It’s with great pleasure that I get to write this end of year message for Thornybush, primarily because it’s my first year stepping in as CEO and because it serves as a benchmark for the start of a journey which I hope will be inspiring, empowering and enriching.
It’s hard to believe that I started with the Collection almost 6 months ago now!
Thrown into the deep end with an expectation to overhaul the business, my first 100 days were spent immersing myself in the business, the people and the offering to fully understand what I was working with.
What I found was a company whose members displayed incredible heart, a massive capacity to give (not only to guests but to the local community too) and a level of caring which delighted me.
I was also introduced to the community projects that Thornybush is involved in. The incredible people who contribute to and manage these projects have given me so much hope and motivation for the future of the business, and for the communities who live in close proximity to the Thornybush Nature Reserve.
This year has not only been about my appointment to the business, 2019 also saw the opening of a brand new luxury offering, Saseka Tented Camp! Designed by the well-known, Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, Saseka has had a lot of coverage in the media for it’s innovative design, and has been a massive hit with guests.
Another first this year was the total revamp of Hananani Primary School, one of the community projects we support. Two new classrooms, a fresh coat of paint across the whole school, and a host of other things were organised by one of our guests, Joel Andersen who came from the USA with his team to manage the project.
2020 will see the start of our planning to overhaul both Waterside Lodge and Chapungu Tented Camp. Thornybush will also be sporting a new digital presence – including a brand-new website and fresher social media platforms – as well as a change in the way in which we engage with our guests (both future and past) as well as our trade partners. We aim to be more relevant as well as a more effective partner to our trade partners.
I’m also excited about ramping up the impact we have within our local communities, putting our people and the environment first in all we do.
Our aim is to make 2020 massive year for Thornybush and its wider community so make sure you keep in touch to see what we’re up to.
Have a wonderful festive season and enjoy being with your family and loved ones!