Looking for something special in Mozambique? Here's a reason to visit a small island just off the coast: &Beyond has added Benguerra Island Lodge to its portfolio of luxury safari lodges and camps. The company will be taking over the management, marketing, and reservations of the lodge, which will be renamed &Beyond Benguerra Island. Even better: The acquisition also opens up a new region for &Beyond.
We hear that the move is kicking off a new growth phase for &Beyond and is part of the company’s lodge investment strategy, which also involves extensive lodge rebuilds currently under way at the company's lodges in Kenya and Botswana. &Beyond Benguerra Island is scheduled for a refurbishment project of approximately $1.5 million during 2014.
So what makes Benguerra special? It's the second-largest island in the Bazaruto Archipelago, and has some top beaches as well as coral reefs with plenty of marine life and excellent fishing opportunities. Set in a national park, the island has a patchwork of habitats, including forests, wetlands and three freshwater lakes inhabited by crocodiles. The Indian Ocean is home to a variety of fish species, as well as one of the few remaining populations of the endangered dugong.
&Beyond Benguerra Island has ten casitas and two cabanas hidden in a shady forest on the edge of a beach. Both the casitas and the cabanas look out over the Indian Ocean and have private decks and plunge pools. Families will want to book the two-bedroom suite ensures privacy and exclusivity, which has its own secluded garden just off the beach. Cool touch: The bathrooms have deep copper bathtubs and outdoor showers with intricate mosaic inlays. The suite’s wooden veranda has its own private swimming pool.
Swimming and boating is available directly off the sandy beach, while additional activities include traditional dhow cruises, island expeditions, bird watching, local village tours and sea kayaking. Good for maritime aficionados: &Beyond Benguerra Island has a dive center where guests can take part in a range of PADI-certified diving courses or explore marine life on their own. The island is also good for game-fishing and fly-fishing, with all activities following a strict catch-and-release policy. Catamaran cruises, castaway picnics and snorkeling are also available. On land, guests can go on horse rides on the beach or into the island’s interior.
SA Airlink and LAM operate direct flights from Johannesburg to Vilanculos, while LAM also runs flights between Maputo and Vilanculos. This is followed by a short helicopter transfer to the lodge.
To book a stay at &Beyond Benguerra Island, email [email protected].