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Walk on the wild side – Dispatch Live

Posted on: June 19, 2017, in IN THE PRESS

Umngazi was recently featured on Dispatch Live!
Here is an excerpt taken from the online article:
“Our first day of the trip took us to Umngazi River Bungalows, a beautiful river lodge on the banks of the Umngazi River, 12km off the R61 Port St Johns main road.
As we were on a midweek break, we did not expect to find the resort too full, so we were quite surprised to find this was not the case. And, as we arrived, three helicopters were leaving with guests who had apparently flown in for lunch, an apparently common occurrence.
Friendly reception staff greet all arrivals to Umngazi.
And after a quick visit to our rooms to freshen up, we took the opportunity to have lunch.
Starters offered a choice of butternut soup or mango with smoked oyster and sun-dried tomatoes.
For mains we had bobotie and rice with tomato and onion sambals and for dessert, tiramisu and ice-cream with butterscotch chocolate sauce. All delicious!
The resort is an important revenue generator in the area as it employs hundreds of people from villages in and around Umngazi.
“We make sure that the people from the communities around our place benefit from this, we share business with them and we employ them at the Umngazi River Bungalows and Spa,” said Umngazi general manager, Graham Walker.
“Currently we have over 200 dedicated staff from this community who are working shifts here in Umngazi.”
He explained that 6% to 8% of their visitors were international tourists.
“And many are repeat visitors,” he said.
Walker said their visitors loved the fact that they were far removed from today’s world of modern technology, and were free to reconnect with their children, who entertained themselves all day without touching any gadgets.
To ensure visitor safety, guards patrol the property 24/7.
Daily rates at the lodge are about R1300 a night, which includes all three meals.
Walker said when busy, Umngazi accommodated about 154 guests, and up to 190 during the Christmas festive period.
Besides being the biggest employer in the area, Umngazi also supports local schools with fundraising and other activities.
Their most famous visitor yet, Walker said, was Nelson Mandela and Graça Machel back in December 1997.
Umngazi offers a spa and has tennis courts, kiddies’ playgrounds, fishing spots and other attractions.
We spent two nights here and on our last day took a river boat ride to enjoy the best view of the bungalows from the other side of Umngazi river mouth.”

Read full article here:

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