Looking for High-end Exclusivity? Try The Royal Portfolio Hotels
Jul12

Looking for High-end Exclusivity? Try The Royal Portfolio Hotels

The Royal Portfolio is a handpicked selection of high-end hotels offering a sense of exquisite exclusivity. Catering for an international market seeking hotels and lodges of a superior standard, the Royal Portfolio certainly sets the benchmark in terms of elite destinations. This intimate collection is a portfolio of private residences, hotels and safari lodges located in sought-after tourist destinations. For those with an extended budget, and want the best-of-the-best, the Royal Portfolio is a must. The Royal Portfolio is a family-run business, and although its properties are upmarket, the ethos of familiar comfort is a primary focus. Royal Portfolio is about the luxury, the familiar and the experience. Each destination is in a must-visit area in South Africa. One of our consultants will happily combine an itinerary with a stay at the below properties, offering you a quintessential “South African” experience exploring the Cape winelands, whale watching town of Hermanus, Kruger bushveld experience and the buzzing Cape Town. Let’s take a peek inside their staggeringly elite hideaways. Royal Malewane in the Kruger’s Thornybush Private Game Reserve The Thornybush Private Game Reserve is a big 5 reserve forming part of the Greater Kruger region. Royal Malewane is a luxury safari lodge in the heart of the reserve, and was recently nominated as one of the best 50 resorts in the world by Condé Nast  Traveler. This classic safari lodge exudes a traditional safari feel combined with a modern take on decor. It’s understated and classy; and provides that much needed slice of luxury combined with the adventurous safari lifestyle. Game drives are led by highly qualified guides and trackers; and take place twice a day during the periods of time when predators are most active. During your down time between game drives, we encourage you to indulge in a spa treatment or simply soak up the bushveld atmosphere. In terms of accommodation, there are six luxury suites, two “Royal” suites that come complete with two bedrooms. Then there is the Africa House, which is an exclusive use villa. Birkenhead House in the Whale Watching Town of Hermanus The Birkenhead House is a stately coastal home overlooking expansive sea and cascading cliffs of Walker Bay in Hermanus. Hermanus is a bustling seaside village that enjoys hordes of visitors during “whale season”, which is the time of year when the southern right whales return to ancient breeding areas. Walker Bay is one of these destinations, and is a short drive from Cape Town, making it a popular add-on to a holiday in Cape Town. The Birkenhead sets the standard in terms of luxury destinations in Hermanus. Decor is contemporary coupled with tasteful beach-house...

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Celebrating Singita Sweni’s Design and Architecture
Jul12

Celebrating Singita Sweni’s Design and Architecture

The exclusive Singita properties ooze style and sophistication, and every single one of their properties  manages to remain classically authentic without being ostentatious. Singita Sweni is a lodge resting on the banks of the Sweni River in the heart of the big 5 Kruger National Park, allowing guests to enjoy ample wildlife sightings from the comfort of the lodge. Singita Sweni is tasteful, bold and classy. This exclusive retreat was furnished by award-winning interior designers that successfully managed to combine the essence of the simple safari life with new trends in design principles. All of the Singita lodges are built with the idea in mind that they’re an extension of the environment, rather than an intrusion. Sweni has utilised the colours of the bushveld in its decor. From the soft furnishings to the furniture and artwork, the colours from outside world have been used cleverly throughout. The lodge was completely re-invented during the course of last year, and we absolutely love Singita’s phenomenal take on modern safari living! The Sweni hideaway is home to 7 suites which are eye-level with the surrounding riverine trees. Each of the suites are open-plan and flow through to private game viewing decks. The outdoor showers are yet another added sense of wild luxury that creates a feeling of being completely connected to the bushveld. The showers overlook the river – be sure to lookout for elephants at the river’s edge – and provide yet another game viewing opportunity from the comfort of the lodge. Singita Sweni lodge also has a pool suite which is home to a private swimming pool and expansive riverfront viewing deck. This suite has two bedrooms, making it ideal for families. In terms of activities, there’s plenty on the go. There are game drives, guided walks, archery, a spa and gym, swimming pool, stargazing, shopping at the boutique shop and gallery ; and community visits. There are also plenty of family activities available, which includes baking with with the lodge chefs, swimming and even a mini rangers’ course. For the adults, there’s also wine tasting. The Singita wine list has received an accolade from the “Top Diners Club Wine List”. And as for the wildlife? Well, it goes without saying that game viewing is unsurpassed. The big 5, birdlife, mammals, plains game, predators, and reptiles all call this section of the bushveld “home”.    ...

