Elewana Newsletter

JUNE 2019

In This Issue:

The Collection

Elewana Collection is proud to announce the opening of Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs in Loisaba Conservancy bringing the total number of destinations to 16 award-winning luxurious camps, lodges and boutique beach hotels in Tanzania, Zanzibar and Kenya for the luxury safari camp and lodge operator. 

Set on an escarpment with impressive views that reach across the magical landscape of northern Kenya stretching out to Mount Kenya, the property expands 58,000 acres and is filled with acacia trees, succulents, mosses and evergreens native to Kenya. 

Designed by renowned architects Chris Payne and Jan Allen with landscape architecture by Jo Silvester, Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs offers an ultra-private experience with eight individual, spacious tented rooms. Each tented room has its own signature style. An eclectic mix of antique and vintage pieces, which have been hand restored in Kenya, were selected to enhance the backdrop of clean, modern architectural design. Décor includes 17th century French walnut wardrobes, upcycled cedar fence posts used as paneling and 1950’s Americana parlour bar stools. Each tented room boasts its own color scheme which was selected in accordance with the colorful vintage Ghanaian Kente cloth that hangs above the master bed.

Service is paramount, with every tent assigned an Elewana Guest Ambassador to serve and cater to every guests’ needs, and a dedicated safari vehicle and driver and a highly qualified Elewana field guide per reservation  who will accompany guests for the duration of their stay. Guests may enjoy an array of activities during their sojourn including game drives, bush meals, bush walks, bush sundowners, horse and camel riding for experienced riders, as well as access to the Loisaba Running & Trekking Track, designed to give each guest a customizable workout with three different routes.

The new high-end tented property will complement the existing product located in Loisaba Conservancy including Loisaba Tented Camp and the Loisaba Star Beds. The announcement underpins Elewana Collection’s dedication to conservation in Northern Kenya and its position as one of the largest sustainable tourism operators in East Africa.

Karim Wissanji, CEO of Elewana Collection, speaks passionately of Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs, “Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs is a different kind of bespoke safari experience - it has been created to speak to the discerning well-seasoned high-end traveller who has come to expect responsible conservation practices without forgoing luxury and privacy. Beyond this, the opening of Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs is a demonstration of Elewana’s commitment to sustainable conservation across East Africa.”

The opening of Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs is testament of the success of the 58,000 acre Loisaba Conservancy, enabled by The Nature Conservancy funding the transition of the Conservancy to the Loisaba Community Trust in 2015. The transition secured the land to ensure that the Conservancy delivers vital benefits and support for neighboring communities, the wildlife, and all Kenyans for the foreseeable future, achieving optimal standards of sustainable conservation. It also ensured Loisaba’s role as a critical sanctuary and corridor for elephants and other wildlife long into the future, as well as providing refuge for one of Kenya’s most stable lion populations and an abundance of other wildlife including Grevy’s zebra, wild dog, leopard and cheetah. 

Most recently, San Diego Zoo Global remote cameras in Laikipia spotted elusive black panthers, as well as a black panther mother and her cubs. These new findings help researchers based on Loisaba to understand denning habitats in the area, vital information in the protection of the next generation of leopard. The research also indicates that black leopards are breeding on Mpala, an exciting discovery for all, including guests visiting this area who may have the chance to experience a rare sighting of the mysterious animal during their stay. 

Matthew Brown, Africa Director for The Nature Conservancy says: “The vibrant grasslands of northern Kenya are home to elephant, zebra, giraffe, lions and local livestock herders. The Nature Conservancy, Elewana and Loisaba Conservancy have partnered to create Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs, the newest and most exciting tourism experience that will generate local jobs and help contribute to critical wildlife and habitat protection. Personally, I find it really exciting that every visitor will be contributing to global species conservation and local livelihoods.”

“Loisaba sits on a vital Elephant Corridor connecting the famous Laikipia Plateau, home to several critically endangered large Mammals and breath-taking landscapes, to Mount Kenya and the Aberdares Range in the south and down into Kenya’s Northern Rangelands. Tourism revenues form an integral part of protecting this globally significant landscape,” says Tom Silvester, CEO of Loisaba Conservancy, “We are delighted that our partnership with Elewana Collection has enabled us to invest in Lodo Springs where every guest who stays will contribute to securing Loisaba’s future.”

This year's Arusha ATTTA networking evening during Kilifair was sponsored by the Elewana Collection and JW Seagon, hosted by Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge on Saturday 8th June. The event was well attended with over a hundred representatives from both regional and International businesses.

James Haigh, Director of Sales & Marketing for the Elewana Collection welcomed our guests thanking them for their support of Kilifair and of the fine work ATTA does on behalf of our close knit industry. He closed the very pleasant evening inviting local tourism stakeholders to return to Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge to investigate ways to create greater demand for off season bookings in the Tanzanian safari industry.

SMC Fleet Vehicles

We are delighted to announce that six brand new custom built 4x4 game viewing vehicles are now operational at Elewana Serengeti Migration Camp. The new design for the spacious custom built Toyota Landcruiser has beautiful wooden trim finishings six comfortable seats with armrests, pop up roof, enlarged front screen, improved suspension, a silent inverter for guests to recharge electrical equipment and a 40 litre Engel fridge to keep a selection of beverages chilled at all times. Larger windows and easily removed rear window panel give a much improved game viewing experience.

The Elewana Collection is delighted to be a part of Turtle conservation in Kenya and partner with Diani Turtle Watch, to aid the conservation and protection of these beautiful creatures. It is a huge importance to the world to protect turtles and their natural habitats in order to maintain the balance of the ocean’s vast ecosystem, including maintaining the productivity of coral reefs, which in turn lend to the overall cleanliness of marine life. Due to habitat degradation and climate change, the population of turtles is decreasing rapidly, which is why organisations like Diani Turtle Watch are helping to try restore and increase the numbers. 

In addition to supporting Turtle Conservation through Diani Turtle Watch Elewana AfroChic also maintains and takes care of its own turtle hatchery, which has been successful in hatching nests thereby directly contributing to the rehabilitation and rejuvenation of turtles along the southern coast of Kenya and lending to the worldwide project to protect turtles.

This year we have 11 nests in our Turtle Hatchery, of which 7 have hatched already with a total of 710 baby turtles that have safely made it to the ocean. Our Turtle Hatchery is a safe space on the beach, directly in front of the hotel, allowing us to relocate vulnerable eggs to an area that is safe and monitored. Unsafe areas include places where there is high foot traffic, too close to the water where they can be washed away or places the nest can be disturbed and damaged, therefore moving the nests to our hatchery ensures they stand a better chance of survival and we can help monitor them.

Moving a turtle nest is a very delicate operation and can only be done by trained individuals. The first step is to carefully remove the eggs from the original nest, making sure they are stored the same way up as they were laid in the sand. A new nest is dug in our hatchery to a depth of around two feet deep, the eggs are then carefully placed in the new site the same way up and in the exact same order as they were laid in the original nest. Finally the nest is covered with sand and a small wall is constructed around it to indicate where it is. Throughout this procedure it is vital that the eggs are not exposed to too much sunlight or heat as this could risk damaging the eggs.

Since 2012, Diani Turtle Watch, essentially a group of volunteers, have been working to protect nesting turtles and their eggs. Development and construction along the coast has led to unsafe conditions for female turtles to lay their eggs, which is why a team is always on hand to carefully relocate nests to safer areas and ensure that the eggs have the best chance of hatching and hatchlings have a higher chance of making it to the ocean unharmed. As well as this, the Turtle Watch team collect valuable data by exhuming the nests and recording the number of empty shells, undeveloped eggs or hatchlings at various stages of development, helping to determine the success rate of each nest and eventually a wider picture of nesting activities and success rates in Kenya.

