Experience a Historic Part of Rwanda's Conservation Story as One&Only Gorilla's Nest re-imagines Jack Hanna's Cottage
One&Only’s second ultra-luxury nature resort in Rwanda, One&Only Gorilla’s Nest, is surrounded by a fragrant eucalyptus forest in the foothills of the breath-taking Volcanoes National Park, on the doorstep of where the rare mountain gorillas roam in the wild. Immersed in nature, the secluded resort now includes an iconic piece of conservation history- the past residence of famed wildlife expert Jack Hanna. The cottage has been reborn as a secluded space for guests to explore with a bespoke games room, fully equipped kitchen hosting interactive cooking classes led by the resort’s Executive Chef, as well as a library where guests can learn more about Rwanda’s conservation work.
The cottage has been fully restored by One&Only Gorilla’s Nest with great care and attention to the original design and architecture, making it an ideal hideaway during a busy adventure-filled escape. Jack’s legacy can be felt throughout the reimagined living areas, which maintain the original furniture and wood flooring as well as intimate private garden terrace. His character can also be seen in thoughtfully preserved details such as the original cottage sign, Jack’s guestbook documenting years of high-profile visitors to the cottage, and photography throughout which tells the story of his adventures in Rwanda.
The modernized space has been created with a luxury experience in mind, adding a games room where guests can spend a relaxing evening playing bespoke wooden board games and cards. The cosy snug is the ideal place to relax after a day exploring the National Park, screening nature and conservation documentaries, as well as offering guests the opportunity to watch their own videos and relive their Rwandan adventures. The cottage can be booked for private dining, serving a fully bespoke menu of traditional national cuisine, made from locally sourced ingredients, including many from the extensive onsite Chef’s Garden, engaging culinary events such as private cigar and whisky experiences and Rwandan cooking classes. Continuing Jack’s conservation legacy, talks from local Gorilla Doctors, who are experts on the health and survival of the gorillas, as well as the wider sustainability of the ecosystem, will be held at the cottage for guests to join and learn more about these incredible creatures and the conservation work to protect them.
For years, Jack Hanna’s Cottage hosted high-profile guests from tourists, philanthropists, dignitaries, and media, educating them on the majestic mountain gorillas found in the neighbouring Volcanoes National Park. Jack Hanna’s love story with Rwanda dates from 1984 when, as Director of Columbus Zoo, he first visited to catch a glimpse of the endangered mountain gorillas. After meeting the people of Rwanda, their rich culture, as well as the beautiful wildlife, he continued to make multiple visits to the country with his wife, Suzi, and the couple have made a trip to Rwanda almost every year since. Jack and his team further believed that it was not out of malice or negligence that forests were getting destroyed and animals killed by poachers, but rather the poverty that had affected many communities, and the answer was to empower local residents to protect wildlife. Under Jack’s leadership, Columbus Zoo’s Partners In Conservation collaborated with the International Gorilla Conservation Program (IGCP), Gorilla Doctors, and the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International with the aim to protect the gorillas’ habitat through educational campaigns, working closely with Rwandan residents to improve conservation within the country to great results.
“My wife, Suzi, and I were excited to deepen our relationship with Rwanda by building a cottage near the habitat of the majestic mountain gorillas,” said Jack Hanna. “We have so much love for this beautiful country - its leadership, its people, its wildlife. Rwanda will always be our home away from home.”
One&Only Gorilla’s Nest reopened on 1 September 2020 and is the second One&Only in Rwanda. Together with One&Only Nyungwe House, the resort offers guests the ultimate ultra-luxury twin-centre experience to discover this fascinating country. One&Only Nyungwe House and One&Only Gorilla’s Nest are part of One&Only’s evolved portfolio, including resorts in exceptional locations of authentic and wild nature. For more information or reservations, please visit: oneandonlygorillasnest.com
Rates at One&Only Gorilla’s Nest include breakfast, lunch and dinner, non-alcoholic beverages and two complimentary activities per person, per day. Trekking with the mountain gorillas and selected other activities have an additional cost.
Created exclusively for the ultra-luxury market, One&Only is conceived as a hallmark of excellence. Set in some of the most beautiful locales in the world, each award-winning resort offers guests a distinctive style and personality borne of its local culture, a genuine hospitality and a lively energy that is unrivalled. The exclusive collection includes One&Only Reethi Rah in the Maldives; One&Only Le Saint Géran in Mauritius; One&Only Royal Mirage and One&Only The Palm in Dubai; One&Only Palmilla and One&Only Mandarina in Mexico; One&Only Cape Town in South Africa; Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley in The Blue Mountains in Australia; One&Only Desaru Coast in Malaysia; and One&Only Nyungwe House and One&Only Gorilla’s Nest in Rwanda. As part of the new portfolio, One&Only will be opening One&Only Portonovi in Montenegro in 2021. Additional resorts in development include One&Only Kéa Island in Greece and One&Only One Za’abeel in Dubai as well as communities of One&Only Private Homes around the world. More information on One&Only is available at oneandonlyresorts.com