Our Story in South Africa
The De Waal story in South Africa began in 1715 when Jan de Waal arrived in Cape Town from his hometown of Amsterdam as newly appointed "Quartermaster of the Cape of Good Hope" - one of the four quarters of the world the Dutch were controlling at the time.
Jan was granted an “erf” or property by Governor Ryk Tulbagh in 1752. This property was 93 Bree Street in Cape Town, restored and known today as the Jan de Waal House, a National Monument.
In 1760 Jan de Waal bought the farm Schotsekloof lying between Dorp and Wale Streets (known today as the Bo-Kaap). He developed the single storey house on the farm into a long, double story house with 14 bedrooms, just perfect to be able to accommodate all of his 17 children! It was here that the De Waal family started making wine, nine generations ago.
For the next couple of years until 1768 De Waal built many small houses which was known as “huurhuisjes”, houses to be rented out to the slaves. He named this area Waalendorp (“Waal-town”). The Bokaap Museum of today was one of the rental houses he built in Waalendorp. This is the oldest existing house in Cape Town still in its original form.
Two well-known landmarks in Cape Town are named after the De Waal family.
De Waal Drive against the prominent Table Mountain is the main highway leading out of the city towards Cape Town International Airport and the Southern Suburbs.
The popular De Waal Park, one of the city’s largest public parks and a heritage site, lies in the heart of the city. David de Waal established this park in 1881 on condition that dogs must be able to run off leash in the park. They still enjoy this freedom today!