Category Archives: Newsletters

January 2017: 8 stories in 6 publications

It’s a new year and for many people that means getting back to work. In business news, Gary Joseph of the South African Supplier Diversity Council is on a mission to transform corporate supply chains. And in music news, the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra and the Cape Town Concert Series are starting 2017 on a high note with a range of repertoire.

If you’re still on holiday, why not visit one of the top Airbnbs in South Africa or get immersed in local culture with an authentic travel experience from Tour2.0? And if you’d prefer something special to eat or drink, you can celebrate International Brandy Alexander Day, savour one of the most memorable meals around the world, or feast on the bounty of Bushmans Kloof.

Breakfast at Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

So, what do you have planned for the year? The Simple Dollar has a great guide on how to create and succeed at personal and financial goals, The Guardian has tips on how to change your habits to change your life, and The Art of Manliness is making a call for a new strenuous age.

No matter what your goals are, trust your future self. To do that, the Harvard Business Review has five steps to recover from a setback so that you don’t get caught up in the past. And Seth Godin encourages you to look ahead to the future: “When we wonder about the future, we get a chance to begin again, to set new goals, and envision bold plans.”

What will YOU do with today, tomorrow, and beyond?

December 2016: 7 stories in 6 publications

As another year comes to an end, it’s a good idea to learn how to make better decisions for your time. If you’re eating out, consider how to split a restaurant bill. And if you’re eating in? Savour the flavours from across the continent in the television series Africa on a Plate.

Speaking of travel, treat yourself to a stay at the InterContinental O.R. Tambo Airport Hotel in Johannesburg, which is the perfect prelude to luxury life at Diamonds La Gemma dell’Est Resort in Zanzibar. You could also find some inspiration from DJ Black Coffee as he shares his love for spinning the globe or from VoiceMap telling stories around the world through its innovative app.

Diamonds La Gemma dell’Est Resort in Zanzibar (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

December can also be a time of stress. Fortunately, Headspace has advice to help you avoid the slippery slope of breaking your routine, as well as a few quick tips if you’re panicking and five tips for avoiding holiday burnout.

There’s more great guidance from The Simple Dollar on the eight little things to always remember when you’re shopping, from Raptitude on how to eat less junk during the holidays, and from The Economist on why sugar is bad for you. (True story.)

Wherever you are right now, take some time to disconnect. Seth Godin has valuable recommendations on how to use your phone so that your phone doesn’t use you, while The Economist reflects on the power and meaning of silence: “[Just] as there can be inner tumult in silence, so there can be tranquillity in the thrum of activity.”

I wish you all nothing but peace.

November 2016: 15 stories in 10 publications

In arts news this month, the Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg is hosting Air: Inspiration – Expiration, the final instalment in a series inspired by the four elements of the natural world. And in music news, soprano Pretty Yende is making her mark on opera stages around the world while Catherine Lückhoff of NicheStreem is connecting artists and fans with an innovative streaming app.

In business news, Robert Cialdini has six scientific strategies to unlock the power of persuasion, which might come in handy if you want to know how to be a tenderprenuer. You can also take inspiration from Vanessa Jacobs of Sow Delicious, winner of a recent Entrepreneur of the Year Award, or Neill Anthony, star of reality television show Private Chef.

Zebra crossing at Welgevonden Game Reserve (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In the world of drinks, the new Black Cellar Club is spreading wine knowledge across Africa, David Donde shares the secret blend of success at TRUTH Coffee, and Charles Hopkins reflects on his career as cellar master at De Grendel Wine Estate. And if you’re looking for a top restaurant in South Africa, here’s the latest list from the Eat Out Awards.

It’s almost time for the holidays, which means it’s time to get away. If you’re in the mood for a luxury safari, escape to Mhondoro Game Lodge in Limpopo or Founders Lodge in the Eastern Cape. Or pick one of the top travel destinations for 2017. In the words of DJ Black Coffee: “Save money, book a flight, find a hotel, and go to a place you’ve never been. It’s such an eye-opener. You always come back a different person. And the more you do it, the more you learn.”

