WOW! I mean, wow in every single way! What a place and what an incredible welcome. We arrived and the whole Molori team were there singing a local Tswana greeting song, just fantastic. The lovely general managers were there to welcome us too and once our bags had been taken off to our rooms, we were given a brief tour around the lodge before we settled down for lunch. We were lead down some steps and through two vast wooden doors to be met with a wall of mirrors and collage after collage of things that have happened over the years at Molori. There was a real feeling of home and total relaxation as we walked through the main doors. Being lead down into the sitting room area, we were met by a stunning array of quirky modern style meets African traditional charm in terms of interior design. Sounds crazy but this worked well and the overall effect was stunning. This looked out onto a sea of pools and Jacuzzis, all flowing seamlessly from one to the other eventually leading your gaze out onto the red Madikwe plains.
We were taken on a tour of the property, starting with one of their newest builds. Down a small pathway we turned a corner to be presented with a small hideout bordering a small watering hole. This has to be one of the most glamorous hideouts I have yet to see: a conference type room, equipped with an old school wooden drinks cabinet. Taking a flight of steps down into the main hideout area bordering the watering hole – it can also be turned into a conference room or even cinema room, it was stunning. You can book this hideout for conferences, business meetings – not entirely sure how much business you would get done with the watering hole nearby to distract you – they conduct whiskey and wine tasting evenings in here too.
The spa and gym are equally stunning – equipped with sauna, steam room, plunge pool and every possible health drink in the form of tea mainly you could possibly imagine. Molori also has the most fantastic telescope, or star room as they like to call it. A roof you are able to roll back to reveal the canopy of stars and because there is little to no light pollution here, the sight is incredible. Dotted throughout the camp are hidden decks for ultimate privacy where you can tuck yourself away to read a good book in a cosy hammock or even have the luxury of your own plunge pool hidden away from everyone else.
We settled down for lunch and had the delightful Herman serving us. On the menu today was Gazpacho with freshly made bread followed by duck, goats cheese and beetroot salad or sea bass with white bean puree and asparagus. To finish off was the most delicious custard tart with homemade strawberry sorbet – of course all of this was washed down with a glass or two of delicious South African shiraz – c’est bonne!
Going back to my room, hidden within the banks of the Kopje, I was able to enjoy everything it had to offer for a brief while – the rooms are beautiful with high ceilings and an open plan sitting room/living room, a huge fire place dominating the centre of the building (it does occasionally become chilly at night). Outside and inside showers, of course and a huge plunge pool outside built into the side of the decking. Just bliss and overall incredibly comfortable. Having a dip in the refreshing plunge pool, I was entertained briefly by some small yellow weaver birds making their nests just above me. These birds are incredibly dexterous and make these incredibly beautiful and neat little nests that hang precariously off the end of thin branches – to evade any snake that per chance would like to steal their eggs.
We reconvened with Jerry at about 4.30pm and headed out to see what we could find. We came across a lioness with two cubs. This lioness was keeping her distance from the main pride as her cubs father was different from the two male lions currently in the reserve. We also saw a tiny jackal cub snuggling up with her mother, very sweet. We returned to a delicious supper all set up by the beautifully lit up pool, decorated with soft lighting and lanterns dotted about in the surrounding acacia trees. Our starter was the most delicious leak and potato soup with truffle oil combined with freshly made red onion bread. Following this, a medium rare ostrich steak on a mushroom risotto base with freshly cooked vegetables. After enjoying all of this surely there was no room for anything else? The chef here is absolutely fabulous and it would have been rude to refuse his specially made chocolate mousse, with chocolate gel, Nutella and mint crisp ice-cream with sea salt meringues and honeycomb – the scene from Monty Pythons ‘Meaning of Life’ with Mr Creosote springs to mind… (Would you like a wafer-thin piece of chocolate Monsoir…!?!)
Safe to say, the scene from Monty Python did not happen, there would have been a waste of delicious food and far too much to clear up for the poor staff! We did retire to bed feeling like a lion after a fresh kill, completely full to bursting but totally worth it!
5am came too quickly again, but as soon as you receive your wake-up call, you have to leap out of bed because missing an African sunrise is just a sin! We met Jerry at the bar in the main area who was already waiting with fresh coffee in flasks at the ready to take on our morning drive. Very slick! Cappuccinos in hand, we ventured off into the morning light… We found them! We found the Wild Dog! I was just reeling with excitement! To see these rare animals is just magical. It was quite a large pack as well, about 18, they were on a serious mission, trotting with purpose right past our vehicle in pursuit of something. We soon lost sight of these beautiful creatures and thought it best to leave them to their hunt, because when they go, they go! A few other vehicles had got wind of the wild dog too.
We left the scene and came across two huge male lion brothers. We then stopped for some coffee and amarula (the only way to do coffee!) on the border to Botswana. On returning to camp, we came across some ground squirrels busy going about their morning routines, making sure their fluffy tails were up to the job of sheltering them like an umbrella from the midday sun.
We returned to Molori for yet more deliciously prepared food. Fresh fruit, homemade yoghurt with locally made honey a top of pancakes. This was followed by a portion of tasty eggs benedict. Departing (albeit reluctantly) from Molori, we were sang on our way by the wonderfully attentive staff. This place truly is a one in a million experience. From the moment we arrived to the moment we left, nothing was a problem and everything was done to perfection and totally effortlessly… Take me back anytime!