Ulusaba Safari Lodge is owned and run by Virgin Limited Edition, Sir Richard Branson’s portfolio of stunning retreats. The properties within the portfolio span numerous spectacular locations, not least Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve, Morocco, and Mallorca. All pride themselves on superb service standards, and true to form Safari Lodge has been awarded a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence! The accommodation is booked on a full-board basis, including all meals, all drinks, all mini-bar items, twice-daily game drives, transfers between the lodge and the private airstrip, and Wi-Fi. The lodge can be booked for exclusive use, and it’s open all year round.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The lodge is accessed via road transfer from Usulaba’s own airstrip. It nestles into woodland within the reserve, providing an exciting sense of being among the game!
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
There are ten guest rooms and suites, occupying various timber, stone, and thatch structures. The smallest option, although it’s really rather spacious, is the Safari Room. This contains a double bed or twin beds, bedside tables and lighting, a writing desk and chair, a mini-bar, and a separate seating area with sliding doors onto a balcony. The décor includes pleasantly patterned cushions and some wildlife wall artwork, and en-suite facilities comprise flush toilet, washbasin with mirror over, shower, and freestanding bathtub. Usefully for families, this room can connect with the property’s Safari Suite to provide a two-bedroom unit. The Safari Suite is similarly appointed to the Safari Room, benefiting moreover from extra lounge space, a guest bathroom, and a viewing deck complete with dining table for a maximum of eight travellers, outdoor shower, and plunge pool! There are also three Elephant rooms, each a larger version of the Safari Room and located next to a migratory route that’s often used by the gentle giants. Travellers seeking treehouse-style accommodation could consider booking one of the four River rooms, as these are raised into jackalberry trees and three are accessed along a swing bridge! Two River rooms boast a private plunge pool. And if you’re looking for something seriously special, we recommend the Treehouse Suite. With a secluded location 15 minutes from the communal lodge via swing bridge, two viewing decks, and amazing views of Ulusaba Reserve’s Xikwenga Dam – a favourite watering hole for elephant and hippo – this option guarantees a memorable stay.
Many of the property’s communal spaces are found within its pleasant lodge, which in common with the guest accommodation is made out of timber, stone, and thatch. The pleasant lounge features plenty of well-cushioned seating around coffee tables, a few occasional tables for lamp lighting, contemporary wall artwork, a few intriguing artefacts, and a cosy fireplace. There’s a fireplace in the dining area too, which also contains a long table flanked by smart upright chairs, and some black-and-white portrait photographs on the walls, alongside two sculpted crocodiles! The bar is positioned in a snug corner of the lounge, and you can enjoy a few drinks under the friendly gaze of a giraffe. There’s a wine cellar too, well stocked with reds and whites to complement your meals. Guests often tuck in to delicious food and drink on the lodge’s decks. You can pop to the Aroma Boma spa for an assortment of massages, facials, and other pampering treatments, or head to the gym to work off some calories. The observatory is ideal for a little stargazing. There are two tennis courts and a nicely shaded swimming pool, which is heated during the winter. And Safari Lodge’s gift shop stocks arts, crafts, books, clothes, accessories, and much more!
Safari Lodge offers some classic safari activities within the Ulusaba Reserve, as well as a couple of excursions farther afield. The reserve covers some 13,500 hectares of savanna, woodlands, and water sources, and it’s home to an exhilarating variety of wildlife. Game drives take place during early morning and late afternoon into evening, always in the presence of knowledgeable and experienced guides. Among the highlights here are all Big Five – lion, rhino, leopard, elephant, and buffalo. Smaller predators in residence include cheetah, hyenas, jackals, and wild dog, while the herbivore count features giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, and many different types of antelope! Birders can look out for hundreds of species of feathery friends, from raptors to songbirds to waterbirds.
The lodge’s safari walks are highly recommended for anyone interested in closer observation of the reserve, including tracking some species of game. There are two additional excursions available, both involving the Panorama Route – one consists of a drive to some of the main attractions, and the other comprises a helicopter flight! Back in the reserve, you can also take part in village visits and enjoy an evening of stargazing in the lodge’s observatory. For further details about Safari Lodge’s activities, or anything else to do with staying here, please get in touch with a member of our team.