Pinewood Opens at Port Lympne Reserve

Pinewood offers a stay on the wild side at Europe’s first animal park resort.

Port Lympne Reserve’s latest accommodation promises to put the fun back into camping without the need to pitch a tent, whilst providing an immersive educational experience.
Port Lympne Reserve has officially opened the newest addition to its accommodation portfolio – Pinewood Camping Pods, cementing its reputation as the UK’s first animal focused holiday destination.

Damian Collins MP Deirdre Wells OBE and Bob O'Connor cut the ribbon at Pinewood Launch
Pinewood comprises ten contemporary camping pods situated within close proximity to the reserve’s lion, Amur tiger and cheetah enclosures and offers guests an immersive, educational experience with a focus on nature and the importance of conservation.
Bob O’Connor, Managing Director of Port Lympne Reserve said: ‘The addition of Pinewood, our most affordable accommodation option, means that we can now offer another exciting product to the UK’s popular staycation market. Pinewood is aimed at schools, groups and families on a budget and offers guests the opportunity to sleep within roaring distance of our lions, tigers and cheetahs.’

The site, built with funding from the ICAP Charity Day 2013, will operate all year round and can accommodate up to 44 guests at a time creating several new employment opportunities, whilst encouraging more tourism to the Kent area. Guests will enjoy exclusive access to parts of the reserve before it is open to the public, whilst school and youth groups can opt to take part in fact filled educational activities and enrichment building, alongside animal talks and feeds.
Damian Aspinall, Chairman of The Aspinall Foundation – the conservation charity working in conjunction with Port Lympne Reserve said: ‘We were honoured to be one of ICAP 2013 chosen charities. Our new ICAP funded educational immersive experience will provide the opportunity for Pinewood guests to learn about our conservation work in a fun and engaging way that will both inspire and motivate.’

The launch event on Friday 6th March was attended by guests from a wide range of organisations including UKinbound, Visit Kent, Shepway District Council and various public sector community service organisations in Kent.
Deirdre Wells OBE, UKinbound’s Chief Executive Officer said: ‘Port Lympne Reserve is a valued member of UKinbound and I was thrilled to be given the honour to officially open Pinewood today. Pinewood is an exciting addition to an already extensive portfolio of fantastic tourism product at Port Lympne Reserve. The dynamism of the experiences on offer here will be of great interest to not only our tour operator members, but international visitors alike, to be able to experience something unique, just an hour from London.’
Port Lympne Reserve, is the only visitor attraction in the UK offering a variety of short break accommodations, including luxury glamping at multi award winning Livingstone Lodge, longer stays at Elephant Lodge and year round relaxation at Livingstone Cottage and the boutique Port Lympne Hotel. Later this year, the Treehouse Hotel, the height of extravagance offering the ultimate treetop retreat, will be added to the reserve’s extensive accommodation portfolio.
Damian Aspinall added: ‘For us to continue to fund our vital conservation work we have to diversify. Pinewood is just one of several new developments for 2015 and beyond. This year we will also see the launch of our stunning new Treehouse Hotel – 10 luxury glass fronted suites, set high in the tree line overlooking the reserve.

The expansion of Port Lympne into a unique short break destination will not only strengthen our business, but more importantly, will enable us to continue the valuable conservation work we do, both in the UK and overseas.’ For further information, please visit www.aspinallfoundation.org/shortbreaks

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