Privately commissioned by a Lusaka-based family, the brief for the main lodge was to resemble a 1900’s Namibian landmark, originally designed by a German-trained architect. A fascinating and complex conception, the purpose and function has always been the same; to accommodate the spirit of adventurous exploration through comfort and leisure.

The family used to holiday at the Swakopmund Hotel, on Namibia’s Skeleton Coast. The design of the Swakopmund Hotel was based around the architecture of the historic station building that was built in 1901 and  which was then transformed into the hotel. The idea for Zambezi Grande (or River Grande as it was known back then) was based loosely around this design.

The dome to the iconic clock tower is covered in copper, to symbolize Zambia’s historic copper mining industry. The intense Zambian sun often meant this dome was a shining beacon over the river, so the idea for the inspired (and quirky!) addition of the clock came from the previous owners when the lodge was still a private property. The clock was built by a Scottish clock maker and runs on German precision. Twice a day, every day, it links to the World Clock via satellite to ensure its accuracy. The rest of the dome remains covered in copper, although with oxidization and a hard-to-reach placement, it’s a rather greener shade of copper these days!

With the opening of Zambezi Grande Private Game Experience, the story continues and grows as each guest, both new and returning, adds their chapter to this Grande tale.