When did you know you wanted to be a hotelier and in particular, a General Manager?
Practically right after high school , but then it was more of being a chef than anything else.
Where have you served thus far as GM?
This is my first property as a GM
Have you had any mentor(s) along the way & how important were they, to your development?
Yes at different stages perhaps not necessarily mentors all the time but really good Managers that always assisted with my professional growth
Have you ever had to open a hotel or lodge and would you say that requires a unique skill set? If not, would you be interested in doing so or not?
Yes this is my second go at opening a property and Its very different from joining a established place so yes it requires a different skill set.
From the first day you served as a GM, until today, you must have learnt so much. If you could share any one piece of sage guidance, to new GM’s, what would it be?
Be open to different ways of doing things , when establishing a new team you also have the opportunity to learn new things from the team you have built
I imagine that being the GM of a property, in a small town, would come with different dynamics to being the GM of a property, in a big city. The same would go for managing a beach property on an island or a bush lodge in a remote corner of the world. Can you share how one adapts to managing in different locations (environments)?
Be flexible or Learn to be flexible , there is never just one way of completing a task always be ready think out side of the box and be open to being challenged so that growth stays an option.
Being the general manager of a hotel, during the Coronavirus Pandemic must have been very challenging. What was the key to survival and did you ‘gain (or learn)’ anything, from the adverse situation?
We were fortunate that we opened during the pandemic which allowed us time to start with a small team and really focus on training. This allowed us to keep our expenses minimal, it taught us that investing in the people you work with brings so much more out of them as we kept all of them employed through the lockdowns , people are and always will be at the core of hospitality so taking care of your team would equal to them talking care of the guests.
Your favourite thing about serving, at your current post?
The Stories we get to tell everything on our property has meaning and it has a special place in south African history
How important is it, for general managers, such as yourself, to visit other properties?
I think it very important so that you are always seeing different ways of doing things and also hopefully different places get you to challenge your standards ?
How is your establishment contributing to the greater good & making the world a better place?
We are extremely focused on continuing the legacy of Madiba. A portion of the revenue we make goes to supporting the Nelson Mandela Foundation and their charitable work.
Interesting Insights about the General Manager:
What is your favourite wine?
No one favourite but I enjoy dabbling between different varietals but two stand out varietals that I enjoy more frequently are Grenache and Cab Sauv.
What is your favourite dish?
Steak I can eat a good Steak any day.
What favourite hidden gem, near your establishment, should we visit?
The Nelson Mandela Foundation
Best question you were never asked or a fun fact about yourself?
“What drives you personally?”
I guess I’m Still searching for this answer!