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Cape Town has been named the ‘World’s Leading Festival and Events Destination’ at the 2018 World Travel Awards. The announcement was made at the Pátio da Galé in Lisbon, Portugal, on Saturday, 1 December 2018.

Accepting the award on behalf of the City of Cape Town, Alderman JP Smith, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, said: ‘This award reaffirms our position as a world-class City and proves that Cape Town has what it takes to lead the way in organising and hosting events. Last week representatives from national government, provincial government, the City’s Events office and myself spent two days in intensive preparations and rehearsals to present the bid on behalf of Cape Town and South Africa, to host the 2023 Netball World Cup. It would be the first time on African soil and would be a milestone for the City, the country and the continent  if we win the bid to host the largest women’s sporting event in the world.’

Cape Town has become the envy of many global cities as a result of its wide-ranging events portfolio.

Jewel events hosted in the city include World Travel Market (WTM) Africa, the HSBC Rugby Sevens, the Cape Town Cycle Tour, Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon, Design Indaba, Mining Indaba, the Absa Cape Epic, Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Sanlam Cape Town Marathon and the Volvo Ocean Race.

In 2012, the City of Cape Town launched its Integrated Events Strategy and set out to become the events capital of Africa. Since then, Cape Town has continually affirmed its place as a leading events destination on the continent.

‘We want the world to know that Cape Town is the destination to invest in, a place to work, for entertainment and the best place to live. This is not just an award for Cape Town; it is an award for South Africa and Africa. We want Cape Town to position itself as a place where the world can access Africa and Africa can access the world.  Continuing to host events of an international standard will make this vision a reality,’ said Executive Mayor of Cape Town, Dan Plato.

The economic spin-offs from events generate a ripple effect of job creation during and after events, and the increased spend at our world-famous attractions. It also enriches Cape Town’s knowledge in hosting and creates opportunities for the some of the people working on the events to initiate, and grow their own businesses.

Eight of the events being hosted in Cape Town over the next 12 months will contribute more than R3 billion to the local economy and create more than 20 000 temporary jobs.

Iconic Events hosted in Cape Town include:

World Travel Market (WTM) Africa

World Travel Market® Africa is the leading B2B exhibition for the inbound and outbound African travel & tourism markets. Mirrored on flagship events WTM® in London and Arabian Travel Market in Dubai – WTM® Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors.

Cape Town Cycle Tour

The world’s largest timed cycle race has been held in Cape Town for over four decades. It has grown from more than 500 cyclists in 1978 to 42 500 competitors from across Africa and the world.

Cape Town International Jazz Festival

‘Africa’s grandest gathering’ is one of Cape Town’s mainstay events having been hosted in the Mother City for the last 18 years. With at least 34 000 festival goers annually, the Cape Town International Jazz Festival has a contribution of about R600m into the economy. It is the largest jazz festival on the continent and recognised as the fourth largest in the world.

Design Indaba Conference

The festival of creativity has been hosted in Cape Town for the last two decades and sees about 48 000 visitors from over 26 countries come to the city to share ideas on all things design.

Over the past six years, Design Indaba has ploughed about R1,7 billion into the economy.

FIA World Rallycross Championship

The first of its kind in Africa, this Adrenalin-pumping motorsport showpiece has come to our shores for the second time this year and enjoyed significant Global TV coverage.

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series – Cape Town Sevens

Cape Town will be hosting this exciting showpiece for the fourth time from 8 – 9 December at the beautiful Cape Town Stadium.

HSBC Cape Town Sevens brings in about R674 million into the economy.

For two years in a row, most recently in September, the Cape Town leg of the competition was named as the Best Live Sports Experience in South Africa at the Discovery Sport Industry Awards last year and this is testament to the great collaboration between everyone involved in putting this showpiece together.

Old Mutual Two Oceans Race

The world’s most beautiful marathon, taking runners on the most breath-taking scenic routes in the Peninsula, is currently in its 48th year and going strong.

Old Mutual Two Oceans Race is the biggest half marathon in South Africa some 16,000 participants while over 11 000 athletes take on the 56 km Ultra Marathon.

It provides a R672 million boost to the economy.

Sanlam Cape Town Marathon

As Africa’s only IAAF Gold label status marathon, the City of Cape Town is a proud supporter of this event as it also helps the Mother City maintain its reputation as the Events Capital of Africa.

The Cape Town Marathon sees some 20 000 athletes from 67 countries take on the marathon.

Volvo Ocean Race

The world’s premier offshore yacht race made its 11th stop in Cape Town for the South African leg of the competition last December.

The Volvo Ocean Race brings in about R540 million into the economy and this biannual event.

For the 11th occasion, the organisers of this prestigious event have trusted our city with hosting the ocean race in our shores, a testament to the confidence international bodies have in Cape Town as a host.

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