N'taba River Lodge is a three-time recipient of funding from the IDC's tourism special business unit.
And demonstrates the benefits of continual reinvestment and expansion of facilities to keep up with demand.
Situated in the popular but impoverished Port St Johns in the Eastern Cape, the business has repeatedly demonstrated initiatives in black economic empowerment and local community empowerment that also provide affordable tourist accommodation.
N'taba received its first IDC loan in 2005. The loan was used to build the lodge's 60-seat conference centre and expand some of the rooms. Four years later the business received further funding to expand the lodge and its most recent loan has helped it to refurbish some of its 28 rooms.
The lodge is owner-managed and employs only people from the surrounding area, who take care of the general operations of the lodge. The lodge's staff complement has grown to 23 people, with very low staff turnover.
Port St Johns has not escaped the downturn in the tourism industry, which is felt especially acutely in poorer regions such as the Eastern Cape, which has to contend with basic infrastructure challenges as well as a lack of co-ordination in the province's tourism industry.
Despite this, N'taba is ideally situated in this popular holiday destination, which is sought after for the many attractions and activities in the vicinity, as well as for its remote location that provides a true break from the rat race.