Connect with us

General

Scenic views and luxury at Olarro

Published

on

Loading...


By MARYANNE GICOBI
More by this Author

Tucked away in the middle of lush bush and towering acacia trees in the Loita Hills at the vast Maasai Mara Game reserve is Olarro Lodge.

Olarro is a peaceful place that is ideal for reflection on life. It was a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Olarro is a four-hour drive from Nairobi or a 30-minute flight from Wilson Airport to Keekorok Airstrip, followed by a one-hour drive through the expansive Maasai Mara to Maji Moto. The lodge also has three helipads, and is located atop one of the hills giving you a bird’s view of the conservancy.

We arrived at lunch time to a warm welcome from the lodge team. We freshened up and had a lunch of lamb chops and potato chips.

The lodge is intimate, with just 15 rooms built close together.

The rooms have small details that enhance the experience, giving you the impression that the construction was well thought out: From the “his” and “hers” washbasins in the bathroom so you do not have to wait for your partner to finish using one, to the much-needed hot-water bottle that they put in your bed at night.

The room service was efficient, cleaning up without inconveniencing guests, and replenishing the towels and the minibar, which was free.

The organic soap and the solar-heated rain showers show that the lodge is keen on sustainability.

However, the WiFi was fluctuating, although the hotel manager warned you in advance. This could be a problem for those who want to be online when on holiday.

We had dinner and breakfast at the upper deck bar, where we saw animals come to the watering hole.

Elephants and zebras came to quench their thirst while we had breakfast. Breakfast was sumptuous, with a wide range of freshly baked bread, juice, and spring rolls. The menu is a la carte.

Loading...

A short distance from Olarro lodge is Olarro Plains, another luxurious property that is private and family-friendly. Olarro Plains has double and twin rooms, ideal for children, and great views of the savannah.

The interior décor of the lodges shows great taste. The couches are from Bali, Indonesia, the laundry baskets from Rwanda and there are paintings from Zanzibar.

From the infinity swimming pool, you can see the expansive 20,000-acre plains.

Annie-Marie, the lodge manager, says they also offer nanny services to leave you to adult away and enjoy your holiday.

Early in the morning, we went on a game drive. The Olarro game drive is unique as it is through a private conservancy. We had exclusive access to all the animals without crowds of tour vans and other holiday makers.

Olarro is ideal for public figures who want some privacy.

Rangers track animals in advance, especially the cat family that is difficult to spot, so you do not have to go around the park on a wild goose chase.

The rangers inform the van drivers where to take the guests. Other big game roams freely in the reserve, which has elephants in abundance due to rescue efforts by the conservancy.

Head of the conservancy William Hofmeyr said they use a smartphone application called Wild App to track the elephants.

“We put it on the lead elephants in every herd, then monitor how they are moving. From screens in the office, we are able to tell where they are at any time. We are proactive on the elephants and hence the large population in this conservancy,” he said.

Over the past six months, they have treated 25 elephants for injuries.

Olarro is truly luxurious. The room rates range from $555 to $830 per person per night, all inclusive.

Comments

comments

Loading...
Continue Reading

General

University, county partner in mass production of protective gear : The Standard

Published

on

Loading...

Laikipia County has partnered with Dedan Kimathi University of Technology to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent spread of coronavirus.
The first 1,000 body suits for medical staff who come into close contact with infected people and 7,000 face masks for distribution to boda boda operators, community health volunteers and enforcement officers, are expected to be ready by the end of this week.
“We are in a fight for survival against the Covid-19. We must do whatever we can first even as we look for help from elsewhere,” Dedan Kimathi University Vice Chancellor Ndirangu Kioni (pictured) said.
SEE ALSO: Mystery over death of Moi University student Prof Kioni said the institution and Laikipia County were seeking to fill gaps in the fight against the virus, and the network of entrepreneurs under innovation programme had come in handy.
The university has trained eight local manufacturers from Laikipia County who are working with 40 sub-contractors.
The Kenya Bureau of Standards has approved the bid by the university to manufacture the protective equipment as coronavirus gets to community transmission phase.
For More of This and Other Stories, Grab Your Copy of the Standard Newspaper.   Read Now »
Under the partnership, the institutions are also working on mass production of ventilators and hand sanitisers, through Small and Medium-sized Enterprises that are under the Laikipia Innovation and Enterprise Development programme.
The Ministry of Health last week projected that the country could have 10,000 coronavirus cases by the end of April, if people do not strictly adhere to the guidelines put in place, putting a strain on medical facilities.
SEE ALSO: State to upgrade towns in Laikipia CountyMass production of the PPEs is part of the preparations that the county government is making as the number of coronavirus cases in the country rises. Although Laikipia has not recorded any Covid-19 case, so far, a model released by its department of health indicates that it is likely to record more than 14,000 infections in a worst-case-scenario and up to 600 cases in the best-case-scenario.
There are nine production centres at the university and by SMEs in Nyahururu and Nanyuki. Four other SMEs are producing hand sanitisers.

Loading...

Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Standard Digital Telegram channel HERE.

Related Topics
Laikipia CountyDedan Kimathi University of TechnologyPPE

Comments

comments

Loading...
Continue Reading

General

State clears way for affordable fertiliser : The Standard

Published

on

Loading...

Farmers maintain one-meter distance while planting in Mangu Estate, Nakuru County. [Harun Wathari/Standard]
Kenya National Trading Corporation (KNTC) has partnered with Moroccan fertiliser manufacturer, OCP Group, to enable smallholder farmers access low-cost input.

The partnership will see Di-ammonium phosphate (DAP) distributed to farmers at Sh2,300 per 50kg bag.
KNTC Managing Director Timothy Mirugi said the partnership with OCP Group through its subsidiary, OCP Kenya, was in line with the government’s objective of promoting agriculture under the Big Four agenda.
Mirugi said the fertiliser will be sourced directly from the manufacturer in Morocco, thus cutting costs normally charged by suppliers and middlemen and shouldered by farmers.
SEE ALSO: The CEO who sometimes goes without salaryThe move gives maize farmers a sigh of relief. The farmers have been buying the same amount of fertiliser for between Sh2,800 and Sh3,100 from some stores in the North Rift region.
Limited stocks
Farmers have been scrambling for limited stocks of last year’s carryover of subsidised fertiliser in Eldoret and Moi’s Bridge National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depots. An official from the board, who spoke to The Standard on condition of anonymity, said they were yet to receive subsidy for the current year.
For More of This and Other Stories, Grab Your Copy of the Standard Newspaper.   Read Now »
During the opening of this year’s Eldoret Agricultural Society of Kenya show, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya announced that fertilisers for this year’s planting season would cost Sh2,300 per bag.
Uasin Gishu Agriculture Executive Samuel Yego recently said NCPB still has 32,000 bags of last year’s subsidised fertiliser at the Eldoret depot, and another 25,000 bags in Moi’s Bridge. He said this was inadequate since the county requires over 550,000 bags.
Yesterday, Mirugi told The Standard that they would guard supplies from unscrupulous business people who may buy the fertiliser in large quantities to sell at higher prices.
“We are targeting smallholder farmers to enhance food security and economic empowerment. Priority will be given to those who cultivate 10 acres. Those with 50 acres will also be considered after vetting,” said Mirugi.
He said mechanisms are in place to ensure the input only benefits farmers who produce maize, wheat and other food crops. “We are liaising with agricultural officials and county administrators, coordinated by county commissioners, to ensure only genuine farmers benefit,” he said.

Loading...

Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Standard Digital Telegram channel HERE.

Related Topics
Kenya National Trading CorporationOCP Groupfertiliser

Comments

comments

Loading...
Continue Reading

General

Mwathethe set to get one more year as KDF boss : The Standard

Published

on

Loading...

President Uhuru Kenyatta(left) and Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces Gen. Samson Mwathethe during the celebrations of Mashujaa at Nyayo National Stadium. [Beverlyne Musili/Standard]
Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) Samson Mwathethe is likely to have his term extended by a year.

If it happens, it would be the second time Gen Mwathethe’s stay in office would be extended. The first time was in May last year.
He was to officially leave office next month, but sources say there are no signs of ceremonies associated with the imminent departure of a KDF chief.
“If he was leaving, he would already have started visiting service command stations to bid them farewell. We would be seeing activities here and there but as of now, it is quiet. We are just waiting,” the source said.
There is speculation President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, may extend Gen Mwathethe’s term by a year.
Mwathethe’s predecessor Gen Julius Karangi also got two extensions.
Meetings for the military succession plans have been disrupted by the outbreak of coronavirus. Military chiefs are said to be planning to hold virtual meetings to plan the succession.
For More of This and Other Stories, Grab Your Copy of the Standard Newspaper.   Read Now »
The Number One Board, the organ that decides appointment and promotion of senior military officers and retirement or extension of contracts of Kenya Army, Kenya Navy and Kenya Air Force bosses, is expected to meet this month.
The KDF Act says a CDF, his deputy and service commanders shall serve a single term of four years, or retire upon attaining the mandatory retirement age.
But the Act also says the president may, on the recommendation of the National Defence Council, extend the CDF’s term for a period not exceeding one year in times of war or emergencies such as political uncertainty.
Mwathethe, a naval officer, was named CDF on April 17, 2015, replacing Gen Karangi of Kenya Air Force. This now means the seat will automatically go to Kenya Army, going by tradition.
Top on the list of those to succeed Mwathethe are his deputy Lt Gen Robert Kibochi, Army Commander Lt Gen Walter ole Raria and Lt Gen Leonard Ngondi, the force commander of the AU-UN Hybrid operation in Darfur, Sudan.
The other high-ranking officer who has a chance of being promoted to full General is National Defence College Commandant Lt-Gen Adan Mulata. He is, however, disadvantaged by the fact that he is from Kenya Air Force.
Whatever happens will depend on the outcome of the National Defence Council meeting where a decision on the way forward will be taken and the president advised accordingly.
Under the Tonje rules, the post of CDF is rotated among the three services – Kenya Army, Kenya Air Force and Kenya Navy. The rules, by Retired Chief of General Staff Gen Daudi Tonje, have guided appointments in KDF.
There has been silent lobbying by those hoping to succeed Mwathethe.
The new CDF will oversee the transition from the Kenyatta presidency in 2022. Regarding Somalia, KDF is supposed to withdraw its troops from the war-torn country by 2021, which the new CDF will also oversee.
The KDF Act also notes that in appointing the CDF, the president shall take into account the service, seniority, military and formal civil education – a degree from a university – and military and security experience.
A military general is supposed to retire at 62, a Lieutenant-General at 61, a Major-General at 59 and a Brigadier at 57 years.

Loading...

Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Standard Digital Telegram channel HERE.

Related Topics
CDF Samson MwathetheSamson Mwathethe

Comments

comments

Loading...
Continue Reading
Advertisement
Loading...
Advertisement
Loading...

Trending