October 2016: 10 stories in 9 publications

In cultural news this month, the Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg is hosting Air: Inspiration – Expiration, the final instalment in a series inspired by the four elements of the natural world, while the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra is performing its series of symphony concerts for spring.

Speaking of classical music, soprano Noluvuyiso Mpofu talks about winning big at the 35th International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition. And in business news, Heike le Cordeur is creating innovative floral designs with Fleur le Cordeur, while Thuleka Duze’s ATG EKASI Handbags and Clothing is spreading African fashion around the world.

Bois Cheri Tea Factory in Mauritius (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)
Bois Cheri Tea plantation in Mauritius (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

If you’re ready to go global, savour the cultures and cuisines of Delicious Mauritius. You could also discovery a new generation of South Africa’s wine talent with the Cape Winemakers Guild Protégé Programme or take a bite of DV Artisan Chocolate, the country’s first bean-to-bar chocolatier.

No matter what you have planned for the rest of the year, take the time to do it well. One of my lessons from two years of CrossFit is that we’re capable of so much more than we think. And one of my lessons from a day with fire-fighters is that we can always bring an element of bravery into our work. The world expects better of you. And you should demand better of yourself too.

September 2016: 14 stories in 10 publications

The seasons are changing (achoo!) and there are plenty of ways to celebrate spring in Stellenbosch. Vanessa Jacobs of Sow Delicious has all you need to grow organic vegetables at home, Greg Zeleny of [spasie] shares the secret of underground dining, and Andy Watts reflects on his career transition from professional cricketer to Distell’s Global Head of Whisky.

In business news, Nick Caripis of BNC Technology is designing smart homes of the future. And if you’d like to some inspiration for your own business, follow the seven steps for conjuring up ingenious business ideas. In arts news, Idols finalist and chiropractor Kyle Deutsch is juggling music and medicine, while DJ Black Coffee is making a name for himself in his travels around the world.

Exploring street art in Woodstock, Cape Town (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)
Exploring street art in Woodstock, Cape Town (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In the mood for some travel tales? Grant Lottering successfully completed his third major cycling tour after a serious accident almost killed him a few years ago; Chris Bertish is preparing to stand-up paddle board across the entire Atlantic Ocean; and Emmanuel de Merode continues to save a slice of Africa in his work as director and chief warden of Virunga National Park.

Perhaps now’s a good time to start planning your own holiday. You could go kayaking in Paternoster or travel to any of the ten winning countries in Africa’s Travel Olympics. But for now, there’s work to do. One of my lessons learned from a day with fire-fighters is that we can all be heroes in our work. The world expects better of you. And you should demand better of yourself.

August 2016: 14 stories in 9 publications

In cultural news this month, the Cape Town Concert Series presents its second season of the country’s best chamber music, while the Matisse exhibit at the Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg draws to a close. In food news, Simon Widdison and Wesley Randles speak about opening The Shortmarket Club restaurant in partnership with Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen, while celebrity chef Neill Anthony talks about his journey to becoming a television star.

Staying in the culinary world, Ntsiki Biyela of Stellekaya Wines shares what it took to become South Africa’s first black female winemaker, while the fourth annual Inter Hotel Challenge crowns a new generation of hospitality industry talent. And staying in the travel world, Emmanuel de Merode of Virunga National Park opens up about saving mountain gorillas in the DRC, while Adrian Landry of the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra offers insight into why Ghana is a country going for gold.

Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park in Accra, Ghana (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In business news, economist Francois Stofberg explains how to fight the effect of rising interest rates, while Denise Dogon of Dogon Group Properties reflects on building one of the country’s top real estate companies. More entrepreneurship news comes from The Department of Trade and Industry, which continues to empower small businesses, and inspiring start-ups like Bumka Scooter Rentals and I Scream & Red, both changing the world in their own ways.

Feeling inspired? Perhaps it’s time for you to start something new. No matter how many times you win or lose, it’s always important to learn from failure and success: “If we learn from our mistakes, we can use them as lessons to guide us forward. And as long as we constantly strive to better ourselves, no failure will be for nothing.”

