Pelican Point Lodge
Look at a map of Walvis Bay on Namibia's Skeleton Coast and follow the thin spit of sand that forms the harbour entrance. That lighthouse near the end? That's Pelican Point Lodge - a luxury boutique hotel with the wild Atlantic on one side and Walvis Bay Lagoon on the other. Talk about going out on a limb.
Access to this converted lighthouse - made obsolete by the ever-extending peninsula - is along 32km of 4x4 track through eerie salt pans and across a pancake-flat sandbank. Or you can get to the hotel by boat across the RAMSAR-listed lagoon famous for its seabirds, flamingoes and sun-worshipping seals.
Port side, the icy Benguela current stirs up foaming waves and buffeting winds that fuse with the dry desert air to form the coastal fog that rendered this lighthouse vital for so many years.
Starboard, Walvis Bay lagoon broods, teeming with life gorging on the nutrient rich Benguela upswell: birdlife meets sealife meets resident jackals in misty mornings and ochre evenings.
Despite being in the tempest - what lighthouse isn't? - Bertus and Christa run a tight ship, all the while making you feel captain on deck. In fact, all nine suites have their own private deck, not least of all, the penthouse-style Captain's Cove, which is open plan and has a 360-degree panoramic view.
The suites are individually decorated with plush contemporary finishes, warm desert colours and silky textures. Glass sliding doors open onto the sand and offer views of an endless horizon; and you can just as easily shut out the maelstrom and watch the ships go by from the comfort of your armchair behind double-glazed windows.
Pelican Point Lodge is a unique and refreshing stop after the dusty heat of the Namib when travelling from Sossusvlei. And if you need that extra dose of peace and tranquility, spend another night and take advantage of all this space. Space to walk, think, sit and ponder life's greater mysteries. And to tuck into your picnic hamper. Just don't forget to breathe.
Nine luxury suites; en suite bathrooms; private deck; bio-fire; 24hr room service; telephone; lounge area; restaurant; laundry service; internet; public lounge; complimentary refreshments
Explore the peninsula on foot - the kitchen will prepare packed lunches, picnics and sundowner refreshments. If you are feeling more adventurous, activities can be arranged for you in any of the following: kayaking; marine cruises; sand boarding; quad biking; fishing; bird watching; sky diving; hot air ballooning; scenic aerial flights; dune paragliding and cultural tours.
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