THE LOGBOOK M A R C H
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You are running out of time to see the world
Contents Editors note.................................................................................... 4 Norwich to Edinburgh in a Skoda Kodiaq VRS.................. 6 Traversing Africa.......................................................................... 8 Senait Ethiopia Tours................................................................12 Mount Kili Adventures Ltd.....................................................14 As You Like It Safaris Ltd.........................................................17 Wild Gaze Safaris.......................................................................20 Serengeti Balloon Safaris........................................................22 Nande Junias Explorer Tours................................................24 Sheldrick Wildlife Trust...........................................................29 Lima Escape.................................................................................32 Hotel Francis Arlene.................................................................34 Lodgâ€™ing.........................................................................................36 Nile Safari Lodge........................................................................38 Glampsan......................................................................................42 Exclusive Tents............................................................................46 Ebony Home................................................................................50 Glampro.........................................................................................52
What a month! The world has been gripped by viral panic. Schools, businesses and social gatherings have been closed or banned. People have been told to not socialise or gather in groups. There are many reasons why these measures are smart, reasonable and forward thinking but it is important to remember that even should you catch the virus, you have a 98% chance of recovery. The travel industry is one sector that has been hit the hardest. Ghost planes have been flying with half their seats empty, airlines have had to close doors, hotels are scarcely populated by wide eyed zombies wearing surgical masks (wonâ€™t do anything for you) and the knock on effects have been felt throughout many industries. The medical industry, ie the surgeons and doctors that need the surgical masks have had shortages because the factories that make them have been closed and the public have been panic buying them in bulk. It seems that every country is on the verge of declaring martial law with everyone being confined to their homes and given a curfew, a response that is usually represented in fiction when thereâ€™s a zombie or vampire outbreak. Through this, small to medium enterprises in the travel and tourism industry are having to pivot, bob and weave. These businesses, in the face of fear are stepping up and making sure that everyone feels hope, everyone knows that those places and experiences on their bucket lists are still going to be there. That their adventures and their dream-vacations and once-in-a-lifetime experiences are just waiting for them. These businesses are also giving a huge amount of hope to the employees and staff and suppliers that rely on these businesses for their bread and butter. In times like this, people are looking for the heroic brands that they can trust. The ones that did not bow to pressure and did not throw in the towel. Indeed, the brands that step forward today will be the heroes of tomorrow. This is the time when heroes are made. With this in mind, we have the usual selection of glamping, safaris and boutique accommodations ready for you. Enjoy.
The Team Published by The Lost Executive LTD Co-founder and Creative and Editorial Director Don Campbell Co-founder Jerome Smith Head Writer Donnie Rust Copy proofreader Daemon Sands Magazine Designer Louise Smith
Working with Glampinghub.com
NORWICH TO EDINBURGH IN A SKODA KODIAQ VRS It’s 3am and I’m driving. My girlfriend, who kindly promised to stay awake to help me keep alert and on the road is curled up like a squirrel in the passenger seat and fast asleep. For the record, she does not snore as quietly as a squirrel. The eight hour drive from Norfolk England to Scotland has only just begun and the roads are quiet and endless. In the prevailing darkness vehicles drift across the road like deep sea fish at the bottom of the ocean. There is a solemn courtesy of the road at this time of night, if you see lights ahead you dim your bright beams, you don’t act like an idiot, you drive carefully. At the Witching Hour every driver knows that every other driver would rather be in their bed than behind the wheel.
Thank god I was in a Skoda Kodiaq vRS2.0!
COMFORTABLE STYLISH DRIVING The Skoda Kodiaq is quite a handsome car. It has the heft that you would expect from a 4x4 and the interior space that suggests it can carry anything. It also has a very quick kick for a diesel that could match a petrol engine for its take-off speed.
And, during these times of non-ideal driving conditions, a vehicle can really demonstrate it’s true worth and value. It is during these times that a driver appreciates the actual thinking time that designers have taken to consider what it means to be a safe and reliable car.
The driving position is very comfortable with everything being within easy reach of the driver’s fingertips. Skoda uses an intelligent design when it comes to the basic controls of a car. Everything is where you’d expect them to be, the start button is on the side of the steering column, the windscreen wipers, the indicators, the lights, the basic controls are all in the locations where your hands naturally expect to find them.
it wouldn’t suit a builder or labourer and while it would probably be strong enough to handle a dirty job, it’s not really suited for it. I would imagine this is a great car for an executive travelling for work or for hauling people around. I was using it to collect an apartment’s worth of clothes, bedding and boxes and boxes of books from a container in Norwich so it’s definitely strong enough for that. These standardised controls mean that when you climb behind the wheel you don’t need a map on how to operate the system. The onboard computer is highly intuitive and assumes that the driver doesn’t have time to pull over to the side of the road to work out how to switch from radio to sat nav or how to connect your phone! So your eyes and your brain are never distracted from the road.
THE SPECS As you’ve probably guessed, I was impressed by how safe this vehicle made me feel while I was driving with only a couple of hours sleep. Cruise control, seven airbags, progressive steering, full LED headlights with an adaptive front light system and LED daytime running lights made me feel like we could survive almost anything. Combined with a Columbus satnav system that was reliable to the letter, even to avoiding the recently put up road works on the A1 and A17.
I will be honest and say that the sport style bucket seats were a bit uncomfortable after several hours of driving, however I think this is more a case of functionality over design. Or it could be because there are surprisingly few cars made for a man of my size and height… or that I should have taken more stops to stretch along the way.
PERSONAL TASTE I am just under two metres tall and as a big guy I don’t fit into small cars. At all. Naturally, I prefer large and spacious cars that are reliable and intuitive and don’t require a great deal of skill to drive. This is one of the reasons I tend to enjoy Skodas and also why I would recommend the Kodiaq vRS. It doesn’t take a great deal of skill to drive but it will still make you look like you know what you’re doing, and most importantly, it is a joy to drive.
FUEL AND ECONOMY It cost us £65 to full the tank and that got us close to 700 miles. Keeping in mind most of the driving was not in cities and we stuck to the motorway as much as possible. We did get a chance to test out the performance on a variety of roads because you don’t get to Scotland without going through some snake bend lanes.
Seriously though, she doesn’t snore like a squirrel at all.
Also, when a hairpin turn appears out of nowhere and you’re travelling at sixty miles an hour I can assure you that this car grips the asphalt as if it were on rails.
See more about this great vehicle at: https://www.skoda.co.uk/new-cars/kodiaq/vrs
FUNCTIONALITY More of a city 4x4 than a heavy duty truck, the Kodiaq vRS does offer quite a spacious boot area with the furthest back seats pushed down. But
TRAVERSING AFRICA Your Perfectly Tailored Adventure
Africa calls to the adventurer with an unmistakable challenge to seek what is over the horizon, to explore, to discover and to embrace the remarkable beauty of this incredible continent. This is the case even for natives like South African born and bred Kirsty Perring who founded Traversing Africa in 2018. After earning her diploma in travel and tourism and spending twenty three years working in the industry, her safari tour company is the embodiment of her avid belief in the value of travel and its ability to transform the way a person sees and interacts with the world.
Having grown up in SA, Kirsty goes on to explain that she has spent her life travelling and exploring the continent and as a result possesses an intimate knowledge of the destinations and is able to offer firsthand advice and insider information. “Nobody wants to think they’re on an average safari,” she points out, “When people commit to come to Africa, they want to believe it’s going to be an adventure. They want to be surprised, they want to be captivated and enthralled. So, I make sure I’m able to offer those secrets that others may not know and that are not readily available on the internet.”
“When I started Traversing Africa,” Kirsty explains, “I was determined to offer something that was unique and give clients the chance to see their Africa through tailor made journeys that were inspiring and memorable.”
THE SAFARIS The immersive quality that Kirsty offers in her safari tours is something that has made her a go-to for families, solitary explorers and groups. Typically, the safaris can last between two days and three weeks and offer a range of involvement for all kinds of people. The tailored tours cater for those who are a bit timider and more cautious, seeking to explore Africa from an almost academic approach of look but don’t touch, all the way to those who want to taste Africa on the wind and feel the soil between their toes.
“While some clients will tell you everything, they want to see in such detail that you need to manage their expectations at the start so as not to disappoint them,” she says, “Others are hesitant to mention what they really want to see and because of this they miss out. So that’s why we build up a relationship where they feel that they can talk about what they’ve always dreamt of seeing in Africa.” Kirsty adds that these relationships are the most fundamental part of her business and they’re not just limited to her and her clients. There are also the relationships she has with her safari and accommodation partners, where the exchange of information and constructive feedback are vital for the smooth running of the business.
“For those who don’t grow up here,” Kirsty says, “Africa represents a once in a lifetime journey. Each client has dreamt about what their adventure will be like and these expectations need to be respected and, wherever possible, exceeded.” She goes on to explain that there certainly is enough variety in Africa to achieve this, but it takes that personal approach which is something she has been so dedicated to producing. According to her, the only way to gain access to a client’s list of “must sees”, is to build the sort of relationship with them where they feel they can share.
