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Makalali Private Game Reserve

N & NW Province & Mpumalanga, South Africa


Three camps, a few kilometres apart, are situated on the banks of the Makhutswi river, each offering 6 fantasy mud, stone and thatch huts. It's pure bliss wallowing in the privacy of Makalali’s huge bedrooms. The décor is womb-like in its darkness and envelops you in a blanket of comfort. Candles and incense create moods to entrance you.

Everything is handcrafted - even the taps. The deep claw-footed bath is separated from the bedroom by a large metal screen with cut-out shapes of animals. Tribal masks, Kente clothes and Bushman murals adorn the walls. Attention to detail and quality makes you look, then look again. Indigenous materials have been used everywhere.

Each suite, perched high on stilts to protect you from marauding wildlife, has a fireplace, a wooden veranda and an open-air sala for your siesta and game viewing. Hairdryers, luxury toiletries in exquisite glass bottles, ethnic robes, built-in electric blankets, piles of soft towels, and insect repellent are provided for guests’ convenience. And for nature lovers, each has a cool outdoor shower made of red mud and mosaic.

How guests have rated the rooms:


Makalali Private Game Reserve: View all reviews

Features include:

  • Safe box
  • Air-Conditioning
  • Fireplace
  • Fan
  • Mosquito net
  • Baby Cots
  • Extra Beds
  • Bathrobes
  • Hairdryer
Save to favouritesPrintMailMakalali Private Game ReserveSet in a 26,000-acre private reserve near the Kruger National Park and Drakensberg Mountains, Makalali offers a deliciously romantic bush retreat coupled with excellent game viewing. American owner Charles Smith and Italian architect Silvio Rech have created a striking juxtaposition of opulence and wilderness, while maintaining a strong commitment to protecting the local environment and wildlife. Moody [r:SA053:interiors] blend with indigenous and modern design to offer a sumptuous haven far away from the crowds. Drawing upon tribal influences from across Africa (soaring uncut thatch roofs meet magical mud turrets), Makalali has been described as the most innovatively designed hotel in the world. After being greeted with iced tea at the entrance, a tortuous jeep ride takes you through the bush to your camp. Once you arrive the cosseting and pampering begins...

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