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There’s lots to love about the incredibly dynamic industry we work in, and it’s safe to say that the hospitality sector is a space that’s unlike any other! We checked in with a few of South Africa’s hospitality-based Associations, including some that’ll directly be involved in this year’s Food & Hospitality Africa powered by Hostex, to find out what they love about the hospitality industry, what makes it unique and an industry to be passionate about.

“The hospitality sector is the backbone of the tourism industry and in its nature, it requires leaders that are customer-centric and obsessed with exceeding customer expectations. To deliver on the promise, leaders within the sector are passionate about all aspects that define hospitality, from ensuring that hotels meet the grading requirements, health and safety standards, food safety standards, service excellence, and overall hospitality. Leaders are passionate because they love the industry and more importantly they get excited when they exceed customer expectation. This is also the service to the country’s competitiveness.” Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO of FEDHASA

“Once one is involved with the hospitality sector, it’s difficult to extricate oneself from it!  Most of my working life has been spent working with the hospitality and tourism industry and it’s the sheer diversity of people and places with whom one works that is so exciting.  As GM of GHASA for the past 20-odd years and as a past star grading assessor, I’m still excited to see a new establishment.  Every property I’ve ever visited has been unique in its own special way.  There’s nothing boring about my job!” Lyndsay Jackson, GM of the Guest House Accommodation of SA

“To be a part of the hospitality sector is an experience of a lifetime. Where else would one meet so many people of different races who arrive as strangers and become friends? How else would a person hear such interesting life stories? When else would a people-person get to fulfil their passion for sharing their love of this country?  Hospitality is an incredibly satisfying and rewarding lifestyle.” Heather Hunter, Vice Chair Coastal National Accommodation SA

“We love the diversity of people, the movement of trends, the speed of this ever-changing environment from ingredients, to methods – it never stays still. We are looking forward to the current anticipation of growth in the next 10 years with a great deal of confidence given by our President Cyril Ramaphosa, through a broader scope and education of the youth, opening doors to so many young people to enter an exciting career in the hospitality industry.” Stephen Billingham, outgoing President of SA Chefs, and Thomas Overbeck, GM of SA Chefs

“We as a company always look forward to meeting different people because each company has its own culture and is so unique. Hotels, B&Bs, Manors, and Game Lodges are managed by professional people and trained very well. The layout of each establishment will tell you something special about the owners, and how they care about the clients and their staff; we always believe that happy staff give you happy clients.  When you go the extra mile you will always pick the fruits, and always give a positive attitude no matter what and you will achieve your goals.” Mariana Mare, Owner BABASA

If you want to mingle and network with your colleagues and peers in the hospitality sector, make sure to visit Food & Hospitality Africa powered by Hostex, which will be running from the 6 – 8 May 2018 at the Gallagher Convention Centre. The show is a not-to-be-missed event where you’ll be able to check out all the latest equipment, products and trends in the hospitality industry, as well as network with industry leaders. To register for free, click here and for more information on the show, click here.