As you look for­ward to get­ting away to your favourite lo­cal spot, or spend­ing a quiet break in an un­usu­ally lazy Jo­han­nes­burg, spare a thought for some of our wealth­ier coun­try­folk who are plan­ning more elab­o­rate fam­ily hol­i­days this fes­tive sea­son. Ntomb

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Gone are the days when Vi­vian Reddy and his wife, me­dia per­son­al­ity Sorisha Naidoo, used to sur­prise each other with ex­pen­sive gifts. Now they have grad­u­ated from show­er­ing each other with bling to fo­cus­ing more on es­sen­tial qual­ity time.

“We are not as flashy any more. We are not try­ing to outdo each other or win each other’s heart. We know each other and we are in love,” says Naidoo.

The last gift she bought her hus­band was a R500 000 cus­tom-made watch from Swiss watch­maker Franck Muller.

And, two years ago, her gift wish list com­prised a MacBook Air, a Chanel bag and a hol­i­day in Mau­ri­tius – all of which she got.

But now, she says, she does not need any­thing for Christmas as her birth­day present more than made up for it. “Vi­vian paid for our nanny’s knee surgery in a pri­vate hospi­tal, un­der the best ser­vice, for three weeks. Un­for­tu­nately, she passed away from re­nal fail­ure last year.”

This year has been one of Reddy’s busiest and the cou­ple have care­fully planned a 20-day hol­i­day to max­imise fam­ily time.

“Vi­vian has been busy with busi­ness and I have been film­ing a re­al­ity show, Di­vas of Jozi. It has been a trau­matic year for us as the kids have suf­fered in terms of be­ing de­prived of our time.

“So, spend­ing qual­ity time with the kids will be the best thing ever,” says Naidoo.

Last year, the fam­ily spent their Christmas in Thai­land, but this year they are do­ing what their chil­dren – aged six and eight – want to do. Their hol­i­day will start with a six-night Dis­ney Cruise, fol­lowed by a 12-day trip to Dis­ney World. Christmas will be spent in Dubai, where the fam­ily is look­ing for­ward to vis­it­ing Mall of the Emi­rates, where the an­nual re­tail ex­trav­a­ganza, the Dubai Shop­ping Fes­ti­val, is held. New Year’s Eve will be cel­e­brated back in South Africa with fam­ily. Naidoo says her ideal va­ca­tion would be on an is­land “any­where” where she doesn’t need to worry about fur­ther trav­el­ling or how she looks. “You just un­pack once as you get there and you can have bad hair, bad skin and no makeup. Just sit on the beach with your kids,” she says. Reddy started the year de­vel­op­ing con­struc­tion projects worth R12 bil­lion in Umh­langa in KwaZulu-Natal. Th­ese in­clude his much-vaunted Oceans Ho­tel and a mall, which will house the coun­try’s first in­door snow park. Both will be launched in De­cem­ber next year. He has also in­tro­duced a share­hold­ing plat­form, en­abling any­one to trade in shares. “This is the best Christmas present I can give to the peo­ple of South Africa. I am hop­ing em­ploy­ers will be en­cour­aged to pur­chase some shares for their maids,” he says.


IT spe­cial­ist Noma Gi­gaba, wife of Home Af­fairs Min­is­ter Malusi, says she will sur­prise her man with a “great book about the global or do­mes­tic po­lit­i­cal econ­omy” for Christmas.

“He loves read­ing, and buy­ing him a book will be the best gift for him,” she adds.

Al­though Noma be­lieves they de­serve a hol­i­day after their hec­tic year, what she wants most is qual­ity time with her hus­band, who is of­ten away for work.

She will start with makoti du­ties in his home­town of Man­deni in KwaZulu-Natal, after which they will move to her fam­ily in Umz­imkhulu. They will con­tinue on their jour­ney to Dur­ban, be­fore head­ing for the West­ern Cape and their fi­nal des­ti­na­tion: Knysna.

In Umz­imkhulu, their two chil­dren will en­joy horse rid­ing and, while in Dur­ban, they will take their two chil­dren to uShaka Ma­rine World. As for Knysna, “it is a breath­tak­ing hol­i­day spot,” says Noma.

“It has a beau­ti­ful coast­line, it is pri­vate and has plenty of ac­tiv­i­ties for kids such as swim­ming, en­joy­ing na­ture, walk­ing the chee­tahs and so on. It is an all-in-one des­ti­na­tion. Above all, we will be en­joy­ing Mzansi’s finest hol­i­day spots. What could be bet­ter?”

The Gi­ga­bas’ younger child turns four years old on Christmas Day, mak­ing it a dou­ble cel­e­bra­tion for the fam­ily.


The chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of min­ing and en­ergy firm Sekoko Re­sources will not re­veal what he is buy­ing his wife, Pol­let, as a Christmas gift. “I will keep that as a sur­prise. Some­times the best things in life are un­ex­pected sur­prises.” He adds that he knows Pol­let loves sur­prises, “be­cause she al­ways says, ‘Sur­prises are great fun’.” And what would Tebeila like? “I am not ex­pect­ing any gift, be­cause Christmas means giv­ing with­out the thought of get­ting. It is about for­get­ting your­self and find­ing time for oth­ers,” he says. The Te­beilas are go­ing on hol­i­day. They planned their break only at the eleventh hour be­cause of their hec­tic sched­ules. They will be vis­it­ing a pri­vate is­land in Mozam­bique, and al­though it sounds glam­orous, it was not their first choice. Ini­tially, their dream des­ti­na­tion this year was vis­it­ing Machu Pic­chu in Peru to ex­pe­ri­ence the won­ders of na­ture and an an­cient civil­i­sa­tion. But they did not leave enough time to plan the get­away prop­erly, so their daugh­ter – “a good or­gan­iser”, says Tebeila – took the reins and made sure they would have a break. “She has ar­ranged a fun-filled pack­age of ad­ven­tur­ous ac­tiv­i­ties and sight-see­ing. Ev­ery day has its ac­tiv­i­ties – but I’m not sure this will al­low me to rest,” he laughs. Even though it will be more hec­tic than he would like, Tebeila says the hol­i­day will be worth­while be­cause spend­ing time with fam­ily “is the most pre­cious thing to do, es­pe­cially away from home”.

AN­TIC­I­PAT­ING QUAL­ITY TIME Dubai and Dis­ney World are this year’s hol­i­day des­ti­na­tions for the Reddy fam­ily

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