* Air France and kulula.com have created a codeshare agreement, allowing passengers to connect with Air France from a number of domestic airports in checking in their luggage, and doing their own one-stop check-ins. Premium Air France passengers will be able to use the SLOW Lounges at Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg airports.
* Western Cape Tourism Minister Alan Winde has announced the launch of a R6,5 million Design Innovation Seed Fund to kickstart its new Design Park, to find the province’s next Mark Shuttleworth. The Design Park will be housed in the Cape Craft and Design Institute. Applications for funding to make local design ideas a reality are now open to students, entrepreneurs, and small businesses. The value of the Cape’s design industry is R14 billion, which could rise to R20 billion with the launch of the Fund, and employ 14000 persons, said Minister Winde. (received via media release from Minister Winde’s office)
* Kleine Zalze Wines has appointed Alastair Rimmer as its new winemaker. He studied viticulture in Stellenbosch, and has worked locally at Overgaauw, Agusta, Vergelegen Wines, and Darling Cellars, as well as internationally at wineries in Spain, California, Australia, and in New Zealand. (received via media release from Manley Communications)
* Creation has introduced a new 10h00 Brunch Pairing, 8 courses paired with wines costing R 125. Continue reading →
* The South African Wine Tasting Championships 2014 will be held at the Hilton Hotel on 2 August. Each participant will taste 50 wines, whereafter they must identify 10 wines tasted blind, out of the 50. The 50 highest scoring participants will participate at the World Championships at Champagne Bollinger in October. (received via media release from Jean-Vincent Ridon)
* The International Air Transportation Association (IATA) has warned that the new Immigration Regulations could affect the profitability of airlines serving South Africa, in that they ‘might stop people travelling‘, even if they were ‘well intentioned‘.
* London is the most visited city in the world for the third time in four years, according to the MasterCard Global Destinations Cities Index. The survey estimates that the city will receive 18,7 million visitors this year, beating Bangkok, which was ranked first last year. Paris, Singapore, and Dubai also fall into the Top 5 visitor cities list. Continue reading →
La Residence pulled out all the stops in hosting the Diners Club Winemaker of the Year 2013 Awards last night, seating and serving 150 guests in its massive entrance hall, lounge and dining room, demonstrating why it was recently voted joint Best Hotel in the world by Conde Nast Traveler. The Awards evening was described as ‘a gathering of wine aristocracy’, and the ‘Oscars of the Wine Awards’! The Diners Club Winemaker of the Year Award is the only award given to an individual, and is even more special in that it is received in the presence of an audience of experts and peers.
Gareth Cliff of 5FM was a good MC, admitting his ignorance as a wine drinker, and doing a brilliant Julius Malema impersonation based on wines (with Ed Morton and Nick Solomon of La Residence in the photograph below). As the venue was so large, video screens were set up throughout the venue, allowing each table to see a screen close by. A Twitter Feed ran on the screen, Cliff being a heavy Tweeter, which will have pleased his hosts at La Residence and Diners Club, with his 571343 Twitter Followers. Diners Club Winemaker of the Year 2013 Finalist Johan Jordaan from Spier was an informative and fun table neighbour, as was Franschhoek Tatler editor Siegfried Schäfer and Helgard van Schalkwyk from Lynx Wines. Johan was an excellent ‘lighting assistant’, in lighting my plates with his phone to photograph the food! Continue reading →