Thursday, 29 January 2009

Durbn Tops

'Durban SA's most positive city'

January 28, 2009 Edition 1 The Mercury
Suren Naidoo
DURBAN has come out as the most optimistic city in South Africa in the latest MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence.
The influential survey - released last week - showed that the city had beat the other major South African urban centres of Johannesburg and Cape Town to top spot in consumer optimism stakes, with a score of 89.6. This was ahead of Johannesburg's score of 83.3 and the Mother City's "grim" score of 57.3.
Now in its fifth year, the biannual MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence surveyed 3 200 South African consumers. The survey is based on answers to questions relating to five key economic indicators, including employment, the economy, regular income, stock market and quality of life. It measures consumer confidence on prevailing expectations in the market for the next six months.
In terms of Durban, the report said the city's residents "remain extraordinarily upbeat in reporting an overall consumer confidence of 89.6".
Scores on all five individual indicators were up from both six months and a year ago - the only South African city where this has been the case. Noted chief economist at T-Sec, Mike Schüssler, said this was "incredible given the present economic climate (in the country)".
In comparison, the report said Cape Town residents had particularly grim expectations for the South African stock market for the next six months. According to Schussler, this was a primary factor in Cape Town's lowest consumer confidence score.
"The decline in Cape Town perhaps has a lot to do with the fall in the financial markets, as many big asset managers are based in the city. The area has also been hit by a decline in tourism - both domestic and international - which is obviously one of its core industries," Schüssler said.
"The Jo'burg consumer outlook, though still very high and up from six months ago, remains short of where it was a year ago . . . My impression is that people simply haven't taken notice yet of South Africa's weakening economic position," he added.
"With the continued fallout from the financial crisis in the world's major markets generating a vicious cycle of negative sentiment, it is good to see there may be some silver lining for us in Durban and South Africa," said acting chief executive of the Durban Investment Promotion Agency (DIPA), Russell Curtis, in response to the MasterCard surveys.
"As consumer confidence has a direct link to business confidence and - by logical extension, to the investments companies make in a city - it is very encouraging that Durbanites recognise our uniquely positive potential, even in these tough times. It is especially significant coming off the back of the recent recognition that Durban has built a good business platform and more sustainable way of life contained in MasterCard's global emerging cities study," he said.
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South Africans have shown encouraging signs in terms of optimism going forward in the latest MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence. This comes in the wake of another survey released just two months ago - the MasterCard Worldwide Centres of Commerce: Emerging Markets Index, which rated all three of South Africa's major hubs among the 65 most influential emerging market cities in the world. While Durban came in at 37, Cape Town and Johannesburg were ranked in 33rd and 11th spot respectively.
The consumer confidence survey revealed that South Africa was the second most optimistic country in the Middle East and Africa region; and came in third spot when the Asia Pacific region is included. South Africa scored 78.7, while Kuwait (at 96.6) came in as the most optimistic country.
"Following a year of slowing economic growth at home and in the face of an imminent global recession, South Africans remain optimistic about the immediate future of their national economy," the survey reported.
However, it noted that although the latest survey score represented an increase in consumer confidence from six months ago, it is five points below South Africa's score for the first half of 2008.
Jeni Webber, South Africa country manager at MasterCard Worldwide, said: "One gets the sense that South African consumers feel relatively optimistic about the next six months.
"Government leaders, bankers, and analysts have been saying that the SA economy will not see a major downturn, as will likely be the case in other markets. South Africans appear to share this optimism."
Curtis said: "South African cities must work harder now to improve and promote our business and investment positions further, to ensure new growth while other global cities are trapped by their national financial doldrums.
"Now appears to be a good time for global companies that thrive on consumer confidence, and looking for greater market access to be targeted by DIPA for introduction to cities like Durban."

GIBELA - translated from Zulu means "hop on"

Sunday, 25 January 2009

DURBAN - Beaches

Durban is situated on the east coast of South Africa, besides the warm Indian Ocean. The city of Durban and it's surrounds offer many beaches which allows swimming all year round. . Because of the long beaches and the semi-tropical climate Durban draws many beach enthusiasts. Excellent conditions await surfers, kitesurfers and booggie-boarders. The Durban and surroundings beaches are lined with shark nets offering the necessry protection from the gentle giants of the oceans.
To the north of Durban is the Dolphin Coast with the following towns - Sheffield Beach, Salt Rock, Ballito, Port Zimbali, Umdloti Beach and Umhlanga Rocks
To the south lies the South Coast with Scottburgh, Umtentweni, Shelley Beach, Margate, Ramsgate and Southbroom.
Particularly well known are the so-called “Golden Mile” beaches in Durban - Country Club Beach (Kite-Surfing), Battery Beach (Sun Coast Casino), Bay of Plenty (Beach Cafe), North Beach (Joe Kool's and surfing) and Ushaka Beach (Ushaka Marine World).
Gibela Backpackers Lodge, Durban is a 25 min walk - 5 min drive from the beachfront.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

KwaZulu-Natal and Gibela

It's amazing to see how many variations of the spelling of KwaZulu-Natal one find on the web.
My last count was 12 yes TWELVE.

