Ramallah – Dunya Al Watan
Zambezi Sands River Resort & Safari in Zimbabwe aims to change the face of Africa from what it is currently known by implementing a series of sustainable solutions that support local communities and their surrounding environment, which previously depended on small businesses and tourism donations for their sustainability .
As the project is the first safari resort owned by an African woman, supporting the local community and the nature they live in is at the heart of founder Vimpai Masiywa’s work, with Patuka supporting the communities she works in support in return. We therefore create sustainable livelihoods to achieve local economic growth, alleviate poverty and contribute to bringing people to an area where they can live at a decent human level.
The five-star resort operated by Patuka Hospitality Group is located just an hour away from the magnificent Victoria Falls – located at the breathtaking western end of the Zambezi National Park and home to a rich variety of flora and fauna.
Empower local women and share our people’s story
There are currently thirty locals working in the resort out of a total of 33 employees, 39% of whom are women, whose roles range from the resort’s hospitality team to the anti-poaching team. Patuka Hospitality also aims to empower women from the surrounding communities, where there is a significant cultural barrier preventing them from working, and to provide them with equal opportunities in a part of the world where only 4.4 % of women work.
Vimpai Masiywa, CEO of Patuka Hospitality, said: “Our aim at Zambezi Sands is to make sure that the local people are a big part of this experience to support them economically, therefore it is imperative that women have a greater role in all it is important for us that local people tell the story of the country, the story of our people and that they are the face of our culture and traditions, but what is also important is that we offer them better ways to to improve their lives, and thus the lives of their families and society as a whole.”
The resort’s rooms and futuristic rooms have been created to offer its guests an authentic African experience – a luxurious African home in nature. Where visitors experience the authentic African touch through culture and tradition to the hospitality of its people.
Give back by launching a fund for support
The opening of the hotel will also coincide with the launch of a community support fund which will be funded by 10% of the revenue generated from each guest stay. The purpose of this fund is for employees of the Patuka Hospitality Family to carry out projects that benefit their local community, and to obtain appropriate funding to implement those projects.
Protection of the surrounding environment through the preservation of wildlife
The resort also aims to preserve the surrounding wildlife, especially during the latter period, and completely eradicate unique species of endangered animals such as the rhinoceros due to illegal hunting. The resort also currently employs an extensive program of five local residents during which they are trained and supplied with all the supplies that support the anti-poaching units that previously played a key role in driving poachers out of the resort’s perimeter.
Vimpai also said: “We are working with various organizations that focus on changing the relationship that local communities have with wildlife that can pose a threat to their crops, homes and livestock. We also hope that tourism will actually be a mechanism to support conservation efforts and help ensure that both people and wildlife live safely side by side.”
Some anti-poaching activities include clearing traps, assigning anti-poaching patrols to national parks, helping to locate injured animals and providing basic resources to anti-poaching units. The Zambezi Sands team will also work on anti-poaching education and campaigns to raise awareness of the issue.
More information about the history of the resort
The destination’s 10 stunning suites have been redesigned by award-winning South African interior designer Yvonne O’Brien, known for her unmatched creativity.
All suites also have a private plunge pool and breathtaking panoramic views of the Zambezi River. For travelers from the GCC, a two-bedroom suite with a private pool, lounge, dining room and terrace will be available for guests who desire more privacy and the experience of living in a luxury home away from home.
The bedrooms are designed as large African-style tents that offer breathtaking panoramic views from the large veranda to the soundtrack of the region’s enchanting wildlife. The walkways that connect each tent to the main dining area and bar also provide adequate protection from the roaming manatees that often spend at least part of the night in and around the camp eating.
It is worth noting that Patuka Hospitality acquired 100% ownership of the former Zambezi Sands Camp and its sister camp, George Lodge, in 2020. The company takes the concept of sustainability and local employment at the core of its work, enabling guests to experience true African culture and hospitality with the least possible damage to the environment.
About Patuka Hospitality
Patuka Hospitality is a luxury ecotourism and community development group focused on conserving and empowering the local communities in which the company’s operating units (residences or hotels) are located by promoting the conservation of local wildlife and the environment around their lodge. The company also owns and operates Batoka Zambezi Sands River Lodge, Batoka Zambezi Sands River Lodge and Batoka Gorges Lodge, both located in Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe. Each lodge offers a luxurious and fully immersive African safari experience, including the use of dedicated natural resources and eco-friendly materials found in every design and construction of their lodge. It also offers a variety of leisure activities at its affiliated locations tailored to individuals, couples and families as a whole; And also a variety of cultural activities that encourage guests to learn about the history of the local destination and the culture for which their lodge is known.