MATCHING THE SAFARI TO THE CLIENT According to Kirsty, who has seen the industry shift and morph over the last two decades, every person has a safari or tour that is absolutely perfect for them. And, as she and her business represent a number of countries in Africa, all which offer unique and exciting safari options, it’s important to match the country with the clients. To do this there are a few ways to narrow it down and they involve getting to know the client and asking questions. “Are they first timers to safari or have they been on one before? Are they travelling with children, and if they are what are the ages? What time of year are they travelling, are they looking for the best price or are they solely interested in the best viewing experience?” she says, “These are the kinds of things we need to know.”
Then, what are their interests and are they aware of the scale of viewing and safari options available? Do they want to explore Africa by trail, water or air? Are they wanting to see birds or buffalo? Migrating herds or predators? Are they looking for adventure or opportunities for photography? Kirsty makes sure that these questions are asked because, as mentioned earlier, she never wants a client to be disappointed because they’ve missed something, they really wanted to see but didn’t mention.
away from home where they can kick of their shoes, put their feet up and help themselves to a drink. Others want to be waited on hand and foot by a fleet of butlers. “One of the important things to know,” Kirsty adds, “Is if the client needs access to strong WIFI or if they’re looking for a digital detox. And, if it is the latter, how extreme do they want it. For example, are they wanting to go completely cold turkey without any connectivity at all or would WIFI in their rooms still be a good idea? You just need to get to know them.”
“For those wanting to be hands on there are a number of conservation opportunities for clients to get involved such as rhino darting for research purposes,” Kirsty reveals, “Or the safaris can be mixed with some culture, city life, history or even combined with a beach. All of this goes into deciding where to send clients and how to partner them with their perfect adventure.”
IMPORTANT CAUSES Always one to add value, to her client’s experience, to her industry and to the environment that she works within Kirsty has become a familiar face in important causes. Always involved in something worthwhile she is an ambassador of how more businesses should strive to be. Recently she held a fundraiser in Toronto regarding Saving The Last Rhino Fundraiser, to help raise awareness and finances for Project Rhino. There are some incredible safari prizes up for grabs including safari trips and awesome accommodation stays. https://www.charityauctionstoday.com/auctions/ Saving-the-Last-Rhinos-Fundraiser-8784 PRICES: see website WEBSITE: www.traversingafrica.com
COMPANY ADDRESS: 55 York Street #1103, Toronto, Ontario, M5J 1R7
Traversing Africa uses a variety of accommodation depending on budget and tastes, ranging from affordable three star to five star deluxe luxury tents, to villas, to bungalows, to hotel type lodges. The average length of stay is three to four nights at each property and Kirsty explains that like the safari, the accommodation must suit the client.
TELEPHONE: +1 6479240674 EMAIL: email@example.com
“Smaller boutique properties suit couples and honeymooners while lodges with incredible kids safari programmes are always a win for families,” she says, “Then, lodges that incorporate dining at one big table with all guests and guides are a good option for single travellers, so they don’t eat alone.” Concurrently, first time safari goers may be wary of staying in tented accommodation regardless of how secure it is, and some people want a home
SENAIT ETHIOPIA TOURS
for the future, Taddese is seldom satisfied with the standards of yesterday and is always looking to improve. Combining his professional experience with studies on sustainable community based tourism as well as his Marketing Management degree from Addis Abba University, Senait Ethiopia Tours is one of the most cutting edge tours in the country.
Senait Ethiopia Tours was founded over ten years ago in 2008 by Mr. Taddese Atlaw who is still the owner and managing director. A young and energetic travel professional Taddese worked for a number of prominent tour companies based in Ethiopia before creating his own business based around his unique vision of what a tour should be.
THE DRIVE BEHIND THE BUSINESS
Having spent much of his time managing and organizing ground arrangements, Taddese knows the importance of smooth logistics in a tour. It is one of those things that if it is done absolutely right, it will be almost entirely unnoticed by the guest but is nevertheless utterly essential for their enjoyment.
Taddese’s main drive has always been to have an ethical, client orientated business that provides the best value for his guests that is of the highest standard and cost effective. A business that is as known for it’s reliability and communityresponsible services as it is for its engaging and entertaining safaris.
Always striving to update himself and his business in terms of his offering to his clients and his plans
The average tour lasts between six to eighteen days and can include a range of focusses including biking, cultural and historical tours and family adventure tours. All managed by Taddese’s professional and friendly staff and making use of their new tourist class range of vehicles. Accommodation is in 3 and 5 star locations and the tours are updated regularly with major overalls taking place every two years. The backbone of their business is solid relationships with local people, staff, clients and other service providers.
THE IMPORTANCE OF GUEST SATISFACTION
TELEPHONE: +251930014376 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
According to Taddese his company’s success is entirely dependent on the enjoyment of his guests. To him and his team, every tour is make-or-break and has to be of the best quality.
“Our business is in the hands of our clients,” he says. And this is not just a hollow slogan. For a service provider such as SET, the recommendations of their satisfied customers have more lasting effects than any amount of literature or promotional materials
SUSTAINABILITY WORK They help charities and organizations working to improve conditions in areas that they are associated with by direct help. Some of the local community schemes they currently support involve building schools in Sendafa and drilling wells for drinking water.
2020 New and regular guests can expect some amazing new developments this year including all new paragliding tours. This will offer guests a totally new perspective for seeing Ethiopia and a chance to make some lifelong memories. PRICE: USD 250- 300/day COMPANY ADDRESS: Bole Road, Woreda 11, Mag Bldg, 2Nd Floor And Office No 211
MOUNT KILI ADVENTURES LTD
Founded in 2011, Mount Kili Adventures Ltd is proof that nothing can hold back a great idea. Owner Yosepha Arestidi Shirima reveals that she created her business for two main reasons. Firstly, a love of adventuring and secondly an inspired move to have a company that could generate income not only for herself but also for other people. Especially the women who work as porters and guides in her company.
“In other words,” Yosepha says, “Our clients are helping less privileged people in Tanzania and contributing towards nature and wildlife conservation.”
Yosepha is proud of the fact that their clients arrive as customers and leave as friends. Not only because as a business they thrive on peer reviews and recommendations, but also because it is a deeply personal relationship that she values.
With a team of ten permanent staff and an additional thirty temporary staff there is a selection of safari packages to suit the tastes of every would-be explorer seeking to experience Africa.
“For many clients this is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” she says, “And it is deeply rewarding to be there with them and making sure they have the best experience possible.”
Depending on what the customer wants, the trips and packages vary from single day trips, to longer adventures that can last between three days to up to fourteen. And, in a fantastic development for the industry as a whole, the guides are all women and are highly experience in both safaris and mountain climbing! Fluent in Swahili and English these guides know exactly how to engage their audience perfectly and showcase the marvellous wildlife, geography, flora and fauna of the region which makes Tanzania the country it is.
THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND If there are any specific dietary requirements it is always best to make it known upon booking so arrangements can be made. PRICE: The price varies depending to the package that the client chooses. There are luxury packages and budget packages available. Depending on this the prices can range between $450.00 US for three days up to $850.00 US for three days. The maximum price is up to $4200.00 US which is a luxury package from the mountain to the wilderness to the beach.
Overnight accommodation of varying styles are available depending on the client’s choice, taste and budget. The choice of destinations are carefully selected and each pride themselves on the excellence of their personalized service and the friendliness of their staff. Yosepha also makes sure that the safaris are all updated once a year to keep them as fresh and as sustainable as possible.
TELEPHONE: +255 784 545 594 EMAIL: email@example.com WEBSITE: www.mountkiliadventures.com
COMMUNITY WORK Mount Kili Adventures supports a number of charities and they also organise volunteers seeking to spend time working in the country. Furthermore, they donate a percentage of their profits to non-profit organizations and to the local community based causes that are doing such great work.
Experience the allure of Africa We inspire you to experience the allure of Africa through meaningful and transformational journeys that are personally crafted to your specific aspirationsâ€Ś â€ŚTraverse in our Footsteps.
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AS YOU LIKE IT SAFARIS LTD An outstanding and unique safari operator that specialises in all of East Africa, As You Like It Safaris has made a name for itself by offering adventurous safaris tailor-made to suit each and every client’s unique desires. Owner, Vivien Prince, has been working in safaris since 1989 and was able to purchase a camp in Maasai Mara from a business partner in 1997. Wanting it to reflect class, flexibility and personality she turned to Shakespeare’s famous line, “As You Like It” and her company was born.
“I love to share this beautiful country,” Vivien says “And to show all it has to offer in the good old-fashioned way of spending quality time in the parks and getting great photos, engaging with this ancient and wild place on a personal and memorable level.”
THE UNIQUE TOUCH Vivien explains that what makes them unique is her personal, old school attention to detail where customers get what they are promised and more.
Truly, the best way in Vivien’s mind to experience a safari, is to get right stuck in and have an adventure!
She explains that she inherited Ernest Kamara, who has now worked with her for thirty years, from Brian Nicholson. Having mentored under Brian and having learnt everything he had to offer, Kamara is now a director of As You Like It Safaris Limited and is an irreplaceable part of the business.
THE SAFARIS Working with a select team of industry experts as well as agents in Canada and Australia, the average As You Like It Safari lasts fourteen to seventeen days, but as each tour is customized for the participant, they can last any length of time. As is suggested by the name, the safaris are all focused around what a customer wants to see.
“He is his own mechanic, he is bush savvy, humble, knows his way around and is an outstanding driver and guide,” Vivien says, “Most importantly, he is much loved by all those who safari with him, and is the standard of which I judge all my other driver guides against.”
