Five new remote luxury lodges in Namibia

Recent years have seen Namibia’s accommodation scene blossom, with boutique camps and lodges drawing travellers to spectacular and remote corners of the country. Here are five new properties offering a luxurious taste of Namibia’s scenery.

Published 4 Feb 2021, 08:09 GMT
A bathroom at Zannier Hotels Sonop.

A bathroom at Zannier Hotels Sonop.

Photograph by Zannier Hotels

1. Zannier Hotels Sonop 

Best for design

Ten luxury tents — all linked by a series of decks, wooden stilts and steps, and tucked into a heap of granite boulders — make the new Zannier Hotels Sonop one of the most architecturally impressive in the country. Climbing the stairs is somewhat of a workout, but the rewards are plentiful, from the heated infinity pool and outdoor cinema to the mud-walled spa. The canvas rooms are 1920s-style sanctuaries, with four-poster beds and rolltop baths, but the real star is the cocktail lounge, which is kitted out with antiques, a vintage pool table and a stargazing deck — perfect for relaxing after a day on horseback or e-bike. From £666, full board. 

2. AndBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge

Best for luxury

Set on a 31,000-acre private reserve deep in the Namib is the newly refurbished AndBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge. Ten huge stone-and-glass suites, each with an equally large private pool, gaze out at a vast expanse of rust-coloured sand and rock, which your guide will help you explore by four-wheel-drive, e-bike and quad bike. It’s tempting to spend the day lazing in your suite, with its generous bar stocked with full-size bottles, and the evening stargazing through the retractable roof, but do venture out to the main lodge for your candlelit meals, including venison served on hot desert stones. From £937, full board. 

3. Anderssons at Ongava 

Best for families 

This new family-friendly camp on the private Ongava Game Reserve, bordering Etosha National Park, has a relaxed vibe, whether you’re spotting eland gathering at the waterhole as you tuck into breakfast, lounging by the pool or chatting around the firepit. The light-flooded rooms at Anderssons at Ongava are simply yet stylishly decorated with plenty of pale wood, muted linens and natural rugs. Morning and afternoon drives will have you regularly spotting lions and rhino, and the Ongava Research Centre walks you through the work being done to protect the nation’s wildlife. From £780, B&B.

4. Kwessi Dunes 

Best for adventure

Conservation is at the core of Natural Selection camps and lodges, and its new outpost — Kwessi Dunes, located in the NamibRand Nature Reserve, one of the largest private reserves in Southern Africa — is no different, with 1.5% of room rates going straight back into protecting the area. Each of the 12 solar-powered chalets features a four-poster bed and an additional star-bed for the best galaxy-gazing in this International Dark Sky Park. Spot gemsbok and bat-eared foxes during nature drives and horse rides, or attempt to climb the nearby Big Daddy dune at dawn. From £675, full board.

5. Camp Onduli

Best for wildlife

Named after the resident giraffe, Camp Onduli is a fresh option in the Damaraland region, famed for its desert-adapted animals. With only six curvy, dome-shaped suites it has a very intimate vibe, whether you’re lounging by the pool, with its neighbouring granite boulders, chatting beside the campfire or out on the star-bed on your veranda. In fact, every place in your room, from the desk to the bathroom, makes the most of the landscape. The highlight, though, is the chance to spot desert-adapted elephants and black rhino that roam the region. Nightly rates from £720 per room full board. 

Read more travel guides and tales for Namibia

Published in the March 2021 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)

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