BIG AMBITIONS
MEET OUR

TEAM

Andrea Hambides

Andrea Hambides

Operations Director

A ‘Jackie’ of all trades and a master of many!

Andrea, our Operations Director, is a ‘Jackie’ of all trades and a master of many! Our behind the scenes operational guru has over 20 years’ experience in the tourism and hospitality industry, backed by qualifications in Tourism, Business Management, and Finance. Unsurprisingly, travel is her ‘happy place’ having visited 24 countries and counting, with no plans to put her adventures on hold any time soon!
Andrea considers her unique superpower to be her ability to empower others to reach their fullest potential. When she isn’t running our agency like a well-oiled machine, you’ll most likely find this ‘extroverted introvert’ cuddling with any animal, sharing laughs over food with family and friends, and of course on some travel-related adventure!

Ashlyn Moodley

Ashlyn Moodley

Senior Web Developer

Ash is not just a coder, he is a visionary who brings together technical expertise, design sensibility, and a passion for creating exceptional online experiences.

Ash is not just a coder, he is a visionary who brings together technical expertise, design sensibility, and a passion for creating exceptional online experiences. Ash has 8 years’ experience in web development and graphic design under his belt and a love for researching and learning new technologies and trends. With both Web and UI/UX knowledge and a keen attention to detail, he is able to create sites that complement both worlds. In his spare time Ash enjoys dabbling in cooking, spending time with family, and playing online games with friends.

babajide olowookere

Babajide Olowookere

Senior Graphic Designer

Jide constantly feeds his yearning for professional development, enhancing his already exceptional creativity, design and branding skills

This go-getting, creative powerhouse keeps us all on our toes. Babajide Olowookere has an impressive list of qualifications, but we know him most for his extraordinary design expertise, leadership and productivity. ‘Jide constantly feeds his yearning for professional development, enhancing his already exceptional creativity, design and branding skills as he juggles a demanding workload with speed and endurance. ‘Jide loves creative design, brand management and problem solving. He’s fast, highly motivated and truly passionate. There’s nothing that ‘Jide loves more than to push his own limits. And it is his passion and leadership that drives us all to keep up pace.

Bianca Golz

Bianca Golz

Writer

While Bianca has written about anything and everything, her passion lies in the travel industry.

Bianca has over a decade of experience as a writer and has spent a sizeable chunk of her career working as a freelancer, which has empowered her to get stuck into storytelling for brands across many different industries and in various countries across the globe. While she has written about anything and everything, Bianca’s passion lies in the travel industry, and she feels privileged to be a part of the game-changing Big Ambitions team. Bianca is a mom to two incredible little boys, and if she ever has any spare time on her hands outside of work and caring for the kiddos, you’ll likely find her tending to her veggie garden, cuddling with anything furry or learning a new language.

Brenda Walters

Brenda Walters

Account Director

Driven by having a sense of purpose in all that she does, Brenda has a great deal of integrity and highly values relationships.

Brenda’s diverse set of skills adds value and achieves results. Brenda’s enthusiasm and positive energy uplift and inspire those around her. Brenda has a diverse skill set from her years of experience in corporate, tourism, and conservation and has a reputation for getting the job done. Brenda is passionately committed to her work, pays attention to detail, and has a clear understanding of effective operations within diverse and intensive work environments. As a published freelance journalist, and having crafted many a tourism story, she loves using words to convey consistent and effective brand messaging. She has a passion for responsible tourism and has worked in the non-profit sector. Driven by having a sense of purpose in all that she does, Brenda has a great deal of integrity and highly values relationships. A nature and book lover, with a keen eye for capturing beautiful images, she also keeps her finger on the pulse, so as to ensure she is always on top of the game.

Carly Baatjes

Carly Baatjes

Account Executive

Your go-to marketing maven with a love for travel and tourism.

Carly is a marketing maven with a passion for travel and tourism! With a Bachelor of Technology in Public Relations and a love for creating social media magic, she knows just how to make your brand stand out in the crowded world of digital marketing. With experience in the travel and tourism industry, she has crafted campaigns that make vacation dreams a reality. Whether it’s showcasing exotic destinations or promoting the perfect staycation, Carly has the skills and creativity to make your brand shine. But she is more than just a marketing guru – with an outgoing and flexible personality, she’s always up for a challenge – from brainstorming sessions to Instagram takeovers, she brings a sense of fun and excitement to every project.

