Hospitality group Sun International on Thursday celebrated the announcement by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa of a further easing in Covid-19 lockdown restrictions that will allow the company to reopen its resorts, hotels, casinos and restaurants.

In a national address on Wednesday night Ramaphosa, whose government enforced a nationwide shutdown from March 27 to try and curb transmissions of the coronavirus, said restrictions would be further scaled back to allow restaurants to reopen for ‘sit-down’ meals while licensed accommodation except for home sharing platforms like AirBnB could resume welcoming guests.

Sun International’s Sun City resort. Photo: Sun International

Conferences and meetings for business purposes can also resume in line with restrictions on public gatherings, as can cinemas and theatres, casinos as well as personal care services, including hairdressers and beauty salons.

Sun International CEO Anthony Leeming said once the government announced dates, the group would stagger the reopening of its properties across the country,  subject to regulatory guidance.

“We have put in place world class health and safety protocols which are considerably beyond what is required. Our properties will observe strict head counts and social distancing rules,” Leeming said.

He said even prior to the lockdown, Sun International had already introduced physical distancing measures at its facilities as well as stringent and comprehensive cleaning, sanitising and front and back-of-house food handling and housekeeping procedures.


“After an extended lockdown, we have put every measure in place to welcome our first guests back to our properties and we will do everything required and more to keep them safe while they enjoy themselves,” Leeming added.

-ANA, editing by Stella Mapenzauswa