Shamwari bags two top accolades

22 December 2008

South Africa’s Shamwari Game Reserve is in the spotlight again following this year’s World Travel Awards, held in the Turks and Caicos Islands earlier this month, after it was chosen as the World’s Leading Safari & Game Reserve.

In addition, the first World Travel Green Awards were also held in the Caribbean, with Shamwari being voted as the World’s Leading Conservation Company for 2008.

“To be awarded the ‘World’s Leading Safari and Game Reserve’ for an eleventh consecutive year and the Green Award acknowledgement is an outstanding achievement,” James Wilson, CEO of Dubai World Africa, a major shareholder of Shamwari, said in a statement this week.

“The Shamwari Game Reserve team has set out to continuously elevate the guest experience at the game reserve, creating new benchmarks in delivering complete wildlife and hospitality offerings to our guest and travel industry colleagues.”

Wilson added that Shamwari would continue to maintain the highest regard for the environment, whilst remaining at the forefront of conservation and hospitality in Africa.

Setting benchmarks

“We are proud of the achievements and commitment made by all and will continue to promote ecologically sensitive tourism and support the local environments through community development projects and conservation of natural and human resources,” said Adrian Gardiner, CEO of the Mantis Group, which owns Shamwari.

“Our goal is to continuously set ecological standards and benchmarks in the green tourism industry of South Africa.”

The nominations of the first World Travel Green Awards were announced at a ceremony held in Popard, Slovakia in October, when 90 organizations were nominated for the global categories of the first World Travel Green Awards.

“The challenges of green tourism are the responsibility of every company, organization and individual working in travel and tourism today,” said World Travel Awards chairman Graham Cooke. “Unless we play our part now, there is no denying that we will all be held accountable by future generations.”

‘Travel industry Oscars’

The World Travel Awards, hailed as the “travel industry’s equivalent to the Oscars” by the Wall Street Journal, are described as “the most comprehensive and the most prestigious awards program in the global travel industry” by numerous media reports.

“The survey is truly global in scale, independent and accountable,” said Cooke.

Thousands of travel agents and industry members from around the globe vote for winners of the World Travel Awards, which was launched in 1993 to celebrate excellence in the World’s travel and tourism industry.

SAinfo reporter

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