Sitting in an Angama Mara design meeting was akin to a crazy rollercoaster ride. All three designers – architects Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, and interior designer Annemarie Meintjes pushed every boundary imaginable.
The goal was to find a balance between creative madness, a fresh approach to lodge design and a distinctive look – all the while staying true to what guests expect when going on safari in Africa. In the middle of it all, was the inimitable Lesley Fox who simply just made it all happen.
Silvio Rech & Lesley Carstens
Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens have spent the past 20 years developing a hand-crafted haute couture body of work in Africa. Where possible, their design philosophy has been to live onsite (in many instances in exotic locations such as North Island in the Seychelles), managing one project at a time by developing and creating a total design: a new language of architecture and lifestyle specific for that location.
Annemarie is Chanel-red lips and black Chinese suits. She is also the best storyteller alive, rooted both in South Africa and the soil of the many nations she has explored on her travels. AM was born to be in media, and spent her early days in TV training, followed by a stint in magazine fashion. She then joined fellow media creative force Karen Roos, and together they spear-headed a new magazine RED that made a deep impression on the South African fashion scene.
In her whirlwind of creativity, Annemarie has published a number of books on design, and her life is currently filled by the style bible, SA’s design wunderkind VISI magazine, for which she is the Deputy Editor. AM has known Steve & Nicky for over 20 years, but this is their first project together. Follow her or watch this video on her vision for Angama Mara.