Seeing that it's back to "school season" in South Africa - I think it might just be a good idea to kick start the year with a spelling lesson.

The correct spelling is


Capital K small wa Capital Z small ulu (all one word) hyphen - Capital N small atal


Hopefully you can set your records straight ifspelt incorrectly in your daily going abouts.Meaning of KwaZulu-NatalKwa - place ofZulu - people from heavenNatal - Christmas (the day the Portyguese set foo on land in the Bay of Durban)So a direct trnlation would be - The place of the People from Heaven on Christmas .Gibela is the Zulu word to - "Hop-On" - to ride, to convey, to move.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

DURBAN - Save the Organ Campaign

The Durban City Hall organ’s revival would certainly enhance the performance spectrum of symphonic music played in our city’s prime concert venue. Its mute status stands as a massively visible blot on the cultural environment of our city. Talk of replacing it with an electronic substitute is way off the mark, and simply uninformed. One may as well ditch the superb Steinway concert grand piano heard each season, and replace it with an electronic keyboard. Originally-crafted acoustic instruments require constant respect and maintenance to yield their full potential. The results on an artistic level need no special pleading. In the light of the Durban City Hall currently undergoing restoration it seems perverse that its crown jewel remains an abandoned relic.The grand Durban organ was original installed in what is now the Post Office and moved to the much larger civic venue which still houses it today. bringing ‘Our Organ’ back to life. You can e-mail Gibela Backpackers Lodge - Durban on expressing your concern, which we will lobby with the releant authorities.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

2010 Soccer World Cup - Durban Dates

Provisional dates for the seven 2010 World Cup games set for Durban will impact on other traditional crowd-drawing events held in the city.
At this stage, these include the Comrades Marathon - which will be held on May 30 -
and the annual East Coast House & Garden Show, which has moved to the end of July.
"At the moment, the first game will be held on June 13, which is a Sunday. Thereafter there will be matches on June 17, 20, 22, 25 and 28. "The semifinal will take place on Wednesday July 7. Most of the games will be held at 4pm and the semifinal at 8.30 in the evening."
The official Fifa fan park being hosted at New Beach, the annual beach festival would also be hosted as normal. Mr Price Pro surfing competition spokesman Clynton Lund said competition dates were set by international surfing authorities. "We haven't got as far as 2010, we are still securing the 2009 event, but we don't believe the competition will be in conflict with the World Cup. There will be lots of football fans who, I am sure, will enjoy the surfing," he said. Gold Circle's David Furness said the Durban July horse race would also go ahead as usual. "It is always hosted in the first weekend of July and because the semi-final is on the following Wednesday, I can't see any problems." Furness cautioned local racing fans to plan well ahead. "As far as we are concerned, the Durban July offers alternative entertainment for football fans visiting Durban, which is something we are very excited about. However, it's important that people who want to travel to the July plan properly. Accommodation venues and flights will be full. "Even though we understand we are not part of the official 2010 entertainment we are going to encourage 2010 tourists to attend.
Gibela Backpackers, Budget Accommodation,

