FLYFISHING COMPETITION AT KLOOFZICHT LODGE. 23 JULY 2017

Pack your rods and wellies and get ready for the  6th Annual Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa Winter Flyfishing Competition with the beautiful Swartkops Mountain as a backdrop.

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Fly fishing at Kloofzicht Lodge takes place under the expert guidance of Wayne Sinclair, the founding member of Sundown Adventures who has over 25 years of sport and flyfishing experience in Southern Africa.

Venue – Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa , Muldersdrift

23rd  July 2017

To book, contact – SFA central reservation – Wayne Sinclair

Email – info@sundowner.co.za / www.sundowner.co.za / www.facebook.com/MBHFlyfishing

Stay over in any of our suites for a good nights rest and a family treat after your day of fishing. Take note of our Last Minute Specials for the best deal available by clicking here.

For more info on Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa see our website  www.kloofzicht.co.za

GUVON HOTELS AND SPAS EXPANDS FOOTPRINT TO PRETORIA.

Royal Elephant Hotel & Conference Centre joins Guvon Signature Collection

Royal elephant compilation 1It started twenty-five years ago with a Scottish themed lodge. Soon after, a five-star fly-fishing haven opened up on the others side of the Swartkops Mountain in Muldersdrift. Next the sound of pinging golf balls and roaring lions were added to this ever-growing portfolio. What does Guvon Hotels and Spas have up their sleeve next? Something with a distinct Moroccan flavour, it seems.

In line with CEO Kosie Pansegrouw’s vision of creating niche products in prime locations and places of outstanding natural beauty, Guvon Hotels and Spas are known for its innovation, constant improvement and sustained passion for the hospitality industry, through the dedicated effort of its dynamic team. Adding Royal Elephant with its unique Moroccan theme fits like a hand in glove, adding substance to this vision of offering leisure, corporate and wedding guests something different and a cut above the rest.

 

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The El Jadida Suite, named after the port city on the Atlantic Coast of Morocco, boasts state of the art conferencing equipment in a unique, Afro-Moroccan setting.

 

The Royal Elephant Hotel & Conference Centre is a splendid Moroccan themed property situated in Centurion linking the main business hubs of Johannesburg, Midrand and Pretoria. Positioned as an upmarket business hotel, it is close to three airports and offers corporates a multi-purpose centre which seats up to 320 people banquet style, 600 people cinema style and up to 300 delegates schoolroom style.

Executive facilities include four boardrooms and five multi-purpose venues including Bondev House for large events. All conference rooms are air-conditioned, have independent light switches and a generator is available.   Sprawling lawns bordering the Hennops River lend itself to a variety of teambuilding activities. Distinctive architecture and decor provide the setting for the ultimate in privacy where certain wings and floors may be set aside for high profile visitors who are accompanied by their own security teams.

With 40 bedrooms and a Royal Presidential Suite, all rooms are individually decorated using Moroccan & North-African furnishings and antiques. Original artwork from distinguished African artists, heavy ornate solid wooden doors and vibrant colours set the tone for corporate travelers looking for something out of the ordinary.

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The Oasis Resident Bar overlooks the pool deck and is ideal for relaxing pre-dinner cocktails. With vibrant turquoise and purple tub chairs, Moroccan lanterns and Tangines dotted around the room, it sets the tone for recapping a day of successful strategizing and meetings.

 

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The Royal Lounge, reserved exclusively for in-house guests, is adjacent to the Zagora Grill Room where all meals are served.  Dining at the Royal Elephant offers a menu of combined Moroccan, international and African flavours. Room service is available to corporate hotel guests.

 

Leon Bosch, Operations Director of Guvon Hotels and Spas explains the collaboration between the Guvon properties and the Royal Elephant Hotel: “It is perfectly situated geographically and provides a much-needed link between the Johannesburg, Magaliesburg and Hazyview properties within our portfolio. Its unique décor, design and superb conference facilities make this a prestigious venue that we are delighted to market. We have seen strong interest from the local business market and look forward to building a mutually strong relationship.”

Stephan  Vlaanderen, General Manager at Royal Elephant Hotel adds: “I believe that the synergy between the Guvon Hotel properties and Royal Elephant Hotel is well suited and will take our business to new heights creating awareness in new markets throughout Gauteng and other provinces”.

