Issue 5 (November 2009) Happy Birthday to Kempinski Mokuti Lodge, which is now 20 years old.
Built in 1989, two kilometres from Etosha’s eastern entrance, the
luxury lodge quickly became a favourite with celebrities, including US
Vice-President Dan Quayle and the film star John Travolta, who was
behind the controls of his own private jet when it landed on the
Namibian president Sam Nujoma adopted a black mamba in Mokuti’s reptile
park and donated N$ 15.000-N$20.000 each time he visited the lodge.
By 1997 Mokuti was thriving, having just been awarded its fourth star.
Then, on the first of April, fire destroyed Mokuti’s main restaurant,
its office wing and conference centre. It was caused by an electrical
fault, and all the damaged rooms had to be rebuilt.
In 2006 the lodge needed another update as a squirrel colony had caused
massive damage to the property’s thatched roofs. Today Mokuti has 106
thatch-roofed rooms, three swimming pools, two floodlit tennis courts
and even its own petrol station.