New direction for Swartland Tourism

Tourism in the Swartland has taken the next step to streamline the official tourism structures in the region after numerous consultations, led by Henk Bruwer, the outgoing Chairperson of Cape West Coast Swartland Tourism Association (CWCSTA). The CWCSTA was responsible for the promotion of the Swartland as a tourism destination since its inception in 2007.
Unveiling the new structure, Lizelle Carstens, newly appointed Tourism Manager, explained that previously five individual committees served the needs of tourists to Malmesbury, Riebeek Valley, Yzerfontein, Darling and Moorreesburg & Koringberg.
A consulting agency, appointed by Swartland Municipality, proposed a new structure for tourism in the region after consultation with the local industry. This proposal, which was accepted by the Swartland Municipal Council on 20 May 2021, included the registration of a Non-Profit Company with a Board of Directors and the centralisation of finances and the management of the visitor information centres in the region.
“With the new structure, collaborative marketing will broaden the reach of the tourism sector and add authenticity to the Swartland brand. The main goal of the company is to get more bums in beds and feet to the region to aid in the growth of the local economy.
“It is important to have a bottoms-up approach and the input of local tourism businesses are extremely important in taking the company and the tourism industry in the Swartland forward. Besides getting the basic administrative procedures in place, the first step for the new company will be compiling a broad tourism strategy with the input and in consultation with local tourism members. The existing voluntary tourism committees in the various town will be the first port of call for this endeavour. Swartland Tourism NPCs business plan is based on a generous financial contribution from Swartland Municipality, with whom the company has signed a 3-year Service Level Agreement, and the support of local tourism businesses through a voluntary annual tourism membership.”
The five voluntary directors of the new Swartland Tourism NPC, that was appointed at the first public meeting of the NPC held on 26 April 2022 in Malmesbury, are Tewie Roos (chairperson), Jolene Janse van Rensburg (vice chairperson) Sean Cleary-Le Grange, Michael Daiber and Derek van der Riet. Dawie Scholtz was co-opted as treasurer for the company.
This dynamic team has been hard at work behind the scenes to ensure a smooth hand over between CWCSTA and the newly formed Swartland NPC.
Tewie Roos, the chairperson of the board said: “In the economic climate that we are currently in, a united front and a coordinated approach is more important than ever. Registering an NPC for tourism makes absolute sense as it will put the company in a better position to recruit sponsors and work closer with local authorities.
“I would like to encourage tourism businesses to be part of this new and exciting direction by signing up as a tourism member and giving their input in the new tourism strategy,” said Lizelle Carstens. She further emphasised that the Swartland Tourism strategy and activities will be aligned with that of the West Coast Regional Tourism Organisation and Wesgro, the designated tourism agency for the Western Cape. Businesses are invited to reach out to Lizelle by sending an e-mail to swartland@cornergate.com