No room at the inn


(eTN) – We arrived at White Horse Inn after a long day of watching mad cyclists, looking forward to a good night’s sleep. The previous nights we had slept on the Chilo Lodge veranda, and we were very cold; the following night we had put up the tent on the grounds of a polo club near Chipinge; and the night before, three of us had shared a room in a hotel in Chimanimani.

White Horse Inn is along a quiet road in The Bvumba. The roads are twisty and on either side, the trees tower above. Streams trickle down from the mountains. It is a stunning spot.

I ambled into the hotel to ask the receptionist what room we were in only to be told that they were fully booked and there was no space. This was rather disappointing, to say the least. I really could not imagine putting up the tent in the car park.

After a short while, our dilemma was sorted out, and we were given a resident’s lounge to sleep in – we had bedding and mattresses so it wasn’t a train smash. We carted in our bags and bedding and sorted out a make-shift bed. We were just grateful that the owner allowed us to use the rooms.

White Horse Inn was a house before David Graham bought it about 30 years ago. It has 12 rooms, all furnished in an old-world fashion.

In the bar there was a roaring log fire, so we settled down to warm up and to drink a few beers. Dinner was excellent. I had bream, the others had trout and oxtail.

The night’s sleep was fine, even though it was on the floor. We let the cyclists go off on their fourth day of peddling, while we had a shower in a now-empty room. Then I had a walk around the grounds.

The gardens are very mature with huge trees, some tree ferns, and even a rose garden. I wished I could have stayed another night just to sit in them for a while.

So, if you are ever near Mutare and need a place to stay, try the White Horse Inn. You will love it.