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Local fashion brand Sun Goddess ascends to full potential with Sun City support

More than two decades after Vanya and Thando Mangaliso started selling clothing from their car, luxury fashion brand Sun Goddess has risen to meet the whims of guests at Sun City Resort’s The Palace of the Lost City.

Sun Goddess, which translates South African traditional stories and imagery into fashion, first partnered with the Sun City Resort in 2022 when they began designing uniforms, steeped in the North West’s Tswana culture and heritage, for staff at The Palace.

The collaboration has flourished, with the leading hospitality company’s support for the small business growing. In November last year, Sun Goddess’ Johannesburg based operations expanded when they opened a boutique store at the five-star The Palace hotel, catering to foreign guests, conference and local holiday travellers. Further jobs are created in the province thanks to a uniform room for staff which operates at the hotel, also making uniforms for staff at the Cabana’s Hotel and the transport department.

“We have grown our staff complement by 30% thanks to Sun International and particularly Sun City General Manager Brett Hoppé’s, whose vision brought us on board,” said Sun Goddess Creative Director Vanya. “After the pandemic when retail changed drastically, they gave us new opportunities and we were able to pivot into corporate uniforms which we had not previously done at such a large scale. It opened up avenues and challenged us to think differently. As a result, our systems have improved and we have scaled up and grown.” As Sun Goddess stepped up their business, they have boosted those in related industries. “We have started working with cut, make and trim manufacturers, embroidery and screen-printing companies to enable us to deliver on Sun City’s requests, which has opened up opportunities for others along the value chain,” Vanya said.

As the fashion brand prepared to showcase 15 looks as part of its Sun Goddess Langakazi Collection for Summer 2025, which debuted at the South Africa Fashion Week, the design team is also tailoring the range to suit The Palace shoppers, with a strong resort wear dimension. Accessories such as hats, beach wraps, sunglasses, and bags are popular.

“The resort shopper is looking for something which they can wear to the pools or beach but also to a relaxed restaurant. They also want swim wear, beach towels, gowns and flip flops. At the same time there is the corporate traveller who wants a nice dress or blazer to wear to a gala dinner or the overseas guest in search of a uniquely South African number which shows that they have travelled overseas when they get back home.” Many shoppers pop in at 8am as they check out, to buy an outfit they’d had their eye on during their stay, meaning the retail store had to adjust from the typical 9am opening time.

 

Sun Goddess will become the first South African fashion brand to launch a virtual shop Metaverse’s Luxury Fashion District, an online marketplace where brands can connect with their customers through immersive technologies such as augmented reality, the metaverse, and blockchain.  The virtual reality platform has already grabbed the fashion world’s attention including big names such as Dolce Gabbana and Tommy Hilfiger. “We want our consumers to be able to experience our brand on a different level, in a different realm,” Sun Goddess Managing Director Thando said. Sun Goddess will launch Africarare where “Africa’s rich heritage meets the digital frontier”.

 

“We are also benefitting from Sun International’s enterprise development programmes which help us to keep improving and growing. We are aligning our creativity with one of the backbones of the economy, the tourism industry, and utilising the opportunity of being linked with an industry leader like Sun International,” Thando said.

 

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