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The Eco Edition



Now in Nelspruit, 38 Murray Street International distributor of fabric, wallpaper and rugs Nelspruit 013 752 8553 | 0860 hertex (437839) |

edsletter You hold in your hands Lowveld Living’s 40th edition. Although I wasn’t involved in the magazine’s conception, wasn’t around for the delivery and didn’t take part in its balmy, talcumscented early years (ha!), I do think I arrived at exactly the right time.

Having joined the Lowveld Living family long after the magazine had packed away the paraphernalia of babyhood, I get to be part of its exciting new expansion into the wide world (have you downloaded our new App yet?). Of course, I’m fully aware that some form of adolescent-style door slamming may hove into view in the next few years but, what the heck, I still think I got here for the fun part of LL’s life.

One lucky Lowveld Living reader has the chance to win a queen size Spring weight silk-filled duvet inner and two silk-filled pillows from Godding & Godding valued at R5 460. Like and Share us on Facebook and look out for the draw at the end of August.

ON THE COVER The Amber Presidential Suite at Sabi Sabi’s LIVING Earth Lodge is named for its magnificent amber bead chandelier. The lodge’s décor takes its cue from nature and combines The Eco Edition ultimate luxury with environmental awareness. The headboard in the presidential suite is made from a dead tree that was salvaged from flood damage along the river.

LOWVELD ISSUE 40 WINTER 2013 R24.95 (incl VAT)

| WINTER 2013



On page 8 we celebrate the eight-and-a-half years and 40 editions of Lowveld Living’s journey so far; from its very first print run all the way to the launch of our unique Lowveld Living App. This technology explodes geographical boundaries and puts the magazine in the hands of anyone with a smartphone or tablet … and it’s free, nogal! As you’ll notice, we’ve dedicated our birthday edition to all things eco. On page 12 you’ll find our exclusive interview with the man behind Mpumalanga’s multi-national biotechnology business. Page further and you’ll meet Miss USA on her homecoming visit to Hoedspruit (yes, she’s a Lowvelder!) as she pledges to use her public platform to broadcast the message about the plight of the rhino. See page 34 for the remarkable story of the first living San to visit the rock art of their ancestors in the Kruger Park. Our Lowveld Spaces pages take you inside Sabi Sabi’s award-wining Earth Lodge, which might inspire you to try earth building yourself. The article on page 50 will get you started using ancient methods that don’t cost the earth. Finally, because it’s our birthday, we’re giving away a truly beautiful, eco-friendly and utterly luxurious silk filled duvet and pillow set from Godding & Godding (page 26). Write to us via email or send us a Facebook message to win. Don’t miss out!

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EDITOR Bev Tucker CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Melanie Reeder-Powell DESIGN & LAYOUT Melodie Bowyer EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS Bev Tucker, Dianne Tipping-Woods, Melanie Reeder-Powell, Dale Hes PHOTOGRAPHY AND ART Sven Musica, Dianne Tipping-Woods, Louise Meyer, Sabi Sabi PUBLISHER Lowveld Publishing - Louis van der Merwe ADVERTISING EXECUTIVE Audrey Ford PRINTER Intrepid WEB FACEBOOK TWITTER SUBSCRIPTIONS CONTACT US Tel: 013 751 3330 EDITORIAL SALES © Copyright 2012 Lowveld Living. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the express written permission of Lowveld Living Magazine or the publisher. The opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. All editorial information contained herein is, and remains, the property of Lowveld Living Magazine and/or its writers and/or photographers. Lowveld Living Magazine, its publisher, staff and contractors accept no liability for loss or damage in any form whatsoever arising from information, submissions or opinions expressed in this publication. Public comment and submissions are published at the sole discretion of Lowveld Living Magazine. E&OE.


To make sure you have access to the Lowveld’s classiest read no matter how far you roam, we made you a Lowveld Living App. You can download the entire magazine - plus links to our advertisers’ web sites - absolutely free and have it at your fingertips wherever you go. You can also read the mag online at ISSUU (, and talk to us via Facebook. 5





Upfront 5 8 10

Ed’s Letter Celebrating 40 issues of Lowveld Living The Good Life - diarise these dates

Lowveld Business 12 16

Mpumalanga’s green gold Packaging myths busted

Lowveld Lowdown 22 24 26

Vintage revamped San-inspired décor Local linen to covet and WIN!

Lowveld Art 28 32 34

Exploring the Swazi craft route Barberton’s hidden art Return to rock art

Eco Living 18 36

Jane Goodall’s comminity outreach Eco Warriors and win a Ranger in a Box

Lowveld Flavours 38 40

Hoedspruit hot spots Vegging out with Mellissa Bushby

Radiant Living 42 44 46

Your health, beauty and wellness guide Miss USA comes home Cruelty free beauty

Lowveld Spaces 50 56 66

Building from nature Inside Earth Lodge Renovation revival

Lowveld Life 76 82 84 88



Lowveld Scene Marketplace Restaurant Guide Then and Now

it Figures clothing

& accessories 7


We Are Family It started as one of Local businessman Louis van de Merwe’s many good ideas: a quality glossy lifestyle magazine to promote the Lowveld and everything the region has to offer


he magazine Louis envisioned was to be upbeat and vibrant to reflect the pioneering spirit that first brought settlers and explorers to these parts. It was to be fun and informative and feature stories about local people, places and events. It was to be their voice, their notice board and their shop window. He spoke to friends and acquaintances about the idea and soon rounded up a posse of willing partners. Among them were Justin Arenstein, Sharon Hammond and Lisa Sheard. In no time at all they’d whipped up a

In Autumn 2007, LL celebrated her second year in print with 128 pages brimming with interest. The magazine was truly up and running. Readership figures were on the rise and collections of the magazine were growing in homes, businesses and hospitality facilities all over the Lowveld and beyond

Born Summer 2004. 62 bonny, bright pages bursting with promise

LL was already stealing the show and had an almost-formed identity made up of lots of home décor, some lifestyle, a bit of local legend, a helping of food and a smattering of art and travel



smart, informative, goodlooking publication that stole the hearts of Lowvelders. 40 editions later, this locally produced and owned magazine is still standing while many larger trees in the media industry have toppled. We believe this has a lot to do with the fact that Lowveld Living belongs to the Lowveld. It was born and bred here. It is the Lowveld’s only truly independent voice. Like all families, we’ve weathered our share of challenges over the years. We’ve also celebrated many achievements. Happy 40th Lowveld Living - here’s to the next 40!