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Dusi Canoe Marathon - 2009

This years Hansa Powerade Dusi field will be over 1 400 paddlers and preparations went off well. Paddlers took to the water this morning, January 15 at 6am for the start of the annual pilgrimage from Pietermaritzburg to Durban.
Recent rains are filling the dams and the river system and the water level is expected to be good. The water quality is better than at the same time last year throughout the rivers and Umgeni Water are monitoring the water on a daily basis. Working for Water from the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry together with the Invasive Alien Species Programme (DAEA), accompanied members of the organising committee worked furiously through the weekend to remove as much of the weed in the river as possible.
The winners so far in this year’s Dusi are the three charities that the race supports. With a day still to go before the Charity Batch auction closes, over R250 000 has already been raised for SPCA, Starfish and the Duzi-Umgeni Conservancy Trust (DUCT). The Charity Auction Batch is a batch of 60 paddlers that bid to be part of an early batch start each day of the three days. The men’s race is the most wide open field for many years.
Paddlers will be backed up by nearly 1 000 volunteers, 40 SAPS bikers, 300 peace monitors drawn from the local communities, navy divers, almost a dozen race helicopters, 100 plus medical staff, a field hospital, and 50 000 spectators along the route. The three day classic starts at 6am on Thursday from the Natal Canoe Club, at Camps Drift in PMB, to Blue Lagoon in Durban (a quick 7 min drive from Gibela Backpackers Lodge) Not only canoes will be seen at the event this week.
The world famous Gabriel aerobatic team will be performing at each of the overnight stops as well as at the finish at Blue Lagoon on Saturday. "We are continually looking at ways to build the crowd appeal at the Dusi", said Ray de Vries, spokesman for the event. "Scully and his team are an exhilarating act and we are thankful to new Dusi sponsors Gabriel, for adding this to our line-up."

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

2010 Soccer Stadium

Final piece of the arch over Moses Mabhida Stadium fitted 13 Jan 2009 Sharlene Packree The final piece of the Durban Moses Mabhida Stadium’s spectacular arch was lifted into place amid great fanfare yesterday. A large crowd watched as steel chains hoisted the last piece of the 350-metre long arch into place late yesterday afternoon.
Work on the insertion of the final piece began just after 6 am with the final piece scheduled to be hoisted at 10 am. However, engineers only started work on the arch in the afternoon as curious onlookers waited patiently at the visitors’ centre. Engineers had to monitor wind speeds before proceeding with the fitting of the last piece. It took 30 minutes for the arch piece to be hoisted to the top of the arch. When the piece was finally inserted, the crowd, including Mayor Obed Mlaba, city manager Mike Sutcliffe and head of strategic projects Julie-May Ellingson, cheered as the completion of the arch marked a major milestone for the stadium’s construction team. “This is an event which we’ve eagerly looked forward to for many months.
The completion of the arch is a major milestone in the city’s preparations for 2010 and exciting proof that we’re well on track,” said Ellingson. The Moses Mabhida Stadium is at the heart of the King’s Park Sports precinct, bordered by the Umngeni River, a major rail line, the beachfront and K.E. Masinga Road (formerly Old Fort Road). Construction of the stadium is but one aspect of a major eThekwini upgrade for 2010. Huge road and rail projects are currently underway to ensure the smooth movement of people around Durban when thousands of soccer fans descend on the city.
Gibela Backpackers Lodge is a 5 min drive from the new soccer stadium, which is situated opposite the ABSA stadium - Home of the Natal Sharks Rugby Team.

Monday, 12 January 2009

Durban Alojamiento, Gibela Backpackers Lodge, Sudáfrica

Està a punto de descubrir un estilo contemporáneo de backpackers, diseñado para ofrecerle una estancia agradable en la ciudad más "cruci-cultural" de Sudáfrica.Este lodge, tranquilo y con mucho estilo, es propiedad de un antiguo guía y experimentado viajero que tambien lo dirige.Sus semejantes recibirán acertados consejos y recomendaciones de gran utilidad a la hora de viajar al igual que podrán disfrutar de un gran confort en una maravillosa y relajante atmósfera.

Nuestra situación:
G. B. L. Está perfectamente situado en la zona residencial y segura de Morningside. Desde aquí se puede acceder perfectamente andando a la zona de ocio de Durban: Florida Road, donde encontrarán variedad de restaurantes, pubs, cafeterías y bares (consulten nuestra lista de "what's hot"). Además a sólo unos pasos de la entrada principal de Gibela, se situa una tienda de alimentación, una oficina de correos y un "auto-teller".También se puede ir caminando hasta los Jardines Botánicos, las playas Golden Mile, las oficinas de cambio y tiendas de las famosas marcas de ropa especializadas en surf-gear.Estamos dentro del recorrido de la red de transportes urbanos que os pueden dejar cerca de museos, cines, mercado indio y Mezquita Jam en menos de 10 minutos en autobús desde el hostal.
Comodidades y limpieza: Lo que dicen nuestros invitados:·
si hay hostales en el cielo - serán como el GBl
· habitaciones, camas y duchas son lo máximo
· Definitivamente un peldaño por encima de todos los demás
· Una decoración llena de encanto y muy acogedora : limpieza absluta de todas las facilidades
· El mejor y el mejor dirigido de todos los hoteles en los que nos hemos alojado en Sudáfrica
· Gracias por el hospedaje tan relajante y tan cómodo en el mejor hostal de los que he estado
· No supone ningùn problema estar lejos de casa cuando estás hospedado en un lugar tan bonito