Liz Harper

The Elewana Collection is delighted to confirm the reappointment of Liz Harper to serve as their UK Trade Representative. Liz has spent the past decade immersed in the UK travel industry, managing the marketing department of UK travel publisher Footprint Travel Guides, and then leading the traditional marketing, PR and partnership team for luxury tour operator Abercrombie & Kent where she gained extensive East Africa knowledge and experience.

As James Haigh, Director of Sales and Marketing for the Elewana Collection, says, "We are delighted to confirm Liz in this role. Over the course of the last ten months she has proven herself a valuable colleague, offering new insights and ideas as we support our trade partners across the UK. I know that she is looking forward to working with you all"

From Our Partners

Loisaba Conservancy Giraffe Collaring cSan Diego Zoo Global 3

Giraffe Conservation Foundation is aiming to raise $1,000,000 for their Twiga Tracker Programme. They are aiming to deploy at least 250 solar-powered GPS satellite tracking units on giraffe throughout Africa. Twiga Tracker will help us learn important information about giraffe movements and how they use their habitat. 

7 Giraffe TrackerThis map shows the movements of 11 endangered Reticulated giraffe that were tagged in Northern Kenya in 2017 together with our partner SDZG Wildlife Conservancy. The cluster on the left shows giraffe that were tagged at Loisaba Conservancy. We now know for sure that the giraffe move beyond the conservancy boundaries and use a significantly larger range. This is important information for the long-term protection of these endangered giraffe and to save them for future generations. 

All donations Giraffe Conservation Foundation receive in June will support Twiga Tracker. Help smash the $1million target and donate now! www.giraffeconservation.org/donate

Donors of US$2,500 or more, get exclusive access to follow 4 giraffe in Africa online.

Staying at Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp, Elewana Loisaba StarBeds and Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs helps ensure SDZG Wildlife Conservancy remains a catalyst for conservation, wildlife research and community development. 

Loisaba’s mission is to protect and enhance critical wildlife diversity, abundance and habitat in the landscape, which sits on the western edge of one of Kenya’s most important elephant movement corridors. The profit from Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp, Elewana Loisaba Star Beds and Elewana Loisaba Lodo Springs, along with revenue from livestock, brings us closer to achieving our ultimate aim of creating a sustainable conservancy providing protection of endangered species and their habitat, as well as over 300 jobs to the local community.

The Elewana Collection is proud to be a key tourism partner to all the conservation work performed on the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy.

2018 was filled with extraordinary moments for the Lewa-Borana Landscape, and 2019 is turning out to be another promising year full of the impact that we strive for. Each story in this report reflects what energises us and demonstrates that the Conservancy’s work is enabling positive results for both people and wildlife.

Download the Report

We hope you enjoy reading it and thank you for taking the time to learn about the latest accomplishments, which have been made possible by your unwavering support.

In The Community

Land Life Scholarship Award

The Daniel Mukenye Wildlife Warrior Scholarship Award was launched this month by the Elewana Collection’s charitable arm The Land & Life Foundation. This scholarship is in memory of Wildlife Warrior Daniel, who sadly passed away in March of this year after a protracted illness. To remember Daniel, Land & Life Foundation are dedicating this new scholarship award in his name. 

This scholarship will be presented to one of the graduating Wildlife Warriors, who have finished secondary school and are moving into tertiary education. The scholarship will go towards the tuition fees of a tertiary level qualification in conservation, wildlife, tourism or hospitality. A Wildlife Warrior looking to pursue a degree, a certificate or a diploma in any of these fields may be eligible for the Daniel Mukenye Award, and the Award will be presented to the scholar with the best KCSE results of the applicants. The scholarship will be paid annually for the duration of the course (up to a maximum of four years).

