Adding to that desire to visit the Big Five Nambiti Game Reserve in South Africa, the uber luxurious resort The Homestead is set to open in 2022. If your travel bucket list includes taking in the majesty of the Big Five – lions, leopards, buffalo, elephants, and rhinos – in their natural habitat and you have a soft spot for life’s finer things, the once-in-a-lifetime experience offered at The Homestead will be worth the splurge.
The luxurious eco resort, which will open for business early 2022, is the brainchild of Wayne Scholes, Chief Executive Officer of Really Epic Dog Group (RED), who purchased the land in 2019. The resort promises to be a “truly life-affirming experience,” according to its website. And we have to agree.
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With eco-consciousness front and centre, the stunning lodge was designed by South Africa’s Dean Jay Architects and Egg Designs. It combines 21st construction technology with 19th century architecture to create spaces that are carefully designed to blend into its unforgettable surroundings.
The Homestead will feature 12 ultra-luxury lodges that cut no corners. Six of the lodges are designed for individual travellers or couples and feature personal infinity pools. The remaining half can be booked privately or connected to one another to accommodate groups of travellers. The entire resort will be available for private buyouts for things weddings and corporate retreats.
The pristine property will also feature a full-service and world class cruelty-free spa, an infinity pool, a fitness centre, multiple meeting and event spaces, and a variety of food and beverage outlets. The culinary program will focus on organic, locally sourced African-inspired dishes created by celebrated chefs.
Appreciated after a day of exploration and adventure, the unique treatments only available at The Homestead range from deep tissue massage (with a secret component!) to help restore a healthy immune system by unblocking energy pathways, to the amazing African head massage and facials with state-of-the-art oxygen treatments.
A stay here offers no shortage of unforgettable experiences, from incredible stargazing and hiking through storied habitats, to anti-poaching educational sessions and animal photography sessions. Of course, lounging poolside and doing nothing at all is perfectly acceptable too.
“The Homestead was born in a moment where we witnessed the impact we can make in the people and places around us. This was the genesis of The Homestead, and it is still at the centre of our ethos today” said Wayne Scholes, CEO of Really Epic Dog and owner of the lodge. “Our surrounding wildlife is extraordinary and our aim is to invite guests to be a part of the experience and recognise the power we all have to affect the people and places around us. The land holds a special meaning and significance to me personally and I couldn’t be prouder of what we are doing.”
The star of the show at the Homestead will be an elevated 590-foot-long structure designed with local ironstone that connects the natural escarpment to the lake. Once it materializes, the roof will be planted using the same grass that covers the resort’s nearby grasslands. This easy-on-the-eyes structure will house the wining and dining areas, the stunning infinity pool, and an unforgettable viewing platform over the watering hole.
Other planet-friendly initiatives of the progressive property include rainwater tanks, tree planting, solar panels, and French drains to channel important nutrients into the ecosystem.
Notably, The Homestead will also introduce a sustainable new breed of African safari with luxury all-electric vehicles that promise to prevent nine metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions over a single year. Furthermore, the noise-free nature of the vehicles limits any potential disturbance of the wildlife. For a three-hour game drive, each electric vehicle will save 60 litres of oxygen and their batteries have a fifteen-year lifespan.
Naturally, the experience doesn’t come cheap. Once reservations open, prices start at $3,500 per person per night.