*Details on the website or those who are interest can email Vivien for more information. www.asyoulikeitsafaris.com
2020 is going to be a safari year, and As You Like It Safaris has some amazing offers in store for those looking for an opportunity to get a different perspective on the usual African tour.
KENYA COFFEE CULTURE SAFARI
AS YOU LIKE IT PHOTOGRAPHIC SAFARI
One that is definitely likely to perk up the ears of many a coffee and travel lover, the Kenya Coffee Culture Safari is guaranteed to get a buzz in your step. Kenya is right on the coffee belt and produces some of the best coffees in the world and this tour is a chance to see this industry at its very origin.
24th July to the 7th August Lead by Vivien herself, this photographic safari during the Great Migration, is a one of a kind opportunity to see how the majestic wildlife of East Africa interacts with its own environment. And, also, to immortalise it in a way that will stay with you for the rest of your life. For professionals and amateurs alike, if you have a passion for seeing animals in their most natural state, then this is one to deeply consider.
With the help of Gibsonâ€™s Coffee, and Serena Hotels Ltd., As You Like It, takes guests through a tour that will showcase the history of this regionâ€™s coffee production. Not just about the beans, this tour also includes safari and wildlife viewing with guests staying at the most amazing hotels in the region.
Picked up upon arrival from the Kenya Nairobi Airport guests are delivered to the hotel and the adventure begins the very next morning. Participants wake early and travel to the carefully selected locations that offer the best chance to get those perfect photographs. Accommodation is on site through a range of hotels and lodges to ensure that as much time as possible can be devoted to the task of getting those perfect shots.
*Details on the website or those who are interest can email Vivien for more information. www.asyoulikeitsafaris.com
“No matter what you think you know about this region, you’ll also be surprised at what you find,” Vivien promises.
CONSERVATION EFFORTS Vivien also explains that they always try to share their conservation efforts with their clients. They are involved in a lot of different projects, including the Mt. Kenya Safari Club Animal Orphanage, The Chimpanzee sanctuary in Ol Pejeta, The Rhino Sanctuary in Ol Pejeta and The Elephant Orphanage.
PRICE: Average US$8,000 to $9,000, but depending on what is wanted it can be as low as $2700 or up to $11,000 to $12,000 per person.
Beyond wildlife, there is a strong social responsibility that As You Like It Safaris is involved in. Hope Streams Academy is one of these projects where many clients absolutely adore the visit to the school. Visitors to the country are often interested in the social aspects of the people that live there, it is an important part of getting to know this corner of the world and realising just how wonderful the locals are.
WEBSITE: www.asyoulikeitsafaris.com COMPANY ADDRESS: P.O. Box 40501, Nairobi 00100, Kenya. And 384 Nassau Way, Boulder City, NV 89005 TELEPHONE: WhatsApp +1 702 343 3776 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT GUESTS CAN EXPECT
“Safari Ants, Baggy Pants, and Elephants,” by Susie Kelly. This is a must read, very informative, but equally, well written, and humorous! It describes “being on safari with As You Like It Safaris and Vivien Prince.” A best seller on Amazon USA and Amazon UK.
Vivien’s pledge to clients is that their safari will be as you like it. How many days? Budget? Special requests? All this is taken into consideration, and all costs and details are made clear upfront. Every detail is catered for at the onset and there are only good surprises.
WILD GAZE SAFARIS Tanzania THE SAFARIS Mountain climbing and safari is the mainstay of Wild Gaze Safaris and as such no corners are cut when it comes to client safety and services. Ernest explains that they spend considerable funds to make their equipment as safe and reliable as possible and that their staff are the best trained in the field. The activities have been packaged in a selection of safaris, each one offering an exceptional Tanzanian experience at an unbeatable value. Each safari is flexible though and Ernest and his team are always up for a challenge if there is something different and unique that a client is looking to enjoy. For Wild Gaze Safaris, based in East Africa, 2019 was defined by the new Southern Circuit safari location in Tanzania. Today, 2020 is all about bringing communities together around the importance of locally focused tourism.
THE GUARANTEES Apart from adventures youâ€™ll remember for the rest of your life Wild Gaze Safaris also guarantee every departure with a minimum of two passengers. Whether a safari tour has a dozen people or just two, they operate on the scheduled date and with the prescribed itinerary, featuring the same standard of tour.
We have spoken with Wild Gaze Safaris previously and highlighted how they are never satisfied with conducting regular standard tours. And how they have travelled the length and breadth of the country to find the most sublime opportunities for their clients. Exploring every destination to ensure that what they recommend is not only based on first-hand experience but that every supplier in the itinerary are up to the same standards. This authenticity is something that Ernest Lugalla, the owner of the company, is insistent upon.
Also, thanks to Ernest and his team having developed close working relationships with their hotel partners and being vigilant on their facilities, cuisine and service, there is a best room guarantee. Depending on what package is selected, the rooms could be in well located city hotels, keeping you in the heart of everything or in a safari lodge located in the heart of the wilderness. Or perhaps both.
THE GUIDES Employing their guides full time, each of the Wild Gaze Safari tour guides have a minimum of ten years safari experience. Ernest only works with the best and will accept nothing other than the finest guides to lead their tours and safaris. Some of the requirements is an encyclopaedic knowledge of the history, geography, people, flora and fauna of East Africa, as well as excellent driving, mechanical skills and a great talent for entertainment and engagement.
2020 This year, Ernest wants to bring tourism social activities to the local community officer and start dealing with Primary schools within the areas of their operations such as Iringa Town. Executed from their Wild Gaze Charity Foundation www.wildgazefoundation.org this will give them the chance to plant the seed of entrepreneurship in the local community to becoming more tourism focused and business minded in the young generation. only with the wildlife and nature but also with the communities in the region,” Ernest explains, “Afterall, it is when you engage with a local community that you experience the real spirit of a place.”
Ernest is also in the process of designing a brand new itinerary for new and regular clients that will involve engaging with visited villages on a direct basis. For example, in Iringa, after morning breakfast the group would cycle 20km to one of the selected primary schools and greet teachers and students and work on engaging projects for a couple of hours before lunch. After a delicious meal they would continue onto a vehicle safari and end the day with an evening game drive and dinner at an overnight camp.
WEBSITE: www.wildgazesafaris.com EMAIL: email@example.com TELEPHONE: + 255 787 007 378 + 255 754 893 717 *All adventures, risks, challenges and good times undertaken by our readers are solely their own responsibility. Before choosing please read our Responsible Usage.
“This would be the first day of a several days safari package that will including engaging not
SERENGETI BALLOON SAFARIS Seeing the Serengeti from the air offers a different perspective on the sheer scale of Africa and is a unique and enlightening way to see some of the continentâ€™s most thrilling natural activities. As featured previously, Serengeti Balloon Safaris were one of the first operators to offer air tours and in many ways, the two founders Colin McKinnon and Tony Pascoe have pioneered this industry.
in the clouds and their feet on the ground, this year will see Serengeti Balloon Safaris take steps to develop themselves and demonstrate how safari companies can, and should, operate.
2020 DEVELOPMENTS Currently, they are in the process of developing a sustainability policy which will be closely aligned with the United Nations Sustainability Development goals. This will help formalise their commitment to make their people, environment and country more sustainable.
Known as innovators who continuously seek improvement to stay ahead, (or above), of the game, 2020 is going to be an interesting and impactive year for this operator. With their heads
To achieve this, theyâ€™ve had to identify the most important measures for the required criteria, work ways to improve and report on them on an annual basis and through a systematic approach, continue to improve. These changes not only cover environmental factors like hydrocarbon use and waste management, but also staff training and improvement on social and cultural measures.
Offsetting has measurable effects but the most important impact for their customers is the reassurance that their activities are carried out in the safest, most responsible and most sustainable way. Other impacts include happier and even more motivated staff, a better protected environment and an overall better safari experience.
This includes achieving Travelife and RTTZ accreditation. This process began in 2019 and will continue throughout this year and beyond. The certifications have different levels of good practise and as a business they are striving to seek higher levels as they continue to progress.
SAFARIS BY AIR With 80 locally employed staff working on the ground and in the air each safari lasts approximately five hours with one hour spent in the air. As Tanzaniaâ€™s pioneering and most experienced balloon safari company it is the skills and know-how that are applied to each safari that keeps the balloons aloft as much as the hot air.
The motivation for this comes firstly from a belief in sustainability and eco-tourism and secondly from the fact that tourism is an essential part of conservation. Their upfront approach to becoming more sustainable is also an action which they hope will inspire other businesses around them and within their industry to do the same.
To operate safe, high quality balloon safaris in this environment is a challenge but it is also the most magical environment in which to experience the wonders of the natural world.
To create real change, Serengeti Balloon Safaris have set themselves the task to really understand what it will take for them to be more sustainable. Instead of just ticking boxes on a sheet. For example, reducing a carbon footprint is one of the most well-known sustainability methods, and as one specific part of an overall strategy it is easily measurable and can be offset.
WEBSITE: www.balloonsafaris.com TELEPHONE: +255 754 688 806 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org *All adventures, risks, challenges and good times undertaken by our readers are solely their own responsibility. Before choosing please read our Responsible Usage.