This year the first recipient of the award is Dancan Muriithi, one of our first ever four Wildlife Warriors. Originally hailing from Ura Gate Primary School, near Meru National Park and supported by Elewana Elsa's Kopje, the ever jovial Dancan completed his secondary education in December 2018. He is now enrolled at the Co-Operative University of Kenya where he will shortly be starting a course in Tours and Travel Management.  His ambition is to become a ranger, protecting and conserving the wildlife of Kenya, and he hopes to eventually work with the Meru National Park next to his family home. Dancan has a great deal of potential and will excel in whatever he strives to achieve and we wish him all the best for the future.

Volunteer Day at Shanga

On the 4th June a total of 8 volunteers from Elewana Head Office, Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge and SkySafari Tanzania spent the day working with Shanga team members at the ever popular Trader’s Walk at Arusha Coffee Lodge. All volunteers arrived in time to join Shanga's early morning exercise routine. They then spent the day helping chopping wood to fit into the bead furnace; dismantling, cleaning and returning the ‘Shanga bottle tree’; sorting and cleaning piles of waste or excess smashed glass for reuse in the furnace. After a well-earned lunch with the Shanga team they continued helping with various everyday Shanga activities.

Everyone enjoyed themselves and the Shanga team were delighted to have the extra helpers and expressed feeling a sense of appreciation and value. The volunteers have requested a repeat and  that they learned so much about the abilities of the Shanga staff despite the challenges of their physical disabilities and it brought them closer as a team.

Shanga’s purpose-built, open workshop is located in the grounds of Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge and is a wonderful experience for visitors to meet the inspirational staff, to view and participate in the creative process behind Shanga products.

Shanga is a successful social enterprise which employs people with disabilities to create unique, high quality and handmade jewelry, glassware and homewares, incorporating recycled materials into many of our products. Shanga products are sold in Tanzania and around the world, with all profits being reinvested back into the development of new products; researching and implementing additional recycling methods into our activities.

Awards & Voting

coffee lodge responsible tourism certified

Responsible Tourism Tanzania have announced the certification of a number of tourism properties, which have recently been awarded by Tanzania’s first Responsible Tourism certification. The certification scheme follows a systematic procedure to assess hotels and lodges on their environmental, economic and socio-cultural activities. This is based on criteria that have been tailored specifically to match both local Tanzanian and international requirements and are aligned with the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), which serves as the international body for fostering increased knowledge and understanding of sustainable tourism practices, in addition to promoting the adoption of universal sustainable tourism principles and building demand for sustainable travel.

The Elewana Collection is delighted to confirm that after a vigorous verification process, all properties in the Tanzania portfolio have now gained a certification status. The properties have been awarded with certificates of compliances at the SEED level for five properties and 1 at SAPLING level from Responsible Tourism Tanzania. The properties awarded with the SEED certification are Elewana Tarangire Treetops, Elewana Serengeti Migration Camp, Elewana The Manor at Ngorongoro and Elewana Kilindi Zanzibar. Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge was awarded last year with the SAPLING Level.

The certification system has four levels or steps, which have been designed to push for continuous improvement. Each step will guide the organization toward becoming not only a mature enterprise in terms of responsibility but a role model for others. The requirements for SEED, SAPLING, and TREE levels have already been developed with the requirements for FLOWER being developed, to ensure the appropriate standards are evaluated and worthy of this certification.

The Elewana Collection has proved that their working culture and daily operations are fully integrated into a sustainable and responsible management approach. Systems are in place to monitor and redirect the operations and all the employees understand the triple bottom line approach. Hannah Wood, Group Sustainability Lead Elewana Collection, said on behalf of Elewana, “We are delighted to achieve this certification of all our Tanzanian properties with RTTZ. This means that the entire Elewana Collection group is now fully eco-certified with every property in both Kenya and Tanzania having achieved at least entry level standards, with many at Gold. We look forward to working with RTTZ here in Tanzania and promoting responsible tourism to our guests.’’

