Wilderness Safaris has reopened Chitabe Camp, in a private concession south-east of the Okavango Delta, having overhauled the elevated walkways and main camp.
Designed by architects Mark Thomas and Chris Bisset, in collaboration with Henry Fagan Engineers, Chitabe’s new design fits in with the meandering waterways of the Delta.
Helene Hamman, CEO at Chitabe said: “When we originally built Chitabe over 20 years ago, it was the first completely elevated camp in the Delta.”
The main area features indoor and outdoor under-star dining, with an elevated white Kalahari sand deck forming the central area of the camp.
A new lap pool, lounge and gym offer a variety of options for exercise and relaxation. A new library has also been introduced.
The library at Chitabe.
To ensure comfortable temperatures, a new evaporative cooling system has been installed in the main areas.
During the design stages, the team used 3-D laser technology to survey the area to create a minimal-impact camp. Fagan’s engineering expertise helped create new non-permanent structures featuring removable concrete-free foundations. Thomas said: “The revolutionary design heralds many firsts for the Okavango, ensuring Chitabe remains a responsible custodian in one of the Delta’s highest game concentration areas.”
The designers worked to incorporate other natural aspects of the area into the design, with the camp winding around trees and termite mounds.
Chitabe has also embarked on a project to replace trees that have been lost to fire or natural cycles and retains the services of an arborist to ensure the trees are taken care of. Nothing at the camp has gone to waste, with the timber from the old decking used as decorative cladding and ceilings.