As such, as a company they will be offsetting their carbon footprint through Carbon Tanzania. Taking measures from their 2019 accounts, including diesel, gas, petrol consumption and air plane tickets and making an equivalent payment to Carbon Tanzania within the first quarter of 2020 to use on their offsetting projects within the country.
NANDE JUNIAS EXPLORER TOURS The Secret to Success. Love what you do.
We caught up with Nande Junias, founder of Nande Junias Explorer Tours to discuss why passion for your work is the greatest tool for success.
fair share for the Namibian tourist industry as well as bringing important tourist traffic to the communities for which his tours visit. Nande grew up in the lovely coastal town of Swakopmund in Namibia, a region where the remnants of the country’s German influence can be seen reflected in the architecture, culture and cuisine. To showcase how such influences have affected the local cultures of the area, Nande has created a host of new tours to the delight of his regular guests. One of which we’ve highlighted this month.
PASSION AND HAPPINESS One thing that always identifies Nande however, is his gigantic and happy smile and infectious joy. It is something that his clients and customers instinctively relate to. According to him, this is not a learned trait but rather just how he is. “I love what I do, and I love that my tours help make the world a bit bigger and more colourful for those participating,” he says, “If you love what you do, everything else falls into place.”
THE TOURS A land of marvellous beauty, Namibia is truly a joy to visit. Benefitting from a well-developed infrastructure and some of the finest tourist facilities in Africa it is one of the continents sometimes overlooked treasures. Nande, who grew up in the area has been dedicated to raising the profile of this country since he founded his business in 2015 and has done more than his
MONDESA HISTORICAL TOWNSHIP CYCLING DAY TOUR
To properly appreciate this extraordinary country, you have to venture out of the highly developed cities to explore the remarkable natural landscapes Namibia has to offer.
Namibia is an ideal destination for travellers seeking an unforgettable African experience in a uniquely beautiful untamed wilderness, and immersion into a different culture. To do this you’ll need someone who knows the country and the people like the back of his hand.
These include the impressive Fish River Canyon Park and the vast Etosha National Park both of which are teeming with local subspecies, such as desert lions, desert elephants and the Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra. At the same time, you don’t want to miss the hauntingly beautiful Kalahari Desert and of course the Namib Desert which stretches for nearly 1000 km along the magnificent Atlantic coastline.
The Cultural Cycling Township Tours led by Nande are all about the people of this land. It is an immersive tour, giving participants the opportunity to truly experience the warmth, friendliness and humanity of the township residents of Mondesa, the same town Nande grew up in. It is a highly involving tour, giving you the chance to walk the streets, hear the children at play, smell
COMPANY ADDRESS: 210 OB Street Mondesa Swakopmund Namibia TELEPHONE: +264 812134443 +264810456310 EMAIL: email@example.com WEBSITE: www.nandejexplorertours.com
the sidewalk barbecues, taste locally brewed beer and try some of the local food like the mopane worms. Primarily conducted via bicycle, this unique tour gives you the chance to gain a glimpse of the daily life in the township. PRICE: Township Historical Cultural Tour N$600 pp Cycling Township Historical Cultural Tour N$550 pp
ADDITIONAL OPTIONS AND PRICES: Historical Township Church Visit (Sundays only), pick up 8h45 with traditional lunch included N$500 pp Township Home Cooking Experience with local family N$700 pp Tours to cape cross / Walwitschia and Moonlandscape Day Tours N$800 pp Sand Boarding N$600 pp Private safari guide/Driver N$1500 pday Dune7 and Flamingos Walvisbay and Topnaar Day Tours N$700 pp Sundowner Tour N$800 pp Township Braai BBQ Dinners N$800 pp 3 Day Private Namibia Sossusvlei Camping Tour N$8000 pp 4 Day Private Namibia Etosha Safari Lodging Tours N$20 000 pp 5 Day Private Namibia Safari Game Tour 10 Day Private Namib Deser Tour Shuttle services-airport N$400 pp Luderits and Kolmanskop Tours
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SHELDRICK WILDLIFE TRUST Saving The World One Orphan at a Time For those that work at the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust theirs is a grand and noble calling. The rescue, rehabilitation and saving of orphans left to fend for themselves due to poaching, misadventure and climate change. With The Trust preserving all wild orphans and the Kenyan Wildlife Services (KWS) Mobile Vet Units treating injured animals from lions and zebras, to elephants, buffalo and rhino, their positive and ongoing impact cannot be understated.
lifelong passion. Recognized internationally as an authority on the rearing of wild animals, her success was attributed to her lifelong experience with wild creatures, an in-depth knowledge of animal psychology and the behavioural characteristics of different species. Daphne passed away on 12th April 2018, and in her 83 years with us, Daphne touched countless lives — from generations of elephants who are thriving today through her trailblazing conservation work, to people all over the world who drew inspiration from her. She is testament to the difference that a single person can make, and her legacy lives on as we continue to protect and preserve wildlife in her memory: https://www. sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/about/mission-history
BEGINNINGS The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (known as the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust) was founded in 1977 in Kenya by Dame Sheldrick in memory of her late husband David Leslie William Sheldrick MBE who was a famous naturalist and founding Warden of Tsavo East National Park.
In 1948, David Sheldrick began his renowned career within the Royal National Parks of Kenya, where he worked unwaveringly for over two decades transforming Tsavo, a previously unchartered and inhospitable land, into Kenya’s largest and most famous National Park. For over 25 years Kenya-born Daphne Sheldrick lived and worked alongside her husband, during which time they raised and successfully rehabilitated many wild species.
The Trust was founded with the aim of embracing all measures that complement the conservation, preservation and protection of wildlife and habitats. Securing a long-term and protected future for wildlife and habitats, so that wild animals may live in harmony alongside humans is the ultimate goal. Working in eleven National Parks including iconic ecosystems like Masai Mara, Tsavo and Amboseli The Trust employs hundreds of staff members locally in Kenya for its field projects. These include anti-poaching, community outreach, saving habitats (encompassing fence-line construction and maintenance), mobile veterinary units, aerial surveillance and the Orphans’ Project.
Since the death of her husband, Daphne and her family have lived and worked in the Nairobi National Park where they built the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and its pioneering Orphans’ Project into the global conservation force that it is today. Daphne’s daughter Angela worked alongside her mother running the Trust for twenty years, and since Daphne’s passing in 2018 continues the mission with passion and vigor ably supported by her husband Robert Carr-Hartley, their two sons Taru and Roan and the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust team.
GETTING INVOLVED “Anyone can get involved in the work of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust,” Amie Alden, head of communications and media says, “From wherever they live in the world.” Adopting an orphan in the care/protection of the SWT is a great way to support the Trust. For a suggested donation of $50 per orphan per year, you (or your gift recipient) can stay up-to-date
DR. DAME DAPHNE SHELDRICK The Founder of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is Dr. Dame Daphne Sheldrick DBE and it has been a
Copyright The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
on the progress of a specific orphan and receive monthly exclusive emails on their Orphans’ Project.
According to Amie, challenges to wildlife in Kenya include but are not limited to the growing human-wildlife conflict caused by development, agriculture and changing weather patterns. Also, their capacity to ensure the global public is aware of these and inspired to help them do something about it.
“It offers a unique insight into the world of elephants and the work of the SWT,” she explains, “While your donation will help fund the SWT’s wide ranging conservation projects.” You can also subscribe to their newsletters and follow and show support on social media.
“As a charity, the SWT has always sought to be as administratively lean as possible ensuring as much of the donations as possible can go to the field,” she says, “We also adopt a ‘where the rubber meets the road’ approach to our work, ensuring we can respond immediately and adapt to new challenges. We’ve always sought to lead the way on pioneering conservation activities and will continue to do this in 2020.”
“We are proud to be able to share our conservation news and success stories daily through our social media channels and every month via email,” she says, “The more people aware of the new developments, opportunities and rescues means the greater change we make.” If you are planning to visit Kenya, you can visit their Nairobi Nursery (during select visiting hours) or stay in one of their Eco Lodges. Few things beat seeing the work in person while their Eco Lodges are based in areas of spectacular natural beauty.
TRIUMPHS Over the years, the SWT has successfully raised 249 orphaned elephants, returning more than 156 of these back to the wild. These individuals would not have survived without our intervention and their successful integration into wild herds gives the population of the species (which has been extremely hard-hit by poaching and habitat loss) a
“Funds from our Eco Lodges directly support our conservation work,” she adds.
much-needed boost. The SWT is also aware of 35 elephant calves born to orphaned elephants they have reintegrated, showing the impact rescuing a single orphaned elephant can have for the creation of future generations.
“In other areas where the SWT maintains its Saving Habitats project and regular De-Snaring Patrols – such as the Kibwezi Forest – the Trust has recorded zero incidences of poaching,” Amie highlights.
In 2019 alone, the Trust attended to 651 sick or injured wild animals across Kenya and, since the inception of its mobile veterinary teams, the SWT has treated more than 2,500 injured elephants in Kenya – that’s 7% of its estimated elephant population. Many of these injuries have been inflicted by humans including snares, spears and arrow and gun-shot wounds incurred during poaching attempts or human-wildlife conflict incidents.
Lastly, through its Aerial and ground teams, the SWT is working hard to prevent humanwildlife conflict and, every year, responds to calls from communities to guide wild elephants off community land and back into protected areas. These operations help prevent crop-raiding by elephants and retaliatory killings by communities, whose livelihoods can be lost in a single night of crop-raiding.
