Q&A: Portia Mchunu, Spa Manager

What made you want to join The Homestead team?

The vision behind it, I have been in the lodge industry for a while and I’ve seen how things happen. I loved what The Homestead was going to do, how it was going to shape the industry, the challenge it was going to bring and I felt like I needed that. I had to come and join


What is your favorite thing about being a spa therapist?

The ability to change peoples lives, the ability to make people happy. To make them feel comfortable, feel free. It’s such a safe space, we’re able to break that personal space barrier that people have, enter someone's space and transfer energy. Just being able to do that is phenomenal.


What is The Homestead Spa doing that no one else is doing?

We are going to literally reinvent the wheel. We are taking things that have been there and we are taking them apart. We are looking at new and innovative ways to make the guest experience even better. We want to be authentic, we want to be innovative and we want everything to be bespoke and specifically designed for the guests needs. We are really looking at shaking up the entire industry with what we are doing.

Can you explain more about the specialty massages?

We are working on some of the crystal ball massages, our Phinda massage offerings as well. We are also now looking at doing more 4-hand treatments, more African authentic treatments with more african ingredients. We are looking at getting plants from the reserve, and incorporating them into our holistic massages. It’s not necessarily just about relaxing the muscles but what we get from nature and what nature can do for us. We want to ground people as well and have them connect, not only to the homestead but to the nature and the ground and the reserve we are on.


What is special about The Homestead in-room treatments?

What we are aiming to do is to allow the guests to stay more in their rooms, even if you’re having a massage we can offer a bath with a herbal bag. The experience doesn’t end with the massage, we will leave you in your bath. It’s a continued experience, it’s something that is prolonged, not just cut off at the end of the massage. We want you to enjoy the massage but also enjoy your room, there’s so many times where guests don’t actually get to relax in their rooms and soak in the nature around them.

How would you like a guest to feel when they leave The Homestead Spa?

Rejuvenated, renewed, refreshed. A new person with a different outlook and to feel grounded. I’d love them to leave feeling a sense of appreciation for not only themselves, but for nature. To be in a thankful and a grateful spirit and mood.


What is your favorite animal and why?

A lioness. Those animals are powerful! They lead the pride quietly, they are strong, they hunt. They are go-getters and they’re beautiful. It’s strength but subtle strength. You’ll never see lionesses going crazy but you know that they harness that power and I love that. Absolutely love it.