A tough assignment on safari in South Africa’s Sabi Sabi Game Reserve

On safari in Sabi Sabi,
in breathtaking South Africa

The other day in Greater Kruger National Park in South Africa, living a TRAVELIFE, The Boss and I were sitting in the living room of the Selati Lodge in the Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve, checking emails and having champagne cocktails while waiting for our afternoon safari drive to begin.

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From the December 2012 – January 2013 issue onwards

Dec 2012 – Jan 2013 issue
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The lodges of Sabi Sabi are among the most luxurious safari lodges in the world, and they have over 6000 hectares of private lands to view wild animals in.

It’s really the best of both worlds as you’re not fighting over animal photo opportunities with people from other safari lodges, as only Sabi Sabi guests are on the Sabi Sabi estate.

No 10 jeeps from 10 different safari lodges trying to see the same lion, for example. This makes all the difference in a safari experience as you can really get a good and uninterrupted view of the animals in their natural environment.

The presidential suite of the Selati Lodge.
This was my room…

And when you return from safari, you’re back in a beautiful and civilized world of organic toiletries, fine bed sheets, private plunge pools, and champagne cocktails.

The table setting at Sabi Sabi

We’d just had a very nice lunch at another lodge on the Sabi Sabi Game Reserve, which is called Bush Lodge, before returning to Selati Lodge, where we were staying.

The Sabi Sabi Game Reserve has four lodges and each has its own personality and attractions.


FROM THE 1920s

A very retro feel at the Selati Lodge

The Selati Lodge is an intimate and nostalgic retro lodge and it’s a really nice choice for those looking for an old-fashioned but luxurious safari experience.

It’s perfect for couples and those looking to socialize with other guests as there are only eight rooms — so that’s a maximum of 16 guests at the lodge. Everyone becomes friends very quickly.

When we were staying there, there were only eight guests and we all had fun together, talking about our animal sightings and comparing notes on travels. Dinner was a half-circle around a campfire, out in the open, but with fine table linen and a four-course meal.

The wonderful African accent pieces
at Sabi Sabi’s Bush Lodge

Meanwhile Bush Lodge is hip and contemporary, as well as a much bigger lodge. It’s almost like a regular hotel in a safari setting, but with great African design. We had lunch here just so we could see it, and I swear wanted to bring home the African accents displayed in almost every nook and cranny.

Bush Lodge is very nice for groups, and it has more services as well.

I’ll write more on the four lodges later, as it’s good to know for anyone considering a safari at Sabi Sabi – which we highly recommend, by the way.

Lunch at Sabi Sabi’s Bush Lodge


Sabi Sabi offers one of the best safari experiences in the world. The Boss and I have been all over the world on some pretty amazing experiences, but we were both very impressed with the overall experience of Sabi Sabi, including the services and facilities.

This is one of the restaurant venues
at Sabi Sabi’s amazing and futuristic Earth Lodge

The personnel too are top-notch, and when you’re on a safari, I can’t over-emphasize just how important having top-notch personnel is.


Anyway, that afternoon, I was on my Macbook Pro writing a blog entry while The Boss was seated across me on his iPad, reading my blog, looking up information on South Africa and possibly answering emails on his phones as well.

The two Blackberries on safari in South Africa

He’s always on his two Blackberries or his iPad , by the way, so sometimes I just send him an email even if he’s just seated across me, if I want to ask him a question.

Yesterday, for example, we were having tea and he was engrossed on his phones as usual. I was just seated next to him working on my computer, and midway I asked him: “What time is it?”

No answer. He didn’t hear me at all as he was fiddling with his two Blackberries again. So I sent him an email instead, knowing it would pop up on one of those Blackberries, with text only on the subject title.

“What time is it?” I wrote.

 That’s the kind of thing I have to resort to at times, to get something across to him.

The decor at Sabi Sabi’s Bush Lodge

Anyway, back to my story. He was on his gadgets again while we were in the living room of the Selati Lodge, and I was working on my computer. While he was doing these, he was complaining that I was writing very inaccurately about him in the blog.

He said to me, although with a smile: “You should be glad I’m so nice, that I actually put up with all of these inaccuracies.” He meant that he was being such a good sport and that he was nicer than how I was describing him in this blog, when actually I think it’s the other way around.


That’s Ashley, having some fun with us,
over mid-afternoon champagne cocktails
at Selati Lodge. 

We were having this conversation and laughing quite a bit at the same time, that Ashley and Brett, the managers of the Selati Lodge, came over to see what all the laughing was about.

The Boss explained to them: “She writes about me in her blog all the time, and it’s all inaccurate. She’s never nice to me.”

I replied: “I only write about you when you’re somehow part of my day. I write about everyone who’s part of my day in a significant way.”

Then I added:  “And I can’t make you sound nicer than you really are. I don’t make up stuff.”

There was a time, a very long time ago, when he was very nice, and I’d written about him in this way. But that was ages ago.


That’s Brett, the Selati Lodge manager
and one of the Selati Lodge bartenders behind him

But then, that very moment, I had a change of heart. Life’s short and I can embellish a little if it’ll make him happy. So I said to him: “Okay, I’ll make you more of something but you’ll have to choose. I can make you sound smarter than you are, or nicer than you are. But I can’t do both. That would be impossible. So choose which one you prefer.”

Then I added: “But I think you should go with smarter. That’s easier for me to invent out of nothing.”

Of course I was just teasing him. He’s never as nice as I would like him to be, but he’s not that bad either. And this amused Brett and Ashley no end.

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So I said to Ashley: “If you can think of something nice for me to write about him. I’ll do it.”

Ashley giggled and promised to do so. But by the time we’d checked out of Selati Lodge to go on to the next Sabi Sabi lodge, she still had not come up with an answer.

And as we rode out of the Selati Lodge driveway, there was Ashley waving and giggling, but still with nothing nicer to say about The Boss. And that’s why you’re still reading about him exactly as he is, instead of as he wants to be portrayed.

Just a bit of fun in a never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.