SURE WAYS OF FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE LOWVELD

Is the open road calling you? The peace and tranquillity at Umbhaba Lodge, along with the seclusion of the Lowveld provides a much-loved venue for short breakaways, especially as we head into winter, which is prime game viewing time in the Kruger Park.  With thirty suites each in individual style, many with open log fireplaces, ideal for those chilly winter evenings, Umbhaba Lodge should be tops of your stay-over list while in the Hazyview area.

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While the major tourist attractions such as the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window, Bourke’s Luck Pot Holes and game watching in the Kruger Park, seems to steal the limelight while staying at Umbhaba Lodge, it’s worth noting that several waterfalls within the area, makes this hiker’s heaven.   The Lisbon Falls, Berlin Falls, Sabie Falls and Mac Mac Falls are all within 30 minutes drive from Umbhaba Lodge. Start your day with a hearty breakfast on the lodge stoep, strap on those hiking boots, pack a picnic lunch and head off in the general direction of Graskop for a day of scenic beauty.

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The Kruger Park is well-known for game viewing, but did you know that South Africa’s best loved Staffie, Jock of the Bushveld, was born on Voortrekker Road in 1885, which runs south of Pretoriuskop in the Kruger National Park, and is a short distance from the lodge?

A commemorative plaque has been erected to remind us of the bravery of Jock, which has captured the imagination of people for hundreds of year.  The 475-pager “Jock of the Bushveld” was first published in 1907 when it became an instant best seller and a local classic. Since then it has never been out of print and captured the hearts of a new audience with a 3D animation film. Heavyweights such as Bryan Adams and Johny Clegg have thrown their weight behind the ultimate story of a man’s best friend and the intense humanity of Sir Percy Fitzpatrick.

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School holidays are the best time to introduce your kids to the tales of Jock of the Bushveld and reading these stories at night around a fire in the Umbhaba Lodge lounge, your own African Tribal Suites or perhaps while traveling in the car following Jock’s trail, is a wonderful way of spending a few days in the Lowveld and bonding with the kids. (Click here for some great advice on traveling with kids.)

Sight-seeing and game viewing is hard work and enjoying a cocktail, glass of port or ice cold beer in the Burn Out Bar after a day of game viewing in the Kruger National Park comes highly recommended.  With an inviting fireplace, comfortable lounge and a wooden deck with great views, this is the perfect venue to reminisce about the day’s excitement.

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Umbhaba Lodge forms part of the Guvon Hotels & Spa’s group – a leading hospitality group offering a collection of hotels in Gauteng, Northwest and Mpumalanga. All properties offer excellent accommodation, conference, team building and wedding facilities. Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa, Glenburn Lodge & Spa and Bush Willow Tented Camp are in Muldersdrift, in the Cradle of Humankind. Askari Game Lodge & Spa, a Big 5 game reserve, and Warthogs Bush Camp are in Magaliesberg, while Umbhaba Lodge is situated in Hazyview. The Fairway Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort (Randpark Golf Club), and All Suite On 14th (Fairlands) add city retreats to our country collection of properties.

reservations@umbhaba.co.za | Tel 013 737 7636 | Central Res: 08611 48866 | www.umbhaba.co.za

 

 

 

HOW A SPA HIGH TEA CAN SOLVE YOUR YEAR END PARTY DILEMMA.

Askari Spa, a little hidden gem on the outskirts of Magaliesburg has just launched a High Tea menu. Call me crazy, but I can’t think of a nicer way to spend and afternoon with girl friends nibbling on mini doughnuts, chocolate fudge brownies (my all time favourite way of kilojoule intake) , mini milk tarts and chocolate dipped strawberries. And did I mention the selection of cupcakes – think: red velvet, vanilla and chocolate. Sounds seriously yum to me.

Feeling that you need to go the healthy route – then the cucumber sandwiches and Spinach and feta quiche will work for you. There is also a Tika Pizzamoosa on the menu which I have  absolutely no idea what it is, but my guess would be a cross between a dainty samoosa and pizza? (Mental note to self – have to ask the Spa a photo of what this looks like!)

At R150 a person its a steal – keep in mind that if you plan your day well, you could lay down your sorrows in the capable hands of a miracle-working massage therapist and still see the elephants drinking water in front of the main restaurant  during lunch.

Women rule the world and also the diary, so keep in mind that this also makes an incredible alternative for a year end function for the girls in the office. Send the men for some bush-whacking or a Big 5 game drive at Askari Game Lodge to keep them busy while you drink, pinky in the air, yet another cup of glorious tea.

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Still thinking about the chocolate fudge brownies like I am right now? Thought I should share my easy-peasy recipe with you (courtesy of Food24.com)

Ingredients: 250 g butter | 500 g icing sugar |250 ml good quality cocoa powder |1 egg, slightly beaten |1 tsp vanilla essence | 1 packet Marie biscuits broken into pieces (bash in a packet or use a food processor)

Method: Melt the butter in a large pot until melted. Remove from the heat and add the icing sugar and cocoa. Mix well until well combined and there are no dry bits.
Stir in the beaten egg and vanilla and mix until smooth.
Add the broken biscuit bits and stir until well combined and evenly coated with chocolate.
Spoon the mixture into a greased 24 x 24 cm and smooth out with a spatula.
Once cooled and firm (pop into the fridge to speed up the process), cut into 16 squares and keep in an airtight container.

I told you it was easy !

BOOKINGS AND  ENQUIRIES: spa@askarilodge.co.za | Tel 014 577 2658 | http://www.askarispa.co.za  |Valid 2016

 

GIVE THAT MAN A BELLS!

Now wouldn’t that be the ultimate reward on day two of your conference or corporate teambuilding day?

At Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa this is not unheard of. Conference packages at this luxury lodge in The Cradle of Humankind goes hand in hand with the fly-fishing season. With six fly fishing dams on the property, one would be crazy not to make the most of this opportunity which only lasts until August when winter hopefully departs.

Under the expert guidance of Wayne Sinclair from Sundown Adventures, conference delegates learn the art of tying flies while a whiskey ambassador presents a variety of quality whiskies. He will further teach you to cast just far enough  to reel in the perfect catch for your participation in the trout cook off and wine pairing event.

CLASSIC FLY FISHING EXPERIENCE

Fly-fishing activities can be custom-made to your group size and requirements, but find below some guidelines to a brilliant day out. Spa treatments can be added to this life style package. A fly-fishing guide will instruct guests on the techniques required for fly-fishing.

These include how to:

1) cast and retrieve a fly 2) select a fly by understanding the life cycle of aquatic insects. Teams will then put their new skills to the test when they compete against each other in the “casting challenges”. Teams then have an opportunity to try catch a fish.

Duration 2.5 hours

TROUT COOK OFF AND WINE PAIRING

Enjoy a demonstration on how to prepare and cook a trout. A presentation during which fine wines should ideally be paired with the fish (based on the way it has been prepared). The teams then compete against each other by trying to prepare and cook the best fish.

Duration 1 hour

INTERACTIVE FLY TYING AND WHISKEY TASTING

Experienced fly-fishing guides demonstrate how to tie a fishing-fly while a whisky ambassador presents varies quality whiskies. Guests then have an opportunity to tie their own fly.

Duration: 1.5 hours

Sounds like fun? We think so.

 

For bookings or more info:  Wayne Sinclair | Sundowner Adventures | Cell: 0834140391 | Email: info@sundowneradventures.co.zawww.sundowneradventures.co.za

www.kloofzicht.co.za | conference@kloofzicht.co.za |Tel 011 317 0600

 

 

FRIDAY IS BRAAI DAY!

I have this little jingle running amok in my head. It may have something to do with the fact that its a Friday, almost lunch time and that I am looking at pics of the new Bush Braai venue at Askari Game Lodge in Magalies where we spent a gorgeous lazy lunch last week this time.

After an eventful game drive where I almost landed on our MD’s lap after misjudging the game drive vehicle’s force going downhill, we ended at a breathtaking clearing a few kilometres from the main lodge. The Bush Boma is in  forest and  red rocks from the farm have been used to demarcate the area with a hip-height wall all around. The fire pit is surrounded by cut tree trunks and benches – a lovely rustic set up inviting you to sit down and immerse yourself in the stillness.

Our lunch consisted of a simple gourmet burger selection, fresh from the grid, and the most delicious pancakes, berry coulis and cream dessert. (Confession time: I had two. So did the GM from Fairway Hotel).