LL celebrated her Sweet16 and marked the event with the brave cover choice of a William Kentridge image that reflected the publication’s growing confidence. The lead articles focused on legendary Lowvelders including the Van der Merwe family

LL had people staring with this one … What can you expect when your hot pink cover features a 50’s bathing suit model striking a pose in a pair of risqué crocheted wedges?




The first Green Edition was such a roaring success that we are repeating the theme in this, our 40th edition


A year later and it was all about homegrown heroes, featuring such diverse talent as Dr Reuel Khosa who requires no introduction; and designer Cheryl Arthur of the Hip Hop fashion label

The Festive Editon in 2011 took readers from the New York marathon to Maputo’s cafe culture plus a whole lot of Lowveld lifestyle in between



South Africa’s Lowveld Lifestyle Magazine


Lowveld Living’s free App is on the way! See page 5.


With LL39 a new era came into being when the Lowveld Living App was born. No longer merely a printed product, Loweld Living has stepped onto a bigger stage with the use of digital technology that puts it in the hands of anyone with a smartphone or tablet




Live the Good Life



check the lowveld living fridge for Everything you need to know about what’s Hot and Happening Throughout the region - Send us your event reminder and we’ll stick it on the door!

Celebrate Mandela Day 18 July Also donate 67 minutes of your time to support your chosen charity in your community. Send us a Facebook message about your 67 minutes.

eatest Rotary Gr e Train Rac 24 Aug

from Enjoy this relay delburg in id M to k Witban spirit. great community money ise ra lp he to Enter n and fu ve for charity, ha t lose. n’ ca u yo get fit 7246)

086 11 TRAIN (8

Jock Cy cle Class ique 20 July A three-sta event goin ge road cycling to Nelspru g from Barberton and back toit to Kaapmuiden Founded in Barberton. now amon the early 80’s its biggest ra g SA’s oldest and ces.

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Arbour Week 1 - 7 Sept Do your bit to green the earth by planting a tree this year (an indigenous one, please!) Trees of the year are the common Blossom tree (Keurboom), Crossberry and the Powderpuff tree.

926 7395

Winter Dullstroom 7 July Festival 5 -

ival. as in July Fest The Christm petition, a MTB m Flyfishing co run for the active. ail tr a d beer race an late, cheese, co o ch , ky s Whis d ki a ings and and wine tast usic etc. There’s m fun zone, live everyone. Join in! r fo g in someth interfestival.c oomw www.dullstr



Recycling Day SA - 13 September

Find nearest drop off point for recyclables or just start one!

WESSA concert for conservation on 24 August Info 076 702 3540

s ’ n e m Wo Day t s u g u A 9

OppiKoppi Music Festival 8-10 August

CANSA Comm-un!-tea - 1 August @ the Lowveld Botanical Gardens 013 741 5441

Remember... download lowveld livings’ FREE app to smartphone!




Green Gold Plandaí Biotechnology is poised to give Mpumalanga’s economy a turbo boost the likes of which has not hit the province in decades. Bev Tucker was granted a rare, in-person interview with the reticent founder and CEO of this new multi-million dollar enterprise


ery few people in White River or its surrounding radius have the faintest idea that a NASDAQ OTC listed, multi-million dollar, multi-national biotechnology company with plans to create thousands of local jobs and save millions of lives around the globe, exists right under their noses. When I requested an interview with the company, little did I think I’d be lucky enough to catch the founder and CEO on one of his flying visits to Mpumalanga. I spent a Sunday morning engrossed in conversation with the fascinating man behind what may well prove to be a silver bullet for Mpumalanga’s economy and the global fight against malaria.



The Founder At an age when most men have retired from fulltime employment, Roger Duffield works a 16-hour day most days of the week and possesses the energy and physical presence of a man in his prime. He attributes it all to the use of the antioxidant products his company makes, or in his own words, “I eat what I grow.” An Englishman, Duffield came to Africa 30 years ago and grew tea as an out-grower for the then Sapekoe tea estate in Tzaneen. Through these experiences, he was able to achieve in depth understanding and practical know-how on the farming, production and natural benefits of the humble tea bush. There followed years of extensive

reading and research which led Duffield to the absolute conviction that locked within tea leaves and certain other plants, were qualities far greater than the genteel feel-good ones typically associated with the world’s most comforting beverage. His thirst for knowledge led him to seek scientific confirmation that, in a highly concentrated, nutritionally bioavailable form, green tea - specifically the powerful antioxidant and anticarcinogenic green tea catechins - could be used as the key active ingredient in botanical drugs which could not only promote wellbeing but prevent and combat serious illness, including one of the world’s biggest killers : malaria. After twelve years of thankless

lowveldbusiness research; at great personal cost; in the face of ridicule from sectors of the scientific community; a 100 million Rand investment from the South African Landbank; millions of US dollars of risk money and untold greenfield business trials and personal tribulations, it appears that this self-described “inventor, explorer and scientist” may have bookmarked his place in history. Speaking from Plandaí’s South African offices in White River, he said, “What we have created is a grassroots technology for wellness. This company is about helping millions of people to help themselves. I honestly believe that my purpose for being on this earth was to be trained to do this job.” If the vision for Plandaí that Duffield described to me is achieved, the outcomes will be monumental. In a nutshell, Plandaí seeks to provide effective nutraceuticals and botanical

drugs to the poor masses and to create thousands of jobs in the process. If the vision fails he may, at the very least, have single handedly jumpstarted a renaissance in South African tea growing and set the ball rolling for a local biotechnology industry.

