The Vodacom Durban July is still going ahead this year virtually on 25 July and one event planner’s booze-filled virtual lounge has been cancelled.
Rusco Experiential, an events and hospitality company, planned their Pegasus Virtual Lounge to celebrate this year’s races. Director and owner Sazi Ncgobo said they had to cancel it due to the president’s announcement to ban alcohol sales again earlier this week.
“After President Cyril Ramaphosa announced this, we had to cancel because our lounge is filled with alcohol and we couldn’t do that with all the restrictions that have been put in place and the partners we had on board. We can’t even transport it to the people who paid for it.
“We also noticed before the announcement that the South African market isn’t as interested in the virtual experience like the rest of the world is, so it was tough to sell.”
The package cost R1,900 for two people, included a bottle of Tanqueray, one bottle of whiskey, one six-pack of Heineken, and canapes.
Ngcobo said they weren’t interested in providing a non-alcoholic version because their partners Heineken and Tanquery have been with them for three years and that all parties greatly disappointed.
“We have communicated and contacted people who paid for their packages, we are refunding them. They have been very understanding due to the circumstances.”
He said going forward for their business to manage during these times, is to plan for a drive-in cinema and drive-in conferences.
“The regulations need to make sense, people can go to a movie and restaurant but can’t go to a drive-in? It makes no sense. We just need an environment were businesses can get going again.”