SA tourism industry celebrates excellence

Products and services offered by the tourism industry are contributing to South Africa’s growth, competitiveness and transformation.

Speaking at the Lilizela Tourism Awards in Johannesburg, the Minister of Tourism, Derek Hanekom, congratulated leading members of the industry for helping to grow South Africa’s reputation as a leading tourism destination, and supporting the growth and development of South Africa’s economy.

The Lilizela Tourism Awards are the premier awards programme for tourism businesses in South Africa.

“South Africa’s tourism industry has proven itself as an excellent vehicle for growing the economy and creating jobs,” said Mr Hanekom. “All the finalists and award winners have done a fantastic job in advancing this important sector through their commitment to excellence in the products they have developed and the services they offer.”

“This means that South Africa’s reputation as a world-class tourism destination continues to grow,” Mr Hanekom said.

This year’s Lilizela Tourism Awards experienced a growth of 854 per cent in the number of votes received from 2013 to 2014 (784 vs 7 480), which highlights the importance of consumer reviews.  In addition, visitors to the Lilizela Tourism Awards website spent an average of six minutes compared to the two minutes they spent last year.  This indicates that the two-year-old brand is gaining traction among consumers.

This year’s highly sought-after Minister’s Award was presented to Mavuso Msimang. The award honours an individual or business that has made a noteworthy local and global contribution to tourism economically and socially.

Mavuso is currently the chief executive officer of the Oliver and Adelaide Tambo Foundation and also sits on several company boards, for corporate and non-governmental organisations.

During his illustrious career, he has been called upon to work in fields of discipline ranging from international development through tourism, conservation and information technology. He has also been extensively involved in the transformation and restructuring of state-owned entities, namely SA Tourism, South African National Parks (SANParks), the State Information Technology Agency (SITA), as well as the Department of Home Affairs. He also set up the Tourism KZN provincial organisation, which he briefly led as its CEO.

“All the finalists and winners are already working with us to achieve our vision of becoming one of the top 20 destinations globally by 2020, but I believe Mavuso Msimang is a worthy recipient,” Minister Hanekom said.

Audit company, Grant Thornton was appointed as independent auditors of the 2014 Lilizela Tourism Awards programme.  The entire process was scrutinised thoroughly by the auditors. This included the entries, the voting and consumer reviews, as well as the final adjudication that produced both provincial and national finalists and winners. The 2014 Lilizela Tourism Awards programme received a clean audit for all the award categories that were audited.

The National Lilizela Tourism Award winners for 2014, which may also be viewed on are:

1.   Lilizela IMVELO Awards

1. Best Single Resource Management – Water
Establishment -ATKV-Drakensville Vakansieoord
Province -KZN
2. Best Single Resource Management – Energy
Establishment – V & A Waterfront Holdings
Province – Western Cape
Establishment – Thaba Tshwene Game Lodge
Province – North West

3. Best Single Resource Management – Waste
Establishment – Sandton Sun
Province – Gauteng
Establishment – Southern Sun Newlands
Province – Western Cape
4. Best Overall Environmental Management System
Establishment – Hotel Verde, Spier Wine Farm
Province – Western Cape
Establishment – African Game Lodge
Province – Western Cape
5. Economic Impact
Establishment – Aquila Private Game Lodge
Province – Western Cape
Establishment – Bulungula Lodge
Province – Eastern Cape
6. Investing In People
Establishment – The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa
Province – Western Cape
Establishment – Garden Court Hatfiled
Province – Gauteng
7. Best Social Involvement Programme
Establishment – African Impact
Province – Western Cape
Establishment – Bulungula Lodge
Province – Eastern Cape

2.   Lilizela ETEYA Awards

WINNER Limpopo Guest Manor
1ST RUNNER UP Discover Durban Tours & Transfers
2ND RUNNER UP Osiba Management
3RD RUNNER UP Park Place Boutique Hotel and Guesthouse
3.   Lilizela Accommodation Awards
1 Star Hotel Road Lodge East London
2 Star Hotel Town Lodge Midrand
3 Star Hotel Umthunzi Hotel and Conference
4 Star Hotel Grand Café & Rooms
5 Star Hotel Fusion Boutique Hotel
4 Star Guesthouse Tranquility Guest House
5 Star Guesthouse Strandloper Ocean Lodge
3 Star Bed & Breakfast Tarentaal Oorslaap
4 Star Bed & Breakfast Gaikou Lodge
5 Star Bed & Breakfast Hyde Park Villas
4 Star Lodge Tanamera Lodge
5 Star Lodge Sarili Lodge
3 Star Self-Catering Shared Vacation Badplaas A Forever Resort : Chalets
4 Star Self-Catering Shared Vacation Orange Grove Farm
5 Star Self-Catering Exclusive Lawhill Luxury Apartments
3 Star Caravan and Camping ATKV Hartenbos Caravan Park
4 Star Caravan and Camping Dibiki Holiday Resort
4 Star Country House De Doornkraal Historic Country House
5 Star Country House Tenahead Mountain Lodge and Reserve
4 Star Backpacker & Hostelling Tsitsikamma Backpackers
4 Star MESE Maropeng Conference Centre
5 Star MESE the forum | the campus

4.   Universal Accessibility Mobility

Soli Deo Gloria

5.    Visitor Experience of the Year

Action & Adventure Wild 5 Adventures
Beach Experience Umngazi River Bungalows & Spa
Culture and Lifestyle The Maboneng Precinct
Marine Adventures Raggy Charters
Roots and Culture Maropeng
Scenic Beauty Cape Point in the Cape Of Good Hope
Wildlife Encounters Monkeyland, Birds of Eden and The Jukani Wildlife

6.    Tourist Guides

Nature Tourist Guide Isaiah Banda
Culture Tourist Guide Rob Caskie

7.    B-BBEE

Exempted Micro Enterprise Ubuhle Be Narha Tours
Large Enterprise City Lodge Hotels Limited