Carolina Ramirez Herrera

Royal Malewane

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Royal Malewane BFF4LYF Royal Malewane edition. Thank you for making the most special trip that much more special

BFF4LYF Royal Malewane edition. Thank you for making the most special trip that much more special

Royal Malewane Hello! I live here now

Hello! I live here now

Royal Malewane The Royal Suite is essentially a two bedroom home in the bush of dreams

The Royal Suite is essentially a two bedroom home in the bush of dreams

Royal Malewane Catching up on my birding and feeling riiiight at home

Catching up on my birding and feeling riiiight at home

Royal Malewane  10/10 sleep in this regal setting

10/10 sleep in this regal setting

Royal Malewane Took ALL the Penhaligons toiletries AND the silk robe to go with it

Took ALL the Penhaligons toiletries AND the silk robe to go with it

Royal Malewane

"Casual" five star lunch, the food was unreal

Royal Malewane The property has its own watering hole which means you can often find elephants, giraffes and other new friends hanging around

The property has its own watering hole which means you can often find elephants, giraffes and other new friends hanging around

Royal Malewane Like this (tiny!!) baby elephant and his mom cooling off

Like this (tiny!!) baby elephant and his mom cooling off

Royal Malewane Not pictured: a

Not pictured: a "barrel" of monkeys chilling straight beneath me

Royal Malewane Interior details

Interior details

Royal Malewane When nature plays set designer for your happy hour. Swoon

When nature plays set designer for your happy hour. Swoon

Royal Malewane Dinner in the bush, under the stars

Dinner in the bush, under the stars

Royal Malewane Taking stealable merch to the next level

Taking stealable merch to the next level

Highs & Lows

  • The people! From the moment we were whisked away at the airstrip by Nick, who was our expert tracker for the duration of the trip along with Robert, to chef Archie, I could seriously go on. Every single staff member felt like family, and was just all around awesome humans.

  • Loved the over all non-hotel, intimate feel. I felt like I was arriving at my super fabulous aunt’s home in the bush. It had just the right amount of beautiful Persian rugs and carefully curated items sprinkled throughout that really made it feel like a home.

  • Hands down the best wildlife/game drives I've seen in my life. Given its location, you will spot the big five on almost every drive and yet no two outings are the same.

  • The FOOD. Definitely not your standard “safari” fare. I was obsessed with how hyper-personalized each meal was.

  • Not enough time to do everything! In a perfect world I'd easily do a week here to do alllllll the things.

  • LEAVING. Tears may or may not have been shed...

The Barometer

  • Design
  • Location
  • Future Forward
  • Night's Sleep
  • Service
  • Amenities
  • Takeable Treats
  • Refer a Friend
  • Overall Value
  • Life Changing
Total: 50/50

Important Bits

  • Type

    Epitome of a luxury safari lodge

  • Vibe

    Classic "Out of Africa" safari vibes with just the right amount of cozy

  • Location

    Blissfully off the grid and one with South Africa’s flagship wildlife reserve

  • Rooms

    10 in the main lodge; 6 luxury suites and 2 royal suites. Additionally there are 3 exclusive-use villas — Africa House, The Farmstead and The Farmhouse which each have between 3-6 bedrooms

  • Pre-Arrival Experience

    Bubbles, greeted by the whole staff / new BFFs like out of a movie

  • Future Forward

    Plastic free and an on-site water purification system plus waste recycling. They also have counter-poaching/conservation efforts across the board

  • Music

    Sounds of the bush is all you need

  • Year Opened

    1999

  • Designed By

    Designed by owner Liz Biden, the lodge was originally her private holiday home

  • Health & Wellness

    Yes, the bush spa has both a gym and a pool but more importantly, every room has its own private pool

  • Food

    OUT. OF. THIS. WORLD. Archie, the head chef chats with you every morning to curate both your lunch and dinner menus. From truffle to perfectly roasted lamb to crocodile carpaccio — 10/10 for every single meal

  • Bar, Events & Nightlife

    The Masiya bar pays homage to the history of Royal Malewane and its Master Trackers, in particular Wilson Masiya who was a part of the family since they opened their doors in 1999

  • Minibar & Retail

    Nothing mini about this, full kitchen and bar are at your disposal. Wine? Bubbles? Just buzz and they’ll send it right over — all complimentary

  • Accessibility

    Wheelchair accessible

  • Pet Friendly

    Definitely not. With so many new animal friends, best to leave your furry ones at home

  • Children

    Technically over 12 are allowed, but the private villas have no set rules so rather do that if its a family affair

  • Price

    Rates starting at around $2,000 USD per person all inclusive and worth every single South African ZAR

  • Tel.

    +27 (0) 15 793 0150

  • Website

    Visit website

Royal Malewane

Royal Malewane

Royal Malewane, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, Hoedspruit, South Africa

The Counter Poaching Dog Unit at Royal Malewane, also known as Tango K9

The Counter Poaching Dog Unit at Royal Malewane, also known as Tango K9

Royal Malewane, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, Hoedspruit, South Africa

Curio Shop

Curio Shop

Royal Malewane, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, Hoedspruit, South Africa

The Waters of Royal Malewane Bush Spa

The Waters of Royal Malewane Bush Spa

Royal Malewane, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, Hoedspruit, South Africa

In the Area

Hotel Location Royal Malewane, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, Hoedspruit, South Africa

The hotel is located in the Thornybush private game reserve in the famed Greater Kruger National Park. Sounds far and intimidating but getting there is quite seamless with flights to Hoedspruit Airport and then a 45 minute drive, where you will most likely be welcomed by some animal friends!

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