A family-owned hotel, on the edge of the Knysna lagoon.

Once the site of an industrial boat-building shed, The Lofts marries history and modern design. Located inside the renovated Boatshed, the hotel pays homage to the building’s heritage by retaining elements of its maritime charm.

The hotel was born after Dr Chris Mulder and his wife Pat began developing Thesen Island. Pat envisioned creating The Lofts and, years later, our lagoon-side hotel is still proudly family owned and run.

The story begins in 1922 when Charles Wilhelm Thesen moved his timber processing plant and boat building yard to the island. Timber was processed on Thesen Island and loaded directly into freighters before being shipped for export.⁠ ⁠

It is this maritime heritage that the architects and developers took care to preserve in both the re-adaptation of the old building and in the general design and planning of Thesen Harbour Town.

In 1998, Thesen Island was bought by the Thesen Island Development Company. The Boatshed was used as an expo centre to showcase examples of windows, doors, paint colours, fittings and finishes, which would be used in the island’s housing estate. ⁠ ⁠ 

Today, The Boatshed is home to The Lofts, a stylish yet laidback hotel offering both escape and entertainment. There’s no better place to absorb the island’s long history as well as Knysna’s awe-inspiring natural beauty. We look forward to showing you around.⁠