South African hotel asset management company, ANEW Hotels & Resorts, launched its 16th property, ANEW Resort White River Mbombela – which is currently known as The Ingwenyama Resort – at Meetings Africa 2023 at Johannesburg’s Sandton Convention Centre yesterday (February 28).
This conferencing and sports resort in the Lowveld was an incredible feather to add to the group’s proverbial cap, in a prime strategic location, said Alan Campbell, Sales and Marketing Director at ANEW Hotels & Resorts.
Speaking to Tourism Update on the side lines of Meetings Africa, Campbell said this property would serve as a strategic base for the group, which would open doors for further opportunities.
He said the group was on track for a major expansion drive – looking at having 20 properties in its portfolio by year-end.
“We are also adding to our family of staff,” Campbell said, noting that the group was very South Africa focused in its positioning.
“We’ve had opportunities to expand beyond SA’s borders but we are a proudly South African brand,” he said.
While acknowledging the challenges currently facing the tourism and hospitality sector in SA, Campbell said the fact that ANEW was investing in more properties and staff, indicated that the group had faith in South Africa’s growth and economic recovery.
“You get to choose how to face challenges. And we choose to stay positive and focus on solutions and growth,” he said, pointing to the fact that the relatively new hospitality group had just three properties in its portfolio pre-COVID (by March 2020), which it grew to 15 during the pandemic.
Campbell said the deadline for the opening of the ANEW Resort White River Mbombela was set for November 1, adding that the owners had asked them to move up the opening date. “So it could open as early as August – watch this space,” he said.
ANEW will launch a 17th property at Indaba in May.
ANEW CEO Clinton Armour said: “This is a remarkable property that we are very proud and excited to include in our ANEW family. We’re thrilled to work with the owners of the property and have an extensive ongoing refurbishment plan in place, one that has already commenced.
“What really makes us excited about ANEW Resort White River, in addition to its proximity to the Kruger National Park, are its incredible sporting facilities – from sports fields and swimming pools to a state-of-the-art high-performance centre and gym.
“ANEW Resort White River is a great location for sports teams and professionals looking for a training location with the benefits of medium-high altitude training. Lying at an altitude of 1 375m above sea level, the gym offers the latest sports and fitness equipment.”
The property offers 149 rooms, conferencing and banqueting facilities for between 15 and 650 delegates – depending on seating – for indoor and outdoor events.
The resort is 39km from Kruger National Park’s Numbi Gate, 19km from the Mbombela Stadium and 17km from Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport.