper reaches of shady Higgovale. Nosy-parkers are foiled by two sets of sturdy gates leading to a large, white, stately home beset by broad windows and conservative white shutters. Ring the door bell and you’d expect to be greeted by Michelle Obama. But that’s the end of that little fantasy. Once inside the overwhelming thrill of being in a working artist’s home is felt in all the colourful and eclectic eccentricities that cover ceilings, walls, floors and doors.
The front hall is double-volume with a winding staircase off to the left and a gob-smacking Kentridge original that takes up almost two floors (sadly too large to sneak into your handbag). Beezy’s lyrical artworks line the walls as do some beautiful black and white photographs of the artist and family (and even the odd surprise celeb).
The left wing houses an enormous open-plan kitchen overflowing into a bright day lounge with French doors opening onto a wide, sunny patio. The kitchen table can seat an entire parliamentary cabinet… and comfy sofas abound with scatter cushions and printed textiles as well as some gorgeous ceramics, colourful glasswear and even a red leather barber chair to add to the quirky atmosphere.
The diningroom and lounge are equally atmospheric, painted in bright colours and decorated with murals, eye-catching sculptures, crystal chandeliers, Chinese screens, antiques and mirrors. And do mind the snarling tiger draped over the sofa, bound to induce an instant coronary if encountered after too many sherries.
The right wing is family space and contains an office, spare room and playroom with pool table opening onto a shady lounge with all the requisite technology that’ll keep teenagers screen-bound and out of your hair for weeks.
Tip-toe upstairs to find the bedrooms. I’ll leave you to discover these for yourself. Suffice to say they’re enormous. The master suite has one of the best and biggest bathrooms in Cape Town, complete with cube-patterned floor and freestanding tub. You’ll love the outside shower. Each bedroom has access through double doors to the extensive balcony that follows along the front of the house, perfect for sitting outside with a G’nT.
Standing in the garden, Table Mountain looms over your shoulder. It’s not just a view: it’s the opera diva of views, complete with standing ovation! Devil’s Peak pouts in the distance… whilst a chorus line of wild leafy garden, Cape Town City Bowl and Table Bay complete the overall setting. There’s also a trampoline and a pool situated on separate garden terraces watched over by Beezy’s sculptures and a borehole-irrigated, organic vegetable garden to delight your inner Jamie Oliver.
The house is spacious, comfortable and perfect for a relaxed family, the band members of Rolling Stones or anyone who loves surreal touches. It’s ever so slightly reminiscent of Salvador Dali’s home-museum in Figueres on the Costa Brava. Here, the situation is the best you can get in Cape Town with easy access over the neck into Camps Bay and Clifton or straight down the hill into town.
Disclaimer: Pins in map may not be accurate if Google Maps cannot find the exact address. In this case an approximation is made.