Apreciamos la importancia de tener comodidades limpias, nos aseguramos de que todo lo esté. En este hostal está prohibido fumar.
Las comodidades ofrecidas por Gibela incluyen:· Sábanas, almohadas y nórdicos (toallas en habitaciones privadas) gratis· Café y té gratis todo el día· Desayuno gratis (cereales, yogur, pan y cosas para untar, té, café, zumo de frutas y frutas)· Intercambio de libros - montones de libros y revistas gratis· Mapas de Durban & KwaZulu Natal + consejos· Depósito de equipaje gratis· Uso de la cocina moderna, limpia y completamente equipada para cocinar usted mismo.· Parking gratis para coche y bici · Consulta libre de todas las guías de todo el mundo· Habitaciones decoradas al estilo Zulú Zen luminosas y limpias· Cuartos de baño modernos y limpios con agua caliente las 24 h· Patio acogedor y cómodo al estilo Indio Bohemio· Internet, P.C. con lectores de tarjetas de memoria y teléfonos públicos·
Secador y plancha - si lo solicitanGibela cuenta con 4 habitaciones de dos camas, 2 dormitorios de 4 camas y 2 dormitorios de 6 camas.Hay 4 cuartos de baños en el hostal con 6 duchas y 5 W.C.Nuestras habitaciones están aseadas y bien equipadas con camas cómodas, ventiladores en el techo y amplios espacios para las mochilas.

INFORMACIÓNSumérjase en la cultura, la historia y la naturaleza del país! Nosotros le proporcionamos INFORMACIÓN de todos los puntos de interés en Sudáfrica:Qué ver y qué hacerDónde alojarse - reservas de alojamientos en Parques NacionalesCómo llegar a ellosReservas de billetes de autobuses, trenes y avionesExcursiones de 1 o más díasNuestro personal le dará los consejos necesarios para circular de la mejor manera por la ciudad - incluyendo visitas guiadas, museos, restaurantes y eventos puntuales.

Durban es un lugar especial. Nosotros en Gibela deseamos compartir la experiencia de nuestra herencia de mezcla de culturas y asegurarnos que su estancia en nuestro "Reino" sea una experiencia agradable y memorable.

