Super rich tourists love SA despite visa rules

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Cape Town - South Africa was the most popular African destination for the super-rich during the 12-month period to September 2015, with about 11 000 multi-millionaires visiting the country.

The term “multi-millionaires” refers to individuals with net assets of $10m (about R150m) or more.

According to a survey on millionaire tourism in Africa, released by New World Wealth, SA remained in the top spot among multi-millionaires despite new visa rules "that made it more difficult for visitors to go to South Africa".

The most popular destinations within SA for these visitors included Cape Town, Johannesburg, Umhlanga, Franschhoek, Stellenbosch, the Kruger National Park (mainly around Sabi Sands) and the Garden Route (mainly around Knysna).

READ: SA's most exclusive estates for super-rich revealed

Africa received about 43 000 multi-millionaire visitors during the 12 months to September 2015. Major destinations for them outside SA included Mauritius, the Seychelles, Marrakech, Casablanca, Cairo, Nairobi, the Serengeti in Tanzania, Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt, the Masai Mara in Kenya, Livingstone in Zambia and the Okavango Swamps in Botswana. Gorilla safaris in Uganda were also popular.

The second most popular African country for the super-rich to visit, according to the latest report, is Morocco with 4 000 such visitors, followed by Botswana (3 000), Kenya (3 000), the Seychelles (3 000), Tanzania (2 000), Egypt (2 000), Mauritius (2 000), Uganda (1 000), Zambia (1 000), Mozambique (1 000) and Nigeria (1 000).

The survey also determined the top 10 rated hotels in Africa (excluding lodges) for 2015. La Mamounia in Marrakech, Morocco, came out tops, followed by the 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa in Cape Town and the Royal Mansour, also in Marrakech. Other SA hotels among the top 10 include The Oyster Box in Umhlanga north of Durban (5th), the Lost City and Sun City (6th), the Cape Grace (8th) and the Beverley Hills Hotel (9th) also in Umhlanga.

Franschhoek features strongly among the top rated small boutique hotels (fewer than 30 rooms) in Africa, according to the survey. La Petite Dauphine is rated number 1, the Franschhoek Country House third and La Residence fifth. North Island on the Seychelles (2nd) and Cleopatra (4th) in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands round off the top five in this category.

Sabi Sands is home to three of the top 10 rated safari lodges in Africa, according to the survey. The Savanna lodge is third, the Londolozi camp fifth and the Singita Ebony lodge eighth. The Ngorongoro Crater Lodge in Tanzania took the top spot and SA's Ngala Tented Camp in Timbavati came second.

ALSO READ: Where SA's super-rich live

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