As many may already know, Cape Town is currently facing a massive water shortage, due to drought and poor water management over many years. Day Zero, which has now been pushed from April to May 2018, is approaching rapidly and it is estimated that on this day all water will be cut to the suburbs.
The city of Cape Town has asked its residents to not use more than 50 litres of water per day, and this includes tourists! But there are fears that tourists may arrive not knowing the full extent of the water crisis and use water wastefully. But tourists have by no means been banned. One statement issued by the Democratic Alliance did discourage tourists from visiting at this sensitive time.
But tourism accounts for 7.5 percent of the city’s income and Cape Town and tourism are synonymous, with Cape Town being named The Best City in the World more than once and the tourism industry growing each year. So the tourism industry itself has come up with a solution to this problem.
Hotels Doing Their Bit
Many hotels in Cape Town have been commended for their efforts to save as much water as possible.
Cape Grace Hotel, a 5-star establishment at the V & A Waterfront, has announced that it has bought a device that turns air into drinking water, to cater for their many guests. The hotel has also implanted other water saving techniques, as well as drawn up a special, long-stay plan for Cape Town residents who may need to move into hotels when the water crisis hits desperate levels.
The Westin is another hotel that is doing its bit. The four and a half star establishment on Cape Town’s foreshore is in the process of building a highly technical reverse osmosis plant, which will turn salt water into fresh water. The plant aims to be up and running by March, so not long before Day Zero. The Westin has apparently saved an impressive amount of water each month by reducing water pressure in their taps and insisting that guests shower.
Domestic tourists visiting Cape Town are urged to bring as much water as possible with them and both domestic and international guests are urged to treat water as a precious commodity during their time in Cape Town.