Like a galloping behemoth from Greek mythology, Exclusive Tents is carried across the hospitality landscape by hundreds of feet that never stop running, hundreds of hands that never stop reaching and a collective of minds that never stop imagining. Leaving a trail of creative and exotic canvas structures in its wake, this glorious beast of a company, ambulating magnificently across the horizon is instantly recognisable. At the helm is Paul Zway, glamping’s most unique CEO, who has deliberately gone out of his way to make his clients, his staff and his contemporaries believe that anything is possible.
THE CHOICE OF SAFARI TENTS
Considering the background of the company’s founder who spent seventeen years working as a game ranger at Kruger National Park in his native South Africa. It is not surprising that, after so much time spent sleeping in one, that the aesthetic and signature style of their products are biased towards the African safari tent. Although, who could have guessed there would be such variety to the use of stretched khaki canvas?
The luxurious tents are particularly popular with the sorts of industries requiring the highest and most exclusive standards. With that in mind, Exclusive Tents counts the biggest glamping sites, hotel brands and safari operators as their regular customers, consultants, and friends. Paul is constantly on the go as well, meeting and offering advice and candour; intently solution focussed and a grand lover of a challenge you could define his approach to running a business in one line:
“Listen to what your customers have to say brother.”
THE IMAGINE COLLECTION
With the year ending Exclusive Tents has launched a versatile collection of products that succinctly proves the only way to pioneer an industry is to be the one pushing against the boundary line.
The Imagine Collection, in partnership with Johan Maree and his son Louwrie, is a collection of tents of the highest quality that are easy (read affordable) to manufacture and setup.
“Our vision was for our customers to have a way to easily design their own tents in any shape or size, using paper cut-outs,” Paul explains, “This procedure forms an important part of our creation process where the dreamscapes of our clients’ visions can be made into something tangible.”
Mindfulness was paramount whilst building the prototypes, every part was considered and appraised against their joint experience of several decades of building and erecting tents. Aesthetics were a crucial factor in the concept design, to ensure that the tents kept the romantic elegance that Exclusive Tents is so well known for.
“A few factors had to be taken into account,” says Paul, “Such as competitive pricing and shortening the production time through innovative manufacturing. We have increased wind speed and snow bearing capability and the ease to which any part can be replaced if needed, such as a section of canvas body or wall panel. Meaning that any repair work can be done easily and efficiently on site.”
Encouraging creative interior design layouts plays a significant role in turning a vision into a reality where minor changes here-and-there often result in significant differences. For example, ease of setup has been improved upon yet again and in addition to some new offerings (scalloped ridgeline and eaves, rounded, or squared off ends) customers have the ability to upgrade from standard features.
“The Imagine Collection is made of the very best materials available to ensure the best longevity and return on investment and will be formally introduced and released in early 2023.”
DESALINATION: a new sustainable way:
As glamping locations become increasingly advanced and adventurous, the need to offer peripheral solutions beyond accommodation becomes more important. In past features with Exclusive Tents, we have covered how glamping sites in more exotic locations are often at the mercy of the elements as a price for offering these locations for guests to stay. Securing plumbing can be a problem in the most remote areas and so as a new addition to their Essentials Category, Exclusive Tents have partnered with an innovative company who have perfected a low cost, fossil-free desalinisation solution that requires limited maintenance to create pure fresh water.
During the desalination process, the seawater and fresh water is separated, resulting in an outflow with a high concentration of salt. This so-called brine is often 100% saltier than seawater, resulting in negative effects on the marine ecosystem. Brine pools can be lethal and fish entering them can suffer severe toxic shock within seconds of exposure. Globally, desalination systems discharge 142 million m³ of brine a day, posing a major risk to aquatic life. Additionally, toxic chemicals, such as copper and chlorine, are used as anti-scalants and anti-foulants which pollute the oceans even more. In contrast to other desalination plants, the Essential Category system by Exclusive Tents, runs on a low recovery ratio and does not use any chemicals in the desalination technology. Operating on a low recovery ratio result in the outflow being only slightly saltier than the source water (instead of being 100% saltier). That way, negative environmental impact is avoided, making desalination a truly sustainable solution to water scarcity for generations to come. These systems can be containerized using eight’ – 40’ containers, producing from 5m3 to 100m3 per day and that is a lot of pure fresh water using about 75% less energy than traditional desalination.
LIVING SHOW ROOMS.
Paul understands the importance of immersion when it comes to deciding on which sort of glamping accommodation is suitable for you. First-time buyers into the industry may have never actually had the opportunity to be fully immersed into an environment. Having spent much of his professional life sleeping in tents in the bushveld, Paul knows how important it is for those wanting to get involved to understand the right way of doing it.
“How does a tent influence your ability to hear the world around you, what part would the location play in your ability to sleep. What sort of experience can be offered when you combine a unique, luxurious safari tent with an unusual location in an unusual area?”
Paul reveals that new tents are already being manufactured and destined for the “Living Showroom,” which will be located in the bushveld within The Dome, the largest impact crater on earth which is also a recognized UNESCO Heritage Site.
“When completed,” Paul says, “Our clients will not only be able to view our tents, but they will be able to overnight in the showroom and be immersed in the best of both worlds.”
Exclusive Tents International Ltd
*as seen in The Logbook