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A Time to Celebrate

With two championship golf courses, four hotels and a world-class convention centre, Sun City is synonymous with unlimited entertainment and an expansive variety of cultural and sports offerings. This year Sun City celebrates its 40th birthday and you’re invited to be part of the festivities.

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Stand a chance to win a share of R6.5 million in cash, cars and prizes.

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Be sure to bookmark this page for events, competitions and exclusive giveaways to mark the milestone of South Africa’s favourite family resort.

Sun City: Then and Now

In December 1979, the then president of BophuthaTswana Lucas Mangope was invited to open a brand-new luxury resort in the heart of the African bush. Flanked by two casinos, a state-of-the-art conference centre and an 18-hole golf course, Sun City was the vision of hotelier Sol Kerzner who wanted to create a place where dreams came true and imagination came to life. This vision was a game-changer with Sun City breaking boundaries and setting new records in the hotel and hospitality industry. Following the opening of the Sun City Hotel and Gary Player Country Club came the addition of two more hotels – the Cascades and the Cabanas – and a bevy of international shows that would put Sun City on the international map.

Did you know? In 1981 Frank Sinatra was paid $2-million to open the SuperBowl where other international artists (including Sir Cliff Richard, Cher, Liza Minnelli, Rod Stewart and Elton John) would later perform.

To complete Kerzner’s incredible vision, in January 1986 southern Africa’s first monorail – the Skytrain – took its first trip. Its coaches could carry 100 passengers and connected Sun City’s entrance to the R30-million Entertainment Centre which housed a casino, conference centre and the Sun City Superbowl.

Five years later, construction began on the most ambitious endeavour in Sun City’s history: The Lost City. Inspired by its natural surroundings, the project included the addition of a 338-room concept hotel which was designed to mimic an ancient city buried by a volcano and rediscovered centuries later. As the jewel in Sun City’s crown, The Palace of the Lost City not only set the bar for Sun International hotels but the site included a man-made forest and the Valley of Waves – an aquatic theme park which attracts millions of visitors to its ‘shores’ every year.

The Lost City jungle is the largest man-made rain forest in the world comprising over
1.2 million trees and plants

The Athlete’s Playground

Over the years, Sun City has transformed into Africa’s most luxurious and best-known resort with a kaleidoscope of experiences catering for leisure guests, sports enthusiasts and adventure seekers. To complement its vast offering of recreation activities, the resort has also become a frontrunner for hosting major sporting events such as the Nedbank Golf Challenge where the likes of Seve Ballesteros, David Frost, Nick Price and Bernhard Langer cemented their place in the history books.

Founded in 1980, the Nedbank Golf Challenge was originally known as the 'Million Dollar Golf Challenge' and is one of the world’s richest and most prestigious sporting events.

Adapting to Change

As the needs of holidaymakers changed, Sun City heeded the call and in 2016 the decision was made to reinvent Sun City’s Entertainment Centre. Home of the South African Hall of Fame, Sun Central (as it was renamed) remains the epicentre of the resort with its diverse selection of restaurants, retail outlets, kids’ activities and repurposed convention centre.

Since the opening of The Lost City in 1992, Sun City’s development programme has since been focused on the refurbishment of its hotels, with improvements to the Sun City Hotel (now called Soho), the Cascades as well as an extensive room overhaul at the Cabanas. The resort’s timeshare offering, Sun Vacation Club, has also improved its offering with unit upgrades and the addition of a convenience and liquor store, a bike park and two well-known restaurants.