A German native living in South Africa, Leonie Andereya’s resume lists invaluable work experience in various international zhoozh establishments but it’s her current position as GM of Radisson Red Cape Town that is the juicy, RED cherry on top; pun intended. When not running an award-winning hotel, she can be found scaling Lion’s Head, running after two young children and writing children’s books.
How did you fall in love with travelling? Very early. Always loved the excitement of packing up, getting into the car, and driving on holidays. Growing up in Europe meant a lot of holidays by car from Germany to Spain, Italy, France, or even Croatia. To me, it was the most special time every year. Started with the planning of the trip, the booking, the packing and then counting down till we finally left.
What kind of traveller are you? I like going by car and just exploring new areas. I prefer round-trips over one-stop destinations. Ironically, working in hotels – I don’t like staying at hotels, and I am also not a camper. Holiday-houses and small B&B’s is what I love and having two kids is what I feel is most relaxed.
What’s your travel philosophy? Money spend on traveling is not an expense; it’s an investment. Therefore, I try to plan a big trip at least once a year and a few smaller excursions throughout. Going to new and different places, always with an open mind and to gain new perspectives.
What are your top travel essentials? My music, my camera, books, and my hiking boots.
Where was your most memorable trip? After I finished school, I backpacked through central America for eight weeks – the best time of my life.
How has traveling changed your life? Like it changes every life (or should). It gives you perspective on different cultures and grows your tolerance and understanding. In the end, traveling made me choose a career that allows me to work and live all around the world.
When borders open again and the world starts to return to ‘a new normal’ what’s your first travel destination on your list? Initially we had a trip planned to Bali as we have not been to South East Asia, but if we still can travel this year then we will support SA Tourism and go to one of my favourite Areas: Umhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal
Best travel advice you can share? Connect to locals, get their input and tips rather than follow a travel-book. One of the best things about travel is the connection to the culture and people.