The Bush Boma area will be the venue of choice with year end functions coming up and GM Graham Shipway explained that braai and spitbraai menus would be more suitable for this venue. When booking the Bush Braai for a year end function, a portion of the menu price will go toward the Askari Rhino Fund.

The Bush Braai and game drive package is available for overnight as well as day guests and pre-booking is essential due to the limited number of people the  area can accommodate.

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Before you light your braai fires at home tonight, have a look at our Proudly SA Braai Pinterest Board for some great ideas. The Bacon wrapped corn is on my wishlist – what a delicious treat for braai!: https://za.pinterest.com/guvonhotels/braai-proudly-south-africa/

 

Enquiries:  www.askarilodge.co.za | Tel 014 577 2658 | reservations@askarilodge.co.za

 

 

 

 

WIN YOUR WAY TO MAURITIUS WITH ASKARI GAME LODGE

BOOK ANY CONFERENCE AT ASKARI  GAME LODGE & SPA AND STAND A CHANCE TO WIN A TRIP TO MAURITIUS!

Askari Lodge just outside of Magaliesberg and an hour from Johannesburg or Pretoria, offers guests a memorable Big 5 wildlife experience within a malaria free environment. A range of wildlife-based teambuilding experiences makes this venue stand out from the rest, and is within easy reach of both Johannesburg and Pretoria.

The game lodge caters for meetings, conferences, teambuilding initiatives and training courses in both the main lodge and Day Visitors Centre. Spa relaxation is available to conference delegates after or during a day of meetings, or as a spa voucher reward for later use

“While frequenting Askari and hosting a national conference we could not have asked for much more, ”  Michelev892 from Midrand describes her conference experience on Tripadvisor. “From the reception, functions, meals, menus, added extras such as the slushy, popcorn and ice creams, every staff member encountered, we couldn’t have asked for more. The staff were exemplary. Can’t wait to come again”.

Askari Game Lodge offers a variety of packages to go with your Wildlife Conference Experience including:

IN-HOUSE : Spa Treatments | Teambuilding | Game Drives | Elephant Experiences | Guided Nature Walks | Potjiekos competition | Bush survival Course

OUTSOURCED TEAMBUILDING: Teambuilding activities are provided by Teambuilding Adventures and trusted suppliers.

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THE PRIZE INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:
2 return flight tickets (excludes airport tax) 7 nights stay for 2 at a four star hotel
on a lunch, dinner, bed and breakfast rate and R5000.00 spending money

HOW TO ENTER:
1) Book any conference or group at Askari Lodge
from 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016.
2) The prize will go to the person that brings in the most
revenue to Askari Lodge during the 12 month period.
3) Any conferences who have booked and paid in full that take place
after the 30 June 2016 up until and including the 31 of August 2016 will
be included provided it has been paid in full before 30 June 2016.
4) The top 5 agents and their total booking values will be posted and updated
on the Askari Lodge Facebook page on 1st and the 16th of each month.
5) The winner will be announced on the Askari Lodge’s
Facebook page on 1st July 2016.

THE RULES ARE:
1) Must have a valid passport
2) Open to all travel agents, PCO’s and in-house conference organisers
3) Prize must be taken in July 2016
4) Cannot be exchanged for cash
5) Excludes any drinks or activities
6) Judges decision is final

Enquiries:
Pat Naude: 014 577 2658/9 | reservations@askarilodge.co.za
Central Reservations: 08611 48866 | cro@guvon.co.za

Terms & Conditions apply

 

READY. STEADY. POTJIE. TEAMBUILDING WITH A TWIST

Nothing beats a tasty potjie on a chilly day. So imagine the delight in the office when we found out that this lovely pastime has been turned into a teambuilding opportunity by Askari Game Lodge & Spa.  

Show off your cooking skills with a potjiekos cook-off, celebrity style. Colleagues are divided into teams, provided with potjiekos ingredients and cooking utensils, and are then let loose to cook up a storm. At the end of the day each team has to present their team name, their team dance and of course their potjiekos dish. Contestants enjoy the fruit of their labour over dinner. Chefs hats and aprons are included in the conference package:

24hour conference package: R1450pp sharing |R1700 single occupancy

(The 24hour conference package includes accommodation, with the option of  staying over in our newly launched family units)

Askari Lodge potjiekos

Bookings and enquiries: Tel 014 577 2658/9

reservations@askarilodge.co.za | www.askarilodge.co.za