Celine Patterson

Celine Patterson

Account Executive

Celine has longstanding passion for tourism and a firm believer in the power of tailormade PR and marketing solutions.

With a longstanding passion for tourism and a firm believer in the power of tailormade PR and marketing solutions, Celine thrives in being part of a team that bring the two together and deliver successful results for travel clients and their customers. She has previous experience in tourism research and development as well as PR and media relations, making her role as account co-ordinator at Big Ambitions a natural fit. Reliability, accountability, and kindness are always at the forefront of her professional motto.

When away from her work desk, Celine’s heart is full when spending time with family and friends, hiking in nature, or exploring new places both near and far. She also has a keen interest in animal welfare and environmental conservation.

Claire Lathe

Claire Lathe

Operations Administrator

Turning the wheels behind the scenes is Claire Lathe, administrator extraordinaire!

Turning the wheels behind the scenes is Claire Lathe, administrator extraordinaire! Claire is a compassionate individual who’s dedicated to organising the lives of those around her. It’s no mean feat, but as a mum of four she’s the one who gets all the ‘soldiers ready for battle’, coordinating it all effortlessly. Originally from the United Kingdom, Claire has experience in working for multiple international companies across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. When she’s not being mum and keeping the wheels turning at Big Ambitions, she loves to dabble in photography, a skill she’s learning more about.

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Daniëlle Taute

Account Executive

If you ever find yourself in need of a multi-tasker, look no further than Dani!

Daniëlle, affectionately known as Dani, has a thirst for knowledge and is an organiser extraordinaire! Time management and productivity aren’t just buzzwords for her – they are her forte. One of her many superpowers is effortlessly juggling multiple projects with creativity and flair, all while maintaining a big smile. When she’s not engrossed in creating content, meeting clients, or building and optimising content calendars, you’ll find her ‘busting moves’ on TikTok, spreading joy and motivation one hip shake at a time!

Dorine Reinstein

Dorine Reinstein

Content Director

Nothing delights Dorine more than taking a complicated matter and distilling it into insights that apply to our clients’ businesses and industries.

Our resident news hound and connector all things thought leadership-related is Dorine Reinstein who admits to being an academic at heart. Nothing delights Dorine more than taking a complicated matter and distilling it into insights that apply to our clients’ businesses and industries. She cares deeply about her clients and the business. So much so, that thinking of ways to help them succeed keeps her up at nights. Dorine can think strategically and put together news-driven content that resonates with a reader whatever their mood. Fluent in English, Dutch and French, Dorine has also lived in several countries, including France, Belgium, Netherlands and Malta.

Hannah Carlisle

Hannah Carlisle

Account Executive

Hannah brings contagious enthusiasm and eagerness to our team.

Hannah brings contagious enthusiasm and eagerness to our team and is excited to build on her marketing skillset after recently graduating from school. Growing up surrounded by conservationists sparked an appreciation for the tourism industry and Hannah soon discovered a passion for the marketing thereof, with specific interests in digital marketing and social media. Creative, curious, and solutions-oriented, Hannah loves taking on new challenges that push her beyond perceived limits. She believes that building personal connections is one of the most important things in life and loves working closely with people. In her downtime Hannah loves running and spending time in the bush alongside the Kruger’s wildlife.

Jasmyn Myburgh

Jasmyn Myburgh

Account Executive

Jasmyn, the youngest member of our team, is hard-working, driven and always on the lookout for new challenges.

Jasmyn, the youngest member of our team, is hard-working, driven and always on the lookout for new challenges. After completing an internship at Big Ambitions learning about the fast-paced travel industry and gaining valuable knowledge in travel marketing and communications, she was afforded an opportunity to join the team permanently. Her skills in teamwork and effective communication, no doubt honed from her responsibilities as a prefect in high school, allows her to collaborate effectively and foster meaningful relationships with colleagues and clients alike. Jasmyn has an insatiable appetite for growth and aspires to soon become a formidable marketing and communications guru within the travel industry by tapping into her creativity to elevate travel brands to new heights. To unwind, Jasmyn loves getting stuck into a good book, listening to music, and watching movies. She also has a keen interest in fashion, travelling to new places and enjoys any outdoor adventure with hiking being one of her favourite pastimes.