The SWT has also played a pivotal role in reducing bushmeat poaching, especially in the Tsavo Conservation Area, seizing/ removing 159,239
2020 In 2020, the SWT is expanding its Saving Habitats through a partnership with Kari Ranch (Kenya Agricultural Research Institute). This is a 64,000 acre of land spread across the foothills of the Chyulu Hills and we are fencing in one side of the Ranch to protect both communities that live on its border and the healthy populations of elephants and black rhinos that live within. “In 2020, the SWT will continue to identify opportunities to better protect wildlife, working with local partners to enhance our footprint,” Aimie concludes. COMPANY ADDRESS: Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
Copyright The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org snares and traps. Considering each snare can be re-laid to trap animals hundreds of times, the life-saving potential of confiscating just a single snare is huge. The impact of these De-Snaring patrols can be seen most clearly in the Northern Sector of Tsavo East National Park where poaching once decimated small animal populations and caused elephants to flee the area. Now, however, it’s not unknown for herds of 100+ of elephants to congregate around the Trust’s Ithumba Reintegration Unit!
Copyright The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust _ Mia Collis
LIMA ESCAPE Glamping, Portugal
Offering a rustic escape to nature, Lima Escape was created in 2012 by Anna and her boyfriend Artur. Together they had won a public competition for the opportunity of developing an old campsite which had become quite rundown. The glamping concept was eagerly applied, introducing the very recognizable tents and of course the treehouses, which were designed and carefully made by Artur.
wooden bungalow made in the style of treehouses and shepherd huts. Living in an era of people fettered to their phones, too many of us spend our lives experiencing the world through our devices. When we see something beautiful, we donâ€™t appreciate it unless we get a picture of it on our phones. It seems that we are slowly losing our ability to appreciate the beauty of something just for what it is and not for the responses we get from our social peers.
According to Anna the inspiration for the project came from a deep love of nature and the outstanding beauty of the area located in the very heart of Peneda-Geres National Parc (biggest natural parc of Portugal). The concept is intended for people with the same desires i.e., those wishing to escape the over-connected hubbub of daily life. The only television or internet connection is at the reception area and the restaurant, encouraging guests to explore the surroundings.
At Lima Escape, the real escape is being able to sit and enjoy the sound of birds in the trees, the leaves being moved by the wind and the sound of the small waterfall trickling down to the river that surrounds the site.
ACCOMMODATION When they began in 2012, they had two lodges and two tents. Today, the site offers eight units in total comprising of one apartment, 5 treehouses and Coloured Lodges and five glamping tents which are in place during the long Portuguese Summers lasting from May until the end of October.
LOCATION Sitting on a peninsula flanked by the rivers Lima, Froufe and Tamente and with Serra Amarela in the background, Lima Escape Camping and Glamping is a true nature retreat. Smoothly aligning camping areas with romantic glamour tents and charming
The tents offer an oriental crossed Portuguese style and the lodges are modern and simple with some wood elements to enhance the feeling of wilderness and freshness. Anna explains that the aim was to offer something simple but comfortable as to not detract from the unique experience of feeling surrounded by nature.
are introduced to the site or updated on new developments, they’re also made aware of the “secret” places like the hidden waterfalls and small lagoons where the special memories that last a lifetime are made.
2020 In the upcoming year there are plans to improve their bar, which plays a significant community role and to put up another treehouse lodge and a fully restored double decker bus where guests can feel like rockstars on holiday. Otherwise, to continuing welcoming guests new and old. PRICE: Lodges from 45.00€ per night (minimal booking is 2 nights), tents – from 50€ per night, with breakfast normally served at the tent’s terrace WEBSITE: www.lima-escape.pt TELEPHONE: +351 258 588 361
WHAT GUESTS CAN EXPECT
MOBILE: + 351 964 969 309 351 926 503 332
At Lima Escape, guests can glamp and camp their own way as there are not too many rules and it isn’t as official or boring as a hotel business. Their main offering is the chance to enjoy the “simple pleasures” and to drop a gear or two and just enjoy relaxing.
Since opening, there has been a steady increase of guests returning year on year, saying that they have a very special feeling about the place. Considering the challenge involved in getting return business in the hospitality industry, it is a mark of how strong their appeal is. Anna reveals that while the location and the accommodation and the access to nature is a strong element, it is their commitment to guest relations that has secured the loyalty of their guests. Upon check in at the reception, guests
HOTEL FRANCIS ARLENE Mexico
Founded twenty years ago by the MagaĂąa Rios Family, the adults only Hotel Francis Arlene was set up with the aim of being helpful to guests who were visiting the area for the first time and to welcome them not only as clients but as friends.
There are twenty six rooms, and in trying to maintain the flavour of the island these are decorated in a Caribbean and Mexican style. There are two terraces, one on the roof and one around the back of the building where theyâ€™ve hung hammocks for guests to hang around in.
With a small staff who can always be relied upon to provide a warm and personable service to guests, this mission has been accomplished as they have established many a long lasting friendship over the last two decades and are set to create more in the coming years.
To make sure that guests are as comfortable as they can be, many of the rooms have kitchenettes and balconies. All of them have included WIFI and the maintenance of the rooms and property is top notch, with the staff checking on every detail during the stay.
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING One of the fundamentals that the owners of Hotel Francis Arlene believe in is relationship building. They do their best to accommodate the needs of their guests, keeping personal health and safety as a priority with the goal of making their guests feel truly at home.
This has certainly worked as some visitors have been returning to their hotel for years and staying for periods of over a month at a time. It is natural that over time, everyone shifts from being guests and customers to being friends and a part of the Hotel Francis Arlene family.
Lock boxes are provided in the rooms for passports, money and other items of value and the property has security cameras stationed all around to keep guests safe. COMPANY ADDRESS: Av Guerrero 7, Centro Supmza. 001, 77400 Isla Mujeres, Q.R
So very close to the coast there is plenty to do including fishing trips, whale shark spotting and swimming, snorkelling, diving and many other water activities. Nearby are also a range of restaurants and cafes to visit and with its central location there are many treasures to be found to enthral, entertain and educate.
EMAIL: email@example.com PRICE/NIGHT: $75-80$ USD and $90 for top floor room with kitchen.
LODG’ING Glamping Tent Suppliers, France
the general maintenance of the product to ensure its longevity not only for Lodg’ing but the client as well.
Spurred on by the desire to develop an innovative tourism concept that focussed on glamping accommodation experiences, Simon Louvard founded Lodg’ing in March 2018. An individual creation this business was inspired by his experiences acquired during the last 10 years in the hotel and tourism industry in France and abroad including Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan and Southeast Asia.
Furthermore, beyond the tents Lodg’ing also offer on-site assistance such as customer reception, daily cleaning, security and other concierge services to support the guest’s overall experience. In terms of capacity they can host up to 120 people comfortably in their tents in the same site and have provided event accommodation for a number of businesses and major events across France.
THE TEAM Lodg’ing is first and foremost a family business with Simon’s father being his business partner, and together the plan is to position itself as the number one pop up glamping hotel in France. Offering tailor-made services so that guests can gain an unforgettable accommodation experience near an event or in an exceptional natural setting.
THE TENTS Offering the highest quality, custom designed tents is just one part of the business and Simon explains that the maintenance of the equipment is the other. This includes disassembly and packaging, cleaning and repairing of the tents and
There are two main types of services available:
A quote by another innovator, Leonardo Da Vinci, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”, is one of Simon’s favourites. As such, their glamping tents are simple and very comfortable. Once set up and fully furnished in these exceptional natural places, they are unique and stunning. Also, there is always Lounge area installed nearby which is the ideal place to relax and interact with other people from different backgrounds.
“DESTINATION EVENTS” For a Destination focussed event, the nomadic Lodg’ing village is erected for a short time during cultural, sporting, or private events which could include weddings or corporate meetings. For these events they offer bespoke services to organizers looking for an original and exclusive accommodation offer. This is particularly useful for event organisers that don’t have accommodation nearby to offer guests and want to offer an innovative solution that is complementary to the event and suitably impressive.
RELATIONSHIPS Relationships are very important, and Simon prefers to work with people, both customers and partners alike, on a relationship based on trust and respect. After all, he decided to work in hospitality and tourism because he loves working with people.
“NATURE DESTINATIONS” For these events, they offer stays (short or long) in the heart of a nomadic village that they create with their tents which includes all necessary infrastructure. To do this, they find exceptional natural locations (eg. https://www.lodg-ing.com/ destination- nature-luberon/) in order to partner with the land owner and create a special location for tourists seeking a nature product while enjoying high-end services.
2020 2020 will be a year to confirm the durability of their young company, with new services to come and the opportunity to properly consolidate their current position in the market. In the meantime, they are well worth a look for event organisers and site hosts. PRICE: on website
According to Simon, in both situations, and more particularly the “Nature Destinations”, their aim is to offer clients a package-type solution, combining accommodation and discovery of the region.
TELEPHONE: +33 6 83 92 62 45 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org WEBSITE: www.lodg-ing.com
NILE SAFARI LODGE The New Nile Safari Lodge In Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda
According to Nathalie, once you understand that the thriving abundance of life in this area is nevertheless reliant on a fragile eco-system, wanting to protect it becomes second nature. And, sharing the experiences that can be had here with international visitors is the surest way to inspire people from across the globe to do the same.
