Mmegi Online :: Mynhardts invest in high-end Okavango lodges
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Last Updated
Thursday 14 December 2017, 18:15 pm.
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Mynhardts invest in high-end Okavango lodges

MAUN: The Sankoyo Tshwaragano Management Trust (STMT) says its leasee, Smart Stones is building two high value lodges on its NG34 concession area.
By Boniface Keakabetse Wed 09 Aug 2017, 18:00 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Mynhardts invest in high-end Okavango lodges








STMT chairperson, Nkgololang Samakata told Mmegi Business that Smart Stones, a tourism company owned by the Mynhardt family is paying the trust P1.5 million per year in lease fees for the NG34 high value tourism zone.

 In March, the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism signed a 15-year lease agreement with Smart Stones investors for concession area NG34 in the Okavango Delta.

Samakata said Smart Stones is building two lodges in NG 34.  He said Smart Stones has already finished a three-star lodge while another high-end facility is expected to complete soon. 

The Mynhardts, one of the most prominent business families in Botswana recently broke records on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) when they offloaded 142 million shares worth P456 million in listed New African Properties (NAP). The divestment was reportedly to raise funds for investment in the tourism sector.

 Efforts to get a comment from Smart Stones were not fruitful by the time of going to press.

 Samakata underscored that they subdivided NG34 concession into high and low value zones with Smart Stones getting the

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high value zone.

He explained that they are in the process of finalising another partnership with Inkunzi Safaris worth P500, 000 in lease rentals for the low value zone of NG34. 

Further, Samakata for NG33 partnered with Wilderness Safaris for operations of Santawani Camp and Gomoti tented camp.  Wilderness Safaris reportedly pays about P1 million for the two leases.

Samakata said the trust is renovating its Kaziikini Camp site also situated in NG33. He said they will refurbish ablutions at the campsite and renew the entire look of the campsite. Samakata added that earlier this year, they also renovated Shandereka cultural site situated opposite Kaziikini.

The renovations entailed building new huts as the old ones were worn out.

Samakata said following the chaotic 2014 hunting ban and series of delays in finalisation of lease agreements for the photographic lodges, things are finally looking up.

In a recent interview the Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Tshekedi Khama explained that everything is now in place for the speedy processing of lease agreements for concession areas.

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