The more traditional of the lodges in the Singita Sabi Sands collection, Ebony is a first rate piece of accommodation known especially for the quality of its service.
A stone, wood and thatch build, and situated in the shade of a mixed grove of knobthorn and jackalberry trees, overlooking the Sand river, Singita Ebony consists of a mess area and 12 suites. The shared areas include a lounge, verandah, dining room, bar, boma, gym, spa, pool, library and cellar. Raised on a wooden platform, the overall look of the main lodge is colonial in feel – leather wing-back armchairs, brass utilities, zebra skins, ostrich eggs, an enormous chandelier, a walk-in fireplace, horns, a stuffed buffalo head. Interesting, eclectic, clay pots are balanced on wall supports above the dining room, woven stick cladding is studded with photographs and much of the furniture is covered with African throws.
The 12 rooms are all large with views of the Sand River that cuts through the concession. The design of the rooms are open-plan with a reading area, bedroom and bathroom leading into each other. Leading out of the large glass fronted sliding doors there is a considerable deck area and outdoor shower with private plunge pool. The four poster beds are quite beautiful, and the stand-alone roll top baths take centre stage in the bathroom.
The wildlife in the Sabi Sands area is world class, and activities at Singita Ebony include game drives, guided walks, mountain biking, archery and sundowners.
Singita is committed to making a sustainable difference to local communities and to protecting the environment and wildlife. To date, a number of successful projects have come to fruition, including the building of schools, micro-financing of small businesses, supporting agricultural initiatives as well as training people in the conservation and hospitality sectors. Many of our guests express an interest in contributing towards such initiatives and we gratefully facilitate this.
Singita has a strong bond with our local communities. Many of our staff live locally and are transported to and from their homes on a daily basis, and most of our staff are ex-pupils of the local schools which we support. We have therefore pledged to undertake projects that empower the local people, using resources at our disposal. This includes providing funds, access to the reserves, expertise and getting involved in social outreach projects. We also deliberately manage our lodges in a way that maximises the benefits to local communities so that they can experience the positive effects of eco-tourism.
At each of our lodges we have dedicated teams whose sole focus is to preserve the land and to protect and increase the wildlife to match its natural carrying capacity. This includes environmental care and anti-poaching units.
Our Guiding teams are selected on the basis of their passion and knowledge of the bush and then deliberately up-skilled by our Head of Guide Training and Development to ensure our guests have rich, educational and enjoyable experiences during their time with us.
Singita Kruger National Park has adopted an approach that is dedicated to stimulating the local economy on the outskirts of the park. Monthly spend on local suppliers and contractors has double over the past two years. Daily transport services for staff are sourced locally, as are services such as waste removal, linen repair beverage supplies and arts and crafts to supplement lodge décor and for special gifts. The Singita Business Linkages Committee oversees this process and ensures that the work that is done is conducted in co-operation with the efforts of the Kruger National Park Community Development Division.
Singita School of Cooking
The school is located on site at the staff village that serves Lebombo and Sweni. It was established with the aim of encouraging the development of culinary skills amongst local
youth. Each year, eight to ten students are selected – based upon clear criteria including a real interest in cooking to participate in a 1-year development programme.
General Community Support
The lodges are involved in supporting schools in the local communities in various ways; providing practical and educational support to pre-schools and assisting communities with access to fresh water. Support for the pre-schools ranges from assisting with maintenance challenges; to the planting of indigenous trees in the school grounds; to the much larger challenge of assisting with the improvement of the quality of education provided.