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“When we originally built Chitabe over 20 years ago, it was the first completely elevated camp in the Delta”, commented Helene Hamman, Chitabe CEO. “Since then we have welcomed and created a lifetime of memories for many guests and are absolutely delighted to reveal the camp’s new look and feel to raise the bar yet again and continue to exceed our guests’ expectations”.
Created by lead architects Mark Thomas and Chris Bisset, in collaboration with Henry Fagan Engineers, Chitabe’s new design features sinuous curves and soft lines inspired by the graceful meandering of the Okavango waterways. Nestling in the natural beauty of Chitabe Island, the walkways now feature low-footprint longer spans and a more delicate-looking structure that weaves through the treeline.
The main area features both indoor and under-star dining experiences whilst a unique, elevated white Kalahari sand deck forms the heart of Chitabe. A new lap pool, relaxation lounge and a gym provides guests with healthy exercise opportunities while moments for introspection will be found in the new library. An evaporative cooling system has also been installed in the main areas to offer guests ample cool spaces to escape to during the warmer summer months.
Staying true to its philosophy of ‘reduce, reuse and recycle’, all of the hardwood timber from the original structure was repurposed and used to create the fire of a million stars, decorative cladding and ceilings. “The beautiful and creative use of our old decking serves as a reminder of where we all started”, Helene added. “We are confident that the new Chitabe will be a huge success, and are looking forward to sharing its magic with our guests and trade partners”.