Ruzizi Tented Camp set to open September 2012June 20, 2012
At TFH we watch any new lodge project with great interest – and none more so than Ruzizi Tented Camp, a new property due to open in Akagera National Park in Rwanda in September 2012.
The camp is part of the ongoing renovation and recovery of Akagera by Akagera Management Company – a joint venture between te Rwanda Development Board and African Parks. The latter is a non-profit organisation with great conservation management credentials across a variety of protected areas in Africa. Akagera certainly needed a helping hand – its habitat and wildlife populations were greatly affected by the movement and settlement of refugees during the 1994 Rwanda genocide. Eighteen years on, and wildlife populations of large herbivores such as Zebra, Giraffe, Buffalo, Hippo and Elephant are slowly but steadily returning to their former numbers; with a proposal to relocate Lion and Rhino species from South Africa to help return these particular species to a viable breeding population.
Up until now, however, visitors on safari in Akagera have been extremely limited in their accommodation options, but the construction of Ruzizi Tented Camp looks set to change all this.
Work started on the camp in January of this year, and one tented room has been completed already. Staff accommodation is nearly finished; the roof frame is being erected for the thatched lounge and dining area; the kitchen is under way and the boardwalk along the shores of the lake is being erected. The team hope to open the camp in September, with a special introductory rate for guests staying at the camp between Sep-Dec 2012.
Ruzizi is tucked away in a secluded patch of riverine forest, right on the edge of Lake Ihema, with plans for 7 en-suite tents along the lake shore. The tents are located either side of the main lodge areas including dining room, lounge and bar. A boardwalk and deck overlooks the lake, offering an ideal spot to enjoy sundowners whilst watching the sun set over the water.
Each tent is provided with a queen-sized double, or twin beds. A walk through dressing area leads to a private en suite bathroom with hot and cold running water. The camp is powered by solar throughout, and is designed to blend and merge with its natural surroundings. Traditional Imigongo art lines the walls and furniture has been hand-crafted by Rwandan artisans and local co-operatives.
Sheltered by the large palms and other forest trees, Ruzizi should prove a comfortable and serene base from which to explore the spectacular rolling plains and papyrus-fringed waterways of Akagera National Park – Rwanda’s best kept safari secret.
We’re looking forward to it!
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