 

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Seen shaking on the new partnership is (fltr) Stephan Vlaanderen (General Manager: Royal Elephant), Christa Badenhorst (Group Marketing : Guvon Hotels), Leon Bosch (Operations Director: Guvon Hotels), Brenda Dooge (Media & PR : Guvon Hotels)) and Wikus Pretorius (Financial Director: Guvon Hotels)

 

Leisure and corporate bookings can be made by contacting Guvon Hotels Central Reservations on Tel  08611 48866 | cro@guvon.co.za or directly with the hotel on Tel 012 658 8000  | reservations@royalelephant.co.za .

 

 

CAN YOU PUT A WEDDING TOGETHER IN 5 DAYS? EMILY HARDMAN DID – READ ON…

Emily Hardman relays her humoristic story of pulling a wedding together in five, yes five days, in the New York Times below.

She summarizes the experience and decision-making process: “… I asked myself: Will it help strengthen my marriage and the promises we made to each other? If the answer was no, I didn’t waste any more time. I now appreciate applying this to other areas of life. Is where we go to dinner eternally significant? If not, it’s not worth arguing over. Do party favors for the barbecue you’re giving matter? Probably not. Enjoy the path of least resistance. If it truly represents the most important elements of your life and relationship, put time, energy and creativity into it. If not, do yourself a favor and skip the stress.”

At Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa,  brides can save up to 25% on their venue hire with last minute bookings. Super spontaneous brides who book one month in advance earn 25% discount on venue hire, while those who feel more comfortable with 4 months notice earn 10% in venue hire discount.

Knowing the planning that goes into a wedding, it is my modest opinion that brides who can put a wedding together in one week should not pay any venue hire at all – just for being so brave. Having said that, more miraculous things have happened and with our list of trusted bridal suppliers you may well be able to put it all together in one week!

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Thinking about it? Click here for some very practical ideas how to make it all come together in 30 days.

 

Sometimes spontaneous last minute decisions can be the best decision ever.

http://www.kloofzicht.co.za | Tel 011 317-0600

 

 

 

 

“KNITTING BROKEN LIVES TOGETHER” WITH 67 BLANKETS FOR NELSON MANDELA AND GUVON HOTELS

Guvon Hotels proudly joined the Knitwits of 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela movement three years ago. Since then our enthusiasm has grown for this heartwarming project and blanket contributions tripled, with the last donation this month totaling a whopping 183 blankets.

 

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Carolyn Steyn (centre) seen with Guvon Hotels head office staff at the blanket handover ceremony at Guvon Hotels & Spas head office

 

In December 2013, Zelda la Grange, late former President Nelson Mandela’s trusted assistant, presented Carolyn Steyn, with a challenge: knit, sew or crochet 67 blankets! These blankets would then be distributed to those in need on Mandela Day. One year later Guvon Hotels and Spas got wind of this great idea and picked up the knitting and crochet needles and joined the movement.

Since then, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day has transformed into what some are calling a  movement that has captured the attention of many South African and international celebrities as well as corporates and “KnitWits for Madiba”  in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Cyprus, London, the US and India.

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Carolyn Steyn and her team took ownership of 183 blankets at the Guvon Hotels head office which was a combined effort from all the hotels in the group as well as Guvon Academy. 

And the best part of the day after the staff excitement, the certificate handouts, the plethora of social media pics and hashtags? When Caroline stopped her car just outside our head office and handed one of our blankets to an elderly lady on the side of the road. That’s how we knit a nation together. One blanket at a time.

                See www.guvonhotels.co.za for winter accommodation and Spa specials.

 

A Memorable Couple. An Elephant Playground. Forest meets African Bush Fairytale at Askari Lodge.

Billy and Sheree from Compassion Art & Photography recently captured this beautiful wedding of  Sherilee and Michael at Askari Game Lodge & Spa in Magaliesburg. It is my pleasure to share the blog, link and precious photos of this wedding day:

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“Sherilee and Michael lives in Beijing and up until the wedding day, we never met, which normally starts out a little awkward. We quickly connected however; Sherilee (also called Sheri) has such a fun loving non-traditional personality! No matter where I pointed my camera, she looked radiant. I guess the artist in me always seek out the unique ones. We just had so much fun!