Jeanette Phillips

Jeanette Phillips

Account Coordinator

Using her intuition, research skills and sheer tenacity, Jeanette is one of those people who’ll figure it out.

Jeanette Briedenhann is happiest when she’s had time to dig to get to the root of the problem. Using her intuition, research skills and sheer tenacity, Jeanette is one of those people who’ll figure it out. With a Bachelors’ degree in communications and diploma in social research, Jeanette loves writing news, researching and diving right into statistics. She’s a dab hand at client operating systems and is always the first person to put up her hand and offer help. That’s her real superpower – a genuine care for other people’s challenges and a master at building strong relationships with all levels of an organisation.

Jenna Berndt

Jenna Berndt

Editor

Jenna is duty bound to deliver her best, always.

It will take you a lifetime to find someone as diligent, persevering and organised as Jenna Berndt. With her BJourn degree, digital marketing qualification and design skills, she’s a flexible communicator with an exceptional eye for detail and quality control. That’s her superpower – spotting mistakes. Forget to dot your “i” or cross your “t” and she’ll spot it miles away! What’s more? Jenna is duty bound to deliver her best, always. Whether that’s writing about piña coladas and palm trees (her favourite) or a serious holding statement. There’s nothing Jenna doesn’t love about storytelling, SEO and copywriting. And, with her diverse creative skillset, we rely on Jenna to understand the whole picture – visual and written communications.

Kayla Blizard

Kayla Davids

Account Executive

An eager beaver with a wicked sense of humour, always keen to help, and happiest when things are organised.

Kayla is a passionate, creative and adventurous marketer, bringing an exciting approach to the management of her accounts. She has achieved demonstrable success in a range of industries, allowing her to fully submerge herself in a business’s needs and challenges so she can structure unique marketing strategies to the best possible effect. Kayla is also a happy-go-lucky, well-travelled, outdoor enthusiast. Coupled with a great sense of humour and an optimistic attitude, she is sure to make your brand succeed.

Kim Taylor

Kim Taylor

Account Director

Kim thrives under pressure and her cool and calm demeanour makes her the go-to during any crisis.

Kim is fiercely passionate about placing relationships at the heart of everything she does. Years of working in customer-facing roles mean that Kim is deeply passionate about communication and problem-solving. Kim thrives under pressure and her cool and calm demeanour makes her the go-to during any crisis. Being naturally inquisitive and solution-driven means that Kim likes to get to grips with the root cause of any challenge and to find an easier and more simplified way to get things done. Kim has a demonstrated history of working in the leisure travel industry, where she was able to influence and craft memorable customer experiences. In her spare time, Kim enjoys empowering herself with as much knowledge as possible and can be found studying a variety of skills, as well as immersing herself in as many cookbooks as possible.

Linda Piegl

Linda Piegl

Editor

Travelling extensively was life-changing, and since then, her bucket-list of destinations has never stopped growing.

Linda wanted to paint like Claude Monet but unfortunately, did not inherit her father’s artistic talent. So, she learnt to paint with words instead and writing became her lifelong passion. With a journalism degree, plus copy-editing and news-reading skills in the mix, she has worked across the media, communications and hospitality industries. Living in Europe for four years and travelling extensively was life-changing, and since then, her bucket-list of destinations has never stopped growing. Linda’s also an avid hiker, nature lover, pet mom, and she likes to hang out at markets.

Lori Cohen Criticos

Lori Cohen

Content Lead: Corporate

From camping throughout Southern Africa to exploring more far-flung destinations, Lori’s love of travel runs deep.

From camping throughout Southern Africa to exploring more far-flung destinations as a travel editor for some of South Africa’s most prestigious glossies, Lori’s love of travel runs deep. A specialised SEO writer and content editor, she has vast experience in shaping and optimising content for online platforms and social media for brands. But it’s her love for the written word that drives every piece she crafts.

Lucy Mussett

Lucy Mussett

PR & Business Development Director

An all-rounder in every sense of the word.

Lucy is our marketing, communications, sales and digital guru and an all-rounder in every sense of the word. She’s worked with the upper tier of society from celebs and top businesspeople to politicians and government officials. With extensive experience in the banking, hospitality and tourism sectors, this high-flying business executive has led multimillion-dollar campaigns and launched a multitude of brands across the globe. If anyone knows how to orchestrate chaos into an award-winning project, it’s Lucy. She also has a deep passion for CSI projects and has pioneered a number of these initiatives throughout her career. She believes that balance brings steady, sustainable direction and results and her go-to when things get really busy is vinyasa yoga and meditation.

Madaléne Manuel

Madaléne Manuel

Junior Account Director

Will always go the extra mile, has a keen eye for detail, enjoys a challenge and likes to get things done – earning the nickname “The Fixer”!

With over 10 years’ experience within the wine and tourism sectors, Madaléne has worn many hats ranging from marketing and communications to events execution, campaign management and operational assistance to management. Mads considers herself to be an energetic ambivert who loves meeting new people and making meaningful connections. She will always go the extra mile, has a keen eye for detail, enjoys a challenge and likes to get things done – earning the nickname “The Fixer”! In her personal time, she loves spending time with her family and is the designated family party planner. To unwind, she also loves exploring new places, sipping on red wine, and getting stuck into a good book.

Mareike Long

Mareike Long

Writer

A curious writer, Mareike likes to always be one step ahead of the game.

Mareike has bucket loads of curiosity and a desire to deeply understand the world around her. Her top strengths are intellection, responsibility and strategic thinking that shines through in her knack for creating creative and disciplined digital content. She’s worked in the travel industry for over 10 years, which is a great fit, as in her free time she loves exploring cute towns in the Western Cape and has even gone on a road trip through South Africa, Namibia and Botswana in her trusty Subaru.

Natalia Rosa

Natalia Rosa

CEO

Natalia always looks for innovative ways of connecting the dots, challenging the status quo and persuading her team, customers and industries to do the same.

Blue ocean thinking is what gets Natalia Rosa leaping out of bed every day. Never happy with complacency, Natalia always looks for innovative ways of connecting the dots, challenging the status quo and persuading her team, customers and industries to do the same. Nothing energises Natalia quite like taking difficult concepts and putting them together so that they are greater than the sum of their parts. A strategic and creative thinker, with a voracious growth mindset, Natalia loves new ideas and creating structure from noise and chaos. But it is true grit and multitask that remains her superpower.

Nicola-du-toit

Nicola du Toit

Account Executive

Nicola is a creative individual with a passion for food, wine, marketing, meeting new people and exploring new places.

Nicola is a creative individual with a passion for food, wine, marketing, meeting new people and exploring new places. She’s worked in marketing roles on wine farms for over 4 years, backed by qualifications in Marketing Management and Digital Marketing, but also has a hidden talent – she is a qualified pastry chef with a diploma in Culinary Arts & Advanced Pâtisserie! This self-proclaimed ‘foodie’ loves spending time with her family and is the designated event planner of all family outings. To unwind, she loves exploring the great outdoors, sipping on tea, getting stuck into a good bottle of wine, and of course baking and cooking!

Roland Müller

Roland Müller

Client Services Director

A critical thinker who looks at problems differently, Roland’s sense of humour ensures he approaches difficult situations with a cool head, always looking for solutions.

Cool as a cucumber, you can always rely on Roland Muller to be the calm person in the room when there’s chaos and craziness around every turn. A critical thinker who looks at problems differently, Roland’s sense of humour ensures he approaches difficult situations with a cool head, always looking for solutions. With a BCom Hons in Tourism Management and a keen interest in branding – from ideas to launch and management – Roland is an artist at making connections where others see none. His patient ways bring stillness and peace of mind to those around him. As such he is brilliant at forging relationships and is renowned for his reliability.

Sonnette Fourie

Sonnette Fourie

Junior Account Director

True passion shines through Sonnette when it comes to all things Media, Communication and Design.

Sonnette Fourie’s true passion shines through when it comes to all things Media, Communication and Design. She started her career as a graphic designer and then moved into the newspaper world, where she bossed a team of journalists and administrators to ensure the paper kept ticking over smoothly and was delivered on deadline. After a hiatus and a stint in Zambia, during which she successfully got her two daughters through to Grade 12 home-schooling, she has jumped back into the working world with the same enthusiasm and commitment she has shown for teaching. Sonnette’s superpower is her willingness to both learn and teach combined with great attention to detail and being a stickler for delivering correctly and on time. Sonnette loves the outdoors and you will find her either combing the beach, hiking a mountain or running trails in her spare time. She is also a dedicated member of the core team at the Paarl Parkrun.

Steph Reinstein

Stephane Reinstein

Digital Marketing & Dev Director

If there’s a technology problem that needs to be solved, Steph is our man.

Steph Reinstein is our development, design and video expert. If there’s a technology problem that needs to be solved, Steph is our man. With a keen eye on detail and a phenomenal grasp of video, animation and great UX and UI, Steph is able to translate a user’s online experience into thoughtful and cutting-edge design and development. A polyglot, speaking English, French, Dutch and Hebrew fluently, Steph’s superpower is his sensitivity to other people’s thoughts and feelings. He also whips up the most incredible creations in the kitchen, is a keen gemmologist and has also qualified as an open-water scuba instructor.

Tallula Esterhuizen

Tallula Esterhuizen

Writer

Tallula loves a good challenge and is fueled by creating meaningful connections with people.

Tallula is a content rockstar who dives into her writing with empathy and enthusiasm. She loves a good challenge and is fueled by creating meaningful connections with people. Her background in linguistics, psychology and art history reflects her love of communication in all its forms, whether it be visual, written or interpersonal. Motivated and hungry for challenges, her interesting history of entrepreneurial ventures has given her unique insight which she pours into her writing and content creation. She is passionate about travel and fiercely curious. When she’s not absorbed in storytelling she hangs out with her awesome dog, goes for long walks in nature and searches out the best chocolate and perfume.

Tamira Ranjith

Tamira Ranjith

Account Executive

Tamira pursued her degree out of a passion for nature and animals, suitably aligning with our magnificent tourism offering in South Africa

Tamira is a career chameleon. She’s gained experience and knowledge in several different industries – from years of working in hospitality and administration, to qualifying in Environmental Management as well as completing an English teaching course – she has mastered versatility and adaptation. Tamira pursued her degree out of a passion for nature and animals, suitably aligning with our magnificent tourism offering in South Africa and her work in the hospitality industry, as well as her personal interests and hobbies. She is loyal, mature, has a dry and witty sense of humour and has a keen desire to continuously better herself through new learning opportunities.

OUR

ASSOCIATE SPECIALISTS

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Johnny Johnson

Brand Strategist at Anthropos and The Journey

Johnny Johnson has forty years of experience working on brands and communications. He has a commercial bachelor’s degree in commerce and an honours in business administration.

Johnny Johnson has forty years of experience working on brands and communications. He has a commercial bachelor’s degree in commerce and an honours in business administration. He has been client service director and deputy managing director at Ogilvy’s, managing director at Young & Rubicam and Saatchi & Saatchi and chairman of specialist agencies at TBWA. He manages his own specialist brand and communications strategy agency (www.anthropos.co.za) and has worked with The Journey on development of the tourism destination brand strategies and identities for Kavango Zambezi Trans Frontier Conservation Area, Sierra Leone and Ethiopia national tourism brands.

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Mike Fabricius

Managing Director At The Journey

Mike Fabricius (PhD) is an experienced tourism strategist, policy analyst and marketer, with a tourism career that spans more than 30 years. Having played various leadership roles in the successful development of the South African tourism industry.

Mike Fabricius (PhD) is an experienced tourism strategist, policy analyst and marketer, with a tourism career that spans more than 30 years. Having played various leadership roles in the successful development of the South African tourism industry, he established The Journey Tourism Consulting, an independent tourism advisory and consulting practice in 2005. Since then he has consulted extensively in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe and is a passionate proponent of sustainable tourism development. He regularly works as senior expert for UN Tourism and other international development agencies (World Bank, IFC, USAID, UNDP, EU, AFDB, SADC, CBI, etc.) and has taught courses on Tourism Policy and Destination Strategy for Tourism Managers in many destinations across Africa, the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

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