* The City of Cape Town’s free wifi service in the Company’s Garden has had a poor response to date, with only a hundred internet users enjoying the service in 11 days since its inception, despite the excellent weather in the past week!
* Hermanuspietersfontein’s Die Bartho 2011 was named Best White Blend in the 2013 SA Terroir Awards.
* New SATSA (Southern African Tourism Services Association) President Francois Neethling plans to make his association a household name, its members offering credible travel and tourism products and services.
* More women are entering the hospitality industry and becoming chefs, says Eat Out Top 20 Finalist Chef Tanja Kruger of Makaron Restaurant in Stellenbosch.
* Media Nova has closed down, previous publishers of Cape Town Tourism’s Visitor’s Guide, and of the excellent Property magazine.
* Amarula has launched a dinkie 200 ml size of its internationally popular cream liqueur. ‘We’ve even named an elephant after Dinkie’ said Christelle Bester, Amarula Brand Manager, of the youngest member of an elephant herd under observation by the Elephant Research Programme, funded by the not-for-profit, Amarula Trust. (via media release from De Kock Communications)
* World Cup 2014 bookings from South Africa are off to a slow start as no match tickets have been allocated to tour operators, making it difficult for soccer fans to budget for the cost of these, writes Travel News Weekly. Hotel and transport costs have already risen, Rio de Janeiro now being the third most expensive city in the world. The tourism authorities capped hotel prices for the FIFA Confederations Cup matches in June, and will do so for the World Cup next year too. FIFA is launching its own World Cup packages via MATCH, which we know to have been an absolute rip-off in South Africa in 2010.
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage