Iris Boutique Hotel
Long an industrial port town, tourism in Walvis Bay is looking up. Harbourside developments, restaurants and excellent desert and water activities - not to mention world-class birding - make a stop here an interesting alternative to the more popular tourist-oriented town of Swakopmund 40km to the north.
Previously Egumbo Lodge, now Iris Boutique Hotel and Restaurant, this accommodation option is small and sophisticated with views out over the Walvis Bay Lagoon. With just nine rooms, including a honeymoon suite, the mood is intimate and the setting is somewhat worldly with a hint of rustic Africanness to complete the picture.
Either with four-poster beds or ornate headboards, the rooms are large and the en suite bathrooms enormous by hotel standards, with double-size showers, slipper baths and twin vanities. The bedding and furniture is of a high quality, if a little on the dark side of austerity, and small touches like central heating - unheard of in these parts but definitely welcome - providing a sufficient level of comfort.
The living areas are just as elegant and modest with a view across the road of the Walvis Bay lagoon, invariably festooned with flamingos, pelicans, cormorants, a variety of waders and many other species that join forces to create one of the sub-continent's most important wetland birding sites.
Another welcome touch is the heated pool behind the house sheltered from the south-wester that blows off the polar current. Breakfast is an impressive spread of cold, hot, savoury and sweet options and dinners are available if you don't feel up to the trying out any of the nearby restaurants.
9 en suite rooms: 4 doubles, 4 twins and 1 suite; bathrooms have showers and twin basins, some with baths; quality bedding; central heating; Nespresso coffee station; private safe; WiFi; TV; dining area; lounge; heated swimming pool; garden terrace overlooking Walvis Bay lagoon; wine cellar, whisky bar and snack platters on request
Walvis Bay lagoon is the focal point of your activities including birding and marine life boat cruises, guided kayak tours, birdwatching along the esplanade, sailing and kite surfing, quad biking and Sandwich Harbour excursions, golf, fishing and adventure sports
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