Who We Are 

Janine Southwood – Head of Personal Collection

Janine Southwood, who has been in the industry for more than 20 years, heads up the Personal Collection team.  Janine and her team customise exclusive, creative travel itineraries, all imbued with distinctive traces of Southern Africa.


“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work”, said Aristotle and that’s something we stick to here at Personal Collection. We love what we do, we’re doing what we love.    

‘Born in Africa, I am blessed to part of a continent like no other.  For so many arriving into Africa for the first time, you almost immediately feel like your soul belongs here, and during the course of your journey, she will steal your heart as you fall in love with her.  Our history is intriguing … from the mysterious rock churches of Lalibela, the ancient pyramids of Egypt, to the reshuffling of the earth’s plates to create Ngorongoro Crater, Great Rift Valley, the Okavango Delta, to name just a few.  All of this creates a natural oasis for wildlife and their migrations across terrains.

And then, of course, there are the colours and sounds of our many cultures, each with their own traditions that will leave you on the edge of your seat, eager for more of their captivating stories.  Combine this with breathtakingly beautiful landscapes that haven’t changed at all over centuries, and you will start to understand my love of Africa and why it is most definitely worth visiting, not just once, but over and over again.

Africa won’t let you forget her gentle sounds of tranquillity and serenity and her undeniable beauty. Africans won’t let you forget how friendly and accommodating we are. And our wildlife – there is simply nothing more beautiful than the sight of wild animals on the great plains roaming free where they should be.”

Tessa Robertson – Africa Specialist

Tessa has over 14 years of experience in inbound travel.  She is passionate about her job and pays special focus to the attention to detail in a tour, ensuring all the bells and whistles are taken care of.

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  “I was fortunate to grow up with parents who had a passion for travel which helped me realise what I wanted to do with my life.  I studied hotel management and then worked in 5-star hotels in Durban, Cape Town and London. It was during my three years in the United Kingdom that I travelled so much of the world and on return to South Africa, I knew I had to see more of my home country, and wow, what an incredible country we have! I had to share this with the rest of the world and so here I am, working with a small dynamic team of ladies, sharing our love of Africa with those fortunate enough to experience it.

“Once you hear the mighty roar of a lion or watch the sun set over the grasslands,  Africa will capture your heart forever. Africa is waiting for you!”


Shannon Powell – Africa Specialist

Senior Tour Consultant, with over 15 years of travel experience, staring in a small retail chain in the UK. Shannon has a hunger for the industry. “It’s not just a job for me, it’s my life.”  


Her son grew up in the Mara so Shannon is personally familiar with all of the deluxe secrets into making the magic moments of your personal itinerary including wedding planning on the Mighty Zambezi River. She thrives on the little special personal touches to make the WOW in someone’s day. Her career started with her being born into her family’s safari lodge in Mana Pools, Zimbabwe. She then followed the family footsteps and worked and lived in 5-star properties all through Africa. Travel is now her speciality and she excels as a Travel Counsellor. Her vivaciousness and caring dedication to her clients are invaluable assets to our Personal Collection Brand.

Shannon has designed individual tours and arranged escorted tours to Southern Africa for many clients from all over the US to Europe, Israel, Australia/New Zealand and Africa. She is also passionate about “giving back” and works closely with local orphans in and around Southern Africa.

Our team is passionate about Africa and each Africa Specialist has a deep love for what we do, thus making your trip even more meaningful or memorable. Join us to create your African legacy, with your footprint on conservation (be it wildlife, community or habitat) and spread the word about how wonderful Africa and its people are.

 Images courtesy of Time + Tide Africa, experts in Zambia, preferred partners of Personal Collection.  


Next time in Africa,
The Personal Collection Team    


Very HIGH tea…

This is extremely exciting.  And for me, perhaps the highest tea you can possibly have.  Well in South Africa.

Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain forming a prominent landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town in South Africa. It is a significant tourist attraction, with many visitors using the cableway or hiking to the top. The mountain forms part of the Table Mountain National Park. This wonderful tourist spot in Cape Town has introduced a new experience, the Very High Tea.

At the summit of Table Mountain, hosted in the Wi-Fi Lounge, offering panoramic views of the city and its surrounds, guests are invited to embark on a high tea experience like no other.

Guests can choose from an array of treats that include salmon trout pannequets, ostrich crostinis, mini lamb yorky bites, mini lamb yorkies, lentil bobotie bites, gazpacho prawn shooters, blue cheese and pickled pear puffs, lemon meringue tartlets, peanut butter brownie cheesecake, and milk tart cigars, while enjoying free WiFi access.

Drinks include a glass of MCC sparkling wine on arrival, a selection of Twinings teas, coffees and mineral water.

The Very High Tea experience is available Mondays to Sundays and is served at 14h30.

Table Mountain Cableway can cater for up to 20 people per high tea sitting, therefore booking is required.

Personal Collection by TA, would most definitely add this delight in our groups when do bookings for your Table Mountain tickets.  This is a HIGHlight 🙂

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“Travelling in the Company of those we love is Home in Motion”  

So aptly quoted by Leigh Hunt, it makes us reflect on the formative years growing up and ever so often, trading the humdrum of everyday life for a family adventure to some exotic location – just the opportunity to ‘Get Away’ and reconnect with each other, to rekindle the level of social connection between the different generations was something to behold and appreciate.

Today, the concept has been given a new lease and FAMILY TRAVEL thankfully is evolving to encompass differentiated experiences that caters to all; from grandparents all the way down the generations through to the 6 year old grandchild. It gives mum & dad the opportunity to disconnect from routine, explore uncharted territory with family in tow and a multitude of options to embrace adventure as it unfolds with zeal and a unified satisfaction.

The delight and appreciation from an African adventure; be it seeing wildlife up close, or meerkats bobbing in and out of their little burrows, to appreciating the undulating African landscapes below from an open-air balloon safari, or the wonder and excitement exuded by children on receiving their first ‘Little Ranger’ certificates – all this and so much more to absorb and digest. Africa really does offers it all!

Families can now create memorable moments across the generations and have much to talk about over dinner or during a quiet moment. The true reflections come from the realization that these often-overlooked moments are life’s real treasures, and family time away should not be taken for granted.

To us at Personal Collection, this is the benchmark of quality family time; which when reflecting on the quote above, gives great significance and truth to the words therein.

Personal Collection travel tips for the best Family Holiday/ multigenerational travel

• Ensure your travel plans include diversity and vary the activities to keep all members actively involved and having a good time.
• Where possible, book a specialist guide. These qualified individuals are child friendly and know how to keep kids entertained.
• Time Out – for both adults and kids to escape and explore personal interests. Child minders can be arranged for the kids to give the adults quality time.

Family travel presents the perfect opportunity for kids to learn the importance of both nature and wildlife and how we all co-exist. It is a fun filled holiday with an education – showcasing life as we live it, appreciate it and nurture it together.