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Annual search is on for Wine Tourism’s Favourite 15

Wine Tourism South Africa today announced that its second annual Klink Wine Tourism Awards – a benchmark of the public’s favourite things to do in the Winelands – is now open for voting.  The awards, a first in its category, encourages wine-lovers, their families and friends to discover the wealth of activities and experiences beyond the cellar door that the Western Cape wine region has to offer; then to vote for their favourite 15.

Monika Elias, Founder of Wine Tourism South Africa, a specialist wine tourism marketing company, says, “Wine is so much more than what’s inside the bottle; it’s about the brand, the wine estate’s atmospherics, the memories created on a wine route, the haute cuisine enjoyed at the gourmet restaurant, the discovery of unique experiences around wine. The Klink Wine Tourism Awards recognises this growing trend by enabling the industry’s keenest critics, the public, to award their favourite experiences top billing.”

In so doing, Elias says The Klink Wine Tourism Awards provides the industry with valuable insights on what the public like most, while at the same time engaging them to promote and establish the relatively new wine tourism industry among peers.

“Internationally wine tourism is booming; Napa in the United States and Christchurch in New Zealand are just two notable examples. Its growing popularity is partly due to tough operating conditions which has made wine a highly competitive industry but also because more demanding wine-lovers are looking for fresh experiences and new things to do.”

It is also South Africa’s fastest growing and most lucrative sector, a point often made by Minister of Tourism Martinus van Schalkwyk. This, says Elias, has created rich territory where smart wineries can capitalise on and capture wine-lovers with new experiences.

Up against four other nominees in one of 15 categories, 75 wine-related experiences have been pre-selected by an astute panel of independent industry experts. They are Graham Howe, Lynne and John Ford, Anel Grobler, Maggie Mostert, Hennie Coetzee and Cathryn Henderson. Nominees can be viewed, reviewed and voted for via www.klinkawards.co.za; www.facebook.com/klinkawards or through twitter @klinkawards.

The voting process is completely transparent as the nominees, and the public, can see which activities and experiences receive the most votes as they are tracked in real-time online. Voting opens on Monday 2nd September and platforms will be live for eight weeks until midnight on 27th October. Only one vote per nominee will be accepted. “The 15 winners will then be revealed in November at the awards evening taking place in Cape Town,” concludes Elias.

To view or vote for The Klink Wine Tourism Award nominees*, visit: www.klinkawards.co.za.