Her hair and make-up on the backdrop of the lush green forest was such a perfect colour combination that I was doing imaginary cartwheels in my head while retouching!

Michael and I briefly chatted about his work as a teacher in Beijing. Previously being in security and finances, he now has far more value for living in his life. As he said “I now get 30 hugs a day…” His love for Sherilee is so evident in all the photographs, he adores her! And it’s so easy to see why!

We had some pretty harsh African sun to shoot in, but of course Billy quickly whipped up the right technical know-how to avoid blow out areas or harsh shadows.

The highlight of course – the elephants, as they always are! They just amaze me…

“To foreign lands I want to roam

Where Kings and Queens sit upon their throne

And big cats prowl, and wild dogs howl

Where mighty elephants trumpet…”

A Memorable Couple. An Elephant Playground. Forest meets African Bush Fairytale.”

For the full blog and photo gallery please visit:  http://compassionartint.com/michael-sherilee-10/ 

 

 

SOME PLEASANT SURPRISES ON THE NEW BALATA RESTAURANT WINELIST

Few things are as truly South African as our beloved national flower, the Protea. Its exotic looks and longevity make this a treasured gift on any occasion.

Imagine my joy when select items from the Anthonij Rupert Protea wine range found its way to the newly launched Balata Restaurant wine list this month. Now Balata Restaurant is no stranger to fine wines and the Rupert & Rothschilds of the world are listed alongside the Meerlust Rubicons and its snobbish family members on the wine menu.

Reality is that many of our pockets are just not deep enough to mix and match Moet Chandon with  Salmon Vichyssoise every time we go for dinner.  It makes me pleased as punch to see that a more affordable option is available to grace our tables as we enjoy the new Balata Restaurant fine dining menu.

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“Everything about this range seeks to marry the old with the new”, Rupert Wines reports. “The heritage of the vines, innovatively tied into distinctive packaging designs, is made to be re-used and recycled, thus prolonging the lifecycle of the product.”

Now let’s just pause there for a moment.

Instead of the standard (yawn) traditional label, each Protea wine bottle has a gorgeous permanent label created by fashion designer Mark Eisen. This is printed directly on the glass with metal-free inks.

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Since drinking with a conscience is what we do best, leftover bottles can be re-used for storing oils, vinegar, juices and the likes. It also opens up a world of recycling options for those who are into creating wine glasses from bottles or fancy them as a candle holder on the dinner table.

For those of us who are really committed to recycling and repurposing, a delightful challenge awaits:  Any takers ?

 

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Image: homesfeed.com

 

If you can’t make it to Balata Restaurant this week, but you really should – it’s just been payday – the Rupert Wines website is sharing this divine Nectarine and Plum Caprese Salad, great with  their Protea Rosé wine:

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Follow this link for the recipe: http://www.rupertwines.com/product.php?id_product=115

http://www.thefairway.co.za | Tel 011 478 8000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nectarine and Plum Caprese Salad

Enjoy It With

Protea

Rosé

2016

Order now

 

Total Time: 10min

Prep Time  0min

Yield:  2 – 4 people

Level:  Easy

Ingredients

Method

Cut the plum in thin slices removing the pit when you cut into it.

Cut the Nectarines into 8 wedges and remove the pit

Cut the bocconcini balls in half

Arrange the plums and Peaches on a beautiful plate

Scatter the tomatoes and the mozzarella on top and garnish with the basil leaves. The big leaves you can tear in half.

Lastly drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over the salad to dress.

If you want, you can serve it with some basil pesto and balsamic cream.

I strongly advise to make this salad fresh and serve it immediately.

 

SCHOOL HOLIDAYS: FIXES FOR YOUR DILEMMA NEXT WEEK

As much as moms have a love-hate relationship with school holidays, I rejoice. No traffic between 7h00 and 8h00 on the roads. No road rage from sleepyhead mommies in PJ’s with bed hair. My colleague who usually manages to crochet half a blanket on her way from Pretoria to Joburg, is at work before she can untangle the wool. (Read more about our Blankets for Mandela day project)

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As schools close 31 March only to reopen again after Easter, the workforce sighs with relief. Moms, on the other hand, are getting slightly panicky, especially if they are working moms.

