Meet the Portfolio Places Team

We are South Africa’s oldest OTA, a boutique agency based in Cape Town that specialises in handpicked accommodation throughout Southern Africa. We have visited each place we list – that means we’ve slept in the beds, checked out the view and dined with the owners ourselves. We’ve been doing this for 38 years and we are leaders in the game with a reputation for quality. It’s why we say we’re discovering the best for you. We hope you to see you travelling with us soon.

Ian Solomon
Ian Solomon
Ian was bitten by the travel bug early through his family’s tourism publishing business. He’s somewhat of an adrenaline junkie, citing Vic Falls as his favourite destination for its adventure opportunities – he has bungeed from the top, helicoptered over the gorge and white-water rafted down the Zambezi. He loves travel for the chance it has given him to see so many places and meet the friendly people the industry attracts.

“My most memorable travel experience was as a 21 year-old on mokoros in the Okavango Delta, four of us camping wild next to camp fires as protection from the wild animals. Closely followed by climbing Mount Kilimanjaro with my soon-to-be wife. My next dream trip is a few nights in a game lodge in the Serengeti, followed by a week on the Quirimba Islands in Mozambique.”

James Westrip
James Westrip
James has been involved with tourism to Africa for 25 years and considers himself a true travel junkie. His favourite destinations (because he refused to choose just one) are Botswana for the wildlife and South Africa for its sheer diversity – and of course, being home to Cape Town. He especially enjoys the excitement of working in travel and appreciates the chance to visit the places he sells.

“My most memorable travel experience is visiting Likoma Island in Lake Malawi; walking through the villages, meeting the friendly locals and seeing the amazing cathedral in this remote part of Africa before heading back to our luxury lodge, Kaya Mawa. For my next trip I’d pick Mombo Camp & Trails Camp, probably the best game viewing in Africa, combined with North Island in the Seychelles for the ultimate exclusive beach chillout – and I would take all my friends!”

Lauren Austin
Lauren Austin
Lauren grew up travelling all over South Africa in a caravan and her childhood memories consist of endless road trips, farm stall pit stops and camping under the stars. Her favourite African destinations are the Quirimbas Islands in Mozambique and the Panorama Route, for the memory of sliding down through Bourke’s Luck potholes. She loves travel for the passion and inspiration she finds in the people she meets.

“It’s a standout for everyone, but Vic Falls was a huge highlight for me as teenager. It was the first time I had an inkling of my place in this vast, wonderful world of ours. I also loved our rafting trip down the Orange River. For my African next adventure, I would take in the Great Migration in Kenya followed by 2 weeks sailing around the Seychelles.”

Chris Fortescue
Chris Fortescue
Chris has travelled to most parts of Southern & East Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands, destinations which he has spent much of his career promoting. He loves the challenge of putting together the perfect experience for our travellers and the diverse nature of the industry. He was hard put to choose a favourite destination, but settled on the sublime Okavango Delta in Botswana.

“A memory that stands out in my mind is flying from Seychelles Airport by helicopter to North Island with whale sharks swimming below. Also sleeping under the stars on a dry river bed in South Luangwa, Zambia, with just a mosquito net and mattress; hyenas surrounded the camp that night and a leopard walked right past us. My dream trip is to sail around the coast of Africa visiting remote islands.”

Lee-Anne Westrip
Lee-Anne Westrip
Lee-Anne has been in travel for over 20 years and wouldn’t have it any other way. She loves the excitement of getting to travel for work as well as the mad bunch of people she’s met. Her favourite destination – not just in Africa but the world – is South Africa, for its diversity, climate, food and people, and of course the unparalleled scenery.

“My greatest travel memory is a 3-hour walking safari in the Masai Mara. Our amazing guide taught me so much about the culture and people of the Masai tribe. We stopped at a small village within the Mara and were invited in to one of the small mud built homes, a truly humbling experience. If I could go anywhere in Africa, I’d start with a horseback safari in Botswana followed by a beach holiday on North Island, Seychelles.”

Kirsty Anderson
Kirsty Anderson
Kirsty’s travel story began in 2007 when she started at Portfolio. Originally from Joburg, says she’s a born Capetonian who just got lost for a while. Her favourite South African destination is the North Coast of KZN and she loves playing a part in creating once in a lifetime memories for our travellers.

“My most memorable travel experience has to be my self-drive trip through Namibia. The vastness of the desert plains, the desolate yet calming landscapes that constantly change as you make your way north – there’s a peace here that I haven’t found anywhere else. The country – and the people! – have an earthy wildness about them. If I could go anywhere in Africa, I’d pick the ultimate beach tour of Mozambique, Madagascar and the Seychelles.”

Heather Coull
Heather Coull
Heather started her travel journey in publishing, both in South Africa and overseas. Her heart is firmly in the Western Cape, with her favourite destinations being the Cederberg Mountains and West Coast. Her love of travel comes from discovering new destinations and experiences, as well as sharing the adventures of the intrepid travellers she meets.

“I will never forget our car breaking down while driving from Binga to Karoi in Zimbabwe, being rescued by the Zimbabwean Nature Conservation and being hosted for the night in a tented camp on the banks of Kariba, complete with bucket shower and gin and tonics! My dream African trip includes visiting Central Africa, Namibia’s Zambezi region, Madagascar and a gorilla trek in Rwanda.”