Text by Marita van Rooyen
Sophia Dale Basecamp, located next to the Swakop River 12 km east of Swakopmund beyond the dreaded mist belt, is where you will feel completely at home with the Lütz family.
After falling in love with the uncomplicated lifestyle Namibia offers (having travelled only 25 km along the route to Boshua Pass), the Lütz family bought the Sophia Dale Basecamp, packed up their life in Germany, and moved to Namibia.
They added a luxury B&B section, restaurant and beer garden to the existing package, did extensive revamps of the self-catering rondawels – The Royal House – and expanded the facilities to include a spacious campsite and canopied parking spots for mobile homes. “We’ll make sure you feel well taken care of – regardless of the accommodation you choose. We strive to provide our guests with just the right mix of hospitality and service in our endeavours to make visitors feel not only at home, but also that they are right where they belong.”
The kitchen is where Manfred blooms – he calls it his dance floor – while wife Michaela adds the soft side to the business.
Here homemade German-speciality sausages and game meats are king, forming part of the breakfast option, and are for sale. Manfred learned the tricks of the meat-producing trade from his father, who also taught him to make ‘the German answer to Namibian droëwors’, a dried meat speciality of game and pork cuts with beef and pork fat and just the right amount of special spice. “My version doesn’t stick to your palate,” he boasts. He is also a qualified Master Butcher.
Think salami, fleischwurst, jagdwurst, blut wurst, leberwurst, sülse, meatloaf, leberkäse, cabanossi, bierknacker, wieners, meatballs… Have a German-food fantasy! Manfred will bring it to life.
Don’t forget to ask about the Padkos options and sample the all-time favourite: filet steak with garlic butter, fresh Swakopmund asparagus and crispy chips! As Manfred says, “Fresh from the field, through the oven, and straight onto your plate!”
Also, every Thursday, Sophia Dale hosts the local German Club’s food evening, with local food fundis coming over from neighbouring farms to enjoy a range of German delicatessen and specialities. Visitors in the self-catering facilities can order fresh rolls and hot filter coffee in a flask the night before, and enjoy a pleasant wake-up call the next morning. Or buy some sausages to take along on the rest of your journey – vacuum-sealed and perfect for camping. Manfred also concocts a well-flavoured goulash soup – also sealed and packaged for your convenience in the form of a large plastic sausage.
The Lütz family feels at home in Namibia. The feeling is infectious – join in and make Sophia Dale your home for a night, a week, or for however long you want!