Tourism major winners of J&B Met

CT jmb met 17 FASHION BOOM: Hayley Egypt, of Fashion Collective, works on garments for the J&B Met where horse racing enthusiasts and fashionistas gather next Saturday. Photo: Brenton Geach

Zara Nicholson

Metro Writer

THE tourism and fashion industries have been dubbed the major winners of the annual J&B Met, bringing R68 million into the local economy, according to Wesgro.

This year’s multimillion-rand event takes place on February 1, with organisers expecting between 40 000 and 50 000 revellers and racegoers.

Employment in the catering sector will also see a boom.

About 40 marquees have been hired for the hospitality village.

Eddy Cassar, spokesman for the event, said it was a huge employment generator with waiters, entertainers, hiring companies, tent suppliers, taxi and shuttle services, bar companies and spa specialists contracted for the day.

Hotels are due to experience increased occupancy with other services such as car hire and restaurant bookings also set to enjoy the benefits of race visitors in the city.

Michael Farr, Sun International’s general manager for communications, said: “The Met definitely works for us, especially with our property of the Table Bay at the V&A Waterfront.

“There is a direct linkage between luxury upmarket hotels given the profile of guests to the Met, because it is all about glamour and horse racing. We are fully booked at the hotel.”

Bruce Deneys, sales and marketing director at the Pepper Club Hotel said it also had a 100 percent occupancy rate over the Met weekend and that the event had grown to attract more businesspeople in the past few years.

“The Met is definitely a boost for us and falls within a busy period for Cape Town because the Mining Indaba follows immediately after.

“The Met has become big for networking and instead of just Capetonians we have a lot of businesspeople coming,” Deneys said.

Judy Lain, the chief marketing officer for provincial tourism body Wesgro, said: “The event has a positive ripple effect on the Western Cape economy.”

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