Marriott is jumping into the safari business and is opening the JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge in Kenya next year.
The chain operates more than 120 properties across the African continent, but this is Marriott’s first foray into safari hotel stays.
Here’s what you need to know about the resort!
Marriott Will Open Its First Africa Safari Lodge
The JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge in Kenya will overlook the banks of the River Talek.
The hotel will feature 20 private tents — including a presidential canvas-topped pavilion and 2 interconnecting canopied suites for families. Each will feature a private terrace overlooking the river.
The hotel will also include a restaurant, lounge bar, spa, and outdoor terrace with fire pits.
Guests will be able to observe the “Big 5” Masai Mara is known for: lions, leopards, buffalos, rhinoceroses, and elephants. The reserve also hosts an annual wildebeest migration between June and September that will see 10 million animals travel nearly 2,000 miles from the Serengeti in Tanzania.
“This landmark project is in response to travellers’ growing desire for experiential offerings that enable them to build a deeper connection with their chosen destination,” said Jerome Briet, Chief Development Officer, Europe, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International.
The JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge is expected to open to guests in 2023. It’s unclear — at least at the moment — about how much cash prices or award stays will cost per night.
Africa is home to some of Marriott’s most exclusive — and expensive — properties, including the JW Marriott Mauritius and North Island, a Luxury Collection Resort, Seychelles. There are other safari hotels in the Marriott portfolio on the continent, including the Protea Hotel Lusaka Safari Lodge in Zambia which features a private game reserve.
But the signing of the JW Marriott Masai Mara Lodge signals Marriott’s desire to have a bigger footprint in the luxury safari space.
“The signing of JW Masai Mara Lodge is a milestone in Marriott International’s growth in Africa as the company enters the luxury safari segment,” added Mr. Briet.
Hot Tip: Read about the best ways to fly to Africa using points and miles, including flights to Nairobi (NBO), in our detailed guide!
Points and miles hobbyists interested in safari explorations will soon have more options with the opening of the new JW Masai Mara Lodge in Kenya. While we don’t yet know how much award rates will cost, it’s safe to say prices will likely be high. That means you may want to start thinking about your Marriott Bonvoy points-earning strategy now before 2023.
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