One of the first tented lodges along the Nile River in Uganda, the Nile Safari Lodge was founded in 1993 by Zahid Alam. Opened under the name Geo Lodges it was designed to be a place of natural beauty, where the presence of guests would have little or no impact upon the thriving wildlife of this legendary area. It was a worthwhile legacy, so in 2017 when the camp had begun to succumb to the marathon of time the family owned company NOVAM Ltd took over the premises. Their aim was to uphold the legacy, restore the lodge to its former glory and add some tailored appeal for the discerning modern-day traveller.
“Enjoying the beauty of nature has never been academic,” she points out, “People need to make the journey and see what this world is like. They need to experience it with all of their senses and allow themselves to be changed by it. This is the truth of travelling to Africa, you do not leave the same person as you arrived.”
We spoke with Nathalie Van Pée of Nile Safari Lodge regarding what the lodge stands for and why this legacy is worth maintaining. She explains, “Having grown up in Uganda and having lived here for over twenty years, we want to both share the beauty of the country and conserve it for future generations.”
THE LODGE There are thirty locally employed, highly trained staff members at the Nile Safari Lodge which is located at the limit of the national park and right on the riverbank. But what is truly unique about
THE IMPORTANCE OF SPACE While often understated, a sure way to determine the standard of luxury at any accommodation is the state of the ablutions. In the same way that a restaurant can be immediately judged on the state of its kitchen, so too can a resort or lodge be lauded or condemned by the state of their guest bathrooms. Bluntly, the kings of the Nile would feel quite at home here. Imagine sinking into a tub in one of these spacious rooms, soaking the activities of the day out of your muscles while watching the steam dance across the thatching. Or, languidly peering out the window at the Nile and imagining yourself drifting lazily upon those currents, while all the creatures in the grass and leaves surrounding you buzz and sing and chirrup just for you.
the location is that the lodge is elevated from the mighty Nile River and this offers guests an uninterrupted view of the wildlife that congregates upon its shores, drawn in by the life giving waters.
The clever use of space in the sleeping areas and the bathing areas has created another aspect
There are eight bandas in total. These include six standard bandas, a Family banda that includes a very popular private child-friendly nine person pool and one exclusive Honeymoon banda which comes with a private plunge pool and an outside star bed. According to Nathalie, with little or no light pollution in the area, the available opportunities for night-time gazing at the cosmos are quite spectacular. The lodge is built using eucalyptus poles and grass thatch as the dominant materials. Stilts have been used to deal with slopes and these have created spectacular views from the various cantilevering decks. Meanwhile, the steep geometry of the roofs allow the impressive structures to sink organically into the surrounding trees as if they had sprouted from the branches themselves.
which sometimes goes unappreciated. Uncluttered living space. Nothing feels as luxurious as having a lot of uninterrupted room to move around in; be it to slow dance to some romantic music with a lover after sunset, or to chase your children around before tickling them to tears. Africa is all about dancing and laughter after all.
With a unique selection of Rampel designed furniture, the bandas are a combination of comfort and simplicity with a big dose of luxury. The interiors offer the calming smell of thatching and eucalyptus, along with providing an exclusive style and ambiance that immerses the guest into the spirit of the location.
“This is important to us,” Nathalie explains, “We wanted an eco-lodge that would blend seamlessly with nature, hence the architectural design of the lodges that has allowed us to provide spacious accommodation for our guests while keeping them in touch with the ever-inspiring Nile.”
While there is no denying that the lodge is certainly an impressive sight providing the most breathtaking and Instagram worthy views, the team understand that the real strength of hospitality comes from the attention paid to the smallest details of guest satisfaction.
THE LODGE Since NOVAM took control of the lodge in 2017, it has been fully renovated to its current status and 2019 has been a new start for them. “We believe that each year is an opportunity to offer something new, exciting and worthwhile for the guests,” Nathalie says, “This includes not only things pertaining to guest comfort and the general luxury of the lodge but also making sure we are doing everything in our power to protect this remarkable and vibrant area we’re lucky to find ourselves.”
“Understanding that many of our guests will have certain expectations,” Nathalie explains, “We make sure to keep lodge and suite cleanliness above the usual standard one would expect. With this in mind we implement a daily procedure sheet designed to effectively train our employees and ensure they always have the best resources and equipment to maintain the highest standard of cleanliness.”
As a National Park, the area is protected. However, the modern sensitivity of global travellers to their own impact on the environment is growing and this is something that NOVAM plan to encourage. “This is without a doubt one of the most mesmerising and humbling places of beauty you will ever find,” she says, “It’s beauty never lessens whether it’s your first night here or your twentieth year and guests always leave with a great sensibility to their place in this eco environment.”
Relationship building is also a key aspect for them, and Nathalie reveals that to build these relationships they focus on exceptional communication. As mentioned, many of their clients come from faraway lands and different time zones.
“Seize the opportunity to escape the ordinary,” Nathalie adds.
“To exceed the expectation of our guests and ensure their comfort during their stay,” Nathalie says, “We make sure that we are present at the lodge and are open to guest enquiries or complaints. It makes it easy to address any problem and find the solution.“
PRICE: $370- 715 per night depending on season and the room. TELEPHONE: +256 772 363362 EMAIL: email@example.com WEBSITE: www.nilesafarilodge.com
RECOGNITION Their above-and-beyond approach to customer focus has won the Nile Safari Lodge a handful of Trip Advisor awards in the past as well as featuring in 1000 places to go before you die: https://www.africanpearlsafaris.com/safari/nilesafari-lodge-in-murchison-falls-national-park/
GLAMPSAN The ‘Flattest’ Tanks available for waste storage and collection Eliminating this fear by providing robustly tested products that have endured some of the most peculiar challenges that glamping has thrown at them, is what Glampsan does.
THE RANGE Glampsan specialises foremost in the provision of tanks from 160 to 1000-gallons and more, both for above and below ground. They also provide a range of complementary products and these include sewage lifting stations, waste pumps, rainwater harvesting tanks, sewage treatment plants, septic tanks and water pressurisation and pumping solutions.
Regular exhibitors at the annual Glamping Show, Glampsan is a leading UK manufacturer of plastic tanks for the capture and holding of toilet waste from outdoor structures. While this includes toilet blocks and site welfare facilities, it is the company’s involvement in the glamping industry, especially glamping pods, shepherd huts and log cabins that is gaining a lot of attention.
Effectively they are a “one stop shop” opportunity for dealing with effluent waste that has proven very popular with glamping and hospitality site business owners seeking and straightforward waste sanitation solutions for their unique set up.
While glamping can be a very personal and bespoke enterprise, one of the challenges, where standards cannot be lowered, is how a site handles effluent waste. Not every site is able to lay down reliable sewage mains to and from the individual glamping units. So, one solution is to rely on waste collection tanks. Such collection tanks need to be completely reliable and also discrete as to not disrupt the “atmosphere” promised by glamping.
“One of our major product lines is the marketleading Flat Tank,” Jonathan says, “This is an above ground, flat, low-profile waste holding tank that is perfectly suited to the glamping environment. It is easy to use and durable with a low environmental impact. It can also be easily located under or nearby any glamping unit.”
We spoke with Glampsan’s General Manager, Jonathan Trelfa, regarding how his business has provided solutions to this essential and delicate matter.
THE MOST ROBUSTLY TESTED TANKS IN THE UNIVERSE (PROBABLY) The glamping industry is driven by unique experiences in unique locations. Every site is striving to offer something ‘bespoke and different’ that other sites do not.
“Our niche is operating in a particular area of hospitality that owners and hosts want to work efficiently, reliably and most importantly, discreetly in the background,” he says, “They are not looking for reviews on how good their waste management is, they’re looking instead for solutions that will mean it’s never mentioned at all.”
“At Glampsan,” Jonathan says, “We believe that the challenges site owners will be facing in the future in terms of their waste management infrastructure are only going to get more interesting and more complex. In no uncertain terms we are encouraging this, and perhaps even laying down a challenge with our innovative Flat Tank.”
Whether it is a five star hotel or a unique cliffsidetreehouse-glamping site there is never a time when an owner wants to hear that somethings gone wrong with this part of their business.
Now on the fourth generation, Flat Tanks are ideal to meet the ever-changing needs of portable sanitation suppliers, caravanners, campers and glampers. They are a more reliable, easier-to-move and cost-effective alternative to old-fashioned steel waste tanks. Contrary to steel, this product will not corrode and will always appear fresh and hygienic. In addition, Jonathan says, “Our Flat Tanks feature inbuilt lifting handles, access hatches and ports, all of which are fully sealable against odours and spillage.”
Jonathan goes on to point out, “Considering that the Flat Tank originally started its life in the construction industry. Collecting waste from toilet blocks, showers and sinks for a high number of construction sites where no permanent sewage facilities are available, when we say it’s been ‘robustly’ tested… we really do mean it.”
THE LATEST PRODUCTS Flat Tanks are an effective and simple solution to dealing with effluent waste for start-up glamping sites and many hospitality venues too. Earlier, Jonathan talked about future needs becoming more complex, “One of the problems that glamping owners sometimes have to overcome is how to deal with and remove waste from glamping units located in remote fields. Sometimes perhaps a hundred metres or more from any vehicle access point and an additional problem, “ he adds, “Is how to deal with collecting and removing waste that has to go uphill. The solution to both of these problems is a lifting station.”
