* The theme song ‘Ordinary Love’ of ‘Mandela; Long Walk to Freedom’ won a Golden Globe last night for Best Original Song, written and performed by Bono and U2, reports The New Age.
* SA Tourism USA has launched a new website, with the theme ‘What’s Your Big 5?’, highlighting the top travel experiences our country offers in addition to safaris. The focus now is on ‘Big 5 Ambassadors’, focusing on ‘celebrities, tastemakers and travel influencers’. The website accessibility has been improved, making it easier to search, navigate, and book the next South African holiday. The website also provides travel itineraries by theme: Adventure and Exploration; Culture and Heritage; Safari and Nature; Entertainment and Lifestyle; and Luxury and Romance.
* Western Cape Minister of Tourism Alan Winde is delighted by two top accolades for Cape Town, being top listed by the New York Times and The Guardian. He reacted as follows: ‘This is great news for our city’s tourism sector and excellent publicity for our destination. These awards will no doubt help to elevate Cape Town to the top of travelers’ bucket lists.’
* South African wine exports increased by 26% in 2013 relative to 2012, with 526 million litres sold. The two biggest markets saw great growth: the UK by 24 % (up to 111 million litres), and Germany up by 24% to 97 million litres. Wines of South Africa (WOSA) CEO Siobhan Thompson attributes the growth in exports to the bumper South African harvest last year and the poor European harvest. (received via De Kock Communications)
* Distell has created a Top 10 Trendspotting list for Cape Town, and put its wine estate Durbanville Hills at the top of the list! The other nine ‘trends’ are: the Biscuit Mill for its ‘organic (sic) and crafted foods‘; Camps Bay beach (we agree!); the Underground Tour of Cape Town; Long Street for ‘trendy shopping‘ and night out; ‘What if the World’ for Indie local art; the Labia Theatre for unusual movies and documentaries; hiking up Lion’s Head on a full moon night (the next one is on Thursday); cycling on the Sea Point Promenade; and the Book Lounge. (received via media release from De Kock Communications)
* Pongrácz has launched two Rosé gift packs for Valentine’s Day: ‘With Love’, available at Checkers only; and ‘Fireworks‘, available only at Makro. The MCC is a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and costs around R125. (received via media release from GC Communications)
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:WhaleCottage