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 Post subject: Safari lodges and future plans
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 1:44 pm 
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The reasons for me logging onto the forum in order to post are far and few in between, I am normally content on just reading the postings of others.

However once in awhile something comes along which gets my blood boiling and I feel I need to logon and air the dirty laundry. Usually it leads to lots of heated discussion and this time I'm hoping it does just that.

It started with me reading the SANPark's New article entitled, "...Malelane Hotel Development in the Kruger National Park". That's right HOTEL. Wanting to make sure I was not getting heated up over nothing I decide to read through the "Information Memorandum" to ensure that I had read correctly. Yup, 164 pages later, I was right... HOTEL. Full description; number of rooms, room service, the works.

It goes into great detail about how SANParks is within it's rights to go this route. How it's (SANParks') actions are inline with a bunch of laws passed by a government that, in my opinion, has pretty much stuffed up everywhere else so far.

I was wondering how long it would take before the environment would start to suffer as well (I'm not going to mention floating crocs and 50/50's report on the water in SA). What the heck, why not stuff up one of the world's greatest parks by turning it into Disney Land. Wait that was another topic brought up by Carte Blanche. My appologies to Carte Blanche.

But wait maybe we can oppose this decision. Nope... The only mention of public participation is the fact that there should at least be "public consultation in matters concerning protected areas" as per the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Amendment Act (Act No 31 of 2004). Thereafter, nothing.

Come to think of it, this is the first I have heard of the Malelane Hotel idea, sorry... reality, or so it seems considering their plan to have the contract to build Las Vegas in the Kruger awarded by October this year.

Have you heard about it? Were you consulted? Do you really want a Hotel in the Kruger? Maybe some more camps, that I could agree with. Maybe if SANParks tried to commercialise (I hate that word) further North in the Park instead of building in the already to commercial South section, that I would be willing to accept. Maybe if SANParks worked on making their other Parks more profitable?

Maybe if SANParks actually consulted with the public instead of dictating what is going to happen with our Natural Heritage. I don't know about you but I think SANParks has lost the plot, or joined the ranks of SA's corrupt, power hungry, irresponsible.... the list goes on.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels that way. If I am, let me know so I can go kill myself, because the one thing worth protecting in this world is no longer being protected? If I'm not, then join me in telling those we entrusted with the responsibility of protecting the environment that they have failed.


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:13 pm 
I have known about this for quite some time…actually, the first time I heard about it was so long ago that by now I thought it had fallen through. :?
The rumours of this started circulating after the Sun International Hotel at Malelane Gate burned down….and it was said that this hotel will be rebuild inside Kruger…..if I’m not mistaken, I think there was also, at some stage, something about it in the Lowvelder …..even the ex-employees of the Malelane Sun were all waiting for this.

Apparently SANParks have made plans for an extra camp in the south and after negotiations they decided that this hotel complex would take the place of the extra camp.

My personal view: I do not think a hotel has a place in Kruger :roll: …..but suppose it is aimed at a market segment that Kruger currently do not cater for…..but my advice to SANParks: it is a bit silly to try and cater for every part of the tourist market….eventually you are going to loose some of your loyal customers in this pursuit

Edit:
Just need to add: I have stayed in the Malelane Sun on a few occasions and the hotel was almost empty… the same goes for the Pestana across the road.
I cannot see why this hotel will do any better inside Kruger….IMHO a normal camp would have added a lot more value by increasing the accommodation in southern Kruger for the category of tourist who are already supporting the park.


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:25 pm 
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A huge read indeed.
On the positive side:
Its close to the gate and on the border of Kruger
And in a controlled environment.

Let me put it this way:
What is the practical big difference with the many day trippers coming to Kruger every day through the Malelane gate from the many hotels/lodges and resorts lining the river bank as it is at the moment.

Going to move this to the Indaba topics btw

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:29 pm 
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Ceruleanwildfire ... Thank you for alerting us to this development.
As Scipio says .... This comes as a real shocker! :shock:

What next for our beloved park?

It is going to be interesting to see what transpires out of this topic.

