Tag Archives: Grant Pascoe

Cape Town Cup 2015: Football flop, scandalous waste of City of Cape Town budget, topples Tourism!

CapeTownCup_300The Cape Town Cup, which took place on 24 and 26 July last weekend, is the biggest Football Flop the City of Cape Town has thrown ratepayers’ money at, estimated to be R 30 million!

I am not a supporter of the ANC politics in the City of Cape Town Council meetings nor those at provincial level, but the reports yesterday, quoting both Tony Ehrenreich and Marius Fransman, made me sit up and take note.

Driving past the Cape Town Stadium last Friday at 18h00, the starting time of the first match, I was surprised at how easy it was to get to the V&A Waterfront, my usual route leading past the Stadium. Other than the Stadium Continue reading →

WhaleTales Tourism, Food, and Wine news headlines: 22/23/24 August

WhaleTalesTourism, Food, and Wine news headlines

*   The City of Cape Town is spending R3 million on the soccer match between Bafana Bafana and Nigeria for the Africa Confederation (AfCon) Cup qualifier at the Cape Town Stadium on 10 September. One wonders what benefit this would have for the tourism industry. In the past the soccer matches with international teams have not benefited our city and its tourism industry when former Councillor and Tourism Mayoral Committee member Grant Pascoe used this as his main strategy to try and boost tourism! (received via Twitter and Kfm)

*   UK wine writer Jancis Robinson praises Franschhoek as a gourmet and tourism town, but writes that there are few wineries. She describes it as a place ‘where the swallows make their own wine!  She highlights Boekenhoutskloof as the best known and Chamonix as the most consistently performing wineries in the village. She generally praises Franschhoek’s terroir as being ideally suited to Sémillon, and particularly winemaker Gottfried Mocke’s Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon blend, the 2012 vintage in particular.

*   Tourism booking cancellations have led Cape Town Tourism to issue a statement about Ebola:‘Cape Town Tourism would like to remind would-be visitors that there have been no confirmed cases of Ebola in South Africa during the recent outbreak. In Continue reading →

WhaleTales Tourism, Food, and Wine news headlines: 17/18 May

WhaleTalesTourism, Food, and Wine news headlines

*   Brent Perremore of Orphanage Cocktail Emporium has won the Cape Town leg of the World Class Mixologist competition with his ‘Gift from Persia‘ cocktail, made as follows:  50ml Ron Zacapa, 25ml Dolin Dry Vermouth, 15ml homemade date syrup, and 3 dashes of naartjie and green cardamom bitters. (received via Communication Services Africa)

*   International arrivals at Cape Town International in the first quarter of this year increased by 3% compared to the same period last year, according to Western Cape Tourism Minister Alan Winde.  In total all arrivals increased by 1% in the same year, meaning that Domestic tourist arrivals declined in this period.  (received via media release from the Minister’s office)

*   Cape Town and the Western Cape is the most popular conference destination in Africa, according to Continue reading →

Cape Town Mayoral Committee for Tourism, Events, and Marketing Grant Pascoe defects to ANC, loses portfolio with immediate effect!

Cape Town StadiumWhat excellent news it was to see on Twitter yesterday afternoon that now former Councillor Grant Pascoe has defected to the ANC for ‘personal reasons’, a decision Mayor Patricia de Lille (who appeared to be a close friend), said caught her by surprise.  She announced that he has been stripped of his position as Councillor and as Mayoral Committee member of Tourism, Events, and Marketing with immediate effect.   We have been very critical of Pascoe’s lack of marketing knowledge and leadership, once again leaving our City’s tourism industry without a marketing plan for the forthcoming winter, which kicked in earlier than usual last week!

The announcement was made by the ANC, and not by Pascoe himself.  The political party said: ‘Councillor Pascoe joins an overwhelming number of South Africans, who despite finding themselves in other political parties, recognise the ANC as the only organisation with the track record, capacity, and determination to build a South Africa’.  Pascoe explained that he was unhappy with the direction which the DA was taking, and had discussed this internally.  To avoid a fight, he decided to leave. He said he feels ‘at home‘ in the ANC, EWN reported! Yet on Pascoe’s Facebook page for his ‘political organisation‘, his ‘About Grant Pascoe’ still states: ‘The Democratic Alliance is South Africa and Cape Town’s best hope for a better future for all our people‘!

Pascoe served as a City of Cape Town DA Councillor for 13 years, and as a Mayoral Committee member for eight years, the last four of which were heading up the Tourism, Events, and Marketing portfolio.  Two years ago he initiated the creation of a Tourism, Events and Marketing directorate, which reported to him and is headed up by Anton Groenewald.  Pascoe’s sole contribution was to bring soccer events to Cape Town, which made no impact on the tourism industry in terms of bookings, reflecting his personal interest in soccer.   From the outset we have criticised Pascoe’s incompetence in the Tourism portfolio: Continue reading →

City of Cape Town Sweet & Sour Service Awards!

