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Cottar’s Guides

Calvin Cottar

GOLD LEVEL GUIDE, DIRECTOR & OWNER

Calvin is the fourth generation of East Africa’s oldest family-run safari business. Having been guiding in the African bush since he was 15, he’s been awarded the Best Guide in Africa on several occasions (as well as being a KPSGA Gold Guide) and is regularly interviewed by the press, authors, and conservation enthusiasts.

Douglas Nagi

GOLD LEVEL GUIDE & DIRECTOR

‘Delta November’ as he’s fondly called: the man who holds us all together. Nothing seems to ruffle his feathers, he’s always ready with a helping hand and has a wealth of knowledge on numerous topics.

Enock Sayagie

SILVER LEVEL GUIDE

Our calm and wise, undercover hero. One of the nicest people you will ever be lucky enough to meet, Enock handles himself with all the grace and grandeur that you would expect from a stoic Maasai Warrior.

Josphat Mako

BRONZE LEVEL GUIDE

Mister FAN-TASTIC! Just wait, you’ll have a new best friend in no time, you can’t help it, Mako is just so much fun to be around. Born in the Mara, Mako joined Cottar’s initially as a trainee, then he learned how to drive, became a spotter and studied to become a guide (and also learnt English in the process).

Letura Kanae

BRONZE LEVEL GUIDE

Determined with a great sense of humour, is how to describe Letura; did you know that he ran the New York Marathon (a few years back, but still) AND with a smile on his face! He started at Cottar’s as a tracker/spotter, and was determined to become a guide which he has done effortlessly.

Cottar's Safaris Joseph

Joseph Ole Mpoe

SILVER LEVEL GUIDE

The best type of guide, so excited by what his home has to offer that he can’t wait to share it with anyone and everyone. Always looking for the next adventure…and usually finding it! “I have always loved what I do, and I always say that it’s the best office to wake up to.

Cottar's Safaris Wilson

Wilson Tumake Mpatiani

BRONZE LEVEL GUIDE

Strike a pose! A true performer – he leads our Maasai talks at camp and did a lot of modelling for the famous Anthony Russell (ask him to show you the fabulous photos). Our newest guide, he’s worked his way up with an astonishing amount of energy and merriment that you’ll soon be swept up in it.

Cottar's Safaris Letilet

Letilet

NATURALIST – IL TOROBO / NDOROBO HUNTER-GATHERER

Hunter-gatherer, Letilet Ole Yenko, whose mother was a Maasai, is an Il Torobo, or Ndorobo as they are sometimes called (a man without cattle). Letilet is a local medicine man who has had a book (‘Letilet’s Tales) and a documentary made about him (‘Life of an il Torobo Hunter-Gatherer’ – 8 million Youtube followers).

Cottar's Safaris Kinyaika

Kinyaika

POACHER TURNED TRACKER

Kinyaika is of the Wakamba tribe, born in the Ithumba area next to Tsavo East National Park. He grew up in a subsistence hunting family due to the harsh area not suitable for farming or livestock.

Cottar’s Heads of Departments

Cottar's Safaris - Amos

Amos Were

CAMP ACCOUNTS AND HR

Amos’ Father – Francis has worked for the Cottar family for over 35 years and is still with us! Francis is part of the family so when his son applied for a job there was no question he would be a superb addition to the team.

Cottar's Safaris - Lucy

Lucy Gakii

HEAD OF HOUSEKEEPING

Lucy is a powerhouse of smiles, work and warmth! Lucy joined Cottars from Lewa Safari Camps where she was the assistant manager. Her passion in housekeeping is second to none – always striving for absolute excellence from her team, Lucy is a force to be reckoned with.

Cottar's Safaris - Peris

Peris Aloyo

SUSTAINABILITY & CLIENT EXPERIENCE MANAGER

Peris leads our environmental management department and is also in charge of our guests’ experience. Prior to joining Cottars in 2017, she was a volunteer at Ecotourism Kenya under the standards and best practices program.

Cottar's Safaris - Grace

Grace Linti

FRONT OFFICE & SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT CREATOR

What can’t Grace do, that’s the question you should be asking. Grace is the ‘front office’ at camp and the content supervisor and on-ground content creator for Cottar’s social media. She is extremely efficient, energetic and always willing to help with whatever you may need.

Cottar's Safaris - Bonnieface

Boniface Muhati

HEAD CHEF

Our supremely talented and all round nice guy, Head Chef Bonny. His culinary career was inspired early on by his Mum’s love and respect for classical British cuisine and her baking skills. His chocolate tart is what dreams are made of, you must try his Tree Tomato Sorbet, oh and the peach chocolate.

Cottar's Safaris - William

William Otsieka

MESS SUPERVISOR

William (Will I Am) always has the biggest smile to welcome you to the dining table whether this table is in the camp, on the side of a hill or by a waterfall, William will have the table looking like you are on a movie set and will make you feel so incredibly welcome and warm!

Cottar's Safaris - Tanya

Tana Pike

CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

For us at Cottar’s, if there’s ever anything we need, then Tana’s the person we call. She knows how to manage the team fairly and get the job or jobs (let’s be honest there are usually numerous) done. She often works too hard, but knows how to enjoy a good glass of red wine too, and has a wicked sense of humour to boot.

Cottars Team - Karen

Karen Darnborough

HEAD OF MARKETING

Karen grew up on the Kenyan coast in the idyllic village of Watamu where her parents owned and ran a small hotel for most of her childhood. She went to secondary school in South Africa and then University in the UK, but couldn’t stay away from her home, Kenya.

Honour Schram de Jong

UK & EUROPEAN MARKETING REPRESENTATIVE

After a spate of jobs in which I could never quite settle I went back to university and studied a masters in International Hotel & Tourism and immediate embarked on a new adventure by accepting a role in Zambia, which is where my love for Africa began.

Brooke Berlin

DIRECTOR & THE AMERICAS MARKETING REPRESENTATIVE

Founder of Karoo Consulting, a company focused on promoting travel to Africa and supporting conservation and community non-profits, Brooke has been exploring the continent for 15+ years and has been to 19 of Africa’s 54 countries, most multiple times. As of 2022, she has collectively traveled to 60+ countries on 5 continents.

Cottars Team - Tanya

Tanya Leakey

CAMP MANAGER

Tanya grew up in a pretty remote part of Kenya, so being outdoors and in the bush is where she’s always felt most at home and at her happiest. She’s travelled quite extensively in and around Africa, but specifically in Kenya, “the Maasai Mara is high on the list of incredible places, there is something truly magical about it…”

Cottars Team - Taro

Taro Croze

ASSISTANT MANAGER

Taro is Kenyan born and raised, and has been working in the safari industry for almost four years. He has worked all over Kenya in luxury tented camps and lodges. He started as an activity coordinator in Loisaba Conservancy, Laikipia, with the Elewana Collection.

Mamma Naishuro Batian

RESIDENT EXPERT MAASAI BEADER

Mamma Naishuru is a widowed grandmother and our resident expert Maasai beader. She was born in the early 70’s and has been living within the Olderkesi area since childhood. She has been part of the Cottar’s team for about twelve years and finds joy in doing beadwork and aspires to learn more jewellery designs and also, advance her skills through formal training.

Director and Owner

Louise Cottar

Head of Accounts

Elijah Njuguna

Head of Reservations

Liz Kamau