Plandaí Biotechnology Inc. The Senteeko tea estate near Barberton (formerly owned by the sugar conglomerate TSB) was acquired in 2007 through a Land Claim by the Shamile Community Trust. In 2013, a 49-year notarial lease was granted to Plandaí’s South African holding company, on four farms covering 2400 hectares. Duffield gathered together a team of agriculturalists, scientists, engineers and investors and formed Plandaí Biotechnology Inc. with headquarters in Seattle, USA (pronounced ‘plan’sha’,

1. Patented formula

2. Extracts from LIVE plant material


Increased levels of bioavailability and stability


plandaí is a Gaelic word meaning ‘plant’). The South African holding company is Dunn Roman Holdings Africa with offices in White River. Harvesting tea leaves is still a task best suited to the human hand and the estate currently employs 380 people. Production will call for approximately 30 jobs per hectare once production is in full swing. The company’s immediate goal is to have 300 hectares ready for harvest by the end of 2013 - enough leaf mass to produce the 6000 kg of material to meet the 2014 sales forecast. Much of it is destined for the cosmeceutical, wellness, nutraceutical and anti-ageing markets, and in due course the pharmaceutical industries. The rest will be used in the production of a range of botanical extracts to be marketed directly to consumers under the Phytofare™ trademark. The company’s competitive edge




with Nano


particle size


Facts at your fingertips Malaria

About 219 million malaria cases are recorded world wide every year Over 1, 2 million people die from malaria annually People in the poorest countries are most vulnerable to the disease 90% of all malaria deaths occur in Africa Most malaria fatalities are children under five years of age


Phytofare™ is the trademark for the end product made by Plandaí Biotechnology Inc. Three botanical extracts - made from live green tea leaves, tomato and citrus fruits respectively and addressing different health needs - will be marketed under the Phytofare™ brand name: Catechin Complex (made from green tea) Limonoid Glycoside Complex (made from citrus) Carotenoid Complex (made from tomatos)

(Source: World Health Organisation)



is their revolutionary method for processing and extracting catechins and other polyenes through something called Hydrodynamic processing and extracting. The claim is that the end product of this process has 95-98% purity with high levels of bioavailability to humans. The technology grew out of years of research; of painstakingly “piecing together a huge jigsaw puzzle of knowledge and wisdom that has existed for centuries,” says Duffield. “This is not my invention. The answers have been there (in nature) all along since the first publications in 1817 and I’ve just put them together.” “Our technology allows us to take specific types of plants and deliver the phytonutrients in a new isomeric form that is compatible to, and efficiently absorbed in human tissue,” says Duffield. In layman’s terms, this means Phytofare™ extracts are more easily and thoroughly absorbed by the body than those found in most nutraceuticals. The end product is an extremely dense botanical concentrate. During our interview Duffield took a small glass vial of Phytofare™ from his briefcase. It has the appearance of dusty green talcum powder and tastes like what it is: intensely strong, bitter, finely



ground leaf matter. What I tasted is the very extract that will be formulated as the active ingredient in the making of nutraceuticals and botanical drugs. With extremely high anti-oxidant qualities, high bioavailability and absorption rates, Phytofare™ calls for smaller doses and therefore allows the company to be price competitive in the botanicals market.

MANAGING Malaria It remains to be seen whether Duffield’s vision of building a Fortune 500 company that will “do well by doing good” reaches fruition; but if Phytofare’s™ malarial prophylactic qualities prove accurate, it will be highly prized in an era when malaria threatens half of the world’s population. Thus far the indications are positive. The New York Times (15 May 2013) reported that analytical tests - developed by and conducted under the supervision of Dr. Sanjeev Krishna at the Division of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Centre for Infection, St George’s London School of Medicine - had found Phytofare™ single Epigallocatechin Gallate when compared to purified Epigallocatechin Gallate to have proven effective in

killing the malaria parasite, plasmodium falciparum. Plandaí confirmed that further in vitro and mouse studies are shortly to be undertaken with the extract by the University of Cape Town to validate the anti-malarial drug target of the total Phytofare™ complex of eight catechins. When all the results have been evaluated, Plandaí will submit its application to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to start Phase II human clinical trials as an FDA approval Botanical Drug. (In 2006 the FDA approved a topical, containing green tea, as a drug). The emergence of a cheap, natural antidote with no harmful side effects, and which health authorities in overburdened poor countries can afford to distribute liberally to their populace, has the potential to turn the tide in the global malaria war. Interestingly, the tea bush and malaria go hand in hand. As Duffield observes, “In every country where there is malaria, tea grows easily. Nature’s answers have always been right in front of us.” For more information see the company website:


It’s simple. The longer we wait, the more we lose.

The largest and rarest of Africa’s crane species, the Wattled Crane, is Critically Endangered. Due to the loss and degradation of South Africa’s wetlands, less than 270 of these magnificent birds remain in the wild today. As natural habitats continue to disappear, so will our birds. Help us act now. The N4 toll road provides a link to some of South Africa’s most spectacular birding locations. Trans African Concessions supports Birdlife South Africa in its conservation drive. You can too.