July 2016: 19 stories in 13 publications

In this month’s food news, Sabi Sabharwal of the Bukhara Restaurant Group talks about his journey from particle physicist to Punjabi restaurateur, while Pieter de Villiers of DV Artisan Chocolate reflects on the switch from control engineer to chocolatier. In other career profiles, Colin Sapire shares his story of creating the famous NutriBullet, Alex Okosi speaks of his job as head of Viacom International Media Networks Africa, and Maira Koutsoudakis brings luxury design to the hospitality world with LIFE Group.

Speaking of the finer things, Giuliana Abrahamse of Profumi D’Italia is giving South Africans a taste of premium Italian sparkling wine with Bottega, while Federico Freschi from the University of Johannesburg offers an insight into the Matisse exhibit now on at the Standard Bank Gallery. In other design news, Olivia Kennaway and Alice Heusser are making an impact with luxury African fashion and lifestyle brand Lalesso, while Zaid Philander of I Scream & Red is on a mission to save the planet (and empower people with disabilities) on stitch at a time.

A morning in Matjiesfontein with Rovos Rail luxury train (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)
A morning in Matjiesfontein with Rovos Rail luxury train (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In the travel world, organisations like Calabash Trust are showing why responsible tourism is good for business. At the same time, achievers like Masood Sadulla of the 12 Apostles Hotel and Spa and ice swimmer Ryan Stramrood are showing the power of having (or being) a mentor or coach.

In other travel news, take a luxury train journey with Rovos Rail or, if you’re looking for an oasis in Oudtshoorn, stop over at Surval Boutique Olive Estate. Wherever the journey takes you, remember to take the time to disconnect. One of my lessons learned from missing a train is that it’s far worse to be missing out on everything else.

June 2016: 11 stories in 9 publications

In this month’s business news, Nick Cairpis of BNC Technology talks about the future of home automation and career coach Ben Fanning offers alternatives to quitting your job. And in entertainment news, the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra presents its Winter Symphony Season, while WP Rugby is offering fans a chance to experience rugby games in style.

So why not raise a glass to Kleine Zalze as the Stellenbosch estate celebrates two decades of award-winning wine? And another one to the riel dancing troupes of Bushmans Kloof as they continue to win top awards on the international stage?

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The “We Are Africa” luxury travel expo at Cape Town Stadium (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

Speaking of celebrations, Masood Sadulla of the 12 Apostles Hotel and Spa wins Concierge of the Year from Red Carnations Hotel , while Ryan Sandes is making his mark in trail runs and ultra-marathons across the globe. And in other travel news, Daniel Adidwa of Tour2.0 is a firm believer that the growth in community tourism will benefit tourists and trade, while Aaron Yeboah Jr. is using photography to tell authentic African stories through African Lens.

So no matter what you’re doing or where you are, take a minute to disconnect from technology and appreciate the outside world. One of my lessons learned from missing a train is that it’s far worse to be missing out on everything else.

May 2016: 15 stories in 9 publications

In this month’s business news, Monique Rissen-Harrisberg of The Voice Clinic offers four ways to improve your public speaking skills, Nick Caripis of BNC Technology talks about building smart homes of the future, and Lumko Mphande of Bumka Scooters wins a top entrepreneurship award from Three Ships Whisky.

Speaking of achievements, Bosman Family Vineyards is reaping the rewards for its ethical initiatives, wineries in Stellenbosch are celebrating the Kingdom of Cabernet, and South African neuroscientists launch the world’s first NeuroWine.

Staying in the world of cuisine, Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen of Restaurant JAN reflects on his journey to becoming South Africa’s first Michelin-starred chef, while Jessica Bonin, who gave up her job in advertising to create Lady Bonin’s Tea, launches South Africa’s first dedicated Tea Bar.

Ancient rock art at Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)
Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

There are more achievements in the world of travel. Masood Sadulla of the 12 Apostles Hotel and Spa is inducted into a prestigious international society for top concierges, while Ryan Sandes is making his mark in trail runs and ultra-marathons across the globe.

In other travel news, you can spend a night at the Menlyn Boutique Hotel in Pretoria, which is the perfect choice ahead of a luxury train trip with Rovos Rail. And if you want even more luxury in the Western Cape, escape to Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat, where it’s clear that responsible tourism works.

