Shamwari private game reserve completes first phase of $25m upgrade
JOHANNESBURG - Private game reserve Shamwari said on Thursday it had completed the first phase of a US$25 million upgrade, opening two newly refurbished lodges.
Situated in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province close to Port Elizabeth, the malaria-free reserve is known for its systematic, scientific rehabilitation and considered conservation programmes. Over the past 25 years, these have seen ecological diversity restored on the reserve and the reintroduction of the "Big Five" and other indigenous animals.
The investment will not only provide an enhanced luxury experience for guests but will also ensure Shamwari is able to continue attracting revenue to fund its crucial conservation work, CEO Joe Cloete said.
“We want Shamwari to be one of the world’s premier wildlife experiences, so we can sustain and grow an exceptionally successful 25-year conservation programme," he said.
The upgrade at Shamwari's Eagles Crag lodge has seen the addition of a new viewing deck incorporating a fire pit and two private dining pods while the spa facilities and nine stand-alone suites have also been upgraded.
Riverdene Family Lodge has been almost entirely rebuilt, with nine spacious rooms ideal for multi-generational families. The family orientated design extends to the exterior where a fully supervised outdoor children’s adventure playground combines climbing towers, elevated walkways and ziplines.
The next phase of the project includes renovating the historic manor house, Long Lee Manor and extensively re-building the contiguous accommodation to provide18 luxury suites.
Shamwari’s wildlife rehabilitation centre, considered one of the best and most successful in South Africa, is being expanded and guests will now be able to visit a purpose-built facility on the reserve, where animals are cared for and treated before being released back into the wild.
This is in addition to the two big-cat sanctuaries, where, in partnership, with the Born Free Foundation, rescued African big cats are given a permanent home.
The entire upgrade programme will be completed by November 2019.
- African News Agency (ANA)