TUFFEST VS FLATTEST The big-brother company, Plastic Solutions (Aldridge) Ltd, supplies this sector in particular and here the tanks are appropriately known as Tuff Tanks. They’re similar products to those offered through the Glampsan division, but with subtly different applications. Ultimately, whether you have a building site toilet or a glamping hut with an inbuilt toilet and shower, the same ‘waste product’ is produced and needs to be controlled and collected effectively.
Due to demand, they have recently added lifting stations which are plastic tank structures with in-built pumping units and a 240v electric supply to their range. This not only extends the usefulness of their products but enables them to offer a more sophisticated option for their glamping customers.
And, for glamping and hospitality there is the Flat Tank. This 500, 750 and 1000-gallon plastic effluent holding tank and its smaller counterpart, the Mini Tuff Tank (160 gallons) are constructed from robust and recyclable polyethylene and are easy to deliver and position. Their flexible, low profile and lightweight design means they are ideally suited to the changing needs of the leisure sector. As sites grow and units are moved the Flat Tank can be easily transported with them without risk of damage, for example, when empty four men can easily move one.
successfully today. The company was one of my favourite customers up to the point I left that industry in 2008. When the owners were looking to fill the GM role, they asked me to come along for a cup of coffee and a chat: I was looking to do something different at that time and it seemed like a very good fit for both sides.” They started in 2010 and made steady progress until 2014 at which point, they developed a range of new products and brought in a focussed business and marketing plan. Since then they have tripled their turnover in the construction industry. It was soon after that they recognized that there are a wide range of industries and sectors that
With regards to innovation, Jonathan continues, “Some of our glamping customers want to install environmentally sustainable composting toilets. Whilst this option is not for everyone, they are growing in popularity and acceptance and we are able to supply composting toilets of the same reliability.”
FUTUREPROOFING Jonathan predicts that in the long term, the glamping industry will of course inevitably mature. With it, even more sophisticated solutions will become more and more popular. “For example, we think that more underground septic tanks and soak-away systems will be an obvious solution for maturing glamping sites,” he says, “For these sites another option could also be to invest in a complete mini sewage treatment system. However, these are substantial investments.”
could benefit from their services and products. In 2017, as they were outgrowing their old site, they purchased new premises outright and after some essential refurbishment moved in early 2018. According to Jonathan their growth plans have also meant the laying on of extra production tooling to keep up with demand and the employment of further staff in sales and warehousing.
Long term, Glampsan will most likely add these to their product portfolio. But in the meantime, Jonathan believes that there is sufficient ‘growing room’ to supply their customers with simpler and hence more cost effective solutions.
Two years ago Jonathan started the Glampsan brand, which, as was already mentioned, is a division of Plastic Solutions. From 2019 the the Glampsan strategy has been to grow by making use of all available tools. This included heavy investment into the website as well as the development of a strong social media strategy.
LEADING BY EXPERIENCE Jonathan Trelfa is a veteran of the portable sanitation industry and has over 25 yearsexperience under his belt. He was the Managing Director of Europe for a toilet manufacturing company between 1991-2008, and from 20112014 was the MD for a manufacturer of ground and surface water monitoring equipment. It was March 2014 when he decided to take up the challenge of driving forward Plastic Solutions (Aldridge) Ltd.
On the technology front Plastic Solutions have invested heavily over the last year and a half in software to aid their sales and customer support staff. Jonathan explains that throughout his working life he’s always been agitated if a ringing phone wasn’t picked up within three rings. To make this possible he created tools and the environment so that their staff don’t get bogged down by too much cumbersome tech.
“I’ve known the business owners since I advised and helped them start their toilet rental business in 1994,” he says, “That business is still running
THE REAL DEAL BEHIND GLAMPSAN Jonathan says, that even though they sell stacks of their Flat Tanks and ancillary products, what really defines both Glampsan and Plastic Solutions (Aldridge) Ltd is their focus on core service excellence for which they have become very well known. “It takes four things,” he explains, “Our strong customer service, our complete understanding of the industry, excellent business ethics and always going the extra mile for our customers.” Glamping guests are spending their hard-earned money to stay “off grid” but expect to have the same comforts as they would at home. Any site owner knows the value of hot and cold running water, a shower and working toilets. Also, they are acutely aware of how important it is that guests be completely oblivious to where things go afterwards.
“Glampsan may only cover a few of the solutions needed for the overall glamping experience,” Jonathan admits, “But, they are the most important parts and hosts are no doubt relieved that we apply ourselves fully to this job.” COMPANY ADDRESS: Merchant’s Way, Aldridge, West Midlands WS9 8SW TELEPHONE: 0800 334 5742 +44 (0)1922 716725 WEBSITE: w ww.plasticsol.com www.glampsan.com EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
EXCLUSIVE TENTS The only place to be is in the thick of it Irrespective of whether a destination is a glamping site, a hotel or a resort, innovation in hospitality is often reliant on the pioneering spirit of the suppliers. It is a cycle of challenge and solution. This dance of supplier and customer is the engine that produces the marvellous and out-of-thisworld destinations that enthrals, and delights travellers like us. Not only one of the leading suppliers of safari tents globally, but also one of the most trusted, Exclusive Tents are often found wherever there is a new idea or a “never done before” project. With Founder Paul Zway often standing right in the middle of it in his khaki shorts.
Paul, who is a self -confessed weather junky, explains that he always has a satellite weather window open on his computer to keep aware of what is taking place. So, he was aware of the weather that Cambodia was having at the time but not the severity of what was taking place on the ground. In fact, it wasn’t until the next day that he received a message from Valentin telling that he and his family were safe.
Featured several times already by The Logbook, Paul has always enjoyed being in the thick of it, whether it was his seventeen years working as an anti-poacher in deepest Africa or his twenty odd years producing the most incredible tented projects. He is in every way an all-or-nothing kind of guy and this counts for a great deal for his customers and clients, or as he would refer to them, his friends.
“The lodge had survived inclement weather for years without any problems,” Paul reveals, “But this was an out of the ordinary flood and when it struck early in the morning Valentin’s wife and kids and some staff were on the lodge.”
4 RIVERS 4 Rivers is a floating lodge resort in Cambodia, that Paul and his team have worked with for roughly ten years. Being the first floating lodge and floating glamping site in the world, 4 Rivers is owned by Valentin Pawlik who built the lodge from scratch. Valentin has worked hand in hand with Paul to create a resort that stands as a testament to ambition, pioneering and friendships.
It was a matter of life and death and it was the local villagers who got into their boats and braved the water to go and help rescue the people off the lodge. Then they had to abandon the lodge until the waters had died down. “Valentin literally had to watch the business he had built largely with his own hands get swept away down a river,” Paul relates.
“It is a two way street,” Paul admits, “That is how friendships work, Valentin and I have worked together for over a decade and I learn as much from him as he does from me.”
Once the waters had died down, they then had to track down the lodge and luckily it had been caught on the bank further down the river and had not been dragged out to the ocean, but it was completely wrecked.
Customer relations is easy when things are going well, but a relationship’s strength is tested the most when things go wrong. This was the case just over a year ago when 4 Rivers Floating Lodge was struck by one of the area’s worst floods in recent history.
repair work had to be done for the tents and the furniture inside. What followed was a process of engineering genius as Valentin manufactured his own replacement parts for the steel frames and recruited a sail maker who came in to do the best stitching repair work ever seen, or not seen as it were. “We supplied them with various replacement tent parts and the smaller component parts such as eyelets, punches and zippers,” Paul says, “We stayed in regular contact offering advice where it was needed and generally just making sure that things were going the way he wanted.”
“To his credit,” Paul says, “Despite seeing the wreckage he didn’t think for a second of giving up.”
During this period, Paul also took to task to make sure that people knew that Four Rivers Floating Lodge was reopening. Sharing this story of triumph and doing his bit to help market and encourage the regrowth.
Instead, he called Paul and they began making plans. For those who know the pair this sort of “get busy” attitude is a characteristic that they share. Paul told him to assess the damage first and to let him know what Exclusive Tents could do to help.
THE RESULT 4 Rivers Floating Lodge is now opened again and benefits from all the hard lessons learnt. 4 Rivers is now much stronger, safer and ready for guests to enjoy the tranquillity that this experiential destination offers. Valentin has developed and manufactured the new floating lodge which is now tethered to the island where the water has
THE ADVANTAGE OF REBUILDING According to Paul, Valentin has been an absolute inspiration during the period of rebuilding. Despite the insurance money and compensation that he was due not being received and having to pull themselves back to their feet with next to no budget, he took complete control of the lodge’s rebuilding and set himself the task of applying all the lessons that this tragedy had taught him. “As Four Rivers was one of the first floating lodges, Valentin didn’t have anyone to turn to for advice on repairing nor could afford to pay any professional consultants,” Paul explains, “He started off having to be a one-person expert out of necessity and found himself having to do the same thing over again.” They salvaged what they could and fortunately had some new tents in storage that they could erect. The original platforms had done the job very well but some were seriously damaged but with lessons learned, Valentin came up with a floating concrete concept which would be way more stable a platform. He designed them and then made the new platforms which have made a huge difference and created more versatility to the floating concept. A great amount of the
THE FLOATING LODGE CONCEPT
less velocity. Also, he used to run power from the island through the river, that has changed and been redesigned to be more practical. He has also evolved his platforms from hollow vessels to floating concrete platforms and he has figured out how to do it on his own.
