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Extraordinary August 2021 Newsletter

Dear Travel Partners

Extraordinary is a company rich in diversity and proud of their high volume (some 75%) of female employees. Modern and aspirational, the brand develops strong and inspirational women to join the incredibly appealing travel and hospitality world. We celebrate some of these beautiful women in August and invite you to follow the daily “boasting” of our Extraordinary Women.

This month we are celebrating our Extraordinary women on social media every day and be sure to check out our Extraordinary collages at the end of the newsletter.

Yours in travel,
Cindy

AN EXCITING UNEXPECTED ARRIVAL TO MABULA

It has been an exhilarating month on the Greater Mabula Private Game Reserve with the unexpected arrival of a pack of Wild Dogs!

Our Reserve Manager, Ivan Killian, gives us an update on where these endangered predators came from and about what they have been up to on the Reserve—including a thrilling encounter with our male cheetah!

WOMEN IN TOURISM — HONOURING WOMEN’S DAY IN 2021

According to the ILO, whilst women perform 66% of the world’s work, they earn less than 10% of the income and own only 1% of the property. In honour of Women’s Day, we explore the accomplishments and obstacles that our tourism industry—in which women make up the majority of the workforce—has experienced in promoting gender equity and women’s empowerment in 2021.

Every August, South Africa celebrates Women’s Month as a tribute to the vital role that women play in laying the foundations of societal progress and development. In our tourism industry, women play an inimitable role across all departments and market segments; From our front office representatives and spa therapists to our waitresses and housekeeping ladies to all the women working hard behind the scenes in our back offices and management—the backbone of our industry is made up of women who are passionate about sustainable tourism and promoting their homeland as landmark destinations to the world. In fact, in a variety of ways, the tourism industry is a champion in empowering women and promoting gender equity.

According to a joint study conducted by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), UN Women, World Bank, and other stakeholders, the majority of the tourism workforce is female (at 54%)—in stark comparison with the broader economy where women make up just 39% of the global workforce. According to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the total number of women working in the industry may actually be underrepresented in the numbers due to the underreporting of informal sector work (amounting to nearly 70% of women’s labour in the industry). Technology and digitalisation have played an important factor in empowering women within the industry by providing them with additional training opportunities and removing barriers to accessing the market. As the industry advances, the percentage of women who are challenging gender stereotypes by assuming roles once dominated by men (such as tour/safari guides, chefs, hotel/lodge managers, and security personnel) is on an astounding rise. At a policy and national decision-making level, the tourism industry offers women greater opportunities for leadership roles than other industries. For example, 23% of Tourism Ministers are women when compared to the 20% of Ministers overall. In South Africa, we are proud to share that our very own Department of Tourism is capably led by the Honourable Minister, Ms Mmamoloko Kubayi–Ngubane.

However, despite the advances that the industry has brought for women across the globe, there is still much work to be done. The UNWTO notes that, while the wage gap is smaller in the tourism industry than in most other industries, women in tourism still earn an average of 14.6% less than their male counterparts. At a broader level, systemic sexual harassment, gender stereotyping, and the inequitable burden of childrearing are all inhibitors to the progress and empowerment of women within the industry and in the larger economy. According to the ILO, whilst women perform 66% of the world’s work, they earn less than 10% of the income and own only 1% of the property.

Furthermore, the Covid-19 pandemic and its resulting economic fallout have had a regressive effect on gender equality globally. According to global management consulting firm, McKinsey, while women make up only 39% of global employment, they account for more than 54% of overall job losses as a result of the pandemic. This has also resulted in a forecasted economic loss of no less than USD 1 trillion in the next decade. In developing economies, the situation is further exacerbated with almost 70% of women’s jobs being vulnerable as a direct result of the pandemic. The effects of the pandemic will also have a lasting negative impact on realising gender equality for the next generation: according to UN Women, an additional 11 million girls may leave school by the end of the COVID crisis.

Nevertheless, the irreplicable value that women bring to our industry, to the economy, and to our society has never been more demonstrable. In times of crisis, women have consistently proven to be extremely adept in playing a leading role in keeping their communities together and building resilience. In fact, the McKinsey predicts that, if we were to close the gender gap, as much as USD 28 trillion could be added to the global annual GDP by 2025—equivalent to the U.S. and Chinese economies combined. In the tourism industry—as the demand for sustainable tourism continues to rise—employers will soon be obliged to adopt ESG best practices, which will inherently expand the role of women across the sector and reduce the gender gap within the workforce.