In recognition of these achievements by the respective properties, huge credit is due to the teams for their hard work and dedication. We would like to congratulate all of them and acknowledge their outstanding commitments! We would also like to thank the panel at Responsible Tourism Tanzania for recognising the Elewana Tanzania properties for their commitment to sustainable tourism principles and awarding the respective certification status.

WHLA 2019

We have entered Elewana Kifaru House and Elewana Serengeti Pioneer Camp for the 2019 World Luxury Hotel Awards. If you believe that either one or both these properties deserve recognition, please visit the World Luxury Hotel page between 1st and the 31st July and cast your vote. You may also click on the respective links below;

Winners will be announced at the Annual Gala Awards Ceremony, which is held on Saturday, 12th October 2019

afrochic travellers choice

We are delighted to announce that a number of properties in the Elewana Collection portfolio have received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence, an achievement that celebrates businesses that are consistently excellent – having earned great traveler reviews on TripAdvisor over the past year and that have continually delivered a quality customer experience.

Kenya:

Certificate of Excellence

  • Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp

5 Certificate of Excellence Awards in a row
(Awarded Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame)

  • Elewana Elsa’s Kopje Meru 
  • Elewana Tortilis Camp Amboseli 
  • Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp 
  • Elewana Lewa Safari Camp 
  • Elewana Sand River Masai Mara 

Traveler's Choice Award & 5 Certificate of Excellence Awards in a row
(Awarded Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame)

  • Elewana Afrochic Diani

Tanzania:

Certificate of Excellence

  • Elewana Serenegti Migration Camp

5 Certificate of Excellence Awards in a row
(Awarded Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame)

  • Elewana Arusha Coffee Lodge  
  • Elewana Tarangire Treetops 
  • Elewana Serenegti Pioneer Camp  
  • Elewana The Manor at Ngorongoro
  • Elewana Kilindi Zanzibar  

TripAdvisor, the world's largest travel site, enables travelers to unleash the full potential of every trip. With 760 million reviews and opinions covering the world's largest selection of travel listings worldwide – covering approximately 8.3 million accommodations, airlines, experiences, and restaurants -- TripAdvisor provides travelers with the wisdom of the crowds to help them decide where to stay, how to fly, what to do and where to eat. TripAdvisor also compares prices from more than 200 hotel booking sites so travelers can find the lowest price on the hotel that's right for them. TripAdvisor-branded sites are available in 49 markets, and are home to the world's largest travel community of 490 million average monthly unique visitors, all looking to get the most out of every trip. TripAdvisor: Know better. Book better. Go better.

Trade Shows

kilifair 2019

Arusha hosted the 2019 edition of Karibu-KiliFair Tourism Fair from the 7th to 9th June at Friedkin Recreation Centre in Arusha. The travel show, has been growing steadily over the last few years has now become East Africa’s largest travel show.

Buyers, agents and media from more than 45 countries attended the show and were able to experience some of the best sights and sounds of Tanzania. There were over 450 exhibitors from Tanzania and other parts of Africa and an estimated 5000 participants during the 3-day exhibition.

The Elewana Collection Sales and Reservations team had a busy three days presenting, networking and meeting new and old friends. We would like to thank all of you who took the time to visit our stand and learn more about the Elewana Collection.

virtuoso

The final preparations are underway, the appointment lists done, lunches and dinners organised, travel itinerary booked…all that is left now is to pack the bags and jump on the plane. Our Director of Sales & Marketing, James Haigh, will represent Elewana Collection for a roller-coaster six days of meetings, networking and a lavish Gala Dinner Las Vegas style from the 10th – 16th August.

Over 6,000 agents, suppliers and tourism officials from around the globe gather in Las Vegas for several days of networking, panel talks and parties. It’s one of the largest events of its kind, a massive display of travel and tourism that highlights the kind of luxury products Virtuoso is famous for.

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