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4 Wildlife and Environment Awareness Days to Mark on the Calendar
Jul11

4 Wildlife and Environment Awareness Days to Mark on the Calendar

Throughout the year we take time to create awareness about the various critically endangered species that once roamed our planet in abundance. These are the animals that now face extinction due to habitat loss, poaching, misguided belief systems, population increase and natural causes. There are specific dates of the year designed to celebrate individual species.  The more awareness we create, both online and offline, the more educated the masses become towards making a shift in their mindset and their actions. There are 4 wildlife and environment awareness days that resonate with us, which we’ve listed below. There are a number of ways of helping to conserve the planet and its natural wild inhabitants. Legitimate organisations have been set-up to help conserve wildlife. You can help by making a financial donation or offering up your time for volunteer purposes. There are even options to create your own event, and ample opportunity to start online petitions. Social media campaigns also have a key role to play in ensuring global consciousness. The below dates are 4 wildlife and environment awareness days to mark on your calendar. World Lion Day Lions have a regal nature and certainly exude a sense of power. They portray all that is powerful, brave and strong. The males are our kings and our females the fearless warriors. They are the kings of the jungle and the guardians of the universe, and are one of the world’s most iconic species. The lion is part of our heritage, and Global Lion Day is a reason to celebrate the presence of the lion worldwide. Lions happen to be one of the big five animals in Africa, and they’re commonly spotted throughout reserves and concessions. Despite being spotted on a regular basis, their numbers are on the decline, and it’s estimated that fewer than 20, 000 lions remain free in the wild. Date: 10 August Information: World Lion Day How to Help : Organise a fundraising event, show your support for lions on Facebook and Twitter, or donate to dedicated organisations. For more information on ways and means of helping, click here. World Pangolin Day The pangolin (scaly anteater) is one of the most critically endangered species in the world. This prehistoric looking creature is immensely shy and is rarely seen. Their body is covered in scales made from keratin, which gives the impression of being covered in protective armour. When under threat, the pangolin tends to curl up into a defensive ball position. The pangolin’s main threat is humans. There is a demand from China for scales which are used in all sorts of mythical medicine, and pangolin flesh is also considered a...

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Client Feedback : Kruger Safari and Panoramic Route
Jul09

Client Feedback : Kruger Safari and Panoramic Route

Liselle’s clients enjoyed a Kruger safari at Simbavati River Lodge in the exclusive Timbavati Nature Reserve and at the  Tanamera Lodge situated on the hills of the Sabie River Valley, in the heart of the Lowveld forest. They clearly saw plenty of wildlife, given their glowing review ! Here is their feedback: Hi Liselle, I will just like to really thank you for a wonderful well planned and well Organised holiday . It’s one of the best we have enjoyed as a family …. and I have you to thank . Simbavati river lodge is absolutely gorgeous and the staff is brilliant . Warm , helpful , attentive to our needs and courteous . Trackers and rangers are absolutely the best .They are  well informed & TOP of their game .They made us so comfortable and  safe especially when we’re so close to the wild animals , as they really knew how to read the behaviours of the animals and were very reassuring . We went away with wonderful memories and the best moments of our lives . Tana mera is a hidden gem up in the hills . Exclusive and beautiful  .We loved our Panaromic drive along the Blyde river canyon .we are so Glad we did those 2 days . I managed to get 2 blissful hours at the Sunday craft market at rosebank as we stayed at holiday inn , just before catching a taxi back to the airport . All together a brilliant holiday in South Africa . I will definitely highly recommend sun safari and simbavati river lodge to my friends ! THANK YOU AGAIN! Best wishes ,...

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Client Feedback : Exceptional Okavango Delta Safari
Jul09

Client Feedback : Exceptional Okavango Delta Safari

Natasha’s clients enjoyed both a water and land safari in the Okavango Delta, a prime game viewing destination home to high concentrations of wildlife. Her guests stayed at Mapula Lodge, and Linyanti Bush Camp which provided them with the ultimate Okavango Delta experience. All of the below photos were taken by Mark Spond, Natasha’s client. Here is their feedback : Hi Natasha! We are home after an amazing trip to Botswana! Thank you for all your planning and booking support — everything went flawlessly! Saskia and I absolutely loved both lodges we visited. If we were not so excited to get home to see our son, we would have never wanted to leave Botswana! Mapula Lodge offered a quintessential “Delta Experience” that was exactly what we hoped for. The food was superb and the lodge/accommodation were very nice.We were spoiled as the only guests at the lodge during our stay, leaving the wonderful staff and entire 100,000-hectare concession all to us. We saw lots of game (lechwe, sable, wild dogs, lion, leopard …) and were amazed by the sunsets/sunrises, stars, and smells (Okavango sage). Mapula is in a stunning location, particularly during the early dry season when the western Delta is experiencing the height of the annual flood. Further, Mapula was recently acquired by “Uncharted Africa,” which operates several famous and very up-market lodges in Botswana. They have significantly updated the lodge and staffed it with excellent people (e.g., Costa, Eric, Slender). It’s only a matter of time before the reputation of Mapula rivals their other camps. Thank you for helping us to stay at this camp before booking availability becomes a challenge and they are no longer offering introductory rates. Linyanti Bush Camp was also wonderful. The Linyanti Marshes offered a nice complement to our time in the Delta. The game viewing was excellent (wild dogs, leopard, hippos, buffalo ….), particularly the hundreds and hundreds of elephants! I would not be surprised if we saw 1,000 individual elephants during our stay. The food was very good and the guest “tents” were extremely comfortable. We were also very impressed by the staff — our guide (Stanley) and our host (Cassie) were excellent. The braai under the stars in the boma was also very memorable, especially the staff singing for the guests. We also loved the scenic helicopter flight over the surrounding area! All these wonderful experiences were made even more special knowing that the camp is operated by African Bush Camps, a company that does great philanthropic work within the surrounding communities. Thank you again, Natasha! Between this trip to Botswana and our previous trip to South Africa, you...

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