It is for these reasons that we join the national and global call for action to raise awareness for the importance to do our part in promoting gender equity in our society. As an organisation, we believe that women are the driving force for positive, meaningful change in every society. Driven by courage, and armed with empathy, our Extraordinary women are instrumental in creating landmark tourism destinations across Southern Africa. On behalf of everyone at the Extraordinary team, we would like to extend our deepest gratitude and appreciation for all the women who make the experiences at our Extraordinary properties so memorable.

HAMILTONS GETS A FACELIFT

Kruger favourite Hamiltons Tented Camp has undergone a little facelift recently. The raised timber walkway connecting the secluded tented suites along the 500 metre stretch of the Ngwenyeni dam has been entirely reconstructed optimising the riverine forest walk. Each of the six tented suites has been entirely re-sanded, varnished and spruced up to their glorious original splendour. Tea and coffee making stations have been added for our guest’s convenience.

Exciting times are ahead for Hamilton’s gastronomy as we look forward to a delicious new menu that is set to launch imminently. Focussing on fresh, local fare sourced from nearby communities and businesses.

VICTORIA FALLS SAFARI LODGE PARTNERS WITH TOP ZIMBABWEAN PROFESSIONAL GOLFER

Leading hospitality group Africa Albida Tourism’s flagship property Victoria Falls Safari Lodge has partnered with professional Zimbabwean golfer Scott Vincent as his only Zimbabwean sponsor.

Vincent, 29, who grew up in Harare, turned professional and started his pursuit of the PGA Tour in 2015, after graduating with a degree in finance from Virginia Tech in the United States.

Vincent began his professional career with a 5th place finish in the Asian Tour qualifying school, securing his Asian Tour card for 2017, and has not looked back since.

In his short professional career to date Vincent has finished top 10 on the Asian Tour Order of Merit multiple times, top 10 on the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit, and top 15 on the Japan Golf Order of Merit.

Among his goals, Vincent, who has reached a career-high world ranking of 129, hopes to enter the Top 100 on the World Golf Rankings this year, start a junior golf foundation in  Zimbabwe and support wildlife conservation in southern Africa.

Africa Albida Tourism chief executive Ross Kennedy said finding a suitable brand partner to link with on the international stage was never easy, and so signing with fellow Zimbabwean Scott Vincent was a real bonus.

“His pride and loyalty in and for Zimbabwe aligns with our own, and his passion for tourism in our own country makes our partnership even stronger,” Kennedy said.

“We look forward to watching and supporting Scott grow his golf career around the globe whilst proudly carrying and promoting Victoria Falls Safari Lodge and the Zimbabwean flag with him,” he said.

“We are delighted to be associated with Scott and wish him great success in the 2021/22 season.”

Vincent said he was proud to partner with Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, not only because he was a Zimbabwean, but because he was a huge fan of the property and what it had to offer. “Visiting Victoria Falls Safari Lodge is always one of my highlights when returning to Zimbabwe, especially when I have international guests in town. It gives everyone that visits Zimbabwe a true African experience,” Vincent said. “The wildlife, friendly people and beautiful views are just a few things that stand out at this miraculous destination. Just thinking about it makes me want to get back there as soon as possible,” he said.

CHEETAH DEPARTURE AT MABULA PRIVATE GAME RESERVE

Mabula Private Game Reserve is part of a project coordinated by the Endangered Wildlife Trust that seeks to reintroduce cheetah to areas where they have been driven out by conflict from farmers as well as one of the biggest wildlife challenges today, habitat loss. The project is called the Cheetah Metapopulation Management Project and is based on the principle that the cheetah occurring in different areas of Southern Africa is seen as one big population and that individuals are managed to prevent inbreeding.

Earlier in June our 18-month old cubs were successfully darted and relocated to Mkhuze Game Reserve where they were quarantined before being transported to their new home in Mozambique.

See more about this incredible story on Mabula’s YouTube channel.

STORIES AROUND THE CAMPFIRE

31 July is celebrated as World Ranger Day and as we are celebrating our Extraordinary women, we thought to share a campfire safari story from one of our Extraordinary female guides, Marguerite.

EXTRAORDINARY HAS PROUDLY LAUNCHED A NEW MOBILE APP FOR HAMILTONS TENTED CAMP, HOYO HOYO SAFARI LODGE AND IMBALI SAFARI LODGE.

Enjoy a paperless environment with contactless check-in. You will also find helpful information and points of interest as well as options for booking spa treatments and available activities in advance.

Download our new mobile apps today!

Features include:

  • Contactless check-in and complete all COVID-19 requirement forms before arrival.
  • View restaurant and bar menus available.
  • Enquire about wellness treatments or extra activities.
  • Make use of useful information and points of interest available on the apps.
  • Mammal and bird check lists are available for the lodges.
  • Travel directions to the property.
  • Direct links to our social media pages.