Packing a Punch Product packaging is an alchemy of art and science dear to the hearts of marketing gurus for its power to brand and sell products of every description, but it gets a bad rap from environmentally conscious consumers. As it turns out, there are a number of misconceptions









1 ton of recycled PET saves 1.5 tons of carbon 1 ha of spekboom sequesters 4.2 tons of carbon a year Recycling 1 ton of PET saves 6.2 cubic metres of landfill space

The triangular marks on plastic packaging represent the grades of toxicity of plastics. Mythbuster: This persistent urban myth is just that – myth. The marks represent the six broad families of plastics, each of which has a number that allows recyclers to identify the grades of plastic in recycling streams. Different kinds of plastic cannot be mixed for recycling. Packaging is the biggest contributor to the solid waste stream. Mythbuster: While packaging litter is one of the worst by-products of modern life, in South Africa the packaging sector recycles close to 70% of all paper and packaging used. MYTH


Foods that are packed in less packaging have a smaller all-round carbon footprint than foods that come in lots of packaging. For example, loose apples which you select in the shop yourself and carry home in a paper bag versus apples that are individually wrapped in tissue paper and pre-packed on a special tray inside a sealed bag. Mythbuster: The production of packaging involves the consumption of raw materials, water and energy. It seems logical to assume that the more packaging food has when you buy it, the higher its final carbon footprint by the time it reaches your table. But studies show that it is more environmentally friendly to buy food that has quality packaging because this preserves the value chain all the way from the producer to your table. The re-use of PET plastic water and soft drink bottles will poison you. Mythbuster: Research proves that it is perfectly safe to re-use PET plastic bottles after washing them out for hygienic reasons. Foods packaged in plastic are contaminated with Bisphenol A (BPA), a harmful chemical used in the making of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. Mythbuster: All plastic food packaging in South Africa is 100% BPA free. (Caution: this may not be the case with non-food plastic containers such as baby bottles so do your research).



Top 5 True or False

Fast Facts

Collect-a-Can turns 20 Collect-a-Can has been teaching South Africans about the importance of recycling and litter reduction for the past 20 years. Since the project started in 1993, Southern Africa’s used can recovery rate has risen from 18% to 72%, which puts us on track to reach the United Nations’ target of 75% by 2015. Collect-a-Can says their goal is to raise the target recovery rate to 100% in the next 20 years with the help of communities, outreach educational programmes and entrepreneurial development. The project has over 150 000 informal collectors who either earn their living or supplement their income by collecting cans.


There’s no nice way to say this so we’ll just say it: plastic is the bad guy in the environmental crime story. Luckily, PETCO, the company behind PET plastic bottles, is working hard to change this. In May the company announced some fairly impressive statistics: Plastic beverage bottle recycling grew by 18% in 2012 PET recycling volumes increased from 42 562 tons in 2011, to 50 280 tons in 2012. That’s a respectable 7718 ton increase Read another way, these statistics mean that over 1.66 billion PET plastic beverage bottles were recycled in 2012. That’s 4.5 million bottles every day There’s money in waste. Close to R193 million was paid for sorted, baled bottles delivered to recyclers About R422 million was injected into the local economy through the sale of recycled PET used to make downstream products By recycling 50 280 tons of PET bottles, 75 420 tons of carbon and 311 736 cubic metres of landfill space were saved. In horticultural terms, it amounts to the equivalent carbon sequestration that 17 957 hectares of spekboom would do in year


The power of paper Re-usable and recyclable

The advantages of recycling paper

Think about how many times cardboard boxes or

 40% less energy is used to make paper using

files can be re-used; about how often magazines

reclaimed fibre than to use new or virgin fibre,

can be shared and read in homes, schools, offices and waiting rooms; about how books can be shared between friends or lent out by libraries. And remember, paper and paper products store carbon throughout their lifetime.

and air emissions are reduced by up to 70%  Recycling paper extends the lock up period of

the carbon in the paper. The longer carbon is locked up out of the atmosphere, the better  Recycling paper also reduces the need for

As a responsible company, we ensure that we don't

scarce landfill space, which not only conserves

only use new fibre, but also maximise our use of

land for other uses, but reduces the amount of

recycled fibre. By promoting the recovery and use

methane produced by landfills. Methane is a

of recycled paper, we increase the amount of fibre

greenhouse gas (GHG) with up to 25 times the

available and also provide significant benefits to

global warming potential of CO₂

society; the lifespan of landfills is extended; collection and disposal costs are reduced and previously unemployed people can earn a living through recycling. However, recycled paper is not suitable for all purposes and is not always the best choice. For this reason, Sappi produces a range of papers with differing amounts of recycled fibre and virgin fibre.

Did you know?

Re-use, Recycle, ReFibre Sappi's waste paper division is called Sappi ReFibre to reflect the broad nature of our commitment to re-use what many classify as 'waste'. This division recycles post-converter and post-consumer waste, which is procured from homes, offices, wholesalers and retailers, as well as manufacturers in both the formal and informal sectors by an extensive network of independent

We mainly use three types of recovered fibre:

agents across the country. Sappi ReFibre has

 Post-manufacture waste – we recycle and trim

developed an outsourced business model that

the waste generated in the manufacturing

enables us to support entrepreneurial development


and job creation, while also providing a secure

 Post-converter waste – this is waste generated

market for recycled paper.

outside the paper mill, such as guillotine trim, envelope blank waste and waste from printers  Post-consumer waste – paper that has been

printed, delivered and then collected again from business and homes.




At the Root of Things Words and photos: Melanie Reeder-Powell

The Jane Goodall Institutes’ Roots & Shoots humanitarian outreach programme is an international success story. Since it’s early days as a teenage-think tank on her stoep in Dar Es Salaam, the good doctor’s ethos of fostering compassion and respect for all living things is, thankfully, catching on, and today has a presence in over 127 countries


ost Lowvelders are familiar with The Jane Goodall Institute SA Chimpanzee Eden, one of the worldrenowned Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) sanctuaries situated just outside of Nelspruit, but not many of us know about the global success story of the JGI’s other arm, Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots. On the website, Goodall’s voice plays out a meaningful explanation of the

symbolism of the project, describing how roots anchor and cement a young plant to the earth, while it’s shoots, although young and delicate to begin with, have the power and tenacity to break through brick walls in order to reach the sunlight and survive. “Imagine that the brick walls are all the problems we have inflicted on our planet,” continues Goodall’s message. “Hundreds

Dr Jane Goodall chats to a group of Roots & Shoots participants



and thousands of roots and shoots, hundreds and thousands of young people around the world, can break through these walls.” The metaphor is simple, yet profound. The project was born on Jane Goodall’s own back porch in 1991 in Dar Es Salaam, when a group of teens approached her about domestic matters that were of grave concern to them,


from pollution in the Tanzanian city to the treatment of domestic animals and deforestation in the mountains, and so began the seeds, so to speak, of the programme. This first ever Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots project was small, and even though it dealt with simply educating a local village in Tanzania on how to treat domestic chickens with care, it spawned a global youth movement that has proved to have no social, geographical or cultural boundaries. The outreach differs from country to country as needs and circumstances change, explains Juliet Price, the seemingly tireless national coordinator for Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots in South Africa. Locally, the outreach focuses primarily on the environment, people, and animals, by identifying what can be done at a grassroots level, from the desire of one individual to that of 1 000s – the project aims to aid anyone who wants to effect positive change.

