By Dian Hasan | July 15, 2010
Fresh on the heels of FIFA World Cup 2010, everything African seem to be in vogue. The continent which offers so much natural beauty is finally getting the exposure it deserves, with travel getting the immediate boost. The continent that invented the safari, is now spearheading hospitality design and responsible tourism into a bold new direction: eco-friendly designers digs, whether in tents, more permanent accommodations, and now… even on water. Design is the new catchphrase!
Africa’s first luxury river safari has been launched: The 135-foot-long Zambezi Queen is the first eco-friendly, floating boutique hotel in Southern Africa. Its inaugural journey a few weeks ago in Botswana marks a major departure in high-end river experiences and a landmark event in African tourism.
The state-of-the-art ship takes guests along Botswana’s great Chobe River, which boasts one of the densest populations of wildlife on the African continent. The chic, contemporary design of the Zambezi Queen set against the backdrop of the African wilderness creates a unique experience. All fourteen suites are tastefully furnished with either a double or two single beds. Private balconies in all rooms offer unparalleled views of the African wildlife along the river.
By Dian Hasan | July 15, 2010
In the world of trends, green is the new black. And the fusion of latest design in portraying resorts that blend into their immediate surroundings, the results are stunning. Firmly placing “chic” in “eco”. The world’s latest crop of new eco-friendly designer hotels are so comfortable in their own skin, and are so place- and culture-specific, that one must wonder, why it took so long for the design community to realize the magical potential of designing with eco in mind. Singita Lebombo Lodge is Africa’s answer.
Singita Lebombo Lodge is situated in the Nwanetsi Concession Area in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Singita Lebombo rests lightly among the ancient boulders of the Lebombo Mountains overlooking the African plain where 2 rivers meet
It is a place where guests will be able to experience the real Africa, majestic, unfiltered and unadorned. From the sweeping wooden decks, you can watch the theatre that unfolds before you, while the lap pool beckons to enjoy a relaxing afternoon. The 15-suites feature contemporary finishes with beds done in high-thread Egyptian cotton and silky-soft throws.
Guests stay in luxurious suites elevated on stilts along the cliff side. Look out from your timber and glass suite and enjoy the breathtaking views over the African bush. The suites all have floor to ceiling glass walls, ideal for game viewing.
Dine indoors or out while watching game traverse the vast open grassland. Singita Lebombo’s dedicated Bush Spa offers a comprehensive activity and personal treatment program, while the African Trading Store showcases some of Africa’s finest and most exclusive clothing, artworks and decorative ware.
Surfers dedicated their lives to achieving perfection in the water. ~ Richard Attenborough, BBC “Wilflife on One”
As more of the world discovers the natural beauty of Cape Town, putting her in a league of other gorgeous cities with similar assets like Sydney, San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona and Vancouver, her hotel scene is also put to a test. Luckily Cape Town has never experienced a shortage of luxury hotels. But rare is the degree of historical character on display at Ellerman House. It’s almost a century old now, and looks every bit as old as it is — which, in a business that’s increasingly obsessed with youthful looks and modern design, is a sure-fire way to distance yourself from the crowd.