Luxe Lavs: A “Back to Nature” Bathroom
Our Friday series Luxe Lavs is dedicated to the most spectacular and surprising hotel bathrooms from around the world. This week, contributors Angela Fairhurst and Natalie Compagno found luxury in the bush of South Africa.
This week’s theme is “back to nature” and we found a bathroom that combines natural surroundings and luxury in South Africa’s famous Kruger National Park. It’s our personal favorite. The Outpost Lodge in northeast South Africa has just 12 standalone suites, but for bath lovers everywhere this is the way to safari. The oval-shaped stone tub overlooks the Luvuvhu River Valley, a Ramsar wetland site. With the expansive 180-degree view, one can see Mozambique as well as 350 different bird species, elephants, monkeys, hyenas and the majestic and iconic Baobab trees. Whether washing your hands in the free-standing sink, or showering in the open air shower, the smells and sounds of Africa surround you.
The Outpost Lodge has a history worth noting. During apartheid this wildlife rich valley was taken away from its people, the Makuleke Community. After democracy was restored, the land was returned to them under the condition that it be used for ecotourism. The Outpost Lodge was built with a workforce from the community and the employees are almost all Makuleke. For a symbiotic relationship with the environment, the eco-lodge uses eco-cooling. It is also committed to restoring the ecological integrity of the valley with strict anti-poaching laws and wetland rehabilitation.
The Outpost is proof that ecotourism, high-end design and the environment can work well together.
For a different Luxe Lav’s experience check out last week’s column: Hammocks are not for the garden anymore.
By Angela Fairhurst and Natalie Compagno for PeterGreenberg.com