As general manager James Basson says: “There is something about the Cederberg that is spiritual and calming. It might sound like a cliché but you become one with nature here and you realise what is important to you in life.”

April 2016: 13 stories in 10 publications

The seasons are changing and there are also new developments in the world of food.

[spasie] underground restaurant has new premises in Cape Town’s Bree Street while the city’s Long Street will be the new home of Lady Bonin’s Tea Bar. Also, the iconic wine brand Nederburg has launched a new look, Sxollie Cider is getting ready for a craft revolution, and Richard von Geusau is happy now that he left his twenty-year accounting career to create Von Geusau Chocolates instead.

Arts news this month takes us up the Cape West Coast to !Khwa ttu San culture centre where photographer Paul Weinberg is presenting an exhibition documenting southern Africa’s San tribes. And back in the city, the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra welcomes top international soloists for its autumn symphony season.

Olga Kern and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)
Olga Kern and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In business news, Alistair King of King James Group is awarded Top Chief Creative Officer at the prestigious Loeries, Phumlani Dlongwana is saving the planet through his business Waste 2 Food, and ten African start-ups are leading the way through innovative fintech.

If you want to get ahead in your career, consider the pros and cons of a post-graduate degree. Or perhaps you’d like to improve your health by learning about the benefits of cryotherapy. Whatever you do, take inspiration from trail runner Ryan Sandes: “Focus on the positives in your life and make the most of them. You only live once and are in control of your own destiny.”

March 2016: 12 stories in 10 publications

Are you ready for another month of delicious content?

Greg Zeleny, founder of [spasie], talks about the underground restaurant’s exciting plans for the year while Stelio Nathanael, founder of Chesa Nyama, shares details about the braai franchise launching overseas. And while we’re on the subject of good food, Abalone House and Spa is pairing brandy with a menu from celebrity chef Reuben Riffel, Darling Brew is pairing meals with its award-winning craft beer, and Sxollie Cider is starting a revolution with apples and pears.

Darling Brew on board the Mirage 760 luxury yacht (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In travel news, choose one of South Africa’s top team-building retreats if you have to travel with your colleagues. And if you have to travel with your family? Sail away on an MSC cruise, which might inspire you to follow in the footsteps of rescue swimmer Robin Fortuin.

Back on dry land, take a drive up the West Coast to explore the historic buildings of Mamre or travel to West Africa and learn the story of Ghana’s Kente cloth. You could also take some advice from Tommy Hollard on his Namib Living Desert Tour: “If you drive fast, you’ll see only plants and sand. But if you slow down and look closely, you’ll see that the desert is full of life. You just have to train your eyes.”

February 2016: 11 stories in 6 publications

It’s the month of love and what’s not to love about fine cuisine?

Elunda Basson of Pongrácz talks about the iconic brand’s three varieties of Méthode Cap Classique; Scot Kirton of La Colobme is honoured to be crowned Eat Out’s Chef of the Year; and Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen of Restaurant JAN in southern France becomes the first South African to ever receive a prestigious Michelin star.

Speaking of stars, why not experience the best local talent on the stage? Grant Almirall talks about his performance in the splash-tastic Singin in the Rain while Bianca le Grange, who many remember as a finalist in the first season of Idols, is now starring in David Kramer’s ‘Kanala’ musical tribute, which marks the 50th anniversary of District Six.

Pongrácz Rosé at the 25th anniversary celebration (Copyright: Eugene Yiga)

In business news, FIFA-accredited sports agent Karabo Mathang is one of only five local ladies in the BBC 100 Women list; Joy Olivier of IkamvaYouth talks about how the non-profit organisation is uplifting youth across the country with the power of peer-to-peer education; and Olivia Kennaway and Alice Heusser of Lalesso are using ethical fashion to improve lives across Africa and beyond.

Feeling inspired? Now’s the time to start making an impact too. Perhaps you want to learn how to choose and fund your studies to move ahead in your career, or how to set and achieve your goals to move ahead in your life. “It doesn’t matter where you come from,” says volunteer rescue swimmer Robin Fortuin, who saved six people from drowning when he was only 21. “Anyone can be a hero.”

That means you too.