Story By Abel Orukpe
Sun International has joined the alliance Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), the world’s largest alliance of independent hotel brands, which operates the award-winning DISCOVERY loyalty programme.
Sun International, who joined the alliance in February 2021, becomes the latest addition to a growing network of 35 independent brands and 570 hotels in 85 countries.
GHA which was created to help independent, upscale and luxury hotel brands compete with the global brands while retaining their individuality, GHA’s DISCOVERY programme celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2020.
Speaking on the development, GHA CEO, Chris Hartley said Sun International joined the alliance at a pivotal moment; the start of a recovery in international travel.
“A strong partner to enter South Africa has long been a priority for GHA. This news reflects our optimism that the travel industry will soon be on the road to recovery. We are proud to welcome Sun International as GHA’s member brand in South Africa. We are confident they will benefit greatly from joining the alliance.
“They will have immediate access to a global audience of over 17 million DISCOVERY members. We know from our research that South Africa is a popular destination for our customers,”Hartley said.
Sun International Chief Executive, Anthony Leeming said he was looking forward to a successful partnership.
“Joining GHA marks an exciting step for Sun International and our guests, and represents an important evolution in our guest recognition and rewards strategy,” said Leeming.
“In parallel with our Most Valued Guest (MVG) loyalty scheme, our recognition programme for gaming members, GHA’s DISCOVERY programme will enable us to better recognise and reward our hotel guests and welcome new customers.
“Notwithstanding the challenging environment faced by the global hospitality industry, our decision to join GHA could not happen at a more critical time in our company’s history,”Leeming said.
The integration and launch of Sun International’s properties into GHA is expected to be completed by mid-2021.
Cape Town’s The Table Bay is expected to go live in April, followed by the other Sun International’s properties.