Perched high above the Kuvenyami River, Kuname Lodge has the most jaw-dropping views from a trio of outdoor seating areas. There are 3 distinct spaces that allow the intimate number of guests to be in a public space, yet enjoy relative privacy. When we arrived, my wife and I were given a tour of the main building before being taken to the accommodation which was less than 10m from this spot. We were so enjoying the ambience of this space that we were in no hurry to leave to continue the tour.
Tucked away under the expansive public deck, is this small wine cellar that doubles as a dining area. Reserved for those who are celebrating special events…or perhaps have a marriage proposal in mind, it is totally secluded and we not been told about it, we would not even have been aware of its existence.
The pool seems to be carved out of the rock that it is situated in. Although the weather was hot, the water was just a tad too cold for me to totally immerse myself in. But, for research purposes, I did relax here for a while with my feet cooling off in the bubbling water that cascaded down the rock face. On the other hand, my wife was the more daring and did do a couple of lengths before stretching out on one of the loungers to enjoy an ice-cold beverage.
The interior of the main building. It comprises a lounge, reception, bar as well as a dining area where all meals were served. Like the other lodges in the Karongwe Portfolio, Kuname serves 3 meals a day, with dinner being a seated plated experience. (but more of that later in this posting)
To the right of the main entrance is this large and imposing guest book. Filled with wonderful compliments/ game drive sightings and experiences from guests who had been there before me. The comments are from a veritable smorgasbord of countries representing all the major continents. But no matter what language they are written in, they all have one common thread that tied them all together…just how much the guests have enjoyed their stay at this lodge.
A challenge to any guest to try and find a drink that is not represented here. And let us not forget the extensive wine cellar that was made mention of earlier in this posting.
EVENTUALLY, we get to our accommodation! As this was just an overnight stay, we were not going to be spending much time here other than to sleep and shower. The rooms were recently renovated and now reflects that fact. The bed was extremely comfortable, with pillows that stood up to MY standards (most of the venues that I visit have soft down pillows, but at all of the Karongwe Portfolio lodges I discovered that the pillows were as firm as the one that I travel with.)The room had both AC and a ceiling fan above the bed. It is not recommended that you sleep with the door open as flying insects, drawn by the lighting could visit.
FYI: This is a low-risk area for malaria, but a good spray with an insect repellant is advisable before venturing out after dark.
A vanity slab with double basins and an adjoining toilet and indoor shower cubicle complete in ablution facilities should you not wish to venture outside to ‘freshen up’…
Take control. There is an outdoor shower attached to these taps, which were way more interesting than a showerhead to photograph. For those who suffer from OCD, I did try to get the ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ to line up but was unable to do so without getting soaked.
A first for my wife and I…neither of us had ever experienced a sunken bathtub on an outside deck before. This is situated in the same area as the aforementioned shower and guests can use either of these facilities in complete privacy.
The view from our deck with the dry Kuvenyami River in the foreground, while the Northern Drakensberg mountains loom large in the distance. The camp manager told me that the recent rains that were enjoyed were not enough to keep the river flowing for an extended period of time. That being said, I should imagine that when the rains DO come, this view will be even more spectacular.
This was the buffet lunch that we enjoyed together with a family from Argentina. A choice of starters, mains(vegetarians are catered for) and desserts were on offer and all of them were delicious. I had a difficult decision to make as I did not want to have dessert at both lunch and dinner, so I opted for the latter.
Returning from the afternoon game drive after the sun had set and the soft lodge lighting had been turned on. It changed the feel of the outdoor area to one of intimacy and privacy.
As mentioned earlier, the dinner was a plated meal, and we were offered the food choices at lunchtime. Once again a meal to remember, from the soup to the Springbok carpaccio and the mains, which in my case was mouthwatering beef fillet with vegetables, while my wife enjoyed a fish dish that was large enough for two people. One thing that visitors cannot complain about is the portion sizes which are MORE than generous.
When a meal is enjoyed in an urban restaurant, it is polite to wish the other diners at your table “Bon Appetite”. Here in Africa, in the bush, that could be changed to “Boomslang up a tree”!
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