Ultra-exclusive blow out escapes for winter
3 September 2009
This winter families and groups are spoilt for choice with an exceptional collection of secluded suites and private villas that combine stylish safari and barefoot beach extravagance in Kenya and Mozambique.
Whether you choose just one destination, or decide to create your own combination you are assured a break that will transport you a million miles from the English winter chill.
360, Shompole, Kenya
The latest addition to the awe-inspiring Shompole in Kenya’s Great Rift Valley, 360 is a spacious and exceptionally private house that retains the signature Shompole style of undulating white walls and multiple textures of natural quartz rock, bulrush thatch and smooth recycled fig wood. Where 360 differs from its counterparts is in its unique and enviable position.
The main mess area is completely suspended off the escarpment over a stunning free form pool with views across to Tanzania. There are two bedrooms offering over 5000sqft of space easily accommodating a family of four in each. Amenities include your own staff, game vehicle, private dining and for those wishing to make a grand entrance, there is a private helipad.
Journeys by Design (journeysbydesign.co.uk) has 3 nights at 360 from £2,455 based on 6 people sharing. Price includes International flights, transfers from Nairobi, and private charter to and from Nairobi to Shompole and conservation fees.
Ol Seki Suites, Maasai Mara, Kenya
Perfect for groups of friends or families wanting the VIP safari experience the new Ol Seki suites offer guests complete privacy, personal service and space. The suites house their own staff with private kitchen, entrance, game vehicle, dining area and expansive game viewing deck.
Located within the immediate vicinity of Ol Seki Camp, the elegantly designed suites are made up of three spacious tents inter-joined by a communal living and dining area. They contain two double or twin rooms both en-suite with their own large bathroom and decking area soon to be equipped with plunge pools. The amazing 180 degree views across the Mara make guests feel totally immersed in the African scene.
Tim Best Travel (timbesttravel.com) has 4 nights at the Ol Seki Suites from £2,795 per person. This includes international flights, internal flights and transfers, and accommodation on a full board basis.
Little Olarro, Loita Hills, Kenya
A new addition to The Art of Ventures eco chic collection is Little Olarro is a private house situated a short distance from the main lodge of Olarro situated in an escarpment on the Loita Hills in South Western Kenya. Olarro has incredible views over the plains below and offers unbeatable safari style.
This new addition follows the same eco ethos and design of all The Art of Ventures properties. Built largely from local materials, the retreat is a continuation of the partnership between the Maasai of the local group ranch community and The Art of Ventures.
Little Olarro is ideally suited to friends and families looking for extra privacy with a luxury suite and master bedroom, smaller twin bedroom, lounge, dining area and veranda with spectacular views over the Loita plains. It also has its own entrance, private kitchen and deck area.
Scott Dunn (scottdunn.com) has 4 nights at Little Olarro from £2,255 per person based on four people sharing. Price includes all meals, drinks, park fee, flights, air taxes and transfers.
The Presidential Villa, Azura, Mozambique
Azura, Mozambique, has just re-launched following a bush fire late last year which may well have paved the way for, if imaginable, a more exciting product. The owners and management have re-created the beauty of Azura with additions so outstanding they will reinforce its title as Mozambique’s finest boutique retreat.
What is really going to push Azura into a league of its own is the arrival of the Presidential Villa, set to be one of the most luxurious private residences to be found anywhere in the Indian Ocean. Boasting three bedrooms, the master on a split-level with panoramic freeform bath & shower, the Presidential Villa opens up onto a 16m infinity swimming pool with amazing views out to the Bazaruto Dune and the Indian Ocean beyond.
It features a sitting room with fireplace and all mod-cons, dining area, wine bar, tree house lounge, private kitchen with dedicated chef and their own private beach area. Guests will feel like a king in their own private paradise.
Okavango Tours (okavango.com) has 7 nights at Azura in the Presidential Villa from £4,448.00 per person based on six sharing. Cost includes international and internal flights and helicopter transfer and accommodation in the Presidential Villa on a full board basis.