WE HAVE SOME SOLUTIONS TO YOUR SCHOOL HOLIDAY DILEMMA:

Take a midweek break and book into Bush Willow Tented Camp with the kids and husband in tow. Set on the Glenburn Lodge & Spa property, this tented camp is more glamp than camp – the tents are already there, equipped with beds, a toilet and small kitchen.  Even hot water is included. Bring the mountain bikes and do the beginners trail with the kids, or get dad to teach them how to fish in the Blauwbank Spruit.

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Should Muldersdrift  feel too close to home,  instead search for Warthogs Bush Camp on Google Maps. Just over an hour from Johannesburg and Pretoria on the outskirts of Magalies, this small Bush Camp allows pets. If Rover and little Ronnie is inseparable, this will bring you heaps of joy. Pets stay for free while humans pay a budget-friendly self-catering rate. Warthogs Bush camp is 2km from Askari Lodge and Spa, and on a Sunday you can watch the two elephants from a distance as they play in the dam in front of the restaurant.

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Glenburn Lodge & Spa has great facilities to keep the kids busy  on the hotel property and at GlenPalms: A putt-putt course, a dedicated games room, tennis courts, play park and obstacle course. Chalets provide a friendly family set-up with self-catering options,  its own braai facilities and a lovely patio, several overlooking the river frontage.

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If by the end of April your nerves are frazzled and you can’t wait to drop the kids with the friendly school teacher, book your Mother’s Day Spa treat. In sympathy, we’ve loaded the special on the website so long, and made it valid from 1 May, for the entire month. You survived the school holidays. You deserve it.

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Editors Note/ Disclaimer: Opinions are totally my own as far as children go. We clearly have something in the drinking water at  Guvon Hotels head office with three pregnancies on the go, so brace yourself for baby boom blogs and news over the next few months. Our latest newsletter even includes baby room decor tips with an Easter theme! Click here to read our Easter newsletter – bunny alert!

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Bookings: Central Reservations Office: Tel  08611 48866 | Email: cro@guvon.co.za | www.guvonhotels.co.za

 

ROMANCE DOES NOT TAKE A VACATION. MAYBE IT SHOULD?

Fresh from a date night last night with my one and only, reading Ane Malan’s article “Romance does not take a vacation” on Date Night Ideas SA, made me think.  The sentiment is a good one because love shouldn’t take a vacation. It should be an everyday bread-and-butter essential in your life.

Fast forward to the real world where your husband works 12 hour days and fills the rest of the time with some random sporty activity. The washing machine breaks and it seems that the ceiling is about to collapse. Sadly the blue colour on the Plascon swatch looks nothing like the real thing – the bright turquoise bedroom wall gives me a headache when I lie on my left side. These are the times when romance definitely is on vacation. Absent With Out Leave.

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Romance needs a vacation as much as slap chips need vinegar.  The one is unthinkable without the other. We need to get away to remind ourselves why we fell in love in the first place. Without deadlines and pressures, surrounded by a beautiful natural setting, we take a step back and realise he is still looking pretty good for his age. His jokes are still funny. And he brews a mean espresso.

Journalist Susan Haydn delivers a compelling argument for relationships in  5 Things you need to know to live happily every after. The take home for me is

“Make kindness the default mode. What you have is special and might not come around again, so guard it with your life.

With Easter around the corner, take your romance on vacation. Book that special getaway; lie down on a Spa bed and massage the cares away. Heck, even a picnic in your back garden with a string of fairy lights mimicking the view of Cape Town at night from Blouberg will do the trick. Take your love on a vacation. Something or someone worth this much is worth the investment.

Click here for Easter accommodation specials at Glenburn Lodge & Spa, Fairway Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort, Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa

For Easter Spa specials, visit www.guvonspas.co.za

(Click HERE to read the lovely “  Romance does not take a vacation”. )

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TROUT FLYFISHING SEASON NOW OPEN AT KLOOFZICHT LODGE, MULDERSDRIFT

“Three-fourths of the Earth’s surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn.”
~ Chuck Clark

On 1 March the Kloofzicht Lodge flyfishing High season commences and we invite all levels of flyfishers to visit Kloofzicht Lodge in Muldersdrift for a day of fun or serious fishing, depending on your level of experience.

For any info, bookings or flyfishing teambuilding activities kindly contact  Wayne Sinclair:  info@sundowner.co.za  | www.sundowner.co.za  | www.facebook.com/MBHFlyfishing

The flyfishing season ends on 30 September.

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Another exciting event of the  FOSAF  calendar is the  6th Annual Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa Winter Flyfishing Competition:

Venue – Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa , Muldersdrift

23rd  July 2017

To book, contact – SFA central reservation – Wayne Sinclair

Email – info@sundowner.co.za / www.sundowner.co.za / www.facebook.com/MBHFlyfishing

For more info on Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa see our website  www.kloofzicht.co.za

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SURE WAYS OF FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE LOWVELD

Is the open road calling you? The peace and tranquillity at Umbhaba Lodge, along with the seclusion of the Lowveld provides a much-loved venue for short breakaways, especially as we head into winter, which is prime game viewing time in the Kruger Park.  With thirty suites each in individual style, many with open log fireplaces, ideal for those chilly winter evenings, Umbhaba Lodge should be tops of your stay-over list while in the Hazyview area.

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While the major tourist attractions such as the Blyde River Canyon, God’s Window, Bourke’s Luck Pot Holes and game watching in the Kruger Park, seems to steal the limelight while staying at Umbhaba Lodge, it’s worth noting that several waterfalls within the area, makes this hiker’s heaven.   The Lisbon Falls, Berlin Falls, Sabie Falls and Mac Mac Falls are all within 30 minutes drive from Umbhaba Lodge. Start your day with a hearty breakfast on the lodge stoep, strap on those hiking boots, pack a picnic lunch and head off in the general direction of Graskop for a day of scenic beauty.

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The Kruger Park is well-known for game viewing, but did you know that South Africa’s best loved Staffie, Jock of the Bushveld, was born on Voortrekker Road in 1885, which runs south of Pretoriuskop in the Kruger National Park, and is a short distance from the lodge?

A commemorative plaque has been erected to remind us of the bravery of Jock, which has captured the imagination of people for hundreds of year.  The 475-pager “Jock of the Bushveld” was first published in 1907 when it became an instant best seller and a local classic. Since then it has never been out of print and captured the hearts of a new audience with a 3D animation film. Heavyweights such as Bryan Adams and Johny Clegg have thrown their weight behind the ultimate story of a man’s best friend and the intense humanity of Sir Percy Fitzpatrick.

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School holidays are the best time to introduce your kids to the tales of Jock of the Bushveld and reading these stories at night around a fire in the Umbhaba Lodge lounge, your own African Tribal Suites or perhaps while traveling in the car following Jock’s trail, is a wonderful way of spending a few days in the Lowveld and bonding with the kids. (Click here for some great advice on traveling with kids.)

Sight-seeing and game viewing is hard work and enjoying a cocktail, glass of port or ice cold beer in the Burn Out Bar after a day of game viewing in the Kruger National Park comes highly recommended.  With an inviting fireplace, comfortable lounge and a wooden deck with great views, this is the perfect venue to reminisce about the day’s excitement.

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Umbhaba Lodge forms part of the Guvon Hotels & Spa’s group – a leading hospitality group offering a collection of hotels in Gauteng, Northwest and Mpumalanga. All properties offer excellent accommodation, conference, team building and wedding facilities. Kloofzicht Lodge & Spa, Glenburn Lodge & Spa and Bush Willow Tented Camp are in Muldersdrift, in the Cradle of Humankind. Askari Game Lodge & Spa, a Big 5 game reserve, and Warthogs Bush Camp are in Magaliesberg, while Umbhaba Lodge is situated in Hazyview. The Fairway Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort (Randpark Golf Club), and All Suite On 14th (Fairlands) add city retreats to our country collection of properties.

reservations@umbhaba.co.za | Tel 013 737 7636 | Central Res: 08611 48866 | www.umbhaba.co.za