SA’s wealthier residents reveal their festive plans

2015-11-30 10:05
Sorisha Naidoo and Vivian Reddy.

Sorisha Naidoo and Vivian Reddy.

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The countdown has begun to the end of the year, and some of the country’s wealthier residents are looking forward to their December holidays. But where are they going? City Press asks a few to reveal their festive plans

Sorisha Naidoo and Vivian Reddy

Destination: Thailand and Singapore

Former actress and businesswoman Sorisha Naidoo, who is married to Durban entrepreneur Vivian Reddy, will be heading abroad next month.

The couple and two of their younger children – a son (7) and daughter (5) – are planning to go to Singapore and Thailand for their December holidays.

For the past five years, the family has been travelling to Mauritius for their year-end breaks, but this year they decided on something new.

“This year is different as we are venturing out. For the past five years, we have been to Mauritius for the beach, sun and quiet, so this is definitely taking us out of our comfort zone,” said Naidoo.

They also have activities lined up for their trip. “Definitely Universal Studios in Singapore and all the cultural relishes that Thailand has to offer,” she said.

Naidoo says they always plan their holidays around their children and ensure the holidays they choose are child-centred.

She says their best family holiday destination was the Seychelles, because of its beaches and coral reefs.

Phi Phi Island in Thailand

Yvonne Chaka Chaka

Destination: Gansbaai, Western Cape

She may be a renowned songbird, but Yvonne Chaka Chaka is no fan of bird on her Christmas plate. She will celebrate Christmas in Joburg with a braaivleis and mogodu before heading to a village for New Year’s Eve.

Chaka Chaka says Christmas at her Joburg home will again be a family affair that will see her in the kitchen cooking up a storm, before everyone jumps in the pool.

“We always have Christmas at home in Joburg. My sister and I usually cook. I’m not one of those people who cook a turkey ... I just cook all the things my kids love,” she says.

“For example, my one son loves tripe. The other one hates it. He says it smells. They all love braaivleis, which I can’t stand. But all these things go on the menu.”

Chaka Chaka and her husband, Mandlalele Mhinga, have four sons: Ningi, Mandla, Mfuma and Themba.

She says they’ll probably be heading to the hamlet of Gansbaai, near Hermanus, for New Year’s Eve. She says she has yet to try diving with sharks – an activity the area is known for. Her sons have done so.

Basetsana Kumalo

Destination: Cape Town on the Blue Train

Businesswoman Basetsana Kumalo is another Christmas homebody. “It’s a tradition we have created, especially for the kids, to have a big Christmas lunch with family and friends. I cook up a storm,” she says.

“We will probably go to Cape Town and spend New Year’s Eve there.”

Kumalo, who is married to businessman Romeo Kumalo, says the family will put up the Christmas tree and decorations this weekend.

“It creates such a festive mood in our home,” she says.

Choosing a holiday destination is tough for the Kumalos. It has to be child-friendly with lots of activities for them.

“The service has to be exceptional as well,” she says. “But before the family holiday, my husband and I are going away for a week on the Blue Train to celebrate our 15th wedding anniversary. For that trip, the kids are staying at home!”

The Kumalos haven’t planned much over December. “It has been a long and busy year, and we don’t like to plan any particular activities. I just want to be lazy, read books I have put aside and haven’t had time to read. I just want to wake up and worry about what’s for lunch,” she says.

Road trips are out, and flying is in. “With small children, road trips can be arduous. They get easily agitated, and one wants a pleasant journey. It’s holiday time, after all – you don’t want to be yelling at this one to stop pinching the other one.”

The Kumalos go to different destinations every year. “My husband and I are fortunate that we have travelled extensively over the years. Now it’s about creating memories for our little ones,” she says.

Her favourite holiday destination? “I guess every holiday is a special time of reflection, gratitude and creating magical moments that linger. Being together as a family is special enough,” she says. 

Gavin Rajah

Destination: Nowhere!

Cape Town-based fashion designer Gavin Rajah said he was planning to close shop early, but not because he’s going anywhere.

After December 15, he’s going to treat himself to a staycation, enjoying the restaurants and sights of the city.

Rajah celebrated the Hindu festival of Diwali two weeks ago with a lavish party with Indian delicacies at his home in the pricy Atlantic seaboard suburb of Fresnaye.

“Oh, the rand is doing terribly for travel!” he says. “But also, I really just want to take a break to enjoy the city and all its new restaurants – and to chill.”

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