lilizela tourism awards 2019

lilizela tourism awards 2019 / Image supplied

Lilizela Awards 2019: All the winners in hospitality and tourism

The 2019 winners of the annual Lilizela Tourism Awards have been announced, honouring excellence in South Africa’s tourism and hospitality industry.

lilizela tourism awards 2019

lilizela tourism awards 2019 / Image supplied

The annual Lilizela Tourism Awards honours excellence in South Africa’s tourism and hospitality industry. This year’s winners have been recently been announced.

Lilizela Tourism Awards: 2019 ceremony

These awards celebrate and inspire greatness by achieving superlative standards of service. The awards cover a cross-section of tourism including accomodation, experiences, tour operators, tour guides and emerging entrepreneurs. 

The 2019 Lilizela Award Ceremony / Image supplied

Tourism Minister, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane paid special tribute to the country’s outstanding tourism businesses. These include some beneficiaries of the National Department of Tourism’s market access and enterprise development programmes.

“Thank you to the men and women who, in their area of work, go the extra mile to ensure that tourists that travel to our country enjoy a memorable experience.

Providing real authentic experiences to tourists is what will sustain and grow our tourism sector. All of us should do this cognisant of the fact that tourists have no obligation to choose South Africa as a tourist destination,” she said.

“Tourism is a very competitive sector and demands from all of us to offer tourists a distinct, authentically South African and memorable experience so that they can return to our country again and again, or even better entice others to come along with them in their subsequent visits. 

As we cast our eyes into the future, we must continue to ensure that we transform our sector inclusively and to showcase more authentic and uniquely South African experiences,” she said.

Sibongile Khumalo and The Ndlovu Youth Choir performed at the awards ceremony. Sustainability Village showcased locally inspired and crafted arts and crafts, which lends itself to the government’s efforts to promote sustainable tourism and youth employment. Guests toured this village space for selected black-owned businesses to market their products. 

The awards

River Place Manor awarded with the Guest House Service Exellence Award / Image supplied

The Lilizela Tourism Awards was established in 2013 as a National Department of Tourism initiative, spearheaded by South African Tourism. These awards recognise and reward excellence in the local tourism industry and are adjudicated through a combination of public votes and a panel of industry judges and are audited by Nexia SAB&T.

In an effort to recognise the wider tourism industry, nine new award sub-categories have been introduced. These include an in-hotel conference centre, events venue, function venue, conference centre, convention & exhibition centre, meetings, exhibitions and special events, apartment hotel, boutique hotel, small hotel. 

Bheki Dube of Curiosity Backpackers was awarded the prestigious “I Do Tourism” award. Introduced in 2018, this award recognises proudly South African organisations or individuals who, through sheer dedication and passion, have excelled in positioning the country as a tourism destination of choice, contributing to the vibrancy and growth of the sector.

Entry to the Lilizela National Tourism Awards is free. Tourism businesses of all sizes are encouraged to enter, across a range of accomodation establishments, tourism operators, scenic attractions and cultural heritage sites. 

The 2019 Lilizela Tourism award winners

These awards help to develop, grow and transform the industry while celebrating its achievements.

66 awards across eight categories were awarded.

Tour Operator: Earthstompers Adventures (Western Cape)

Accomodation Mobility: Soli Deo Gloria (Western Cape)

Experience Mobility: Cape Town International Convention Centre Company (Western Cape)

Scenic Beauty: Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve (Western Cape)

Wildlife Encounters: Hayward’s Grand Safaris(Gauteng)

Emerging Tourism Entrepreneur of the Year Award: Camping RetrEats (Gauteng)

Beach Experience: Chokka Trail (Eastern Cape)

Action & Adventure: Baviaans Camino (Eastern Cape)

Roots & Culture: TAHS-SA (Traditional African homestays South Africa), (Limpopo)

Culture & Lifestyle: The Workshop to ko Kasi (Northern Cape)

Lap of Luxury: Oceana Beach & Wildlife Reserve (Eastern Cape)

Marine Adventure: Raggy Charters (Eastern Cape)

Caravan & Camping

Mahai Caravan Park Royal Natal (KwaZulu-Natal)

Dibiki Holiday Resort (Western Cape)

Jackalberry Ridge (Mpumalanga)

Backpackers & Hosteling

Saltycrax Backpackers (Western Cape)

Once in Joburg (Gauteng)

Coffee Shack Backpackers & Surf School (Eastern Cape)

Bed & Breakfast

The Kingsman (Eastern Cape)

Bushbaby River Lodge (Limpopo)

African Tulip Guesthouse (Western Cape)


River Place Manor (Northern Cape)

La Lechere Guesthouse (Limpopo)

Panorama Guest House King William’s Town (Eastern Cape)

Naba Lodge Guest House (Northern Cape)

Country House:

Welgelegen Manor (Mpumalanga)

Pleasant Places  Country Guest House (KwaZulu-Natal)

Hamilton Parks Country Lodge (Mpumalanga)


The Gorge Private Game Lodge & Spa (KwaZulu-Natal)

Kagga Kamma Nature Reserve (Western Cape)

Ebundu (Pty) Ltd (Mpumalanga)

Game Lodge:

Bayala Game Lodge (KwaZulu-Natal)

Phelwana Game Lodge (Limpopo)

Palala Boutique Game Lodge and Spa (Limpopo)

Self-Catering Shared Vacation:

Haga Haga (Eastern Cape)

Thunzi Bush Lodge (Eastern Cape)

Mjejane Bush Camp (Mpumalanga)

Self-Catering Exclusive

Bethesda Exclusive Accommodation (Free State)

Aquarius Luxury Suites (Western Cape)

Burlington Bush Cottages (Eastern Cape)

N’Wambu Safari Lodge by Elite Residences (Mpumalanga)

In-Hotel Conference Centre:

Mont d’ Or Hotel (Free State)

Events Venue:

Naba Lodge Conference Facility( Northern Cape)

Mthatha Dam Resort Luchaba Nature Reserve (Eastern Cape)

Sun Arena (Gauteng)

Function Venue:

Monakaladi Gardens Wedding and Conference Venue (North West)

AnnVilla Conference Venue (North West)

Conference Venue:

The Forum | The Campus (Gauteng)

Convention & Exhibition Centre:

Sandton Convention Centre (Gauteng)

Olive Convention Centre (KwaZulu-Natal)

Meetings, Exhibitions & Special Events (MESE)

Birchwood Hotel and OR Tambo Conference Centre (Gauteng)

Centurion A Forever Hotel Conference (Gauteng)

Small Hotel:

Eendracht Hotel (Western Cape)

Mayfair Hotel (Eastern Cape)

Apartment Hotel:

The Hyde Hotel (Western Cape)

Boutique Hotel:

Ekhaya Boutique Hotel (KwaZulu-Natal)

Oceana Beach & Wildlife Reserve (Eastern Cape)


Road Lodge Potchefstroom (North West)

Town Lodge Port Elizabeth (Eastern Cape)

Lesedi African Lodge & Cultural Village (North West)

The Oyster Box Hotel (KwaZulu-Natal)

Thaba Eco Hotel (Gauteng)

Tour Guides

Fhumulani Sidney Mikosi, Nature Guide (Limpopo)

Bulelani Gerald Futshane, Cultural Guide (Western Cape)

Kwandiwe Waxa, Adventure Guide (Eastern Cape)