TANUJA Gangabishun is a familiar face at The Boardwalk in Port Elizabeth because it has been her professional home for the past four years, which is her second stint at the hotel and casino complex.
Gangabishun, who is full of humour, grew up in Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal, and is best known for her role as the marketing manager at The Boardwalk.
But she is also a mother, fiancee and chef in her home.
She was raised in a Hindi home, alongside three siblings, and has passed on the faith’s traditions to her daughter, Rhea.
Cooking is one her favourite activities, but “sandwiches and finger foods just won’t do” for dinner in her home, Gangabishun said.
Curry and rice is one of her most loved dishes to make because of her daughter’s insatiable appetite for the Indian dish.
The proud mother talks fondly of her daughter, who, she said, has changed her from a career-driven woman to “learning that there are other more important things in life”.
Despite becoming the marketing guru that she is, Gangabishun grew up convinced that she would become an accountant.
She even gave accounting classes to Grade 12 pupils, some of whom went on to pass the subject with flying colours.
This ambitious mother cut her teeth in marketing at Sun City, where she started off as a guest and hospitality officer, and has plied her trade in many other places including Polokwane.
She had a bacon wrap with La Femme at Kipling’s Brasserie at The Boardwalk Hotel.
I love my job because … I get to meet people from all walks of life, with no dull day in the office. My job keeps me on my toes with constant curve balls and challenges.
I love that I can make a difference through my involvement and input to any situation.
Having spent the last 15 years of my career within Sun International, it has become more a way of life than a job.
I have a soft spot for … my little one. My five-year-old daughter, Rhea, knows how to wrap mommy around her finger.
I’d love to party with … Madonna, a great humanitarian, fantastic artist and mother, who has adapted and evolved over the years – always keeping it real.
I’m listening to … I went away this past weekend and listened to old-school R&B, which I enjoyed, such as Boyz II Men, Babyface, Keith Sweat and Toni Braxton.
When I was 16, I wish I knew … the value of investments. Gosh, how much wealthier I could have been today.
I’ll know I’ve made it when … I look at my daughter and feel the pride of motherhood. Looking back, both my personal and career goals have been met.
Juggling through the everyday demands of the entertainment, hospitality and gaming industry, I can still go home to prepare a home-cooked meal every day.
The person who has taught me the most is … my mom.
What a gem she is. She has taught me that hard work and perseverance always pay at the end of the day.
My music weakness is … Hindi wedding songs, it’s definite groove music.
I absolutely hate … negativity, I strive to bring out the happy, fun element to any situation.
I share my life with … my fiance, Dean, and daughter, Rhea.
I can’t go a day without… chatting to my mom – my daily dose of motivation.
TANUJA Gangabishun shared some of her favourite places to visit in Nelson Mandela Bay:
A definite favourite of mine is the beach, being the coastal girl that I am.
The Boardwalk has got to be on the top of my list as well, a place where there is something for the entire family. Dining at any of The Boardwalk restaurants has become even more of a treat now that there are the entertaining daily water fountain shows.
Shopping at Woolies Food is a favourite pastime.
Relaxing at Africology Spa at The Boardwalk is the ultimate indulgence.