With the eyes of the world glued on South Africa ahead of the FIFA World Cup Final on Sunday, the prestigious World Travel Awards are taking the opportunity to recognise the leading lights of the tourism industry in Johannesburg.
Twelve hundred industry leaders will attend the Africa & Indian Ocean Ceremony at the Sandton Convention Centre tonight – all hoping to walk away with a glittering prize.
The gathering will include key figures from the region’s leading travel companies, as well as government ministers, heads of tourism departments and representatives from leading destinations.
“This is a once-a-year opportunity to recognise the exceptional quality, creativity and leading edge performance of both regions’ top operators,” said WTA president Graham Cooke.
During the past few months, industry professionals have been voting worldwide for the companies and brands they believe deserve the honours.
Those nominated for the South Africa event are among 5,000 companies - spread across more than a 1,000 categories, including airlines, cruise companies, destinations, resorts and hotels in over 160 countries – to receive WTA recognition.
The fight for Africa’s Leading Business Hotel title is set to be among the most fiercely contested, with nominations including: Alexandria, Four Seasons; Conrad Cairo; Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza; Hilton, Durban; Mena House Oberoi; Sandton Sun; and The Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays.
As the fastest growing industry sector, there is also set to be a keen interest in cruising and Africa’s Leading Cruise Line category.
Nominations for this award include: African Safari Club; Discover Egypt Nile Cruises; Sakkara Travel Group; Silverseas Cruises; Sonesta Nile Cruises and Travel Dynamics International.
Indian Ocean Nominees
In the Indian Ocean categories the biggest struggle will be among the 12 properties anxious to win the coveted title of Indian Ocean’s Leading Hotel.
Nominees for this much sought after category are: Banyan Tree Seychelles; Baros Maldives; Belle Mare Plage Resort, Mauritius; Château de Feuilles, Seychelles; Conrad Maldives Rangali Island; Legends, Mauritius; One&Only Le Saint Geran, Mauritius; Royal Palm Hotel, Mauritius; Soneva Gili, Maldives; Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, Maldives; The Fortress, Sri Lanka and The Oberoi, Mauritius.
Again, in addition to overall Indian Ocean categories, there are awards for Madagascar, Maldives, Mauritius, Reunion Island and Seychelles.
Head over to the World Travel Awards website for a complete list of nominations.