In locations with sensitive eco systems, such as jungle islands the floating lodge concept allows the creation of a hospitality destination that doesn’t leave any footprint. This has always been something that Paul has favoured, his tents after all offer permanent structures that can be easily moved and re-erected somewhere else.
Now, easily one of the most experienced and skilled engineers in the realm of floating lodges, Paul has brought in Valentin as a consultant for a project in the Maldives where a floating lodge concept has been put forward.
The idea of a lodge floating on a concrete platform, anchored to the floor of a river bed or the protected ocean floor also produces many other benefits than just bringing the guest closer to nature in a unique environment. For islands it means that the island can remain practically untouched, opening up more opportunity for engaging and educational tours on the land itself. Also, a floating lodge with an anchor would create natural shade and becomes a haven for marine life and if the lodge wanted to expand it could do so without damaging or disrupting this ecological benefit.
“You cannot put a price on the experience he has in this field,” Paul says, “On all sides of it.” He adds, “What Valentin has told me about this experience has been a learning curve. I’ve learnt enough about it to talk about the floating lodge concept which many people are getting excited about.”
According to Paul, it creates a far more dramatic connection with your environment. “Let’s say that you create an opening in the platform, you close that up with glass, then you set the tent up over that and you get a direct view into the ocean,” he says. Another example of the greatest advantage for ROI, would be, if you have a small island with maximum space for ten tents. By using a floating lodge system, assuming that it works with the coastline and the currents, you can double the capacity on a floating lodge, so instead of getting a return on ten tents you can get forty etc.
Paul explains that to pull off such projects, like the one that is planned in the Maldives, it takes knowing which suppliers to rely on to handle the logistics.
“In French Polynesia and the Maldives, you get these concepts on stilts because it offers guests a different feeling, however it is still a hotel, just on stilts,” Paul says, “But experientially a floating lodge is different to everything else out there. You could even do it on lakes, shallow coastal locations and of course rivers.”
As an example, the question of dealing with waste material is an obvious one that keeps bobbing to the surface. “You have to consider these things at the planning stages,” he says, “And I already work with a manufacturer in the UK who specialises in containerised sanitation and we’ve been speaking about how he could integrate his system into a floating platform.”
Then, if you want to move the lodge you can tow the entire hotel to a new area. Paul goes on to point out that water is not an asset that has been used for building and there is always a distance between guest and water. This concept narrows that gap more than ever before.
Paul goes on to explain that his supplier’s system produces grey water from waste which is clean enough to be purified into potable drinking water. This is useful if the lodge is on a remote island away from a natural water source. Or if necessary, it can be released safely back into the ocean.
“We are going to see more of this, the concept is picking up,” Paul says, “And it is only fair to say that Valentin is very much the pioneer responsible.” Exclusive Tents International Ltd WEBSITE: www.exclusivetents.com
THE ROI FOR INVESTORS
Whether you’re a hospitality investor or just a traveller, the concept of a floating lodge and the obvious benefits in today’s ecoengineering conscious environment should get you very excited. For those seeking a calculable ROI there are other important things to consider. Firstly, staying in a tent is sexy. You’re protected from the elements but in direct contact with nature so whatever is in the environment, be it grass lands or trees, or water, you’re going to feel involved in all of it. Put that on water and you have another element that enhances that feeling. You get all the sounds, sensations and movement.
EBONY HOME Quality for 2020
“Incredibly the big things can usually handle themselves,” she says, “It’s the small details in the background that take up the most headspace like budgeting, learning which products have the most demand, how to price products appropriately, turnaround time on orders, which marketing techniques work well and which ones don’t, learning how to keep constant open lines of communication with customers and being available to answer questions.”
Ebony Home is an entirely digital online interior design store which was founded by Heather Black in July 2019. Despite the youth of the brand, Ebony Home is already made a name for itself as a supplier of choice to the hospitality and residential industries. A resource for those wanting to create the perfect habitat. Deeply passionate about the process and the artform of interior design and very aware of the influence of her products, Heather has stridden into the industry with charisma and confidence. We caught up with her as we leave one year to see what ’19 has meant for her and what ‘20 holds in store.
If the past year has proved anything it is that Heather has hit the nail on the head with her business, because even with the back-end workload surmounting with orders she is still able to apply the levels of creativity and motivation that is required of business leaders. Especially when it comes to choosing the right products. After all it is what we put into rooms that turn them into homes. There is no substitute for quality, and Heather is constantly searching for unique,
EBONY HOME According to Heather, 2019 has been a year of frontline learning. Starting an online retail business from scratch is a challenge and she has had to learn the ins and outs of the industry on the hoof while building her business, brand and client list.
The new collections will include high quality furniture, unique hand-crafted decor from all over the world, fun and unique lighting, artwork, area rugs, pillows and throws to create unique and comfortable spaces that fit any style. She is also providing some great options for bedding, bath, storage, kitchen and dining.
high quality products to sell in her shop. Seeking a wider variety of styles, from new and trendy to timeless classic. Working with a range of clients from home owners to glamping site hosts, Ebony Home’s quality of service and product speaks for itself. To this end she is also quite particular on her partners, choosing to work with dependable suppliers that offer quality products with reasonable prices that are easy and affordable to ship.
“As I continue to learn and gain experience with running a business,” she says, “And with the recent momentum the store has been gaining, I am confident that 2020 will be a great one and I am eager to get into it.”
QUALITY SERVICE Believing that customer relationships need to be regularly polished and maintained, 2019 has identified that Heather has a complete devotion to customer satisfaction. If her clients are not happy with a product, she offers a full refund or a replacement. A risky step for any young business, unless of course you are completely confident in the value of what you are offering not only to the business but to the customers.
PRICE: Generally, her prices are lower than the competitors and for the most part, the prices reflect the quality of the item. For example, a basic duvet set, and pillow cover can go for under $10, while she also has higher quality, handmade artisan pillow covers that run from $60-$70, and higher quality bedding for those who are looking for something a little more durable. Additionally, she has a wide variety of decor, accent furniture, wall art, kitchen and dining products, bath products, storage and organization, lighting, rugs and window treatments that range from about $4.99$1100.00.
2020 Heather says that she’s thoroughly enjoyed curating new and exciting collections for 2020 and is excited to share the catalogue of new products.
WEBSITE: www.ebonyhome.com.co TELEPHONE: 001 435-469-0549 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
GLAMPRO Glamping Supplier, Slovenia
range from luxurious glamping tents to adrenaline parks, bio pools and other unique designs and creations to suit the needs and tastes of every imaginable client.
With a talent for turning ideas into reality and manifesting their clientsâ€™ dreams for them, Glampro have quickly become a go-to business for topâ€‘notch glamping resorts around the globe. Founded in 2015 with the aim of bringing innovative products to tourism and hospitality the company, which was founded by Borut Kokelj, smoothly combines engineering design with more than a little creativity. With this, they entered into the glamping industry with a flourish and soon made a name for themselves as glamping maniacs. With no two sites looking the same, their designs
THE TEAM Many established sites as well as newcomers to the industry are attracted to working with Glampro thanks to their philosophy and approach to the creative design of their sites. This approach values being different, being unique, standing out and letting the projects tell the story. Working with a team that can range between ten and thirty people at a time depending on the project requirements, Borut explains that the time lines can range from 6 months to three years depending on size and scale. Details such as timescales and budget, levels of difficulties and potential hurdles are all discussed with the client ahead of time for the benefit of troubleshooting issues before they crop up.
The projects where the designers can focus on the sustainable solutions and charming details. In cooperation with Adria Home, they also create glamping tents, which are usually placed in their projects.
A number of projects that Glampro have been involved with are worth mentioning, including Garden village Bled, Herbal resort, Chateau Ramsak resort, Glamping Olimia and other resorts in as far afield as Korea, China, Philippines, Japan, Costa Rica, Canada, UAE, Austria, Croatia, Portugal and Italy ... to name a few.
FACILITIES Based in Ljubljana (the capital of Slovenia), Glampro keeps a studio there for design and project management while partnering with a range of international suppliers and key business partners that they have worked with over the years.
THE KEY INGREDIENT TO THE BEST SITE Over and above the creation of classic luxury tourist resorts, Glamproâ€™s specialty lies in creating resorts in an urban environment where small or limited spaces call upon an innovative layout.
WHAT CUSTOMERS CAN EXPECT In addition to project control, clients are also given creative control to ensure that their dream is manifested as they saw it in their mind, physical possibilities withstanding of course. Borut says that he has learnt the importance of these relationships as the quality of the completed project relies on it.
2020 The upcoming year is going to be a busy one with Glampro already designing approximately fifteen new resorts, as well as planning to build their own resort in the future. As glamping continues to expand and diversify, we expect to continue to see great things from this young and vibrant company. COMPANY ADDRESS: Zemljemerska ulica 12, 1000 Ljubljana / Slovenia - EU TELEPHONE: 00386 41 521 766 EMAIL: email@example.com WEBSITE: www.glampro.eu