City Hall Sweet ServiceThe Sweet Service Award goes to the City of Cape Town, for its announcement that it is to spend R 25 million to upgrade the City Hall, in its attempt to position Cape Town as the Events Capital of Africa, according to Mayoral Committee member for Tourism, Events, and Marketing Grant Pascoe.  In 2013 the venue hosted 143 events attended by more than 150000 persons.  The City Hall is a beautiful building with character and history, and the renovations will include roof repairs and the protection of the ‘architecture and design of the ceiling‘, reports the Cape Times.  The City Hall’s toilet facilities are shocking, despite an upgrade last year, and one hopes that a few pennies will be made available for the modernisation of these.

Street lights Kloofnek Road 6 March Whale Cottage PortfolioThe Sour Service Award goes to the City of Cape Town, for its wastage of electricity on Thursday 6 March, the day of the country-wide electricity load-shedding, in that all the street lights on Camps Bay Drive, Kloofnek Road, and on the highways were switched on during the daytime, despite various parts of the city experiencing electricity cuts, causing havoc for businesses as well as residents!

The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog.  Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at  whalecot@iafrica.com.   Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the www.whalecottage.com website.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio:  www.whalecottage.com  Twitter: @WhaleCottage

WhaleTales Tourism, Food, and Wine news headlines: 31 January

WhaleTalesTourism, Food, and Wine news headlines

*   The African Nations Championship 2014 will come to an end at the Cape Town Stadium tomorrow, with a closing ceremony, followed by the third and fourth place play-off, and the Final thereafter.   The Closing Ceremony is themed ‘Celebrating Africa’s Home Champions’, explained City of Cape Town Councillor for Tourism, Events, and Marketing Grant Pascoe to The New Age.   Ghana plays Libya in the Final, while Nigeria and Zimbabwe will battle it out for places three and four.

*  American air travellers would ideally like a passage that allows free baggage, confirmed seats, and security fast passes.  They do not want to pay for baggage.  They are however prepared to pay for overhead space for hand luggage, for their luggage to come out first at Baggage Claim, to have comfortable seats, to have extra legroom, complimentary meals, and to not have a reclining seat in front of them!

*  South Africa ranks 29th out of 140 countries on the World Economic Forum Travel & Tourism Index, and third in Africa (after Seychelles and Mauritius) on this Index.

*   Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, with their family, are said to live in Johannesburg for a few months, while Pitt works on a  movie Continue reading →

African Nations Championship (CHAN 2014) soccer tournament kicks off in Cape Town today, a non-event?!

0910PH0366The 2014 African Nations Championship, referred to as CHAN 2014, kicks off at Cape Town Stadium today, with few tickets sold, and a scandal surrounding South Africa Football Association (SAFA) Cape Town Vice President Vernon Seymour.

CHAN 2014 is the first international soccer tournament to be held at the Cape Town Stadium since the 2010 World Cup.  Sixteen African teams will participate in 32 matches across the country, playing matches at stadia in Cape Town (including Athlone Stadium), Bloemfontein and in Polokwane.  The tournament theme is ‘Celebrating Africa’s Home Champions’.

The African Nations Championship will commence with the Opening Ceremony at 16h00 today, which includes performances by Jimmy Dludlu, The Soil, Mi Casa, and Zolani Mkhiva.  The New Age reports that more than 300 dancers and models will form part of the Opening Ceremony  At 18h00 the first match of the tournament kicks off, with local team Bafana Bafana playing Continue reading →

Cape Town overwhelmed by one of busiest Festive Seasons ever!

Cape Town Festive Season Cape Town PartnershipCape Town experienced one of its busiest Festive Seasons ever, so much so that the city can be said to have been out of control as far as access to its attractions, beaches, shopping malls, and roads was concerned.  Perfect weather and a weak Rand attracted locals to the Mother City.  Once again the Atlantic Seaboard was the most attractive location for tourists in terms of restaurants, beaches, and accommodation, with resultant chaos in this area in particular at all levels.

The Festive Season period was a very short ten day period, from 27 December – 5 January this year, and almost every accommodation establishment, especially those on the Atlantic Seaboard, was fully booked.  Guests were predominantly from Johannesburg, or living overseas with South African family connections, meeting up in the city.  At Whale Cottage Camps Bay our international visitors were Norwegian, British, and Dutch during this period.

While it felt fantastic that Cape Town was so popular, one felt that the city was doing itself a disservice in that tourists had to experience: Continue reading →

Cape Minstrels march colourful yet disruptive start to New Year in Cape Town!

Minstrels 2014I did not venture near the city centre on Saturday to see the annual Cape Minstrels march, held on 4 January this year for the first time, to allow more participants than would be the case on the traditional Tweede Nuwe Jaar (2 January), when some of the troupe members would have to be back at work.   It is a shame that a tradition with so much heritage should be marred with political posturing by the City of Cape Town and the ANC, and that the Cape Town city centre streets were gridlocked yet again.  More than 40000 minstrels were reported by The New Age to have participated.

The city centre was largely closed off for parking for the day, Wale Street being on the route and having metal stands to prevent any parking.  We read that some Minstrel march enthusiasts camped on the city’s pavements from the night before, to get the best view of the march.  The day started off badly, the troupes leaving Bo Kaap later than announced.

As the 75 troupes marched down from Bo Kaap via Wale Street to the Grand Parade, it caused traffic mayhem on Buitengracht Street in both directions, this street being an important road in and out of Cape Town, as well as on Long Street, as one could not cross Wale Street.  We were told that despite horrific parking Continue reading →