South Africa - The Day After
"I never knew of a morning in Africa when I woke that I was not happy"
Dear Friend of The Most Famous Hotels in the World;
Soccer World Cup is over, South Africa was a great host. About 10 000
new hotel rooms have been introduced to the country since the beginning
of last year, the biggest expansion has been seen in five-star hotel
rooms (plus 30%). Now these rooms are empty.
The historically grown hotels will be less affected, naturally. The Mount Nelson in Capetown is the most famous of them all*, with over 200 rooms it is a true grand hotel, managed by the exquisite Orient Express Group**. It opened its doors to travellers in 1899 (read more about the Mount Nelson's history).
Sandro Fabris, general manager of the Mount Nelson and Mr Orient Express*** at the tip of the African continent, summarises:
‘The World Cup went very well, it was a great display for the country. We will see most of its benefits in the future. Although business was good it has been not as strong as many would expect. Many new hotels opened for the world cup and are now looking to a very difficult moment in front of them after the cup, with very low occupancy.'
Can Somebody Please Learn Their Lessons From History!
'It's in a sense sad that this story repeats itself all over the world.
It was the same in Italy in 1990, in Lisbon for the UEFA cup seven new
hotels opened and now Lisbon's hotels are fighting with low demand and
large oversupply. Why people do not look to history and learn the
* Other resorts include the unique Disney-World-like Sun City deep in the rugged bushveld, in the heart of an ancient volcano, or the Mala Mala camp, originated by Wac Campbell in 1929, or South Africa’s maybe oldest hotel, the 1802 d'Ouwe Werf in Stellenbosch, only 45km from Cape Town. There is also the renovated old Queens Hotel.
** Orient Express runs about 40 icons of hospitality, from the Ritz in Madrid to Madeira’s Reid’s Hotel, from the Cipriani in Venice to the Copacabana Palace in Rio or the Grand Hotel Europe in St. Petersburg, Russia, to name but a few (all Select Members of The Most Famous Hotels in the World). Not to forget the trains, such as the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express and the Royal Scotsman.
*** Sandro Fabris is Regional Managing Director, Africa, in charge of the Mount Nelson Hotel, Cape Town; The Westcliff, Johannesburg; Eagle Island Camp; Khwai River Lodge and the Savute Elephant Camp.
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