Sabi Sabi Newsletter - March 2009
2009 is off to a great start with Sabi Sabi receiving two new accolades: Placing in the top 10 in Travel + Leisure magazine's list of the "World's 500 Best Hotels", as well as securing a spot in the latest Conde Nast Traveler's Gold List. We are very proud of these achievements in this the beginning of our 30th year of excellence.
It is 30 years since Sabi Sabi first welcomed guests on safari and while much has changed, says
Marketing Director, Jacques Smit, the fundamental values are very much the same.

Rod: "I was hosting some top international photographers and on an early morning drive we came across some giraffes. I noticed that one of the females looked incredibly nervous and uneasy and suspected there was a predator close by. However, on closer inspection we discovered that she was starting to give birth. Although she was in a dense thicket, we managed to find an unobtrusive vantage point and watched her 90-minute ordeal and the awe-inspiring miracle of birth. We even saw the baby recover, stand up and take its first shaky steps. Surely one of the most photographed births ever!"

For Elliot Mgiba, life before Sabi Sabi is a distant memory. He was there almost from the time of the first safari; he was there when the fences with the Kruger National Park came down in 1991; he was there through the devastating floods in 2000; he was there when Earth Lodge opened its doors a year later; and he is there today, greeting guests with a warm smile, a wealth of knowledge and the promise of the safari of a lifetime.

Today Elliot is one of the longest serving rangers at Sabi Sabi, having been there almost since inception. He worked his way up through the ranks (as have many other Sabi Sabi employees), starting as a tracker. He jokingly says he has spent a 'lifetime' on a safari vehicle, but wouldn't have it any other way.

"I recognised early on that Sabi Sabi would play a vital role in the community and they have done and continue to do so," says Elliot. "The two have travelled a long path to get to the point where many joint initiatives are bearing fruit and proving beneficial to all. On a community level, Sabi Sabi is involved in education, conservation, health issues, sustainability projects and much more. On a personal level my association with Sabi Sabi has enabled me to fulfill a dream and see my daughter doing well at the University of the Free State and my son nearing the end of high school.

"I have really enjoyed seeing the changes that management have made over the years at Sabi Sabi and the many new things that have been introduced to make us one of the most responsible conservation companies in the safari industry."

The new Amani Spas at Earth Lodge and Bush Lodge opened to resounding success, with guests taking advantage of the pure natural products, trained therapists and luxurious new facilities. The tranquil bush setting is the perfect backdrop to relax and indulge.

Amani Spa at Earth Lodge
Amani Spa at Bush Lodge

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