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Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 7:29 pm
by Ladyofthelake
As reported on SouthParks News, Chessington have submitted a screening opinion request for a new accommodation development comprising of 45 lodges, bar and lounge, reception building, and play areas. 34 of the lodges will be standard, whilst 11 will be classed a s premium offering views across the Wanyama Reserve.

The plans for the lodges follow what was outlined in the draft Long Term Development plan which the Resort consulted on back in May this year so it's not a total surprise to see these plans moving forward. It is perhaps going to frustrate many people as this would make the third major accommodation development at Chessington in recent years after the Azteca Hotel and Explorer Glamping. I think we can only hope that as this is the first project from the draft LTDP to come to fruition that we'll see more plans submitted in the near future for the theme park based projects.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 7:37 pm
by Liam.W
Out of all the parks, why Chessington? At this rate it will have more accommodation than it does decent rides!

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 8:44 pm
by Luce
Whilst it is nice that Chessington is being thought of in terms of development, I personally don't think it's the right way to go. I would rather they put money into bringing new rides and attractions to the park and also a general spruce up of the park as a whole would be good too.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Fri Nov 25, 2016 9:00 pm
by Twinklepark
It's a no brainer really. The real profit is made in the accommodation. With a lack of space and decent offering at Thorpe and Chessington being so close to rail connections into central London for the London midways, Chessington has turned into a bit of a south East hub. Dont get your hopes up for any park investment as it has less of a return and you just have to look at the dire state of AT yet still another hotel being built there too.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 8:43 pm
by Max
Liam.W wrote:
Out of all the parks, why Chessington? At this rate it will have more accommodation than it does decent rides!


Already does.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:19 am
by Owen
I have to say although I disagree with the accommodation forward direction Chessington are going, I feel once Explorer Glamping is gone that this will be a lovely little edition! Looking at the plans they seem to be copies of the Enchanted Village lodges which are really nice for family and personal getaways.

Lets just hope that this development will inspire them to build the 2/3 coasters previously mentioned more quickly!

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:00 pm
by lewis97
Yesterday Kingston Council determined that Chessington's lodge development will not require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). It's just a case of waiting for the full application to be submitted now, which I imagine won't be until the new year.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:44 pm
by lewis97
The full application for the Safari Lodge development was submitted last week, and SouthParks News has a full rundown of all the details.

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Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 4:56 pm
by Ladyofthelake
It's been a while since we had any news on the Safari Lodges, however, as reported by SouthParks News, the Resort have now submitted revised plans for a much smaller development comprising of just 34 lodges.

The 11 premium lodges, the bar named The Watering Hole, and the dedicated reception building have all been removed from the proposals. Instead, lodge guests will check in either via an app, or at a desk within the Safari Hotel. Food and beverage facilities will be provided by the exisiting infrastructure which may worry some as, like with some of Merlin's other hotels, the restaurants are already frequently fully booked in main season.

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Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 5:21 pm
by Swarm Chris
Why do Merlin have such an aversion to building restaurants, especially for their 'resort' offerings? This is something that they have done well in the past and is surely something they could be capitalising on more. Chessington certainly could have proper themed restaurants - something else for the annual passholders to do during the day and then to feed those staying at the end of the day.

At least the lodges look nice externally from the plans. Little concerned over the 'use your own device' key. I had that option recently with a major chain hotel and it didn't work. Merlin's mobile apps don't have the greatest reliability as it is.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:59 pm
by Justin
If they are like Enchanted Village lodges then I am happy. We should be grateful they didn't change the offering to pods!

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:14 pm
by Chris
It's a shame the bar has been cut, but still has the potential to be a lovely development.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:09 pm
by DerpyQuark
I like the look of these, but I don’t like them as much as the Stargazing Pods. And Chessington doesn’t need more accommodation!

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:48 pm
by lewis97
A document added to the application today, gives a planned completion date of March 2020 for the development, with it intended that construction will start in April 2019.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sun Nov 25, 2018 11:35 pm
by Jared
Chris wrote:
It's a shame the bar has been cut, but still has the potential to be a lovely development.

Just to confirm, the bar hasn't been 'cut'. It'll be part of a secondary expansion application once the initial set of Lodges is built. Essentially, Chessington ran into huge problems with the original application due to issues with London's planning department (basically a lot of politics got in the way). It was rejected, but in order to speed up the process, Chessington has submitted a new application that is less than 1000Sq meters in order to avoid the need for it to go to the planning departments in London. It's all to do with the greenbelt etc and it's all rather complicated, but this new approach speeds things up and gets it built in two phases.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2018 11:52 pm
by Jared
Sorry to double post, but it was approved on Christmas Eve.

Re: Safari Lodges Development

Posted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:31 am
by Chris
Jared wrote:
Sorry to double post, but it was approved on Christmas Eve.

Great news!