The Jewel of Thornybush

Saseka exterior

Saseka, aptly named after the Tsonga word for “beautiful”, is all-encompassing of the word, so forget what you know about luxury tented camps because when you visit Saseka you’ll be in for a sensory surprise. Inspired by its surroundings, its close call to nature and the romanticism that treads nostalgically on bygone eras, Saseka tented camp is here to show you how luxury and nature blend in with modern and ultra-luxurious ease.

Situated on a curve of the Monwana River that sweeps through our 14 000-hectare big-five Thornybush reserve, is where you’ll find this crowned jewel, nestled unfenced and unobtrusively in nature. Built in 2019, it’s the newest addition to the Thornybush family, attracting guests from all over the world to its unique design.

A pioneer of interior design in luxury lodge architecture

Safari architecture as a design ‘style’ has evolved from the Out of Africa, cookie-cutter khaki mould into something that elevates the senses but simultaneously greets you back to nature. Saseka’s fresh interpretation of its surroundings aims to transcend the safari cliché in favour of an aesthetic that shifts you away from the norm and opens the doors to a truly luxurious safari experience. With its core focus on outdoor living, textures to complement the climate and colours conducive to relaxation – it’s gone ahead and re-inspired the safari concept into a progressive craft symbolic with its surrounding culture. Reinterpreting the safari tented camp experience into a luxury setting, it welcomes you to experience easygoing and low-key lodge life that still delivers on high-style luxury.

Lodge luxury with intimacy at its core

Silvio Rech + Lesley Carstens Adventure Architecture is the design team behind Saseka. This award-winning duo’s architecture and interior design studio delivered on the vision to pioneer and reimagine modern bush camp architecture. Saseka comprises eight 200 m2 elevated tented suites, sleeping two, a two-bedroom private villa called Leadwood  and a main public space, all aiming at combining the nostalgia and romance of tented safaris with 21st-century design. Each air-conditioned suite has been designed to host its own private pool, outdoor shower and game-viewing sundeck. With the utmost privacy only found on a transformative safari, you really feel one with the wild, truly immersed in the sounds and sights of the bush.

The famous tented suite ceiling print

It’s no secret that the Saseka ceiling design in the tented suites is iconic; embellished in botanical species found around Saseka. The design is so cleverly articulated that it allows guests to lie in bed and read the captions of each botanical species, and at night, lit from behind, the draped fabric casts a soft, diffused light that sets the mood for relaxation. This is just one of the many features of Saseka that draws specifically from its habitat.

Words escape the main lodge

Walking into the main lodge area you are transported into a space that flows with nature, rather than against it. A view of the sand riverbed presents guests with on-site game-viewing opportunities, whether from your breakfast table or your private deck. The main area flows through different levels and terraces to give a sense of volume, with a water feature forged from natural rock reinforcing the connection to the riverbed that is laid out in front of you.

Keeping the natural light flowing in is key to help expand your eyes to the extraordinary ceiling of the main area. Dubbed the ‘ceiling for all seasons’ it filters light into the space imitating the natural dappled light of a tree canopy.

A feast for foodies and safari lovers

Not only will your appetite for world-class game viewing be overly satisfied but so will that of your taste buds. Saseka makes a celebration of every mealtime; from private buffets of the freshest produce to 3-course dinners and delectable tea-time treats, it’s a foodies dream.

On our twice-daily game drives, be sure to work up your anticipation for the morning “bush coffee” and homemade treats and when evening descends you’ll be served your beverage of choice followed by savoury snacks as the sun sets on an iconic landscape.

The Thornybush reserve is home to all of the big five, plus wild dog, pangolin and cheetah. Game drives are a spectacle and have hosted many wildlife photography enthusiasts to snap up its wildlife sighting experiences.

Sole-luxury at Leadwood Villa

Nestled adjacent to the Saseka tented suites is a 2-bedroom villa that sleeps up to 6 adults. Its aim is to allow you to experience ultimate intimacy by booking it as a sole-use option for your family or small group. The main villa includes a tented suite, sunken outdoor lounge and fire pit as well as an indoor lounge area that grants you the privacy of staying at your own lodge. With the same attention to detail and magnificent architectural inspiration within the prime grounds of Saseka Tented Camp, this villa boasts views overlooking the seasonal Monwana riverbed, where your game viewing is uninterrupted.

For more information about Thornybush Saseka Tented Camp visit

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