It is our pleasure to introduce the heart and soul of Shumbalala Game Lodge. At Shumbalala we value everyone, mostly you as our guest but also every member of the team. Some will become very familiar to you and then some will be making your stay memorable by working behind the scenes which is equally important.
Meet the Team
I loved the outdoors and animals since I was a little girl and my dream was to be a veterinarian but instead I was offered an opportunity to foster some wild animals and from there to get actively involved with the lodge industry.
I have a bubbly personality and love dealing with guests so I turned my attention to guest satisfaction.
After gaining thirteen years' experience climbing the ladder, I now find myself exactly where I love to be at Shumbalala Game Lodge. Here I can focus my attention on personalized service.
I strive to give our guests the best experience when they visit our beautiful country. I enjoy every moment knowing that I get to make someones dream holiday come true and have the best time of their lives.
Hostess & Duty Manager
I was born and raised in a small village called Athol where I finished my school career.
It is during this time that I realized I had a passion for the hospitality industry in which I then proceeded in obtaining a hospitality diploma.
I am grateful for the special people in my life who believed in me and offered me the opportunity to grow and further my career.
It brought me to Shumbalala Game Lodge, where I am today.
Shumbalala Game Lodge is a magnificent place.
Here you want to free your mind and heal your soul - do not hesitate to book with us!
I call this place home and when you leave, you will understand why and call it home also.
I look forward to welcoming you to Shumbalala Game Lodge.
Francois van Rhyn
Field Guide & Duty Manager
Since I can remember I knew that I will end up doing something animal related as I've always been interested in animals and nature.
Being a wildlife enthusiast, I followed my dream in becoming a Wildlife Photographer. During this remarkable experience I found myself where I always dreamt of being... in the BUSH!
Shortly after the photography course I pursued my dreams further and became a field guide.
I am so fortunate to be working at a world renowned Lodge in the heart of Big 5 territory, where my dream and my job became my lifestyle.
I am amazed at how much the bush has to offer and how much I still get to learn from it.
Come and join us in the amazing and brilliant experience we call, Safari.
Field Guide & Duty Manager
I grew up in the small town in Kwazulu Natal, I always enjoyed the outdoors and was outside the house every moment I could get. I did my guiding course in the Kruger National Park and fell completely in love with the area. I have never looked back on my choice on becoming a guide, everything about nature is amazing. Animal behavior is what I like to focus on as every sighting is different and passing on the knowledge I have built up over the past fourteen years to guests makes the experience more enjoyable, creating a holistic experience of the environment. I am constantly learning more about nature so that I can lead you as the guest on a guided nature experience that Is like none other. I have been doing bush walks for the last eleven years and absolutely love being out in nature.
Shumbalala Game Lodge, being a boutique lodge, really let’s you have the opportunity of getting to know your guests on a more personal level. I can say that you will feel like part of the family when you depart after time spent with us.
I was born in the Klaserie Nature Reserve, (a stone's throw away from Thornybush) I am 44 years young and a father to a son and two daughters.
At a very young age I had a keen interest in animals and at the young age of 19 I decided to attend a tracking academy. I obtained my level 2 tracking qualification, and got my first job as a tracker soon after I graduated.
I went on to obtain my level 3 and 4 tracking qualification over the next few years in various Nature Reserves. I am only one year away from obtaining the ultimate tracking qualification of becoming a Master Tracker.
Sam looks forward to welcoming you at Shumbalala with his warm friendly smile where you can experience his great skills out in the natural habitat of the big 5
Deborah is the newest member of the family while Sheila has been with us for many years.
Their smiles would win any guest over long before their impeccable service does.
They are happy to serve and to share many special memories with our guests.
From left to right:
Onicah Ngobeni, Sarah Gumede, Susan Mosoma
These ladies are at your service and am responsible for your immaculate room which is serviced three times per day. Onicah and Susan has been the longest standing family members, dating back since before Shumbalala has been revamped in 2001 while Sarah is the newest member to the family!
Maintenance & Gardening Team
Maintenance & Gardening
Raymond & Isack ensures that the gardens remain in perfect condition and that all maintenance are of top standard to ensure that you, our guest have a care-free holiday.
They are continually in argument with the warthogs who considers Shumbalala their preferred bathing and grazing destination!