We can scour the world in search of those stretches of sand that epitomise remote, raw and rustic island life, with an element of extravagance added to the criteria. Where the waters are those transparent, mellow blankets of blue and the trees are occupied by monkeys giddily scrambling for coconuts and mangoes. The beaches are an endless runway of vanilla and the image you have of yourself denotes a tranquil tale of eternal bliss, as you succumb to the sun’s warm rays, under a hat, with a drink in hand, a book in the other and a willing participation in barefoot luxury.
Very few places – if any – come close to the idyllic attributes of the archipelago islands of Mozambique. A place where the rustic marries the regal with honour and integrity, and then elopes with your heart for the rest of your days.
Settled on the tip of the San Sebastian peninsula, just off the vibrant mainland town of Vilankulo, Marapi languidly rests upon the southern shoreline of the Vilanculos Coastal Wildlife Sanctuary – where some of the richest biodiversity in Mozambique exists. Five exquisitely chic individual villas – with their indoor and outdoor luxury bathing facilities – dart off down meandering wooden walkways with wrought iron railings, sitting in the canopy of the trees, overlooking the ocean. The main fabric of the property comprises of an open living and lounging space with a gorgeous bar, long, spacious decks with daybeds and recliners, a swimming pool and a dining area – where all of the indulging of the fresh tropical fruit, sizzling seafood and fine Xima, peri peri, pão and spicy mango achar feasting takes place. The interiors have been cleverly considered and stylishly executed by the owners who have a discerning eye for textiles, colours, local earthenware, cabinetry and craft. Its rough, raw stone, polished concrete and thatch hold the spaces together with authenticity.
With the hideaway being so secluded on the peninsula you get the feeling you have paradise all to yourself. You’ll spend your days with your bevy of family and friends, lounging around the comfy recliners, under the trees, listening to the birds and the soothing sea waves as they drift in and out. A slow game of cards or scrabble or backgammon is on the go, as the occasional Eland saunters along the beach, dodging the cute crabs that are burrowing their way through the sand.
The odd dip in the pool then back to all of those books you’re ploughing through or perhaps finally preparing that memoir for print. A place like Marapi holds those hidden chapters that are willing to surface when inspiration presents itself.
You’ll spend hours in the water, on little boats, swimming with the turtles and rays and dolphin. Occasionally you’ll head out to the deep sea and go fishing, or remain in the shallows for some snorkelling and canoeing. Savouring every simple moment of what epitomises an idyllic elopement to pure and utter paradise.
What we love!
What you need to know…
Reviewed by Colleen Ogilvie
Five bedrooms, all with:
1 x king bed
En suite with bath, shower & outside shower
Fan above the bed within the mosquito net
A large outdoor decked seating area
Accessed via the outside (not part of the lodge building)
1 x guest loo
All linen & towels provided
Pool towels provided
WiFi – can be intermittent dependent on signal
House Marapi serves three main meals a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner. The food is inspired by local cuisineand is served family-style
Laundry is at an additional cost to guests
A skipper is available as part of the booking
You will be collected from Vilankulos Airport and transferred to the beach where you will be met by the skipper and transferred to House Marapi by boat. On arrival at the boat you will walk through water on the beach so pack some waterproof shoes handy. Have some sunblock nearby for the boat trip.
*For any additional use of the boat, fuel will be billed directly to the guests at the end of their stay.
**All activities include the WWF fees.
From USD300 per night