Cape Town ready for 'bumper tourism season' – 191 weekly flights expected from January 2023

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Just over 190 flights to Cape Town per week are expected from January 2023.
  • Cape Town's tourism sector is expected to have a busy summer season, says WC Premier Alan Winde.
  • Winde was speaking at the reopening of the Shimansky Diamond Experience at its Rockwell Showroom in Green Point.
  • The museum opened its doors in October after nearly three years of being closed due to the pandemic.

Cape Town is set to experience a "bumper summer season," Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities, Mireille Wenger, said last month.

Wenger was speaking at the reopening of the Shimansky Diamond Experience at its Rockwell Showroom in Green Point, Cape Town. The museum, a popular attraction for local and international tourists alike, reopened its doors on 27 October after nearly three years of being closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Shimansky founder and CEO Yair Shimansky said: "Today we are reopening the Rockwell Diamond Experience; this is a very meaningful event for us. After Covid-19, we had to close down due to lack of tourism."

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Shimansky at its Rockwell Showroom in Green Point, Cape Town.

Also present at the sparkling event was Western Cape Premier Alan Winde, who said that the reopening of the diamond museum symbolises that the Cape Town tourism sector was ready for a busy tourist season.

"Covid-19 hit us really hard, and it hit the tourism industry the hardest. From lockdowns to red lists … it was really hectic. Given the severe hardship caused by the pandemic and lockdown, the revival of a business like Shimansky – itself a casualty of the economic slowdown is deeply encouraging," said Winde.

The reopening was a sign that economic recovery in the Western Cape was making steady progress, said Winde, adding:

I look at the … direct flights coming into Cape Town. Suddenly, three cities in America have direct flights to Cape Town, which we didn't have pre-Covid, but we've got them now. How's that for recovery? It really just speaks volumes. If I think about this industry and the potential for jobs in the economy, we need to celebrate today.

According to Wenger, there will be 191 international flights a week into Cape Town from January 2023, "which is really phenomenal".

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Shimansky also launched the first of its kind Cape Town ring, which symbolises "the beauty of this wonderful South African city," said Wenger.

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Shimansky's 'My Africa' collection. Photo by Zakiyah Ebrahim

Said Winde: "When [international tourists] think about South Africa, they obviously think about our wine, mountains, and oceans, but they also think about those mineral resources that we are globally known for: they think about diamonds. And this [diamond museum] is such a unique experience for tourists." 

By appointment only, the public is invited for an exclusive jewellery tour that will involve hands-on experience, live jewellery manufacturing and diamond polishing (booking in advance is essential). During this visit, you can experience the transformation of one of South Africa’s most precious resources – from raw to finish. 

"Polishing a diamond is a really ... special experience," said Shimansky.

Winde said that the reopening of Shimansky's Rockwell Diamond Experience symbolised hope for all entrepreneurs, businesses and investors in the tourism industry. 

"If we all do what we need to do, people will go back with exactly as you say those experiences and memories of this amazing place here at the southern tip of Africa, which is a unique offering. So let's get back, let's rock the world… this is going to be the bumper season people are going to talk about for decades to come."

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Bookings for a unique diamond and jewellery experience at the Shimansky Diamond Experience and Showroom can be made here. You can expect to learn more about the history of diamonds and how these jewels changed the world from 1870, when the diamond rush started, to today, right here in South Africa, the birthplace of the world's most famous diamonds.  


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