He has discovered South Africa for us

The living room in Chernex, high above lake Geneva is home to a special Quartet: a Steinway Grand piano, a harpsichord, a rare Clavichord and a digital piano. F

He has discovered South Africa for us

The living room in Chernex, high above lake Geneva is home to a special Quartet: a Steinway Grand piano, a harpsichord, a rare Clavichord and a digital piano. From the walls of the master composer Johann Sebastian Bach and Frédéric Chopin, to look. After some Hesitation, the master of the house sits down at the harpsichord and play Bach's Partita No. 1 in B-flat major (BWV 825). Nimble flying fingers over the keys, here is a true lover of music.

Bruno Bay is at the age of 84, in third marriage with the artist and gallery owner, Ludmilla Moshek Bay married. The Bach and Chopin portraits painted. Bay carries a great name from the Golden age of the travel industry. "I am pleased that you have taken the long way to a Fossil himself," he joked upon the Arrival of the reporter.

Not with fossils, but with wild animals, the native of Aargau employees during his career. His first company was called Wildlife Safaris and taught from 1971 to travel to southern Africa. Later, Rotunda Tours, the leading Swiss specialist for travel to the countries between the Cape, Victoria falls and Etosha pan came out of it. In 1994 and 1995, Rotunda won the Travelstar for specialist tour operators, the "Oscars of the Swiss travel industry".

In January 1996, sold the Gentleman the company of the Kuoni's subsidiary Private Safaris, to devote himself henceforth private passions, such as Bach and Chopin. What is the sum to him Kuoni transferred, not the price is Bruno Bay. It would have been a nice single-digit million amount.

At the beginning of Stan your Thomas-Cook-catalogue

An English teacher had once kindled in the young Bruno, the desire to travel, as he showed the class a tattered catalog of Thomas Cook. The entry into the industry in Bay at the head office of Kuoni. He moved to England, where he worked for a tour operator for winter sports holidays organized before the largest transport company in Africa called. Belonged to South African Railways & Harbours, the South African Airlines. The airline expanded in the beginning of the sixties, the international route network. Bruno Bay was the first Governor in Zurich.

"a Boeing 707 we flew Johannesburg–Rome–Zurich–London, and sometimes there is a rose in Zurich for only four passengers," recalls the Retired. The reason for the reluctance of the Swiss audience: Because of the apartheid policy, it was generally frowned upon to travel to South Africa. Nevertheless, Swiss companies were eager to business with the Boer state.

"As I wrote at the South Africans under," says Bay, "I had no idea of the Apartheid. I wondered in a first or business stay in Johannesburg, I camped alone on the Park bench, sat, and the Black on the lawn." Swiss tour operators such as Kuoni and Hotelplan led no own South Africa program.

"I, the racial segregation was not right,"

But Bay before joining with the establishment of Wildlife Safaris and later Rotunda in a vacuum, and offered as a pioneer in travel to southern Africa. In the program: individual Trips and group trips to South Africa and its neighbouring countries. The most popular Tour lasted 24 days from Johannesburg to the Kruger Park, Durban and the Garden Route to Cape town.

Where else comes close to the giants of the animal Kingdom? Safari in the Kruger national Park. Photo: iStock

it Was Bruno Bay nothing to ignore the Political Correctness and a country that discriminated against the majority of its own citizens, to work closely together? The travel Pro a. D. rejected the suggestion: "I found the racial segregation in order, but the fact is that it was Black and White in South Africa material in the section better than it is today."

sector-protagonists of the past confirm that they were not unhappy that Bay have raised in the breach and a South Africa Tour-Operating. "Who booked the Rotunda, thought to policy, but wanted to see wild animals, and the table mountain," says one, "without Bruno, these customers would be moved overseas." The Business ran well thanks to the Postings of the branches of Kuoni and Hotelplan so good that Bay had to buy a hand-wägeli, in order to bring the nightly letters to the Post office.

Since the nineties, a boom destination

The cultured Senior leaves today, hardly the impression of a tough business. But in the pioneer years, he has grabbed his chances. "For a lot of money, I graduated in 1978 with a first Computer," says Bruno Bay. The crate allowed in the Rotunda of the Crew, offers and travel programs time-saving to assemble, instead of tapping it into the typewriter.

After the Apartheid was ended in 1990 and Nelson Mandela had come to Power, turned South Africa into a booming destination. "We were in the first row and achieved annual revenues of up to eight million Swiss francs," says Bay.

Bay has remained South Africa loyalty. In the Winter of his apartment in Cape town serves it, with views of table mountain, as the base, in the summer, he's staying in a condo at the Montreux. From there, an E-Mail comes days after the visit. Perfectionist Bay apologizes to the author, to have his private concert not better prepared: "you caught me on the wrong foot – I did not change the score sheets properly executed." We haven't noticed. Later, he sends a Link to Bach's "Goldberg variations" (BWV 988). In the keys of the South African Veteran, but the highly talented French harpsichordist Jean Rondeau does not apply now.

Created: 06.02.2020, 17:39 PM

Updated Date: 02 March 2020, 12:02

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