Namibian lodge heads for full rebuild

Wilderness Desert Rhino Camp, situated in Namibia’s Palmwag Concession in Damaraland, will undergo an extensive renovation.

Works will take place between December 2023 and July 2024 at the Wilderness brand’s site.

Elevated experience

The new camp will aim to elevate guests’ in-camp safari experience in the Namib Desert landscape, while simultaneously celebrating its conservation success story, and the ongoing protection of one of the world’s last free-roaming populations of critically endangered black rhino.

Originally built in 2003, Desert Rhino Camp provides a meaningful guest experience and is a monitoring outpost for Save the Rhino Trust (SRT) Namibia. The camp serves as a base for one of SRT’s tracking teams, with the operational costs covered by Wilderness.

Spectacular new design

Alex Henderson, Wilderness Namibia MD, said: “Now, 20 years in, we are excited to rebuild the camp, and to offer a spectacular new design that will blend as seamlessly as possible into Desert Rhino Camp’s magnificent desert landscape and environment; telling the unique story of the rhino, while in every way enhancing our guests’ comfort and experience.”

Natural stone found on site has inspired the colours and texture, and reinforces the camp’s connection to the area. Large stretch-fabric roof structures with deep overhangs and silhouettes provide shade and protection without compromising the horizon-wide views in the eight Meru-style tented accommodation. With details of timber and leather, the tent interiors, though modern, have been inspired by the explorer genre.

Captivate and conserve

Henderson added: “Everything we do at Desert Rhino Camp revolves around the black rhino. It’s why we’re here: to defend, preserve, and expand these iconic Namib wilds for the resilient desert-adapted wildlife that survives in this arid environment.

“This camp, where it started, what it stands for, and our pioneering conservation coalition with SRT and the three conservancies, will continue to captivate and inspire all who are privileged to visit. We look forward to welcoming our guests to the stunningly reimagined new camp in 2024.”