Advertorial • March 2015

Five ‘natural luxury’ retreats

From open-air rooms in Botswana and luxury tree houses in Zambia, to a Nile river cruise with views of the water from a four-poster bed, experience nature in luxurious style with Sanctuary Retreats

Looking for a once-in-a-lifetime holiday experience without sacrificing on comfort? Say hello to Sanctuary Retreats. Boasting a collection of luxury safari lodges and river cruisers, the company brings the boutique experience to guests with the added promise of authenticity.

Want to spend a week in a safari lodge or camp in Africa? Sanctuary Retreats has properties in Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda, which let you explore nature in comfort. All are small, exclusive and private, set in fantastic landscapes that blend naturally into their environment.

If you’d rather take to the water, Sanctuary Retreats’ ships explore some of the world’s most amazing cultural and ecological sites along epic rivers, including the Nile in Egypt, the Ayeyarwady and Chindwin in Myanmar and the Yangtze in China. Each boat has a limited number of travellers to create an intimate and personal cruise experience.

Every Sanctuary Retreats’ property is completely individual in its design and operated around the philosophy of ‘Luxury, naturally’. All have the same aim: to allow guests to have a ‘real’ experience and enjoy a more natural kind of luxury in properties that have a strong commitment to conservation and responsible tourism.

Read on for our pick of the best...


‘Sky beds’ and ‘star baths’ in Botswana

Sanctuary Baines’ Camp is set on raised platforms above the Boro River in a private area bordering the Moremi Game Reserve. It features just five suites, each with a four-poster ‘sky bed’ for a night under the stars and a private ‘star bath’ that can be set up on deck. Seasonal mokoro (traditional canoe) rides and motorised boating are available during the Okavango flood season. There’s also the chance to view the area through the eyes of an elephant, as you observe and interact with a trio of them on a leisurely walk with Sanctuary Retreats’ exclusive Walking with Elephants experience.  


Gorilla experience in Uganda

Uganda is home to the world’s greatest concentration of primates and home to half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. It is also a paradise for bird watchers, with more than 350 recorded species. Featuring just eight tents, Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp is the only luxury camp within the forest and is often visited by gorilla families due to its unique location. 


Tree house accommodation in Zambia

Sanctuary Sussi & Chuma is just 10km upstream from the mighty Victoria Falls. The main lodge is made up of 12 Sussi tree houses connected by wooden walkways and set in giant ebony trees overlooking a bend in the Zambezi River. There are also two private Chuma houses, with their own dining areas and decks with plunge pools, as well as a private chef and dedicated staff. The river comes right up to the lawns of the lodge, and an infinity pool makes a perfect setting for an evening sundowner, with dramatic views over the Zambezi.


Sail the Nile in style in Egypt

The Sanctuary Sun Boat III is an intimate and stylish river yacht with just 18 unique cabins. All cabins feature traditional wooden shutters while the four-poster beds are reminiscent of a time when Nile cruises were home to the rich and famous. World-renowned Egyptologists offer a truly unique and intimate experience alongside access to 5,000 years of ancient Egyptian history. Highlights include the Valley of the Kings and Queens and the Unfinished Obelisk.

To find out more, visit Sanctuary Retreats


Yangtze River cruise in China

The Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer carries a maximum of 124 passengers in 62 cabins – the highest crew-to-passenger ratio on the river. Itineraries include visits to local villages and the Three Gorges Dam Project, while onboard activities include Tai Chi, Chinese cookery and calligraphy classes.

This article has been tagged Destination, Hotels