Ol Malo Adventure Lodge
A Century in the Making
Guests of the Francombe family have the opportunity to witness Kenya through the eyes and minds of those who know and love the land the most, and learn that there is more to life in Africa than the Big Five.
Rocky Francombe’s grandmother, Olga Watkins, immigrated to Kenya from England to start a coffee farm during the era of Karen Blixen, of Out of Africa fame.
Colin Francombe’s father, Aubrey Francombe flew Queen Elizabeth out of Kenya after she received the news of her father’s passing, and became the first pilot to ever fly a British Queen.
Colin Francombe moved to Laikipia, where he has now resided for over 50 years, to begin a career in cattle ranching. He managed famous author and conservationist Kuki Gallmann’s ranch for 23 years.
The Samburu Trust opened the North’s first nomadic school for Samburu children, an education system that fits the needs and lifestyle of the pastoral people.
Colin and Rocky’s second daughter, Julia Francombe, founded The Samburu Trust to support all measures of conservation in the area, including education, healthcare, water supply, women’s opportunities, and eco-tourism.
Colin and Rocky Francombe purchased 5,000 acres of land in Laikipia and began to build Ol Malo Lodge by hand while living in tents on the property.
The first rock was laid at Ol Malo House, a project that would take two years to complete, while Andrew Francombe designed and managed the undertaking from his camper van on the land.
Andrew and Chyulu tied the knot at Ol Malo after eight years of dating. Their wild little offspring, Piper and Chalbi, are shaping up to be the next generation of Ol Malo owners and helicopter pilots.
Andrew purchased his first helicopter and launched Ol Malo Choppers, flying guests on expeditions all over Kenya and into the Great Rift Valley.