Governors Camp Collection has recently completed their camp refurbishment of Il Moran, Little Governor and Main Governors after months of hard work, and the result is simply dazzling.
Drawing their inspiration from the Persian influences of East Africa and African textiles the idea behind the refurbishments was to bring a fresh energy to the camp while retaining the elegance and authenticity that has become synonymous with the Governors’ Camp Collection.
Governors’ Camp was the first tented camp to be established in the Masai Mara National Reserve in 1972, therefore it was important to maintain the old safari feel and not stray too far from the original furnishings etc. We recovered all of the camp chairs, made new table cloths etc and added roof linings to the tent interiors to brighten them up. We decided to use African textiles and handmade crafts to decorate the interiors. Malian Mud cloth was used to make throw cushions for the tents and lounge areas, the geometric pattern is striking yet the earthy colours remain understated. Congolese Bakuba fabric added an interesting texture to our handmade leather bed and bar runners. Coastal coconut fibre lamps are found throughout the interiors that add a lovely warmth to the tents in the evenings. Hand crafted soapstone lotus flower soap dishes, chess-boards, and statues were custom made for us by artisanal craftsmen in the Kisii region of Kenya. Reverse osmosis systems have been installed to reduce plastic waste and water is now provided to guests in hand blown Kitengela glassware water jugs at meal times.
Wildlife canvases by acclaimed wildlife artist Simon Stevenson are on display in the dining and bar tents. Locally made hanging pod chairs are found suspended above the decking and elsewhere around the camp and these have proved to be especially popular with many of our guests who have taken to relaxing with a drink or a book after lunch while looking out over the Mara River.
Little Governors probably had the biggest makeover of the three camps. The idea was to brighten up the public areas through the use of roof linings, brass candle lanterns, and handmade colourful woolen throws. Comfy sofas, antique Congolese trunks, Indian glass-topped tables, sisal carpets and Kenyan leather/cow-skin pouffes were all added to the bar area along with plenty of coffee table books and bird books to encourage guests to come together in the evenings and chat about their days safari with a Governors special cocktail in hand. Chimeneas are placed throughout the bar in the evening for those who would like to remain seated in the bar while the traditional camp fire is lit outside overlooking the marsh at dusk encircled by our famous canvas camp chairs for those who wish to really take in the sounds of the African bush at night.
Little Governors also received all new beige rip-stop guest tents. These are now a little wider, longer and higher than before and feature huge mesh door fronts and interior cotton curtains. The bathrooms have remained as they were with the beautiful wooden paneled side walls as these are such a special feature of Little Governors. However, the beds have been rotated to face outwards in order for our guests to take in the breathtaking views of the marsh as they relax during the day. Patchwork cow-skin carpets are laid out in front of the beds, while unique leather cross-hatching reclining chairs are placed on the wooden decked veranda; the perfect place to sit with a pair of binoculars and cup of tea and take in the prolific bird life that thrives in the marsh. Six hanging chairs are scattered throughout the camp hanging from the riverine forest trees and are always filled with guests taking a moment to reflect on the beauty that surrounds.
The idea behind IL Moran was to go for an Indian/Persian/Beduin sort of feel. It now features a lot of antique furniture, such as heavy glass topped coffee tables, Jute rugs, copper port lamps, hand made brass lanterns, old brass telescopes & fans etc. Indian throw cushions are scattered on white couches, and little trinkets such as Benin Bronzes decorate some of the surfaces.
All of the tents now have white roof linings to brighten them up and we have replaced some of the heavy olive wood furniture with more practical pieces that are in keeping with the theme. We have kept the olive beds and Victorian bath tubs that IL Moran is known for.
You can download the refurbishment images from the WETU platform, here are the links: