10 Things We Loved About We Are Africa 2018

Our pop-up Gastronomic Bar at We Are Africa in Cape Town each year is not merely a celebration of gastronomy, a source of not only excellent food and wine, but also genuine inspiration and community. This year, 10 things really took us by the hand and left us pining for the moments to last.

Here are our favourite impressions from WAA 2018.. 

1. Cape Town is known for being a four seasons in one day kinda gal, and even though she is currently in a dry spell, Autumn has been unpredictable. We Are Africa, however, had the gods shining down on it, with beautiful warm sunlight across the city, clear views of Table Mountain and instagrammable sunset after instagrammable sunset. Thank you, weather spirits. Now, back to raining.

2. Gastronomy. We intend on travelling as much of the continent and Indian Ocean as possibility allows, but having so many of the incredible Relais & Châteaux Africa chefs under one roof made for a phenomenal journey of its own, with unique tastes, from fynbos granola to raw eland meat, and inspiring sights and smells.

3. Compliments. Being the show’s hub of fine cuisine, we enjoyed several kind words from international and local guests – about our food, our wines (from Delaire Graff Estate and Waterford Estate), our people and our properties. And, well, kindness is never unwelcome.

4. Friendship. Having attended and exhibited at We Are Africa since its inception, we’ve made a few friends. It is always beautiful to reconnect with them in the Cape. Having the people of our hotels and lodges in Africa and Indian Ocean altogether… well, that’s magic.

5. Those wines… Waterford Wines and Delaire Graff Estate lured a few more guests to our meeting place. It was a pleasure to watch the conversations around the counter, as wine lovers from all over the world embraced the joys of living.

6. The parties. Some of us chose to enjoy the sheets of our Ellerman House or The Cellars-Hohenort suites a little longer each morning, while others ventured up the cable car for sunrise music sessions with a local band on top of the city’s best-known mountain. Some of us returned to our hotels for slow sundowners on our terraces, while others took to We Are Africa’s extravaganzas in art galleries and circuses.

7. The Art of Giving. Gift giving and receiving was at its finest, with hotels and lodges sharing tastes of their unique place in the world with others, such as the baobab jam from Anjajavy le Lodge, handmade wire birds with personalised proverbs from Royal Chundu, and beach-lover sandals from Zanzibar Luxury White Sand Villas & Spa.

8. Conservation was on top of our minds throughout the show – from the Conservation Lab on the first day, with inspiring speakers, to the We Are Africa Awards given to leaders and innovators in African conservation and tourism. Catching up with our hotels and lodges about their latest conservation and community initiatives was particularly rewarding – from Camp Jabulani’s ever-growing sanctuary for endangered animals to Great Plains Conservation’s successful rhino-saving projects.

9. Colour! Once every year, We Are Africa gives us four beautiful days to dress up in the boldest of African-inspired outfits. Hats, waistcoats, bejewelled necks – they all shone with the diverse colours and patterns of Africa. How can anyone go back to navy blue after that?

10. Travel! Having scouted out the must-see destinations, the best places to stay, the chefs to indulge with, the whens, hows and what to packs, we’re all ready for some serious adventuring. And to fill the months ahead with #notonestory, but all the stories of Africa.


Thank you to our chefs and hotels and lodges for showcasing your exquisite gastronomy at our bar, to our partner, Nespresso, to We Are Africa for putting on one electric and eclectic show and to the city of Cape Town. Because, my, you sure are beautiful.

Esiweni Luxury Safari Lodge Chef, John Roux and his eats…

    

Ellerman House’s Head Chef Grant Daniels and his team’s tastes of the Cape…

Delaire Graff Estate’s Virgil Kahn (Indochine Restaurant) and his delicacies…

Great Plains Conservation, Kenya’s Benjamin Martim (Mara Plains Camp, ol Donyo Lodge) and Botswana’s Pierre Van Zyl & Raymond Maarman (Zarafa Camp, Duba Plains Camp) and their treats….

 

Executive Chef Peter Tempelhoff & Head Chef Paul Nash of The Cellars-Hohenort

   

To Protect and to Serve in the Wilderness of South Africa

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To protect and to serve – these words aren’t merely the dictum of US police departments. They’re what drive so many conservationists in Africa, fighting each day to conserve the Earth we call home.

They’re the words of special people like Adine Roode, Camp Jabulani lodge owner and elephant conservationist, and her team, who continue to inspire hope with their efforts to save the elephants and other endangered species of the continent in their special place in the Kapama Private Game Reserve in South Africa.

Following their adventures adds a wild spark to our days back home, in the city, as they remind us that there is always hope as long as individuals continue to, well, protect and conserve.

In Adine’s own words, here is an update on another successful introduction of an elephant orphan to the Camp Jabulani herd.


One of the Most Exceptional Cycling Experiences Ever

It has been called the ultimate cycling safari. A mountain biking experience to rival all other mountain biking experiences. And an event for only a chosen few: a powerful pride of protectors, preservers and legacy builders. The concept behind the Great Plains Foundation’s Ride For Lions will make you want to be part of that pride, no matter how daunting it looks…

Discover more about the journey here, or as told by the Great Plains Foundation below…

Lions need land. They need hidden places, not always prime savannahs, to breed and to roam as nomads. They need this land now more than ever as a reservoir for their dwindling numbers.

There are an estimated 44 million acres of land in Africa on which lions roam that is currently unprotected or under hunting management. 60% of the remaining 20-30,000 lions live under no protection at all on this land. Great Plains is working to change these numbers and protect more land for lions.

Through the Great Plains Foundation’s Ride For Lions, conservation-minded individuals and companies help fund and expand the amount of conserved land where lions roam freely. We do this through the purchase of land leases that cost roughly $250,000 to service and protect each year. In many cases, these leases are parcels of ex hunting land where the animal populations have significantly declined. Through programs and partnerships that rehabilitate the land and wildlife while mitigating human-wildlife conflict we have seen areas once desolate, become safe havens where lions and other wildlife return in abundance.


Participants in Ride For Lions not only demonstrate a commitment to conservation, but also intimately experience the land being conserved throughout the course of the ride.

Groups are limited to just 10 members. In keeping with the singular intimacy of this experience, riders gain a greater appreciation for the land undistracted by large groups.

A ride like this is unprecedented; combining an on-the-ground conservation experience with the comforts and security of Great Plains operations. It is a 4-day exploration of Kenya’s priceless Amboseli-Tsavo region: a showcase of Nature’s grand-scale artistry and wildlife spectacles. It is this magnificence that riders witness, experience and conserve.

Graced by the presence of Mt Kilimanjaro, riders follow bush tracks, elephant trails and footpaths. From the vast swathes of savannahs with green smudges of game-rich wetlands, riders gradually ascend into the lava world of the Chyulu Hills.

At these higher elevations, the verdant slopes tumble towards the great plains of Africa that extend forever.

Ride for Lions is imbued with the Great Plains defining ethos: exquisite attention to detail, luxurious finishes, beautifully appointed locations, non-negotiable safety measures, fine dining and inimitable style. Riders enjoy a perfect synergy of exceptional touring and exceptional care.

There are echoes of the Hero’s Journey in this spectacular event. Like the archetypal Hero, riders have embraced a great adventure together, shared experiences, endured challenges, triumphed, emerged with new insights, and, most importantly, making a heroic difference to African conservation.

Contact info@greatplainsconservation.com for more information on joining Ride For Lions.


Watch the Video for a Closer Look