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“At 23:56 on 23rd October 1963, Zambians rose in reverence of the Union Jack, the de facto national flag of the United Kingdom, for the last time as it lowered, signifying the end of British rule in Zambia.”

― Precious Mwansa-Chisa

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The hustle and bustle of city life can get you down, especially with all the things currently working against us. That being said, we Zambians have a real tenacity. My documentary about the Zambian national football team is a testament to that. We always find a way to persevere.

The notion of a staycation has beguiled me, having been unable to travel abroad for some time. The entrepreneur life requires sacrifice, to the detriment of my mental health. I have not been able to find enough outlets or places of inspiration to rest and flex my mind’s creative muscles accordingly. When Le Elementos’ General Manager Cisanga Mwanza extended an invitation for an experiential stay, I jumped at the chance to find a way to transform the frustration in my unreleased creativity, into healing. I was not prepared for how effective hiding away in plain sight would be.

Chisanga Mwanza – Les Elementos Manager

After a long week, I was ushered into a beautiful room and instantly transported out of Lusaka, out of Zambia, and into outer space. My imagination ran wild, inspired by the textured and glittering stucco wall centring the room. All the stars in the universe were collected just for that feature for sure. With the curtains drawn, I felt like I had been placed in my own intergalactic space pod and I was off to “a galaxy far, far away.” Over the weekend I did whatever I wanted with my time and ventured out to explore if and when I wanted to. I have a list of 50 things that make me happy, to find joy in the little things, turning mundane moments into something special, so I did things like working out to my favourite YouTube Videos. Watching downloaded fluff from Netflix.Drinking glasses of red wine. Eating good food in-house. Nibbling on chocolate often. Refreshing with the cucumber and lemon water always available in the lobby. Winding down with copious amounts of tea.. Enjoying two amazing nights of deep and revitalising sleep facilitated by a comfortable king-sized bed large enough to cradle this queen’s big dreams.

It was easy to enjoy creating, even just for play’s sake, in a stress free environment. Surrounded by all the textures, colours, materials and decor accents thematically clustered about the modern artsy hotel provided a uniformly eclectic, and much welcomed, stream of inspiration. Captain Cisanga and her crew ensured the only decisions I had to make were what to eat, making me feel at home away from home so my mind was free to wander off into places where it had the space to manifest new ideas without limits.

Boutique hotels have been popping up in Lusaka over the past few years but Le Elementos stands out to me. It had exactly what I needed to recharge my batteries and kick start my creativity again. The idea of a staycation is not so far-fetched anymore – it’s actually an easy thing to do, now that there are options to get away without the hassle of organising a trip out of town or out of the country. Le Elementos is a great option for locals looking for a classy, yet relaxed, safe haven. The two days I spent was more than enough time to recharge. Buzz Lightyear has nothing on this Ndhlovukhazi Storyteller – I am well on my way “to infinity and beyond” with the energy and zest for life I have regained. Hitting pause on your life can actually help you to press play and get the ball rolling. I highly recommend you try taking time out in the city, and when you do, whether you travel by rocket ship or car, Le Elementos is ready to receive you.

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