Saturday, 10 January 2009

Willkommen in Durban!
Entdecken Sie die Stadt, berühmt in ganz Südafrika für ihren einzigartigen Mix verschiedener Kulturen, von einer modern ausgestatteten Backpacker-Unterkunft aus. Das Hostel mit seiner entspannten Atmosphäre ist ein komfortabler Platz zum Wohlfühlen, stylish dank authentisch-afrikanischer Dekoration und eine Fundgrube für Informationen. Sie wird von einem passionierten Reisenden und ehemaligem Tour-Guide geführt. Er gibt Travellern gerne Insider-Tipps und kann bei allen Fragen bezüglich der Reise weiter helfen.
Die Lage
Gibela Backpackers Lodge liegt mitten im sicheren Wohngebiet Morningside.
Von Gibela aus sind es nur ein paar Minuten zu Fuß zu Durbans Ausgehmeile Florida Road - dort findet man Restaurants, Bars, Clubs und Cafés (Tipps für jeden Geschmack gibt es im Hostel). Nur ein paar Meter entfernt von der Lodge gibt es ein Lebensmittelgeschäft, ein Postamt und einen Geldautomaten. Gäste können von hier aus zu Fuß zum Botanischen Garten gehen und die Strände der "Golden Mile" erkunden. Man kann hier einfach Geld wechseln und bei den Fabrikverkäufen berühmter Surfwear-Hersteller das ein oder andere Schnäppchen machen. Gibela ist außerdem optimal ans Busnetz der Stadt angebunden - von der Lodge aus sind es weniger als zehn Minuten mit dem Bus zu Museen und Kinos, zum Indischen Markt und der Juma-Moschee.
Ausstattung und Sauberkeit - was sagen die Gäste?
"Wenn es im Himmel Hostel gäbe, dann müssten sie so sein wie Gibela."
"Die Zimmer, Betten und Duschen sind das Allerbeste."
"Auf jeden Fall ein Stück besser als der Rest."
"Charmantes Dekor und nirgendwo der kleinste Schmutzfleck."
"Das schönste und am besten geführte Hostel in Südafrika."
"Danke für den entspannten und komfortablen Aufenthalt im besten Schlafsaal, den ich kenne."
"Wenn man hier wohnen kann ist es kein Problem, weit weg von Zuhause zu sein."
Unser Ziel ist eindeutig: Wir stellen sicher, dass das ganze Hostel immer blitzsauber ist.
Rauchen ist nirgendwo auf dem Hostelgelände gestattet.
Das bietet Gibela:-
Kostenlose Bettwäsche (Handtücher in Doppel- und Einzelzimmern)- Kostenlos Kaffee und Tee - den ganzen Tag lang- Kostenloses Frühstück (Cornflakes/Müsli, Joghurt, Brot und Marmeladen, Tee, Kaffee, Säfte und Früchte)- Kostenloser Büchertausch - viele Bücher und Magazine- Kostenloser Stadtplan für Durban und Landkarten für die Provinz KwaZulu-Natal - und die passenden Tipps für ein gutes Programm- Kostenlose Gepäckaufbewahrung- Kostenloser Safe- Kostenlose Benutzung der modern eingerichteten, sauberen Küche- Kostenlose Parkplätze für Autos und Fahrräder- Kostenlose Lektüre von Reiseführern aus der ganzen Welt- Helle, saubere Zimmer, dekoriert im "Zulu Zen"-Stil- Blitzsaubere Badezimmer mit Warmwasserversorgung rund um die Uhr- Gemütlicher Innenhof mit indischer Dekoration- Internet-Zugang, Computer mit Speicherkarten-Lesegeräten, öffentliches Telefon- Fön und Bügeleisen auf Anfrage- Keine Sperrstunde: Zugang zum Hostel wann immer man möchte.
Gibela bietet vier Doppelzimmer, zwei Schlafsaal-Zimmer mit jeweils vier Betten und zwei Schlafsaal-Zimmer mit jeweils sechs Betten. Es gibt vier Badezimmer mit sechs Duschen und fünf Toiletten. Die Zimmer haben Charme und sind mit komfortablen Betten und Ventilatoren gut ausgestattet. Sie sind groß genug, um Gepäck bequem verstauen zu können.
Erleben Sie die Kultur, Geschichte und Natur Südafrikas! Wir bieten Informationen und Tipps für jeden Ort des Landes:- Was anschauen und was unternehmen?- Wo übernachten? Wir buchen auch Unterkünfte in den Nationalparks- Wie hinkommen?- Reservierungen für Bus-, Zug- und Flugtickets- Tagesausflüge und mehrtägige Exkursionen
Unsere Mitarbeiter kennen Durban genau. Sie geben ihr Wissen gerne weiter und haben viele Tipps parat, wie man sich in der Stadt am besten zurechtfindet, was man hier unternehmen kann, und wo es gutes Essen gibt.

Monday, 5 January 2009

Gibela Backpackers Lodge, Durban

You're about to discover a contemporary-style backpackers, designed to provide you with a comfortable stay in the most cross–cultural city in South Africa. This stylish and tranquil lodge is owned and managed by a former guide and keen traveler. Fellow travelers will receive good insider tips and travel recommendations, as well as superior comfort, in a wonderfully relaxing atmosphere.
Our location
Gibela Backpackers Lodge is conveniently located in the safe, residential area of Morningside. Gibela is within walking distance to the center of Durban’s entertainment life, Florida Road, where there are restaurants, cocktail bars, clubs and coffee shops galore (check-out our what’s hot list). Only a few steps from Gibela's front gate there is a grocery store, auto-teller and post office. Guests can walk to the Botanical Gardens, Golden Mile Beaches, currency exchange and famous brand surf-gear factory shops. We are on both inner city transport networks, which link you to the museums, cinemas, Indian Market and Juma Mosque, in less than a 10-minute bus ride from the hostel.
What our guests say:-
'If there are hostels in heaven – they are Gibela Lodge'-
'Rooms, beds and showers are absolutely tops'-
'Definitely a step up from the rest'-
'Lovely warm décor & spotless facilities'-
'The nicest and most well run hostel we stayed in during our time in South Africa'-
'Thanks for a very relaxing and comfortable stay in the nicest dorm I've been so far.' -
'[It's] no problem to be far from home when you come to stay at this lovely place.

'We appreciate the importance of clean facilities; we ensure that everything is spotless.
The hostel is a non-smoking establishment. Durban is a special place. We at Gibela want to help to share the experience of our city’s mixed cultural heritage and make sure your stay in our “Kingdom” is an enjoyable and memorable experience.
GRADED AS A 4 STAR BACKPACKER LODGE by the South African Grading Council.
Reception hours - 07H00 till 21H00
We have no curfew.
inimum length of stay: 2 nights.
NO children under 12 years.