Sitting majestically on the western side of the Moremi Game Reserve in the heart of the Okavango Delta, Botswana. Xigera – pronounced ‘kee-jera’ – named for the Pied Kingfisher that makes its home amid the watery channels of the reserve, is set to open in January 2021. It is part of the family-owned Red Carnation Hotel Collection and is conceptualised by Toni Tollman, Philip Fourie and Anton de Kock, in collaboration with Southern Guild gallery.
Xigera has a total of 12 fully air-conditioned suites, including one two-bedroom family suite, that sleeps a maximum of 24 guests. The lodge takes the concept of local design to the next level, with hand-crafted bronze elements, local artwork and all furniture made by African artisans in natural materials. Rooms are a ‘living gallery’ featuring bespoke works commissioned by some of Africa’s best artists and craftspeople, such as Adam Birch, Madoda Fani, Porky Hefer, Otto du Plessis and Stanislaw Trzebinski.
Quietly surprising touches transform Xigera, from the lily-inspired spa to South African artist Porky Hefer’s trademark woven ‘nests’ for guests to sit in and the chance of a life-changing sleep-out beneath the velvet night sky.
For dining, African-inspired menus are designed by Red Carnation executive chefs complemented by signature recipes inspired by Bea Tollman’s own dishes, while the cellar showcases a range of premium Champagnes and wines, including some from Xigera’s sister vineyard, Bouchard Finlayson in South Africa.
Children over the age of 12 will be welcome for family stays, and experiences on offer will include glass-bottom mokoro boat excursions through the Delta’s waterways, a “sleep-out” experience in a baobab tree house 1km from the camp, spa treatments by Tata Harper – a first for Africa – and game drives.
Rates at Xigera Safari Lodge start from approx £1,847 per adult per night sharing, on a fully inclusive basis (except spa), with all park fees and all activities.