The main lodge building as seen in the early morning light. As I made my way to the hide at the bottom of the garden, the sunlight gently caressed the buildings at The Last Word Madikwe Bush House. Although the lodge has new owners, the buildings have remained as I remember them from a visit in 2016 when my wife and I fell in love with this camp and all that it had to offer.
We were grateful to hear that the alterations that will be made will not involve major changes that will detract from the charm that returning visitors have come to know and love over the years. For first time visitors, they, like others before them, will hopefully be ready to book a return visit before leaving the lodge gates!
This was the room that we stayed in, but I will not dwell on the interior as there are plans afoot to take the accommodation from great to excellent and my wife and I cannot wait to see what changes are in the pipeline.
And given the excellent standards that The Last Word consistently shows through all their properties you can bet you bottom dollar that the devil will be in the details.
Fun fact: The devil is in the details is an idiomatic phrase that means “even the grandest project depends on the success of the smallest components.”
I was told that with the exception of the bar, which will have a make-over, the rest of the lounge will remain as is…perhaps some soft furnishing changes? But if it ain’t broke, why fix it?
Dinner for us was served in the lounge where the low coffee table (with ostrich eggs and not books) was replaced with a beautifully decorated dinner table and chairs.
Seated in front of a warming fire, we were served with food that was both delicious and wonderfully plated and presented.
The dinner menu choices were presented to us at high tea before the afternoon game drive and that gave the kitchen and the wonderful chef the opportunity to prep for dinner service with plenty of time available.
Soup, lamb chops with veg and a crème Brule to finish off the meal. Perfection.
Although dinner was served in the same space every evening, the table decore changed as did the menu.
The use of elements sourced from the garden made the table decorations unique and this attention to detail made each meal special.
Soup, Rib-eye steak with creamed spinach and a mushroom sauce and for desert, a poached pear.
I was wondering if the staff saved the heart decoration for our final night. A great way to enjoy our final meal…
No soup but an interesting starter that included bacon and a filling and presented as a small volcano, ox-tail in a potjie and the BEST malva pudding we have ever enjoyed.
Often malva can be heavy and stodgy and as the final dish eaten before heading off to bed, it can prevent the onset of a peaceful sleep.
By comparison, the dish that we were served was light (almost fluffy) and melted in our mouths. We did say that there was extra available should we require seconds, but although the was a tempting offer, we decided to finish off with a coffee instead.
Perhaps I should have requested a take away to bring home with us?
The decoration at breakfast was unexpected and joyous.
Unlike dinner, breakfast was served on the patio outside the main lounge and overlooking the waterhole with its constant ebb and flow of a variety of wildlife.
Breakfast was a lot more that just the hot offering. There was cereal, yoghurt, a variety of cheeses, biscuits and pastries.
Wandering through the garden while wondering and pondering what might appear at the waterhole and on game drive.
This path leads to the outdoor boma as well as a surprise I was NOT expecting…
A Baobab tree that was planted some 63-years ago by the original owners of the farm on which this lodge now sits.
It was planted to celebrate the arrival of a grand-daughter, and I wonder where she is and if she has every returned to visit the tree planted to commemorate her birth.
Madikwe has a large population of elephants and many of the breeding herds seem to be located in the Western part of the reserve where The Last Word Madikwe Bush House is situated.
They, like me, spent a LOT of time at the waterhole.
Another view of the garden which is watered using a grey-water system which keeps it looking green and lush even in the depth of winter.
Should it be raining, there are chairs on this veranda where guests can sit, out of the rain, and still enjoy the feeling of being outdoors without getting wet.
The pool did look inviting but the air temperature and the wind were two factors that kept both my wife and I out of the water.
The pool is situated just a short walk from the photographic hide and enjoys a view of the waterhole.
On returning from an afternoon/evening game drive, guests can gather here to enjoy a beverage of their choosing before dinner is served.
A meeting point to interact and to discuss sightings of the day.
To find out more about The Last Word Madikwe Bush House, click on the logo to visit their website.
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