A CULINARY CULTURAL EXCHANGE
In partnership with the Millennium Challenge Account Namibia (MCA-N), four students from the Namibia Institute of Culinary Education (NICE) were able to participate in a cultural exchange programme at the Robert Wetzlar Berufskolleg (RWB) der Stadt Bonn.
After several weeks of anticipation, the girls were finally ready to begin their journey on 30 September 2014. They were whisked off to the Hosea Kutako International Airport by private shuttle and were heartily welcomed with garlands upon arrival in Frankfurt. None of the trainees had ever visited Germany before and all but one, had never traveled by air. Even the high-speed train trip to Cologne proved rather exhilarating. The entire experience was to be quite an adventure for our culinary ambassadors!
Representing the chefs department were Beauranzia Louw-Sauls (left), Hirodina Sangunji (second left) and Yvette Naris (far right). The Food and Beverage Services Department was represented by Nelao Ngondji (third from right). The four ladies were selected by their instructors based on demonstrated competence in their chosen field, passion for the trade and an ability to adapt to different environments. They are seen in the image above with the principal of the RWB college (second from right).
While in Germany, the girls attended classes at the Robert Wetzlar Breufskolleg (vocational training college); conducted a week of work observation at the KSI Hotel and had the privilege of visiting several sites of historical and/ or cultural significance. Floating on the river Rhine, strolling through Pützschens Markt and beholding the renowned “Kölner Dom” (Cologne Cathedral) are among the activities, which stand out as highlights for the culinary quartet. The ladies also showcased their own culture by dressing up in traditional attire to perform the “Nama Stap” and an Oshiwambo song for the benefit of their German counterparts.
Our girls had this to say:
“It was very interesting to see how a college abroad trains it students to become qualified professionals”. Hirodina
“We realised that having the right equipment makes a big difference to the efficiency of a kitchen and it might even affect the taste of the food. In Germany, the ovens and other kitchen implements seemed to work so much more efficiently”. Yvette
“We also learnt that no matter where one works, it is very important to cooperate with others in your working environment”. Nelao
“Thank you MCA‐N for making our trip possible! None of us had ever been to Germany before and the trip really opened our eyes to ‘the real world’ ”. Beauranzia
The waiting period is finally over- the newly constructed suite at Wolwedans Private Camp is fully operational!
With a refreshing plunge pool, a spacious deck and a brand new luxury suite, visitors to the site can now enjoy a heightened experience of the camp.
The location comes complete with a personal chef and is perfect for couples seeking some seclusion. The camp can now host a maximum of 3 couples. For exclusive use of the camp, a minimal occupation fee will be requested.
Should you wish to make a booking, please feel free to contact our reservations team. The details are as follows: email@example.com
Think beyond the realm of the obvious. Join Heike Kolles for an interactive VisionRetreat at Wolwedans this season.
The VisionRetreat has been handcrafted for women with a burning desire to change their lives. Women who dream of living a life of fulfillment and meaning; who despite making several efforts to attain their goals, find themselves feeling tired, empty and disconnected.
If you are in a similar situation, the VisionRetreat is for you!
When: Saturday, 15th November – Friday, 21 November 2014
Where: Wolwedans Private Camp, NamibRand Nature Reserve, Namibia
Why: Embark on a transformational journey: re-think, re-feel and redesign your life!
If you are interested see more info here…
or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to the huge leaps made by Wolwedans Collection of Camps in implementing sustainability goal posts, Namibia once again gains international acclaim as a forerunner in sustainability in Southern Africa.
Winner: Best Ecologically Responsible Safari Property in Africa - Dunes Lodge
Wolwedans Dunes Lodge has been awarded the prize of Best Ecologically Responsible Property in Africa by the Safari Awards. The award catapults Namibia to the forefront of eco-tourist ventures in Africa.Wolwedans has already contributed majorly to putting Namibia on the ‘sustainability map’ in when it has been nominated as one of three finalists under the conservation banner for the 2012 Tourism for Tomorrow awards. Every year the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) recognizes the very best in sustainable tourism. This Award is one of the highest accolades in the global Travel & Tourism industry. This achievement speaks volumes about the sustainability efforts the Wolwedans operation has been pursuing since its inception.
Winner: Best value property - Wolwedans Dunes Lodge
The accolades are particularly noteworthy given the fact that more than 4000 vetted tour operators, travel agents and travel journalist were involved in the voting process.
In addition, nominees were selected from more than 1000 luxury travel professionals. The readers of notable publications such as that of Conde Nast Traveller, Tatler, Brides and Travel Africa Magazine all contributed towards the final result.
Runner up: Most romantic honeymoon room – Wolwedans Private Camp
The awards recognize an establishment’s efforts to operate an environmentally friendly business, without compromising on excellent service delivery to clients. Wolwedans, which is situated in the NamibRand Nature Reserve, has been proven to adopt practices which benefit both nature and society, Through its use of solar energy, sustainable waste management and the promotion of conservation, Wolwedans was able to place first in the eco-tourism category. For 2014, no other Namibian establishment was accorded a placement with the Safari Awards.