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:38 pm 
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bert wrote:
Let me put it this way:
What is the practical big difference with the many day trippers coming to Kruger every day through the Malelane gate from the many hotels/lodges and resorts lining the river bank as it is at the moment.


Day visitors numbers are supposed to be limited arent they? Add the new amount of bed space taken by the hotel to that number and you'll get the practical difference it makes.


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:40 pm 
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Where will it all end???????

One leads to two, two leads to three... and soon we have a glorified safari park!

DGK


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:41 pm 
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It does seem somewhat unbecomming of a National Park, particularly kruger, to have a hotel within it's boundaries. I do however hasten to add that if it is going to increase the number of people who have access to the Park I suppose it's a sacrifice that needs to be made.

The park has to adapt to the changing times to ensure its continuance for future generations. I'm sure there would have been sufficient research into such a development and the buildings will be designed in accordance with the character of the park.

I might be mistaken but is there not a hotel withing the golden gate national park ?

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:47 pm 
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Thanks for the information ceruleanwildfire! :thumbs_up:

I think you've opened a huge can of worms now, but I think this is a VERY important issue. :hmz:

Well, I'm going to read these documents, that are part of the article posted by ceruleanwildfire, before making my decision to support the Hotel or not. :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:48 pm 
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So , so, so ...
You were all by now tired of my "thin edge of the wedge" cliche ?

It will be able to sleep how many people ?

Enjoy the Malelane area before this happens in case you are against even more OSV's to spoil the ambience .

BTW , what other expansions are planned within the KNP , remember my "thin edge of the wedge" cliche ?

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KNP is sacred. I am opposed to the modernisation of Kruger and from the depths of my soul long for the Kruger of yesteryear! 1000+km on foot in KNP incl 56 wild trails.200+ nights in the wildernessndloti-indigenous name for serval.


Last edited by ndloti on Wed May 27, 2009 3:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:59 pm 
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Crazy !! There is no place for a hotel inside Kruger ,even if close to the gate ,rather develop another affordable camp .To say the hotel will cater for a more upmarket group is to miss the point,for that go to Singita or Timbavati ! Kruger is almost always fully booked why go the hotel route ?,Rather upgrade the current camps a little and keep it affordable and build a new camp similar to the current camp if needed !

Totally against it !!!


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 3:11 pm 
TheunsH wrote:
Yes, yes, yes...it's got it all...bars, gym, spa, DSTV,etc,etc :tongue:


….well I hope it also has a proper environmental impact study because this sure sounds like something that will have a big impact. :? :roll:


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 3:21 pm 
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:shock: Madness!!!! ~~No Hotel INSIDE the park--- :wall: MIKE

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 3:28 pm 
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ndloti wrote:
I propose a poll be created on this very Sanparks website .

Simlply : "Are you in favour of this (Malelane hotel) proposed development within the borders of the KNP ?"


Mods, who can help with this?



And next on the agenda we have.....picture this....luxury wilderness trails, where porters carry you around in a glass cages, just in case you come across a situation where you might just have to experience real Africa.


LOL!


TheunsH.....you forgot the animal sounds cd playing 24hrs a day, and the tv channel with a 'real African' wood fire showing in the evenings.


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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 3:52 pm 
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A poll on this forum would be very interesting, though I think the result is already obvious and the end result already decided? :wall:

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 Post subject: Re: Another step forward....? Wait a second....
Unread postPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 4:07 pm 
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Forumites, please read the attached draft carefully before jumping to conclusions.
1) Tourist will be transported from the Malelane gate.
They will not be driving through Kruger
2) Very strict environmental conditions
etc. etc.
A carefull study of the impact of a hotel has been made.

So the question is:
Are you against a hotel in Kruger or not.
Are you afraid of missing a sighting because a vehicle from Malelane Hotel is blocking the view.
Dont forget the impact on the animals will be minimal because the vehicles from the hotel shall stick to the normal routes.
If you are honest to yourself the impact of 200 people more on the road is minimal.
btw, this is a neutral observation and do understand that this is also very emotional especial when you are used to Kruger in the old days.

Looks to me that this is a fact so shouldnt it be more productive to use the energy of the forum to ensure that the hotel will follow the rules and
minimize its impact on Kruger

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