A South African, Ms Madembe Muvhulawa of Ha-Maelula has won the Most Improved Grading Assessor award at the Tourism Grading Council’s annual assessor conference, held at the Silverstar Hotel & Casino in Krugersdorp on 28 March.
According to zoutnet.co.za, the award recognises assessors who steadily grow their portfolios and take on an active role in educating the industry on the value of star grading.
Muvhulawa started school at Liivha Primary in Thohoyandou and matriculated at Progress College in Cape Town, where she also started her tertiary studies in public relations and marketing.
With a desire to enter the workspace, her career began with an internship at Simeka, a public-relations firm in Cape Town.
Muvhulawa worked for various organisations as a lecturer, sales representative and business development consultant before she started working at the former Tusk Casino and Hotel (now Khoroni Hotel), under Peermont Global, as marketing manager. Her career within Peermont progressed swiftly, followed by a move to Emperor’s Palace, where she was in charge of promotions.
In 2018, she was appointed as an independent accredited grading assessor with the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA). With a passion for tourism in Limpopo, she took on this role with great passion in the pursuit of seeing quality-assured tourism products in the predominantly rural area for increased tourism traffic in leisure and corporate travel.
“Previously, the grading industry was white male dominated, so I was thrilled to be part of the transformation of the trade,” said Muvhulawa. She is one of 50 accredited grading assessors nationally. The TGCSA is the only officially recognised quality assurance body for tourism products in South Africa.
“Unfortunately, we still have too many ungraded tourism products in Limpopo, and this affects the overall perception of quality for the traveller. Without quality-assured products, travellers are left keeping their fingers crossed that the place they have chosen meets their expectations,” she said.
Muvhulawa’s company, Wamadembe Projects, offers support services to the hospitality industry, including supplies, hospitality recruitment and training. She is currently also on the executive committee of Limpopo Women In Tourism and serves as a district coordinator for the Vhembe District.