An emotional investment
Posted on 24 February 2015 by Part of Africa
Part of Africa is your gateway to a magical private game reserve in the Tuli Block in Botswana. Every month we ask a fellow co-owner to let us know why he or she decided to invest in this reserve. This month we had the pleasure of interviewing Amol and Kavita, co-owners since August 2012.
Can you tell something about who you are, where you are from and what you do in everyday life?
My wife, Kavita and I have been visiting Africa since we fell in love with this part of the world following our first visit in 2004. We haven’t been on many holidays elsewhere since. I have a background in financial services and now run a kitchen design and installation business and my wife is trained doctor and now a scientist. We are from the UK and of Indian origin.
How often have you been to Africa?
We usually visit couple of times a year and have made nearly 20 visits over the last 10 years.
What is it that makes Africa unique for you?
The open spaces, clear blue skies, spectacular landscapes, warmth of the people, the wildlife and most importantly a ‘connection’ to the land, which is difficult to describe. Those that long to return to Africa immediately get it.
And what is special about Botswana and the Tuli Block?
Botswana is a real African gem. A well run country with a stable economy. Warm & friendly people. Government policy committed to care for its natural heritage and this commitment goes right up to the President. Nowhere have we seen wild spaces protected as well as Botswana. The rugged landscapes of the Tuli Block make it quite unique in Botswana. Its very well connected with SA making travel in and out easy.
All of these made the decision to invest in Botswana a relatively easy one.
How did you find out about the reserve?
We had seen adverts in various magazines but it was a trip report shared by a fellow shareholder on a travel forum that piqued our interest.
When did you visit the reserve for the first time?
In May 2012
When did you decide to invest in the reserve?
Within a few hours of arriving here. On our first game drive. River Lodge is such a spectacular setting that its hard not to want to be a part of this lovely reserve.
What was the main reason for you to invest in this reserve? Did you also visit other reserves in your search for a place/reserve to invest in?
It is an emotional investment. We always wanted to have a part of Africa to call our own. There is much talk in Europe about caring for our environment but we felt it was mostly humbug. We decided to put our money were our mouth was and felt there was no better was to do this but to become part of an initiative which would be set aside to conserve nature & wildlife and protect it from human greed.
From a commercial perspective, there is too much uncertainty about investing in land based assets in South Africa. The reserve is unique in that a beautiful part of Africa can be owned and protected for the future without worrying about political or economic stability.
How long have you been a shareholder?
Since August 2012.
How often do you visit the reserve?
Usually once a year for a couple of weeks.
What is your favorite spot at the reserve and why?
Its a tough call between watching the sun go down at Lipadi hill and the cliffs overlooking the bend in the river on the eastern side of the reserve
Can you describe your perfect day at the reserve?
An early morning start with a coffee at River Lodge followed by a slow game drive to see whats happened overnight on the reserve. Finding Wild dogs or Brown Hyena is always special. We’d stop after a couple of hours for coffee and some rusks near one of the waterholes before making our way back as the day starts to warm up.
Then its usually back to the lodge for a hearty breakfast, a shower, quick catchup on emails before heading with some beers to Hippo Hide with a book or lounging near the main area watching birds. A nap in the afternoon is followed by packing the ice box with drinks and a drive to the hide at Mogorosi or along the river to the cliffs for sundowners.
Back to the Lodge for dinner which is usually a braai. Its an amazing feeling sitting by the river hearing hippos grunting with the unforgettable wood fire to keep you warm over a few glasses of wine and then to bed, falling asleep with the gentle sounds of the Limpopo flowing no more than 50 ft away.