Saturday, March 22, 2014

Stellenbosch Wine Routes makes its debut at ITB in Berlin

Stellenbosch Wine Routes makes its debut at ITB in Berlin 
Stellenbosch’s Wine Tourism campaign goes global

Jordan Vineyards

The Stellenbosch American Express ® Wine Routes, South Africa’s first and foremost wine route and gourmet capital of the country, will be making its debut at the 2014 ITB Berlin – the world’s largest tourism convention – as part of the global launch of its dynamic wine tourism marketing campaign, Stellenbosch Experience.

From 5 till 9 March, the granddaddy of South African Wine Routes will join forces with South African Tourism, Wesgro – the Western Cape’s tourism, trade and investment promotion agency – and Tripadvisor in showcasing the potential of wine tourism in Stellenbosch and the broader Western Cape to the world’s largest gathering of tourism trade and media.

“The potential of wine tourism in South Africa is huge, and Stellenbosch and the Western Cape at large are perfectly placed to attract more wine tourists to our country, but then a far greater and more aligned effort is needed on a global scale. We are thrilled about this collaboration and cannot wait to introduce Stellenbosch as the ultimate wine tourism destination in terms of quality, authenticity and value for money experiences to the world,” shares Annareth Bolton, CEO of the Stellenbosch Wine Routes.

‘Recent research by Tourism New Zealand found that 13% of all international travellers visit wineries and embark on wine tourism related activities annually. These travellers spend more on average than other leisure travellers and stay longer. It is no wonder that destinations like New Zealand are focusing a lot more on wine tourism promotions,” adds Bolton.

The Stellenbosch Experience, which will internationally launch at ITB, is a dynamic marketing campaign initiated by the Stellenbosch Wine Routes in association with Destinate, an international tourism marketing agency established by Mariette du Toit-Helmbold after a successful ten year tenure as CEO of Cape Town Tourism. The campaign is supported by Stellenbosch 360 (aka Stellenbosch Tourism) and the aim is to expand the region’s wine tourism footprint, locally and abroad.

“With this campaign we aim for maximum international recognition, making use of primarily digital marketing to showcase the wealth of our wine tourism offering and our passion and pride to the world. ITB offers the perfect platform for us to share just why Stellenbosch is South Africa’s wine tourism capital and benefit from the leading think tank of the global tourism industry,” explains Bolton.

The establishing of the Stellenbosch Wine Routes in 1971 was seen as the start of wine tourism in South Africa. Not only did it herald the first co-operative venture between a corporate entity and a wine region, but it also enabled a specific wine region to approach the whole topic of wine tourism on a level that had until then not been seen in the South African wine industry. Today it is recognised as the leader in South African wine tourism and the country’s premier wine route in terms of quality wines, tourism offerings, professionalism, reputation, innovation and community involvement.

As part of the Stellenbosch Experience international launch – trade and media visitors to ITB will be able to take part in an exclusive ‘The Ultimate Wine Tourism Bucket List’ competition, which will expose the world’s top trade and travel media to what Stellenbosch and its wine routes have to offer.

Leading up to the convention, international trade and media are invited to select their ‘ultimate bucket list’ from an enticing itinerary of awe-inspiring experiences in and around Stellenbosch, ranging from harvesting with a winemaker and dining with a local celebrity chef, to game viewing in the Winelands and learning how to drive a tractor. One lucky winner and a partner will then win their ‘ultimate bucket list’ and will experience just why Stellenbosch is the perfect hub from where to explore Cape Town and the surrounding regions of the Western Cape.

Entries will be managed via the Stellenbosch Experience’s new, inter-active blog, StellenBlog, which shares and celebrates the latest news, stories, communities and rich culture of this historic Winelands destination with daily updates on the catchy blog wall.

Other campaign elements include an enhanced digital presence across all social media networks and an innovative wine tourism blogger campaign with top international and national travel, lifestyle and food bloggers between April and September.

For more information on the Stellenbosch Experience initiative visit the new blog du Toit-Helmbold at or phone 083 225 5955.