Above: A Roots & Shoots school group participating in the Food Garden Project Launch after learning about sustainable food gardening Below: Forres Preparatory School Roots & Shoots Group harvesting the vegetables they have grown



Keeping the faith

Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots relies on donations and sponsorships to survive – if you would like to contribute in any way, contact Juliet Price 072 723 9256, juliet@ Lowveld Living will be meeting with Dr Goodall during her whistle stop Nelspruit trip. Follow us on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook to see photos and updates of this world-renowned humanitarian’s South African tour.

Environmental cleanup day with 400 participating children from Khaya Centre



Participants washing dogs as part of the “Care of Domestic Animals in My Community Programme”

“Generally, people want to do good but don’t know where to start,” explains Price. “We have so many problems in SA, and people think, ‘what can one person do with no resources’? Roots & Shoots is a very flexible programme. It allows people to focus on what their passions are,” and address particular needs. For example, continues Price, if a school requires something as basic as food to feed its learners, then they’ll focus their energies on a food garden. If the children want to support a local old age home, or help save the rhinos, if the desire is there Roots & Shoots doesn’t exclude anything or anyone. Projects incorporate pre-school to high school, community centres and youth groups, with a heavy reliance on volunteers and community leaders in all the provinces to help ensure things run smoothly and effectively. Currently, there are 42 groups running in South Africa, and 6 major national programmes; Care of Domestic Animals in my Community (in conjunction with Kidz Clinics of Women & Men Against Child Abuse, or WMACA); the Food Garden Project; Communities for Primate Conservation Programme; the Role Model Programme, offering young men and boys positive experiences and mentors; the Sports Programme; the Reading Programme and the Greening my Community Programme. Mpumalanga doesn’t have as much of a footprint as some of the other provinces, but local youth groups and schools are encouraged to get in touch with Roots & Shoots, in order to make use of the programme’s extensive networks and knowledge. Dr Jane Goodall is in South Africa for the first week of July – what better time to make the connection?




Old Is The New Green Antiques are a form of recycling with the added X-Factor that only time gives. We love Antiques & Artifacts, style maven Angie Bunyard’s off-the-beaten-path shop, housed in an old sinkdak building behind a workshop outside Nelspruit. It’s a treasure trove of vintage finds, early South African and Boer War memorabilia, once-off pieces picked up in Africa, India and beyond. There’s glassware, furniture, china, knock-em-dead statement pieces, architectural items, made-to-last workshop equipment and (pause to draw breath) … so much more than we can possibly show you here. You’ll just have to go see for yourself. 083 292 9300,




From previous page: Giraffe family hand carved in Jacaranda wood – from R380 Antique Chinese rice carrier – R2 500 Antique Indian dowry chest – R15 500 Vintage oil pump – R1 520 Vintage Berke scale (standing) – R7 225 Hanging Salter scales - from R3 500 Euphorbia carving in Jacaranda wood with hardwood base – R700 Victorian cast iron fireplace – R4 000 Handcarved painted wood kudu (on wall) – R2 000 Union Castle leather photo album from HMS Arundel – R1 200 Motorcar print cushions 50x50 – R650 Traditional Maasai shukas (red woven cloth) – R695 Zulu bead aloe on wirework frame – R995 Soda bottles circa 1960’s – R450 Mali day bed – R4 950 Original Coke bottle stand – R1 980 Bronze kudu sculpture, Kobus Hattingh original – R45 000 Paraffin lanterns made in Germany – R250

Above: Sunbeam Polish metal chest 1950’s – R2 300 Teak Morris chairs circa 1920’s – R3 000 Silk linen cushions with Cameo Lady prints, down inners – R435 Bodo the Bear, handmade limited edition teddy (nose slightly worn from lots of kisses) – R1 200 Georgian dropside table – R3 300 Phillips Bakelite radio – R1 000 Cartwright’s Curry Powder metal chest – R2 300 Painted wooden trunk – R1 200 Red lacquer hatbox – R1 500 Chinese ceremonial drums made of leather – R1 750 Edwardian gilt mirror – R600 Kashmiri carpet – R1 700



a story like




the wind A

manda du Plessis’ exquisite fabric range was inspired by !Nanni and Tamme, two San children whose story and drawings were recorded by famed San linguist William Bleek in the 1800’s. The pair made an epic journey on foot from the desert in northern Botswana to the Cape, where Bleek encountered them through his work with indigenous people and encouraged them to record the folklore, plants and animals they had encountered. Jacquards prints and knits are grouped into a series of ranges - Desert Diaries, Roots and Leaves, Sand and Stone, Berries and Beasts. Where: Courtyard Framing, Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre, White River, 013 751 1349



hogging It’s the season to snuggle down under the duvet with a good book and copious mugs of hot chocolate. We sourced the most beautiful natural fibre duvets for your cuddling pleasure

Godding & Godding

Founded in 2002 by naturalist and conservationist Sue Godding, Godding & Godding has evolved from a small silk farm specializing in fine linen to an international company with a big range including luxurious skin care products, gifts, décor items, and the finest bedding. A duvet filled with pure silk from their range is light on the body while being warm and naturally hypoallergenic. Where: Godding & Godding at Perrys Bridge, their factory shop at The Silk Farm and Hoedspruit, 082 808 9203



Tsakani African Silks

Tsakani makes a range of heirloom quality duvets in three different seasonal weights to suit the African climate. The filling is an AA grade long-fibre mulberry silk floss that gets layered and stitched in place to ensure it won’t turn lumpy over time. Where: Friedenheim, Nelspruit, 013 755 3213


Take a drive to McCloud’s, makers of fine, pure wool duvets, situated in the quaint village of Chrissiesmeer in the heart of Mpumalanga’s sheep farming district. The shop is housed in the picturesque old Parker Wood & Co building where you’ll find wool-stuffed duvets that are the snuggliest of them all. Where: Chrissiesmeer, 017 847 0053


the covers WIN

Africa Silks

One lucky Lowveld Living reader has the chance to win a queen size Spring weight, silk-filled duvet inner and two silk-filled pillows from Godding & Godding valued at R5 460. Like and Share us on Facebook or email us on to enter

Africa Silks began as a community project creating employment for rural women who were supplied with spinning wheels and their first silkworm cocoons. A wonderful success story of social upliftment ensued. Today their shop is piled to the rafters with silk fashion and homewear including duvet inners for beds of all sizes from cots to kings. Where: Louis Trichardt St., Graskop, 013 767 1665

Linen Drawer

This proudly South African manufacturer supplies quality household textiles across the country and around the world via their online shop. Their rallying call is ‘ethical and enthusiastic’ and Lowvelders can access their range with a click of a mouse. Where:

Loads of Living

Loads of Living needs no introduction to South African homemakers. We love their light as air and warm as toast goose down duvets for their irresistible cuddliness. Where: Riverside Mall, Nelspruit, 013 757 0936



Five of the Best Words and Photos : Dianne Tipping-Woods

Swaziland’s small size belies the enormous talent of its crafters. Around the country, you will find outlets and workshops for a variety of original, high-quality handmade candles, jewellery, glasswork, fine linens, sisal mats, baskets and more. You’ll also meet the friendly people who make them, as Dianne Tipping-Woods discovered on a recent trip to the scenic kingdom

Swazi Candles

Lindiwe removes the moisture from the candle, Phindile scrapes off its outer coating and then Bonakele takes over to finish the product, which is shaped like an elephant and patterned in shades of blue and white. It’s one of the thousands of candle shapes and designs that these ladies, who share the surname Dlamini, create at Swazi Candles; a World Fair Trade accredited organisation founded in 1982. “Now I am inserting the wick and then I’ll fill the little hole with this teapot full of wax,” explains Bonakele, who is used to demonstrating the age-old ‘millefiore’ technique to the candle and soap factory’s guests. Visit




Swazi Craft Stops Tintsaba

It’s hard to follow exactly what Cebile Hlathwako is doing with her fingers, even if she works the colourfully dyed sisal around the dry grass frame in slow motion for your benefit. “You need a lot of practice and patience to be able to do this,” confirms Cebile, whose mother taught her how to weave baskets when she was 13. “In the winter we mainly sell these decorative baskets, in the summer we sell lots of jewellery,” she says, showing off the beautiful silver ear rings and bangles made by ladies working in the World Fair Trade accredited Tintsaba’s Piggs Peak workshop. Visit


A different Cebile – Maseko – greets visitors to Rosecraft, another Fair Trade accredited shop located right next to Swazi Candles. She explains how the shop’s fine shawls, linens and accessories are made from the inner fibres of bamboo, mohair, organically grown cotton, wool and silk, using a mix of contemporary design and traditional weaving methods. “The bamboo products in particular are very good for people with allergies and for babies, because it does not irritate the skin,” she explains. Visit



Ngwenya Glass

Near the Ngwenya (crocodile) border post there is a small cultural complex and restaurant. The highlight of the centre is the workshop and showroom of Ngwenya Glass, which makes ornamental and functional objects out of 100 percent recycled glass; most of Ngwenya’s glass comes from soft drink bottles gathered from all over Swaziland. Started in 1979 by Swedish Aid, Swazis were trained in the age old art of glassblowing, which visitors can witness firsthand. Their products have become so popular that Ngwenya has opened a boutique at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. Visit




Gone Rural

Located in the Malandela centre, famous for the House of Fire and the annual Bushfire festival, Gone Rural is a popular stopover for visitors in search of Swazi crafts. Its products are also sold at the South African shopping chain Boardmans. Its best sellers include placemats and floor mats as well as their bowls with an intricate woven rim, like the one Sibongile Zwane shows me. “People from all over the world buy these bowls,” she proudly confirms. They have more than bowls to be proud of; the initiative’s social program has been running for 20 years and has reached over 6,500 rural women. Visit



the nomad artist Words : Dale Hes Photos: Sven Musica

The recent revamping of a disused building in Barberton unearthed friezes painted by a restless artist who undertook a remarkable journey across Africa in the early 1900’s


ack in the early 1900’s - when Barberton was still in its high-rolling, cocksure, devil-may-care heyday adventurers, traders, hunters, gold diggers and remitance men blazed a trail to the small town, convinced of their chances of striking it rich. They came by wagon and horseback if they had the wherewithal or on Shank’s Pony if they didn’t. Men arrived from every corner of the earth, chasing their dreams or fleeing their pasts. And all of them at some stage passed through the doors of the rumbunctious Impala Hotel. Among their number was one Conrad Genal. The hustle and laughter of that era and of those men’s lives has been largely swallowed up by time and forgotten. This would have been Genal’s fate too if not for a recent renovation project which uncovered a series of friezes he painted as barter for board and lodging, and which have revived his memory. When Lawrence Reyneke, the present owner of the Impala Hotel, began a restoration project on the disused building his workers chipping away at the old paint on the interior walls, revealed the exquisitely detailed art inspired by the famous Percy FitzPatrick story, Jock of the Bushveld.



