Entries tagged with “expo”.


WhaleTalesTourism, Food, and Wine news headlines

*   SA Tourism may be feeling threatened by the World Travel Market Africa expo taking place in Cape Town a week before Indaba in May.  To date Indaba has been the dominant tourism expo in South Africa and on the African continent. Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk issued a statement, in support of Indaba (logical as it is organised by SA Tourism)!  In it he reflects that (the very negative) feedback about Indaba 2013 was heard and taken into account in planning Indaba 2014, scheduled for 10 – 12 May. Key is the increasing attendance of African countries at Indaba, 22 to date, with a total of 1242 buyers having booked to attend to date.  The Minister announced that a new bidding process will commence after Indaba 2014.

*   Bistrot Bizerca appears to be in liquidation.   The restaurant has been a Top 10 and Best Bistro restaurant in the past, but appears to have lost energy when it moved into Heritage Square over a year ago.  (Note: See Comments for response on behalf of Bizerca, not explaining its liquidation in 2012, when it moved to the new premises)

*   South Africa’s tourism growth is estimated to be 3,6%, below the global growth rate (more…)

For the first time in many years, it would appear that fewer out-of-town cyclists will be participating in the 35th Cape Argus Pick ‘n Pay Cycle Tour, if the accommodation bookings in Camps Bay are a benchmark.  Relative to past years, when the Cycle Tour weekend was fully booked weeks in advance, this coming weekend is well but not yet fully booked.  Fewer of the bookings already taken for the weekend are related to the Cycle Tour, compared to previous years.

The 35000 participant 110 km Cycle Tour next Sunday is the largest individually timed cycle race in the world. Fewer than 10 % of the cyclists are from overseas.  It is organised by the Pedal Power Association and the Rotary Club of Claremont, and monies raised from the entry fees are shared with community upliftment and cycling development projects, R3 million having been raised in 2011.   It is estimated that the Cycle Tour will contribute at least R500 million to the economy of the Western Cape, based on 2011 information.

Running alongside the Lifecycle Week, which consists of an Expo related to cycling and also is the Cycle Tour registration venue, are two further cycle events.  This weekend the 208 km Columbia Grape Escape is taking place over three days, from the Durbanville Racecourse to the Boland Agricultural High School on Friday, from the school to Diemersfontein in Wellington yesterday, and from Diemersfontein to Boschendal today.  It is the second time that the Grape Escape has been organised.  In addition, the 11th Cape Argus Pick ‘n Pay MTB Challenge is being held at Boschendal.  Yesterday it challenged novice and casual mountain bike riders, and today it is more experienced riders who have chosen to ride 32, 52, or 65 km.  Some of the cyclists participating in one of these ancillary races are also riding the Cycle Tour next week, such as our Whale Cottage Franschhoek guest Anton Mellet.

Concern for the environment is a characteristic of the Cycle Tour, with clean-up crews at every refreshment station, and waste sorted thereafter.  Last year 98% of the waste was recycled, say the organisers.  Recycled products are used where possible, such as cardboard bins, bin liners, and cups.  Airspace above the Cycle Tour route is restricted to helicopters with permission, to reduce potential harm to any animals affected by the noise.  The MyCiTi shuttle bus service will be free of charge between the Thibault Square and Stadium stations, and will run from 6h00 to 18h00 on Sunday.  The Table View MyCiTi service will commence an hour earlier than normal, at 5h40, on Sunday.  Trains can also be used to get to the start, running to normal Sunday schedules.  Cyclists are encouraged by the organisers to use public transport on Sunday.

A number of major roads in the city and Cape Peninsula will be closed for most of the day, including Hertzog Boulevard, Heerengracht, De Waal Drive, Nelson Mandela Boulevard (eastward), M3 (southbound), M4 between Muizenberg along the coastal road, Chapman’s Peak, Victoria Road from Hout Bay to Bantry Bay, and Beach Road from Sea Point to the Stadium.

The Cape Argus Pick ‘n Pay Cycle Tour is the ultimate New Year’s resolution for many Capetonians and South Africans.  The cycle race is an excellent means of showing off our beautiful city, with its backdrop of Table Mountain, the Twelve Apostles, Chapman’s Peak, Table Bay, False Bay, and the Atlantic Seaboard.  We encourage motorists and cyclists to drive and ride safely in the week ahead.

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

The U2 360° concert in Cape Town on Friday evening will have contributed largely to the R 4 billion the City of Cape Town estimates is generated annually for the local economy from live performances, with 72000 spectators having attended a visually stunning and extremely well organised concert at the Cape Town Stadium. 

Writing in the Sunday Argus, the City of Cape Town’s  Executive Director of Economic, Social Development and Tourism, Mansoor Mohamed, states that films and events  are the largest contributors to the Cape Town economy, the film industry generating R5 billion, and conferences and live events R4 billion each.  Mohamed writes that it is not only income that is generated, but jobs are created too.   The services and products required to host such events go into the pockets of mainly Cape Town-based businesses, which in turn will pay for rates and taxes, and thus share the burden of payment of these to generate income for the city, but they will also share the benefit of the use of these monies (an excellent example is the wonderful new Green Point Park).

Writing about the contribution of the film industry to Cape Town, Mohamed mentions the two movies currently being filmed in Cape Town – ‘Safe House’ wrapped up filming on Kloof Street over the weekend, and stars Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds, who have been seen eating at Cape Town restaurants, and hanging around in Camps Bay, another location for the movie.  ‘Judge Dredd’ is another movie being filmed, and the two movies combined have a production budget of R400 million, going to two Cape Town companies (Moonlighting and Cape Town Film Studios, respectively), and their suppliers.  In addition, still productions, and print advertising and TV commercial shoots contribute to the economy.   Mohamed requests Cape Town residents to be tolerant of road closures and other inconveniences linked to these, in understanding that every R1 billion income allows 15000 jobs to be sustained in the city.

The Cape Town International Jazz Festival generated R685 million to the local economy, and created 2000 jobs, mentioned by President Zuma in his Station of the Nation address ten days ago.   It attracts 35 000 attendees, and runs over ten days, incorporating local art, culture and heritage, and local musicians blended with international stars such as George Benson.   Some of the local musicians performing at the Jazz Festival have received  bookings on international stages as a result of their performances at the Festival.  

The Pick ‘n Pay Cape Argus Cycle Tour contributes R650 million to the local economy. It has attracted the attention of international VIP’s such as Matt Damon and Lance Armstrong, who have participated, and this has been recorded in the world media, having a tourism benefit too.  This year executives from top companies such as RIM (manufacturers of Blackberry), Sainsbury in the UK and Vodafone Europe will participate in the event.   Some Cycle Tour lovers are said by Mohamed to have bought houses in Cape Town, and they pay their rates and taxes annually and in advance, he writes!  “They create tomorrow’s tourists and South Africa’s future foreign investment”.  He added that events such as the Cycle Tour, the Jazz Festival and the U2 concert play an important role to ‘start, facilitate or help to close deals’.

The recent Mining Indaba, which was held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, filled up all surrounding hotels, created a taxi shortage in the city, and filled up restaurants in Cape Town on a scale not often experienced in the city.   Delegates attending were from Africa, Brazil, Russia, India and China, amongst others.    Similarly, the Design Indaba taking place at the moment as a Conference, Expo and Film Festival, is staging top international designers, such as Alberto Alessi, Michael Wolff, billionaire Mark Shuttleworth and trend forecaster Li Edelkoort, with about 37000 delegates attending, according to Cape Town Tourism.  The Design Indaba attracts them to Cape Town, the city enjoying the most glorious weather currently, and therefore making future tourists out of these delegates, one can confidently predict, and more business deals benefiting the city could flow from this event, contributing R 232 million per annum.   At the Design Indaba the latest updated Cape Town Design Route map  will be launched, marketing some of the city’s top design artists and their businesses.

In September the World Veterinary Congress takes place in the Cape Town International Convention Centre, and will be attended by 3000 delegates, and contributing R30 million to the economy.   Other conferences to be hosted this year include the 4th Pan African Pain Congress (500 delegates), the World Congress of the World Federation for Mental Health (800 delegates), the Global Forum for Health Research Forum 2011 Meeting (1500 delegates), World Conference of the International Association for Educational and Vocational Guidance (600 delegates), The Southern African Association for Learning and Educational Differences Conference (500 delegates), and the World Economic Forum on Africa (2000 delegates).

The 20th Cape Town Pairs, the largest sponsored open bowls event in South Africa, was held at the Glen Country Club in Clifton last week, and attracted 36 teams from around the country, as well as from the United Kingdom, Namibia and Zimbabwe.   The gale force Southeaster almost forced a change in venue, blowing over 100 km/hr!   We congratulate our Whale Cottage Camps Bay guests Phil Downs and Greg Bingham from Johannesburg for having won the hotly contested tournament.

The Cape leg of the Cell C Tour of SA 2011 takes place over the weekend, and covers Gordon’s Bay, Grabouw, along the Theewaterskloof Dam, Franschhoek, the Helshoogte Pass in Stellenbosch, and finishes in Paarl, 120 cyclists participating in the race, reports the Cape Argus.

The J&B Met and the Cape Epic have an economic impact of R 200 million each, and the Two Oceans Marathon R223 million.  Mohamed has estimated that the city’s events and the film industry jointly add more than R 15 billion to the local economy. 

The benefit of these events reaches the hospitality industry too.  Six out of our 20 guests staying at Whale Cottage Camps Bay this past weekend flew down from Durban, to attend the U2 concert, and they made a three-day ‘weekend’ out of it.   Three of the U2 band members ate at Pierneef á La Motte last week, each visit widely reported (Bono and The Edge’s visit at La Motte even made the Sunday Times), which will attract more business to this wonderful Winelands wine estate.  Cargo Carriers has booked out Whale Cottage Camps Bay for the Argus Cycle Tour weekend, to accommodate its team over three days.   Delegates attending the Mining Indaba stayed at Whale Cottage Camps Bay too.

And a final note on the U2 concert – it was a ‘must attend’ concert, with amazing lighting effects on The Claw and the 360° screen ensured that every attendee saw the band on the relatively small stage, no matter where they were sitting or standing.  Many did not know most of the U2 music performed, but the performances of Amazing Grace, Stand by Me with Yvonne Chaka Chaka, and Without You were real crowd pleasers.  I did not pick up sound distortion, but read complaints about this on Twitter.  The quick and easy in and out of the stadium was commendable, and the event was run by Big Concerts without any hiccups, it was reported.   Replacing the Stadium pitch for the concert cost Big Concerts R803000 alone.  Taxis were in good supply before and after the concert, and the R50 per trip between Green Point and Fresnaye was the best money I have spent in a long time!  The long sit, from 7.30 – 11.30 pm, was the only off-putting part, as the seats are not the most comfortable.   Neil Diamond is the next big name performer at the Cape Town Stadium, his concert taking place on 11 April.

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

USA homestyle author and TV presenter, Martha Stewart, will be one of the guest speakers at the 13th Design Indaba, which runs from 24 – 28 February in the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

The Design Indaba is broken up into different elements, and the Conference runs from 24 – 26 February.   Stewart, who is America’s doyenne of style and taste, and editor of the ‘Martha Stewart Living” magazine as well as presenter of a TV programme, will address the conference.   Other speakers include Dutch designer Tord Boontje, trend forecaster Li Edelkoort, and local cartoonist Jonathan Shapiro, better known as Zapiro.

From 26 – 28 February a Design Expo will take place, showcasing 260 exhibits of the best of design in advertising, architecture, craft, decor, film, fashion, graphic design, interior design, new media, publishing and product design.   The Expo is a “100 % local-is-lekker celebration of South Africa’s ingrained creativity”, says the Design Indaba website.

On Saturday 27 February a special breakfast has been organised in conjunction with Woolworths, starting at 9h00, with Martha Stewart as guest speaker.  The breakfast presentation costs R 250, and tickets can be booked at Computicket.

A fashion show, a focus on design for children, a film festival, and the search for South Africa’s most beautiful product also form part of Design Indaba 2010.  More information about the Design Indaba is available on www.designindaba.com.

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

The Top Gear team of Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and The Stig will be performing in Cape Town’s GrandWest Arena from 28 – 31 January, the first visit of this hugely popular BBC motoring programme team to the Mother City.   5FM presenter Sasha Martinengo will also participate in the Top Gear Live show.

Consisting of both an expo and stunts (outside the arena),  and “the best bits of Top Gear and will be attempting them live in the arena.  It’s ambitious, but I am sure it will work out well” Clarkson is quoted in the Cape Argus.  The report says that the world’s fastest cars will be pushed to the limit. “Fans on four continents can expect an edge-of-the-seat experience with flaming rally cars, extreme underground street racers, and cars that change colour.  Other sequences will feature The Stig leading  a troupe of international stunt drivers with a mix of hand gestures, sonic pulses and Morse code, showing audiences the ultimate in precision driving.”   Audience members will be able to interact with the Top Gear personalities.   Sound levels of up to 104db. and 30 000 sq meters of fireballs will be experienced.

The equipment required for the show will be transported in 135 trucks, 3 ships, and a freight plane, and the show entails the use of 94 cars and 150 sets of tyres.

Clarkson and his team have such a vast following that most of the tickets have been sold already.  The wine industry of South Africa has been up in arms about some of Clarkson’s views of South African wines.

Top Gear Live is at the GrandWest Arena, from 28 – 31 January, with shows twice or three times a day. Tickets cost R 250 – R 450, and can be booked at Computicket. www.mphshow.co.za

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

S A Tourism and Cape Town Tourism worked hard in marketing the country at the ITB travel and tourism expo in Berlin, which was held earlier this month.

According to TravelHub,  S A Tourism launched the new ‘Voices’ advertising campaign, which sees Germans being asked to relate their positive experiences of South Africa.    It is planned to have over a million Germans talking positively about South Africa by June 2010.

FIFA and the Local Organising Committee for the 2010 World Cup used ITB as a platform to encourage and inform the German market about the event, reassuring them about the country’s readiness, infrastructure and sustainability, the report says.

S A Tourism won third prize for its ‘Numbers’ ad in the Golden Gate international film advertising awards competition at ITB.

Cape Town Tourism too was active at ITB, and its CEO Mariette du Toit-Helmbold reported back on the successes her association achieved:    Cape Town Tourism was invited to present its visitor services and marketing innovation to the World Tourism Organisation International Destination Council;   the 2010 World Cup mascot Zakumi was used in a competition, in which ITB attendees could be photographed with Zakumi, post it on the Cape Town Tourism website with a creative comment about Cape Town, to win two tickets for the 2010 World Cup, resulting in 200 images being received;   via a German PR company, Cape Town Tourism’s PR and Communications Manager met 15  journalists individually, presented its marketing toolkit to Dr Michael Kaiser from News Corporation Germany, who will do a presentation on Cape Town to the German Press Club,  Suedafrika magazine will do a free two-page spread on Cape Town, and a free feature on Cape Town will appear in the bi-annual German 1 Golf publication.  

In addition, Cape Town Tourism will be running a winter promotion on Expedia; an educational campaign with FTI, Germany’s third largest tour operator, was concluded;  joint marketing agreements were concluded with Tripadvisor, Google, and BBC News on-line; an agreement was reached with Petit Fute to develop a French guide book for Cape Town;  and assistance will be provided in the production of the official 2010 FIFA World Cup documentary.

However, Cape Town Routes Unlimited Marketing executive David Frandsen, on his return from ITB, has predicted that leisure tourism from Germany will decline by 20 % in the coming season.   He based his forecast on the 30 % drop in bookings received by the top five German tour operators making bookings in South Africa, in January and February this year.    He said however that 200 smaller special tour operators are making up for the decline in bookings received from the big tour operators.   Namibia is attracting bookings from the German market, and has become a trendy destination for Germans.