You love the wide open spaces, dunes and vistas of NamibRand – and Wolwedans in particular? This month a long awaited dream has become reality: Wolwedans launches its Horseback Safaris – in association with Namibia Horse Safari Company.
Now imagine the sensation of freedom when experiencing this magnificent landscape and it’s wild inhabitants from horseback. Other than walking, there can hardly be a better way to get up close and personal with nature. A brand new activity launched at Wolwedans Collection of Camps from September 2013, the Wolwedans Village is now complete with horse stables and a resident professional horse guide.
The horseback safaris offered at Wolwedans can be tailored to suit each guests riding ability. Different options (always on a first come first serve basis) include a two hour mid-morning ride around the village, three to four hour morning or sunset rides with breakfast, or respectively, sundowners in the dunes, as well as day-rides (5 – 6 hours on horse back) with a picnic lunch served in the field (normally at Jagkop mountain).
The horses range from gentle souls to more lively rides, once again dependant on each guests level of experience. For more information, please have a look at the different options for rides and feel free to enquire with your guide or our camp management.
Introducing Megan – your resident Wolwedans Horse Guide
‘I did all my guiding training with Andrew Gilles as well as doing a lot of self study – I believe there is always more to know when you are a guide and I learn new things every day.
I have been working in the Namib for two years now, managing the horses as well as guiding all the safaris, including Sossusvlei and the Naukluft mountains. I was also involved on camping trips, where I guided as well as cooked dinners and breakfasts on the fire.
I enjoy guiding as it gives me the opportunity to work with people from all over the world. I get to learn about their cultures and I get to share my knowledge of the area I work in with them. There are few things that make me happier than having a satisfied customer at the end of their safari with me. I feel that the combination of horse and nature gives guests a different perspective and feel of our country and I thoroughly enjoy seeing them experience it first hand and at the same time falling in love with the horses.’
Reading Tip: Condè Nast Traveller 'I had a house in Africa'
Wolwedans Private Camp is located in a quiet and idyllic valley. This splendid suite caters for four guests exclusively. It is the perfect getaway for families, honeymooners or individuals seeking uncompromising privacy and solitude.
Private Camp is a safe, private retreat in the desert and makes for a perfect family getaway. Menus and special requirements for the children can be discussed with the designated staff, including a private guide and private chef. The villa has its very own waterhole, allowing for exclusive game watching all day long…
Guided activities such as scenic drives, scenic flights, hot-air ballooning and nature walks can be arranged either exclusively for you (at an extra charge) or to be shared with other lodge or camp guests.
Private Camp is your special home at Wolwedans. It demands nothing much of you, but to relax and enjoy the ever-changing colours of the desert.
Private Camp offers two spacious en-suite bedrooms, a ‘Sala’ where one can laze away siestas, various decks and the central lounge, combining a study, living room, a dining area and a fully equipped kitchen. Its open-plan design allows uninterrupted views of the surrounding nature.
Family Hux: ‘My family of four (two boy ages 2 and 4) stayed at Private Camp which was perfect. We didn’t have to worry about disturbing other guests and our daily activities were planned around our needs. We had a chef (who cooked child-appropriate food on request), maid and guide. The guide, Felix, was the best we have experienced to date: extremely knowledgable, very friendly and fantastically patient with the children. The camp was situated in front of a waterhole set in stunning wilderness. I felt it was a safe environment for the children and we didn’t come across any big bugs in the camp. Sand-dune walks with the kids highly recommended. They also came on drives for 3 hours and were fine. If you are at all worried that the ‘children are too young’ – don’t be. We all had a trip-of-a-lifetime which will be remembered one-way-or-another buy all of us.’
The Wolwedans Collection of Camps is a very special cluster of safari camps – all snuggled into the dunes sporadically placed against a Namib Desert background. The ethos embedded within the conscience of the people involved in Wolwedans is simple and effective. Wolwedans stands proudly for sustainability, conservation and responsible tourism within the precious and stunning NamibRand Nature Reserve.
Right from its beginnings in 1998 this approach has been adopted by Wolwedans and the proof is in its earliest mission statement which reads, “We are committed to sustainable growth by carefully balancing quality leadership, economic progress, social responsibility and care for our environment”.
Jana Brückner, communication officer for the camps and the reserve, excitedly relayed news of Wolwedans’s recent progress in the field of sustainability. Wolwedans has been nominated for the prestigious 2012 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards which is one of the highest accolades in the global travel and tourism industry. It has been nominated under the category of “conservation” which is very fitting as it recognises the mammoth efforts put in by staff, conservationists and founders to ensure the region, communities and wildlife in the Namib are protected and conserved.
Wolwedans has also recently launched its solar hybrid system/ power station as part of its new sustainability strategy. They seem to be setting an impeccable example in the tourism industry and hopefully many other Namibian camps and lodges will follow in their footsteps towards responsible tourism practices as a result.
The solar-hybrid installation will reduce the camps’ carbon footprints as fossil fuel consumption will decrease by 65%. Hats off to Wolwedans and their conservation and sustainability efforts.