“I had some idea of who they were painted by and I immediately got excited,” says Reyneke. “Conrad Genal is a legend in these parts.” Genal’s life story is a tale of adventure that reads like the pages of a Clive Cussler novel. Born in Germany in 1875, Genal fulfilled a childhood dream when, aged nineteen, he packed his bags for North Africa to join the French Foreign Legion. He served in the scorching Sahara Desert and became infatuated with the continent. So deep was his love that, when his legion was ordered to relocate to Asia, he seized an opportunity to escape by diving into the sea as his ship passed through the Suez Canal. Despite being shot by the ship’s guard, he managed to reach the shore and scramble to safety. Disguised as a nomadic Somalian trader, he meandered south along the fertile Nile River Valley, through Egypt, Sudan, Uganda and Kenya. En route, Genal put his artistic talents to work, painting friezes on the walls of hotels in exchange for his accommodation. Most of them have been erased over time and the find in Barberton is a rare exception. On reaching Zambia, he met Alice Watts whom he married in 1901.

After flirting with the monotony of a steady job as a railway guard, his wanderlust flared up again and Genal left behind a growing family to explore more of Africa. He travelled across Rhodesia and the former Transvaal and Natal before World War I broke out in 1914. Then 29 years old, Genal was automatically enlisted to fight for Germany, but for the second time in his life managed to escape serving in uniform and succeeded in eluding authorities for the duration of the war. He went on to decorate numerous halls, hotels and churches with his paintings; depicting everything from the bush and wildlife, to Africa’s Great Lakes and medieval town scenes. Genal evidently wandered away from the Lowveld to Durban where he died in 1939 of what is thought to have been an asthma attack, just three years after he completed the Barberton friezes. Today, despite the plethora of locations where Genal practiced his art, Barberton is the only place where the work of the travelling artist is known to have survived. The discovery of the paintings in the former Impala Hotel - now called the Greenstone Trading Post - adds to an existing collection of Genal’s friezes at the nearby Digger’s Retreat Hotel. For further information contact013 712 2108.


Lawrence Reyneke, owner of the Greenstone Trading Post (formerly the Impala Hotel) who spearheaded the restoration and un-covered Genal’s works



artful origins Photos: Andrew Paterson

Recently two San leaders made a momentous visit to the Lowveld to view rock art painted by their ancestors, which no living San person had seen


ndrew Paterson - an experienced field ranger, owner of Africa Walking Safaris and CEO of the anti-poaching charity Rhinose Day - has a deep interest in San culture and in the fate of the remaining San people. They were pressed out of the Lowveld in the 1800’s and, like their counterparts from other regions, have been largely marginalized by authorities throughout Southern Africa. “I knew about San rock art in the Makuleke area showing a jackal which is spiritually important to the Khomani San now living in the Kalahari. Their folklore tells of the cunning jackal, Oom Klaas, which has powerful symbolism for their clan and is represented in this rock painting, but which no living San person had seen until last year.” Paterson obtained special dispensation to walk into the region with Khomani leaders, the brothers John and Toppies Kruiper, who were unaware they would be shown to the site of the rock art. “When we got there both men dropped to their bellies and started exploring by crawling deep into the overhanging rocks. They said they felt an immediate kinship with the place,” says Paterson.

Andrew Paterson with John and Toppies Kruiper, who have with them a stick called ‘die oog’ used to help them ‘see’ into other dimensions




Authentic Quality Safari Clothing, Lodge Uniforms and Outdoor gear for any African bush adventure. Retail shop located in Hoedspruit for convenience. Greater Hoedspruit area and Retail shop under new ownership.

Proudly stocking:

Greater Hoedspruit Distribution & Retail Shop Shop 1, Rockfig Lifestyle Centre Hoedspruit, 1380 Tel: +27 (0)15 0017079 Tel & Fax: +27 (0)15 793 1762 Email:



‘I miss walking along the Phugwane River at dawn with a backpack weighing me down, a rehabilitated campsite behind me and not another soul for miles’

Wayne Te Brake

Sboniso Phakathi



Legends in the Making


Photos: Christiaan Munoz Salas

The immense task of protecting wild animals, habitats and ecosystems is passing into the hands of a new generation of conservationists. Dianne Tipping-Woods met two young Lowvelders who are making their voices heard

THE Explorer

The Eco warrior

Wayne Te Brake has spent the last 3 months in Chile presenting Wild Expectations, a wildlife documentary series the making of which saw him floating among giant icebergs, exploring the Atacama Desert and his first live on foot sighting of wild puma. Te Brake’s easy-going personality makes him a natural in front of the camera where he is very much at home explaining the behaviour of the exotic animals that he and the rest of his team encounter. “I haven’t watched much TV in the past and don’t even own one, which means I just get into ‘guide’ mode when we’re filming,” he laughs. Although born and raised in Johannesburg, 30 year old Te Brake left the city as soon as he could and has been based in the Lowveld for nearly a decade. With a BTech degree in Nature Conservation, Te Brake is also a FGASA Level 3 Trails Guide with track and sign qualifications, who describes himself as “so addicted to back-pack trails in the Kruger National Park that I will struggle to ever leave the industry.” While Te Brake presents documentaries and travels all over the globe for work, part of him is always back home in the Lowveld. “I miss walking along the Phugwane River at dawn with a backpack weighing me down, a rehabilitated campsite behind me and not another soul for miles.”

