Since the beginning of construction last year, the ambitious Hermanus Sports Club has come a long way and now provides a state-of-the-art sporting hub.

The outdoor seating area overlooks the tennis courts.

While there are still several projects in the pipeline, the complex already boasts a floodlit astroturf hockey field, six tennis courts (of which four are floodlit), two netball courts and four squash courts; the BMX track is up and running and a new skate park is currently being built.

Another milestone that was reached this month was the opening of the restaurant and bar at the clubhouse, leased to Paul Richards, for whom this is a familiar environment. An avid tennis and squash player, Paul says he grew up in sports clubs in Johannesburg. “Club members spend a lot of time together, so they feel like family,” he says, underscoring the importance of having a clubhouse where members can socialise and hang out between games.

Paul, who is also the owner of Sandown Blues on Kleinmond Beach and previously owned The Shellfish Bar in Harbour Road, recently moved from Kleinmond to Hermanus and was ready for a fresh challenge. “The clubhouse was just an empty shell but we are slowly getting to where we want to be,” he says.

The interior of the clubhouse is light and spacious.

The premises, designed by architect Anton du Plessis, are light and spacious, with rough brick walls, high ceilings, exposed beams, wrap-around windows that offer expansive views in all directions, and a verandah that overlooks the tennis courts. The clubhouse is reached via an elevated walkway above the squash courts. On the opposite side of the building towards the cricket field is an attractive courtyard that still needs to be completed by the addition of a tree in the centre and walkways that will lead up to the restaurant.

Paul’s right hand in this new venture is Judy van der Merwe, who started her career at The Burgundy and also worked at the old tennis club in town before the new courts were built at the Hermanus Sports Club. This means that most of the members already know her and should feel right at home. “For the regulars, the clubhouse really is like a second home,” says Paul. “We want to create a welcoming space where people can just relax and have a drink or a bite to eat.”

Waitress Sharon Muparari and bartender Eric Mutandiwa.

The clubhouse menu offers toasted sandwiches, burgers, schnitzels, steak, Prego rolls, fish and seafood, along with coffees, teas and cold beverages, including milkshakes. Nothing fancy, but good quality and good value. Most of the wines on the wine list are from the Walker Bay region and the bar will also stock craft beers and craft gins.

A table tennis at one end of the large restaurant provides entertainment and Paul says he’ll also install a pool table in due course. “We have a great sound system and the venue is available for private and corporate functions, parties and weddings,” he adds.

Paul Richards with clubhouse manager, Judy van der Merwe.

Although the restaurant’s official opening is on 6 December, it is already up and running and open to the public, Monday to Saturday from 11:00 – 20:00 (kitchen closes). Contact 072 505 1387 for enquiries or bookings.

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