Lalibela Game Reserve in South Africa’s Eastern Cape – close to Port Elizabeth (Gqeberha) and Addo Elephant National Park – has been increasingly receiving enquiries for exclusive-use accommodation.
Accordingly, it has adapted its offering to meet the new trend, which has grown in popularity for travel to Africa since the COVID-19 pandemic.
At WTM Africa earlier this year, a panel discussion amongst hospitality companies highlighted that thedesire to travel within ‘bubbles’, and limiting the risk involved when sharing aircraft, vehicles and accommodation, had given rise to renewed interest in exclusive-use offerings.
Head of Sales at Lalibela, Bruce Deneys, told Tourism Update: “The demand for exclusive-use villas has definitely picked up since COVID.” An exclusive-use lodge catered for two markets, those who were slightly more cautious and did not want to interact with other guests, and those guests who were slightly more discerning and who wanted privacy and exclusivity, he said.
There is already an exclusive-use villa, Mills Manor, on the 10 500-hectare Big-Five reserve, and there are two smaller lodges that can easily be booked for exclusive use.