An exquisite gem hidden in the heart of London, we are proud to be honoured as one of the World's Most Luxurious Hotels.
Named after US Senator Ted Kennedy, who stayed at Ashford in the early 1980s, the Kennedy Suite (one of the Castle's exceptional Staterooms) is located in the oldest wing of the castle and features an impressive selection of antique furniture, including a 19th-century walnut bed, an early 18th century Spanish Armoire and an early Victorian Rosewood centre table.
The Kennedy Suite enjoys spectacular views over Lough Corrib and can be combined with the Reagan Presidential Suite to complete a private three-bedroom wing of the castle.
Amid a stand of indigenous Croton trees, the striking steel structure – built in the evocative shape of a baobab tree – ascends nearly 10 metres above the floodplain, offering panoramic views from each of its three levels.
The structure’s design was inspired by an iconic painting of a solitary baobab tree by Jacobus Hendrik Pierneef, one of South Africa's master landscape artists. Inside the tree’s ‘trunk’, a winding staircase climbs nearly four metres above ground, delivering guests to the spacious bathroom on the first level.
The bedroom is located on the second level, beautifully appointed with carved timber furniture by celebrated designers such as David Krynauw, John Vogel and Adam Birch. Both the bedroom and bathroom spaces have canvas walls that can open up entirely to the outside environment, or be zipped closed to allow for privacy and protection from the elements. Sounds from the surrounding bird-life, animals and insects drift through the tree-like branches and screened windows into the tented structure.
Ascend to the top of the ‘baobab’ and the drama truly unfolds, with an open-air deck for lounging, reading and watching wildlife pass undisturbed below. A serene, hidden – and entirely safe – eyrie from which to witness the magic of the Okavango Delta at dusk or – if you choose to spend the night in the open-air king-size bed – to marvel at the jet-black sky punctured by the stars of the southern sky.
The Baobab Treehouse Experience is tailor-made for each and every guest. Arrive after lunch for sundowners and a picnic-style dinner on the deck, or depart Xigera Safari Lodge after dinner for an unforgettable night’s sleep in the tree house of your dreams.
Sefefo Dining Table by Peter Mabeo, handcrafted from Panga Panga wood (indigenous to the region). The table balances a defined profile with a rhythmic sense of craft through the repetition of grooved colourful lines.
Ash and army green custom Kassena Server by Dokter and Misses, inspired by the patterned adobe structures built by the Kassena people, who live in the Tiébélé region on the border of Ghana & Burkina Faso. The geometric patterns wrapped around the cabinets are derived from two literary texts in the Sotho and Tsonga languages.
Ebonised marula side table and ebonised marula fork sculpture by Adam Birch, who spent seven months on site at Xigera carving more than 150 large-scale timber sculptures for the lodge. He worked alongside a team of local carpenters, training them in woodworking skills that will stay with them for life.
Melia weave Karakul by Coral & Hive, an all-women, ethically operated company with some of the most talented weavers in South Africa, whose skills have been passed down for generations. The lounge carpet is made from Karakul wool, from sheep that are raised in the Karoo, in South Africa.
Heartwood bowl by Port Alfred. Each bowl is a one of a kind piece of art, hand-crafted over many days and weeks. They have unique African design sensibility, with leadwood sourced from a farmer in the Limpopo Valley.
“Further in Further Out” artwork by South African artist Chris Soal, created with collected bottle tops from bars and shebeens around Johannesburg.
Bronze Bowls by Charles Haupt, who together with Otto du Plessis, has spearheaded the functional design side of Bronze Age Studio. Created in patinated bronze and gold leaf, the bowls are inspired by natural growth patterns, cast in bronze, finished with a unique patina and gilded with gold leaf.
Glazed ceramic tableware collection by Chuma Maweni, a master of hand-thrown ceramics, who was the single largest individual supplier for the lodge, producing every item by hand, himself.
Walnut and bronze bed by Duchenne cabinetry, in partnership with Southern Guild, combining African totem references with traditional timber craft. The lily finals were sculpted by Trevor Potter and are cast in bronze, each one shaped to a unique configuration. The headboard fabrics were selected by Toni Tollman from the most exclusive and luxurious European fabric houses.
African Jacquard custom bedspread, designed to complement the colours of the suite.
Mushroom side tables in walnut, kiaat and light granite by Duchenne & Southern Guild. Custom designed for the lodge, these tables brought together two different artisans. The woodwork was produced by Duchenne, whilst an expert timber carver, Friday Jibu completed the carved texture, with each base taking a day to carve.
A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the Okavango Delta’s natural rhythms.