South Africa

This post was written by our friend Willow Kalatchi from Elite Travel International.

 The breathtaking views and luxury accommodations at  Singita Lebombo Lodge

The breathtaking views and luxury accommodations at Singita Lebombo Lodge

Destination

Singita Lebombo lies at the far eastern region of South Africa's Kruger National park, bordering Mozambique. Singita-Kruger offers several 6-star service accommodation options. The newly refurbished Singita Sweni is a chic, bright and whimsically decorated 7-room lodge on the river bank, and the original Singita Lebombo is a14-room lodge perched above the plains and a nearby river. There is even a private 4-bedroom family villa at the lower end of the property.

What to Do

Game Drives

Twice-daily game drives depart at sunrise and in the late afternoon to maximize your chances of seeing the animals. As a passionate safari enthusiast, I was struck by the raw nature of the land concession. Unlike many other safari destinations, it is extremely rare to see another vehicle traversing the park and you are always the only vehicle at any one siting. And although you aren't guaranteed to see the 'big five' game animals – lions, leopards, elephant, cape buffalo and rhino – they are all native to the area. The search alone to witness these amazing animals in their natural habitat is part of the thrill of trekking through the bush, and we were blessed to come across a pride of four female lions and the most adorable baby lion cubs.

 
 Twice-daily  Game Drives  provide an unforgettable South African experience.

Twice-daily Game Drives provide an unforgettable South African experience.

 

Physical Activity

The lodge boasts two inviting pools. An afternoon swim in the refreshing water is the perfect remedy after hours bumping around in the African bush in the sun. In addition, there is a well-equipped gym, as taking a run is not advisable when you risk the chance of encountering wildlife. 

 
 Two luxurious  lap pools  provide a respite of relaxation amidst vast breathtaking beauty.

Two luxurious lap pools provide a respite of relaxation amidst vast breathtaking beauty.

 

Culinary

Lebombo has an award-winning culinary program that offers all types of cuisine with local flair, and they are happy to cater to all dietary requirements. One night, we were treated to an amazing “Bush Dinner” with full bar, entertainment and a barbecue, complete with white tablecloths and candlelight atop a rocky hill in the bush. The lengths and logistics to which they must go to make this evening perfect are beyond my imagination - but it was magical and seamless nonetheless.

All Singita properties are recognized for their extensive wine cellars and guests are welcome to select bottles during their stay. I had the pleasure of a fun wine tasting hosted by the lovely Lebombo/Sweni Somelier “Dee”, where I learned about South African wine regions and some new boutique brands.

 
  A unique and extensive  wine selection  is available to guests during their stay.

 A unique and extensive wine selection is available to guests during their stay.

 

Why i Loved It

The service was impeccable - no request went unanswered and the team made every attempt to make sure every guest felt like a VIP.  The rooms and the lodge are visually stunning and the central lodge and long bar area made it feel uniquely social for a safari lodge. The culinary program was nothing short of outstanding. Every meal and even snacks were as creative as what you might find in any fine dining restaurant in a major city. The rooms had both indoor and outdoor beds, so the brave could sleep outside and listen to the sound of the grazing hippos below and stare up at the stars (I am proud to report that I did spend one evening sleeping out under the stars and it was worth it!).

To top it off, the Singita Organization prides itself on giving back to the community. They offer hospitality and culinary training to neighborhood residents. Singita also focuses on sustainability and has established its own Tesla Solar farm to provide all the electricity for the lodge operations.

To book an all-inclusive stay, including logistics and full itineraries/combinations with other properties, please reach out to willow@theartofrefinedtravel.com

 Students and staff of the unique  Singita Community Culinary  School

Students and staff of the unique Singita Community Culinary School

 Treetop views. Photo Credit:  Syabona Africa

Treetop views. Photo Credit: Syabona Africa

  Fully-equipped gyms  are available for guests' convenience. 

Fully-equipped gyms are available for guests' convenience. 

 
 
 Willow Kalatchi,  Elite Travel International

Willow Kalatchi, Elite Travel International

ABOUT WILLOW KALATCHI

Willow Kalatchi is on the Elite Travel International team and specializes in unique luxury experiences and adventures. Using her lifelong passion for exploring the globe and her knowledge of some of the world's most spectacular locations and hotels, Willow creates tailor-made travel itineraries for the discerning Traveler. She has visited 38 countries to date and counting.