Destination Inspiration: Namibia with Zannier Hotels


Two renowned brands, Zannier Hotels and Leica have joined forces to offer discerning travellers and photography enthusiasts the unique opportunity to participate in exclusive curated photography tours across Namibia.

The first tour will take place in Namibia between 18 – 27 November 2019 and will offer a privileged photography experience within Zannier Hotels’ two private nature reserves, Omaanda and Sonop. The experience will be guided by carefully selected Leica ambassadors, who beyond sharing their extensive photography knowledge with participants, will also bring along the entire Leica camera and sports optics range for Zannier guests to use during their adventure.

From incredible landscapes and personal encounters with wildlife and conservation experts, to engaging with local ethnic tribes, this special trip is a once in a lifetime opportunity to discover a captivating destination, all the while receiving personalised coaching from two expert photographers.

Guests will master the difficult skill of night photography in arguably the darkest sky on our planet and learn to capture sunrises and sunsets atop one of the world’s tallest dunes. Further highlights include daily game drives and excursions at Omaanda, thereby ensuring guests get up close to some of the most impressive animals on the continent such as leopards, giraffes, elephants and rhinos.


Namibia offers exceptional stargazing in one of the world’s dark sky reserves, of which there are only eleven. Dark sky reserves are proven to be so clear that astronomers can virtually see all the stars in the sky. Not to mention, the milky way is more defined than anywhere else in the world in Namibia. At Zannier’s Omaanda and Sonop, guests are presented with splatters and sprays of stars each evening against a black sky. To preserve their exceptional stargazing location, the lodges take extra precautions to prevent unnecessary human-created light, which is proven to affect the clarity of star viewings. Sonop ensures the immense galaxy takes centre stage in all its incredible intensity each evening. For example, guests are encouraged to experience meals served under the stars in the wild; this dining experience has been carefully chosen to ensure complete discretion and privacy. Aside from the lanterns hanging delicately from the ancient branches of the Acacia Erioloba tree and the regal candelabra on the table – no other man-made light is found, only the stars above.

Brian Gardiner, Sonop’s General Manager, is a passionate astronomer and, together with the lodge’s knowledgeable guides, regularly hosts stargazing sessions in the evening. They point out specific constellations and shooting stars, discuss the wider universe and highlight the various planets visible.

The stargazing experience at Sonop starts upon arrival as guests are surprised with a bespoke certificate, which provides details of a star specifically named after them. Moreover, each luxury tented room boasts a professional telescope so guests can gaze at the stars from the luxury of their private living room. The telescope can be configured by the guides to point directly at the guests’ new namesake star.


Zannier Hotels’ is delighted to invite wellness seekers and yoga enthusiasts alike to experience the hotel group’s first yoga and nature retreat in the heart of Namibia. The unforgettable journey will be led by yoga teacher, physiotherapist and posturologist, Katy Mission and will take place between 30 November – 08 December 2019.

Namibia offers some of the most awe-inspiring and incredible landscapes in the world, thereby positioning the stunning destination as the perfect environment to re-connect with and discover nature at its most beautiful and rustic. The eight-night retreat provides an opportunity for discerning travellers to transform their bodies and minds through daily yoga and meditation practices with Katy Mission herself. Each morning will begin with yoga practice and meditation at the lodges or out in the savannah or desert. Katy’s dynamic classes will encourage participants to awaken their conscience through the practice of meditation, breathing work, yoga, asana, posturology and neurophysiology.

Guests will have a one-to-one wellness consultation with Katy and benefit from an intimate group of only seven people, therefore ensuring each individual receives ample attention and guidance.

Perfectly positioned for those who love yoga, nature and animals, the retreat includes a variety of guided wildlife excursions, such as: private conservancy drives, behind the scene tours of Zanniers’ conservation reserve, safari walking tours, desert horseback rides and a trip to the majestic dunes of Sossusvlei. Afternoons will conclude with a second yoga practice before a healthy dinner under the starry skies. From the fresh, local healthy cuisine to the personalised spa treatments, every detail of the retreat has been considered to ensure a restorative and transformational experience.


Arnaud Zannier, the founder and driving force behind Zannier Hotels, has created an alternative luxury travel experience through his passion for hospitality and gastronomy, driven by his over-arching philosophy: ‘Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’. All Zannier Hotels’ are pure, elegant and unique, located in the most beautiful parts of the world.

Caoilfhionn Rose

Caoilfhionn is a freelance travel writer who enjoys slow travel and avoiding landmarks in favour of diving into a destination's culture. Instagram: @CaoilfhionnRose

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