She heads up the Point

2016-12-06 06:01
 Celeste Bell, general manager of Cape Point.       PHOTO: momenti marketing

Celeste Bell, general manager of Cape Point. PHOTO: momenti marketing

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A love for knowledge and a dream to better herself has seen Celeste Bell rise from her job as cashier to the general manager of Cape Point.

Bell started working at Cape Point in 2000 as a general assistant. Since then, she has held positions as supervisor, maintenance administrator, safety officer, stock controller and deputy manager.

As general manager, Bell is responsible for managing the daily operations and ensuring the safe operation of the tram.

“When the funicular operation is suspended, all safety aspects need to be taken into consideration for alternate transport arrangements at Cape Point. That is definitely a challenge.

“I also manage and maintain the cleanliness of the Cape Point facility and I am responsible for overseeing all administrative functions. A major part of my job involves leading and directing employees and overseeing their welfare and development,” she says.

Bell has moved through her positions by constantly undertaking training, says Jerry Mabena, CEO of Thebe Tourism Group – which manages the attraction – at a recent function to celebrate the attraction’s 20th anniversary.

“Celeste is still training and has said she may even take my job one day,” Mabena joked at the event.

But Bell says her pursuit of knowledge is not just about the next job.

“[I’m motived to train further to expand] my knowledge, to better myself and to become more confident,” she says.

Her time at Cape Point has given her various fond memories.

“One of the most unforgettable memories would be the sighting of puff adders mating at Olifantsbos. There was also the time that Sir Cliff Richard extended a personal message to my mother. We had a staff hike to Kanonkop, which was very strenuous, but the spectacular view overlooking the bay made it completely worth it,” she says.

Secret spotsBell is also in on all the secret spots at the landmark.

“One thing that tourists overlook is Diaz Beach, which is one of the most secluded beaches, with soft white sand and breathtaking cliff views. This makes for a very romantic spot within Cape Point – it has even seen a few marriage proposals,” she says.

Cape Point celebrated its 20th anniversary at an event on Thursday 24 November.

The Flying Dutchman funicular, named after the ghost ship said to sail the seas around the point, opened in 1996.

The rest of the facility had opened a year earlier, making the celebration “both a 20th and a 21st birthday”, according to Mabena (“Videos shed light on point”, People’s Post, 29 November).

More than 348 000 people have ridden in the funicular this year, and the popular destination has welcomed more than 840 000 visitors.

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