It is indeed a pleasure to introduce Gawie Marx, Welgevonden Estate’s newly-appointed estate manager who took office on 1 June 2020.
Gawie has extensive executive experience in hospitality, tourism and residential estate management, having managed operations for top-class, resorts and estates before. He served as general manager at Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate for seven years and held senior appointments at, amongst others, the Grande Roche Hotel Paarl, the Diaz Strand Hotel & Resort, and the Vineyard Hotel & Spa. His most recent appointment was that of executive assistant manager of the Taj Hotel Cape Town before being appointed at Welgevonden Estate.
“Although I thoroughly enjoyed my career in the hospitality industry, the time has come for me to return to what gave me great satisfaction before – managing a residential estate,” says Gawie. “I’m extremely excited about my appointment at Welgevonden Estate. I am looking forward to serving the community and, especially, to contribute towards building an estate to be proud of.”
It is clear that Welgevonden Estate ticks all the boxes when it comes to Gawie’s preferences for an ideal working environment – the character of the estate, its location in the Cape Winelands with its distinct appeal, the estate’s exceptional sense of community and, above all, its people. When asked about the latter, his immediate response was: “I’m a people person and enjoy interacting with others. Meeting and working with the members and residents will give me great pleasure.”
When it comes to formulating a long-term approach for his new position, Gawie points out that he is a firm believer in observing the right of existence of the organisation that he works for. “At Welgevonden Estate I will be guided by the essence of the WHOA’s constitution, namely to maintain standards for community-living in such a way that members and residents may derive the maximum collective benefit from it, to preserve the prescribed aesthetic standards, including the architectural style, of the estate, and to maintain the common property for the benefit of all who live on the estate. In doing so, I’m keen to reach out to and involve all stakeholders – service providers, Excom, as well as homeowners and residents – to ensure a partnership to reach these goals.”
At the same time Gawie makes it clear that the only way to manage an estate is to run it according to the book. “When someone invests in property within a community scheme such as Welgevonden Estate, they do so knowing what the rules are. What’s more, they expect the rules to be adhered to. I have a responsibility to make sure that the rules are fair, and that they are abided by.”
But being guided by the constitution and applying the rules, for Gawie, is merely the basis for good governance. “What is of even greater importance is the opportunity and duty that I have to assist individuals in resolving their queries and to contribute towards implementing solutions that are for the benefit of the community. I have an open door and I look forward to getting to know the owners and residents.”
Gawie is a member of the Association of Residential Communities (ARC), the South African Chapter of the Community Associations Institute (CAI), as well as the Club Management Association of Southern Africa (CMASA). He is a family man, is married to Sonika and they have twin boys, Justin and Grant.
Gawie is also a qualified sommelier, having completed a diploma course in Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy in Eastern France. And although this qualification wasn’t a prerequisite for his appointment as estate manager, it says something about him. As wine connoisseur he certainly has the gift to identify and enjoy a good thing when it comes his way, especially if it is an executive appointment at our champagne estate located in the heart of the Cape Winelands!