I spent eight days in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) last week, in search of the perfect food experience, in a province I had last visited about ten years ago to attend Indaba, and the well-known Midlands area, which I had last visited more than 25 years ago.
The encouragement to visit the province was made more than a year ago by Chef Jackie Cameron, who is the most passionate proudly-KZNer I encountered on my journey, making it her business to support KZN produce, from the Midlands in particular, in using and in marketing it at every opportunity. Jackie has put KZN on the food and restaurant map over the past twelve years that she worked at Hartford House, making the Eat Out Top 10 Continue reading →
This week Cape Town Tourism launched a new ‘Hello Weekend‘ communications campaign at Indaba, to counter the dreaded Seasonality problem the hospitality and tourism industry in our city has in winter. The object of the Continue reading →
Africa Travel Week 2015 kicked off in the Cape Town International Convention Centre on Monday, and runs for the full week, attracting about 5000 delegates from around the world. The Africa Travel Week consists of three events.
On Monday International Luxury Travel Week commenced, 300 delegates welcomed to Cape Town and the Western Cape by provincial Minister of Tourism Alan Winde. He informed delegate that luxury travel is a growth Continue reading →
* The largest part of Camp Bay Drive, a major road connection between the city, Camps Bay, and Hout Bay, is to close for road widening and surface improvement for 5 months from 20 April, at a cost of R20 million. Between Rontree Avenue and Geneva Drive Camps Bay Drive will be widened by 1,4 meters, and sharp curves will be softened. It will be the first upgrade of Camps Bay Drive in 30 years.
* Grammy Award winner Pharrell Williams (singer of ‘Happy’) is working with Woolworths as its Style Director on a number of sustainability projects. He is due to visit our country in September, but only Continue reading →
* Eclectic Brands is set to list on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange later this month, a restaurant group consisting of an eclectic collection of restaurants, a deli, and a catering company: Burger Perfect, ChickinTyme, Giovanni’s Deliworld, Green Catering, Slug & Lettuce, and more.
* By the end of June, the City of Cape Town will be offering 61 free wifi hotspots in its public buildings, including the existing services in the Civic Centre, Hillstar, Plumstead, and Harare Library in Khayelitsha. A total of 69 exterior wifi spots are also available, including in Khayelitsha and Mitchell’s Plain.
The sod has been turned for the construction for the expansion to the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), which is certain to boost the Tourism industry in Cape Town specifically, and the Western Cape economy generally. Green design elements have been planned, to make the expansion section environmentally sustainable.
Western Cape Minister of Tourism Alan Winde said about the expansion: ‘The CTICC is a major economic catalyst and the planned expansion of the venue will significantly increase its capacity for meetings and exhibitions. This will boost business travel to the province and create more employment opportunities in the tourism sector. In the previous financial year, it is estimated that the CTICC created 7 500 jobs. This is an excellent example of infrastructure-led growth paving the way for increased employment for our residents’. The exhibition space will double by 10000 m², which means that Cape Town can bid for future Indabas, Africa’s largest tourism exhibition.
The Western Cape attracted 28000 conference delegates worth R347 million in the past year. In the current financial year this is Continue reading →
* The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) countries have signed an agreement to create a New Development Bank, reports The New Age. The Bank’s first loans will be made in 2016, from its pooled resources of $50 billion. South Africa is reported to have contributed R 5 billion to the establishment of the Bank. In addition, a $100 billion ‘contingency reserves pool‘ will be set up, to safeguard any of the five countries from being hit by ‘an exodus of foreign capital‘. The Bank headquarters will be in Shanghai, reports Mail & Guardian, while Johannesburg will be the regional centre of the Bank for Africa.
* SAA has been named Best Airline Africa for the 12th year running, and won the Best Airline Staff Service Africa award for the third time, presented at the Skytrax World Airline Awards in London. The airlines were evaluated on the basis of customer surveys conducted amongst 18 million travelers. SAA has a 4-star rating from Skytrax, the only airline in Africa to have achieved the service quality rating.
* The Tourism Business Council of South Africa has welcomed the appointment of new Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom, and has thanked the former Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk for his contribution to growing the Tourism industry in his ten year tenure. Minister Hanekom previously served as Minister of Agriculture and Land Affairs, and most recently as Minister of Science and Technology. (received via media release from the Tourism Business Council of South Africa)
* South Africa is against an Africa Tourism Tax, the Ministry of Tourism has stated, deeming it to be an ‘unworkable plan’. Taxes are country-specific and cannot be levied across the continent, the department said. Last week the African Union called for a tourism levy on flights and accommodation, which has also been opposed by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation. IATA has added its voice, saying that the proposed taxes would make travel within Africa even more expensive.
* SA Tourism has admitted that the number of visitors to Indaba earlier this month had declined Continue reading →
* Tourists do not want to ‘face administrative hurdles‘ in their visa application process when travelling in Africa, said Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairman of the African Union Commission, at Indaba at the weekend. Making visa applications easier, liberalising air routes, and acting against animal poaching could increase tourism to Africa, she added. Joint visas to travel within Africa are being considered. The African Union is working on making Africa the preferred travel destination in fifty years from now! Another goal is to motivate Africans to travel within Africa.
* Indaba 2014, which closed its exhibition doors today, attracted significantly fewer buyers than in previous years, and was criticised for having become ‘stale’, and for not having re-invented itself as was promised last year by SA Tourism’s Marketing head Jan Hutton. While larger than the recent World Travel Market Africa exhibition held in Cape Town, it disappointed attendees, many especially smaller tourism players not planning to return next year. The speed networking sessions were a shambles on Saturday and Sunday, with many buyers not present. Costs of catering were said to be prohibitive.
* The Great Wine Capitals Best of Wine Tourism Awards is open to entries for the 2015 Best of Wine Tourism Awards, in the Continue reading →