Why learn with José?

  • He understands the needs of South Africans travelling to Spanish-speaking countries.
  • He teaches universal Spanish with an extensive knowledge of the Latin American cultures and local vocabulary.
  • Teaching is in small groups.
  • His method focuses on getting people to think in Spanish through a thorough understanding of Spanish grammar, and not simply to repeat phrases.
  • Classes consist of hands-on teaching by José himself, using his own purpose-built teaching material. He does NOT use off-the-shelf tapes or CDs.

About José

José Hares founded the Latin Connection School of Spanish in 1992. He has taught Spanish to thousands of individuals from an extremely wide background. In addition, he brought the DELE (Diploma Español Lengua Extranjera) examinations to South Africa in partnership with the Spanish government, and his school was accredited to run the examinations.

José has also developed and run tailor-made Spanish language courses for companies including South African Airways, Iberia, Blue Continent, and Dole. José is an accomplished simultaneous interpreter, and has provided Spanish-English interpretation at over 120 conferences and events. José also spent a week giving voice coaching to the actor Nicolas Cage for the movie Lord of War.

Testimonials

From Nabor García, former Consul General of Spain in Cape Town

I have known and worked with José Hares, Director of the Latin Connection School of Spanish in Cape Town for the past four years. I can attest to the outstanding contribution he has made to the promotion of the Spanish language and culture in South Africa, and to the high degree of professionalism, enthusiasm and imagination that he brings to all he does. … José’s school has an excellent educational record and reputation. … In recognition of José’s outstanding contribution to Spanish language and culture, he was awarded the “Cruz de Oficial del Mérito Civil” in 2000 by the King of Spain, His Majesty Juan Carlos. … José … brings meticulous professionalism and passionate commitment to his work. I do not hesitate to recommend him to any prospective students or collaborators.

Read the full testimonial from the former Consul General.


From current and former students

It gives me great pleasure to write a testimonial for you and The Latin Connection.

The Spanish courses our family did with you were happy and enriching times. We learnt to love and admire the language and the culture built upon it. But even more so we were inspired by your genuine love and enthusiasm for it. You have a gift for teaching and sharing which gave us all great joy, and respect for a wonderful and stimulating field of learning.

We were taught by the best Professor we have had for any subject – without doubt. You challenged us, but always made each of us feel that we were up to it. Every learner’s progress, however small or large, was always noticed and appreciated. Best of all, we learnt not only Spanish, but the value of true passion for one’s calling, appreciation of the shared pleasure of expanding one’s mind and horizons, and we found friendship with like-minded people that we will always treasure. We often worked hard, but there was always joy, laughter, fun and camaraderie.

Although we haven’t been for lessons in some time and our lives have been taken up by other pursuits, we all still consider ourselves your admiring students. Hopefully, we will be back for more some day soon.

– Willie Duminy

What a wonderful surprise, an e-mail from my best ever Spanish teacher … Strangely enough today I went to my usual Thursday Spanish tutor appointment at midday. The only difference is José Hares never let his students down and this is the second time in as many months that my tutor didn’t pitch up. I think I need to fly to CT once a week. If that were possible I would do it, seriously. I have had bad luck with tutors and you set the bar very high. … My Spanish classes were my weekly tonic.

–  Amanda Fitschen

I spent 5 years studying Spanish with José at the Latin Connection, progressing from a complete beginner to taking Level “Basico” (now known as level B1) of the DELE exams, one of the most widely recognised tests of fluency in Spanish as a foreign language. What made me return course after course, was the sheer enjoyment of studying with José. He is an exceptionally talented teacher who gets results from his students by developing their speaking ability through a strong foundation in grammar (the building blocks of a language). The group classes are dynamic and draw on interesting content and material, which could be anything from an El Pais newspaper article to a Spanish song or movie clip. He also fosters an appreciation of the wider cultural context, sometimes even taking us out of the classroom to enjoy a paella dinner or catch a flamenco performance at the theatre. Studying with José is a thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended experience!

– Adele

Many years ago, after dropping out of medical school for a year, I found myself in La Paz, Bolivia, with no money and very little else except the clothes on my back. I realised I had to learn Spanish – fast! So began a love affair with South America and Spain and the Spanish language.

Later, when I wanted to go back to South America, I knew I should improve my basic Spanish, which is how I discovered José Hares and his Latin Connection School of Spanish.

Since then I’ve returned to Spain and South America several times, mostly to go climbing in the Andes, and what José taught me was always a fantastic asset.

To understand and speak somebody else’s language is a wonderful thing, and I had the particular privilege of learning Spanish with José. I can’t imagine a better teacher. His understanding of the language is of course superb, but equally important he has a passion for Spanish literature and culture which he passes on to his students, a contribution which was recognised by an award from King Juan Carlos of Spain himself.

And more than that – Spanish classes with José are fun! The groups are small and José is a warm and entertaining teacher who gets the best out of his students – even when they do not hand in their homework on time! José is much loved by his students, as the turnout in the City Hall at the 20-year anniversary of his School of Spanish showed.

Whatever your reason for learning Spanish, whether for business or for travel, or simply because you have a love of Spanish language and culture, a Spanish language course with José will enrich you as it has enriched me. You won’t find a better Spanish teacher anywhere – un profesor distinguido y excepcional!

– Dr Joe (José) Tyrrell, cardiologist, Cape Town

In case you have not experienced that learning can be fun it is a MUST to learn Spanish with José Hares. If you ever doubted your ability of learning a new language in an advanced stage of your life STOP IMMEDIATELY and book yourself lessons at the School of Spanish. Under José’s skillful directorship we became young matadores of the Spanish language, countering every attack (questions which were asked were answered by us with a full sentence which made sense from the first lesson) with a formidable response towards our teacher. Such is his skill that every student leaves feeling being an A Grade matador = student, confident and happy, wanting to learn more, deepen the experience! You will learn quickly because the hours are filled with expertise and fun and no matter from which side the bull attacks, your only death can be that of too much laughter! José’s teaching method is unique, his personality charismatic, his knowledge and love of the language profound, his appreciation towards his matadores efforts = students uplifting, so come and stand with us in the Spanish arena.

We will be back for more!

– Gabrielle & Reinhard Lechtape-Gruter

We return on 5 Feb to South America to continue our journey. In the latter half of last year we toured Ecuador, Peru and Brazil and will spend the next three months visiting Bolivia, Chile and Argentina.

The lessons we had with you before we departed have been invaluable on our trip. Even though our Spanish is still very poor it has made such a difference in our dealings with locals. Once we try to communicate in Spanish the attitude of the person we are talking to changes dramatically! (A similar change happens when they realize we are South African).

We would like to continue our Spanish lessons when we return …

Best regards

– Andy Donovan

He pasado la semana pasada con un grupo de uruguayos que visitan Sudáfrica y han estado muy impresionads con cuánto podía hablar y comprender también!

I started off very shy but after the first lunch together I was feeling much more comfortable as I also realized my Spanish, even though broken was much better than their English! There were a few times I had to look up words but they were so patient and understanding and they were so impressed with me. It was amazing! I just wanted to thank you & I cannot wait to join class again soon!

Muchas gracias mi maestro

–  Marisa Breedt