Sboniso Phakathi’s brightly painted mini-bus is a familiar sight in the Hoedspruit community and surrounding villages. Known affectionately as Spoon, this environmental activist and educator has a talent for engaging the attention of children and adults alike with the result that he has become the de facto ambassador for a range of environmental issues in the Lowveld and beyond. Born in rural Kwazulu- Natal in 1988, Spoon joined Protrack, a Hoedspruit wildlife conservation company, at the age of 20. Initially based in their anti-poaching unit, he spent a year at the frontline of the fight against rhino poaching, before joining their public relations team and continuing the fight in the public arena. Increasingly aware of the need to reach as many people as possible to educate them about the plight of rhino, he joined Paul Jennings on a “Rights for Rhinos” walk that took them the length of South Africa, from Musina to Cape Point, over a distance of 1700 kilometres. En route they visited 25 schools and spoke to 16 000 children about the cause. The walk and the children he met en route inspired Phakathi to launch the Green Kidz Initiative (GKI), a Hoedspruit-based Not For Profit organisation that provides environmental education to underresourced schools. GKI also forms part of Rhino Revolution, a community-based initiative working to halt rhino killings in the area.





dinner in the neighbourHOED Words and photos: Dianne Tipping-Woods

From South Indian curries and authentic Italian pastas to distinctively Lowveld fine dining, Hoedspruit is putting itself firmly on the culinary map, with a range of interesting restaurateurs waiting to welcome you to dinner

Food finesse and local flair at The Hat & Creek

Husband and wife team Andre and Cheryl Nel have spent the two years since they opened The Hat & Creek restaurant raising the bar when it comes to fine dining in the fast-growing town. “It’s really simple,” says Andre. “We focus on freshness, quality, flavour and presentation, specialising in signature meat and fish dishes paired with fine wines.” The couple has a history in the restaurant business. “But this is not a brand we’ve brought to the Lowveld, we’ve grown the brand here,” says Andre.  “It’s been hugely rewarding to see the restaurant evolve. We love catering for people’s special occasions, we love that our staff have all been trained in-house and that we have managed to strike a balance between a relaxed, lowveld ambience and a fine dining experience.” The Hat & Creak’s open plan design, green lawns and fairy lights create a romantic, elegant ambiance. Guests can expect to enjoy dishes like the signature wild game platter, honey and soy tuna fillets, angry prawns, dressed sole or a range of fine steaks, such as Roquefort and fig fillet. “That combination of well-matured meat, saltiness and sweetness is hard to beat,” confirms Cheryl. Andre is suitably proud of their enterprise. “Every dish on our menu is a winner and we work hard to keep learning and developing it. With food, you can never know enough.” Info: Andre Nel, 071 5543503, 015 793 1135,,

Hoedspruit wouldn’t be Hoedspruit without Sleepers “We’re like a home to some people in Hoedspruit. After being here for nearly 20 years we’ve grown up with some of our clients,” says manager Maja Prinsloo. Located alongside the railway tracks at the town’s old station, the atmospheric restaurant’s cosy interior is papered with old newspapers and train-related memorabilia, while the outside deck makes the most of Hoedspruit’s balmy evenings, with tables set under a huge mahogany tree. Sleepers is known for its piri piri - “we ship boxes of our stuff to Joburg” - but the place is also famous for its gourmet burgers, pizzas and grills. “My favourite dish is the Oriental Express,” reveals Maja. “It’s a combination of juicy fillet, egg noodles and the most exquisite Asian flavours from the pesto.” “If you visit a place as a tourist, you want to eat where the locals eat. That way you get the actual feel of what a place is all about. That’s what we offer at Sleepers,” says Maja. The restaurant is well-supported by Hoedspruit’s volunteers, students and rangers. The restaurant’s pub, The Puffing Billy, also has a loyal - and lively - client base. “If you’ve been here and go away, then coming back to Sleepers is like coming home. You can come here any day and find a group of people who will treat you like friends.” Info: Hoedspruit Railway Station, 1 Python Road, Hoedspruit, 015 793 1014,




Authentic Italian cuisine at Cala la Pasta

Luca Properzi and Erika Taverna had their work cut out for them when they made the bold move to leave L’Aquila, about 100 kilometres outside the Italian capital Rome, and start Cala la Pasta in Hoedspruit. Their menu includes delicious pizzas, arguably the best in Hoedspruit, and a mouth-watering range of authentic pasta dishes. “In Italy the food culture is very different,” explains Erika. “We’ve had to teach the people in Hoedspruit about Italian food, how to eat it and appreciate it, because before people were just used to a lot of meat.” The restaurant has had the same staff since it opened towards the end of 2010. “I’ve taught them to make gnocchi like my grandmother taught me. They’re also like family now,” says Erika. Luca is the chef, having studied at a culinary school near Rome. Every dish Cala la Pasta serves is prepared fresh: from the hand-made pasta and pizza bases to the subtle pasta sauces they both love. “We could eat pasta twice a day. I love the white sauces, Luca likes the bolognaise a bit more, but we both love the Pappardelle alla Boscaiola,” says Erika. Erika explains how they first fell in love with South Africa and then Hoedspruit. “We were mal d’Afrique, crazy about Africa. We’d been coming on holiday to South Africa since 2004 and when we were back in Italy, it wouldn’t feel like home anymore.” So they moved, bringing a bit of Italy with them, including their dog, Mira. Expect an atmosphere - replete with red checked table cloths as welcoming as the food. “We’re Italian,” Erika laughs. “We’re sunny. We hug!” Shop 26, Kamogelo Tourism Centre, Hoedspruit, 015 793 0452,,

South Indian cuisine all the way from Kerala

Over the last year, more and more Hoedspruit residents started talking about the amazing curries at Kalimambo in the Kamogelo Tourism Centre. And it has to be said: once you have tasted the delicious South Indian dishes of the new manager Ram Lekshman, you’ll be coming back for more. Born in the Indian state of Kerala, Ram and his team’s cooking has now found its way to the Lowveld. He has an air of quiet determination about him. “The business wasn’t doing well. My job is to change that for the new owner.” While there are a lot of restaurants in Hoedspruit, Ram saw that no-one was doing curries. With his vision and an experienced chef from South India, it wasn’t long before Kalimambo’s reputation as a pub and grill was replaced by its reputation for its authentic and reasonably-priced cuisine: subtle lamb, beef, chicken and vegetarian curries flavoured with chili, black pepper, cardamom, cloves, ginger and cinnamon. “It won’t be long before we introduce dosa to the menu. It’s one of the foods in the world that everyone has to try,” Ram says, describing the distinctive pancakes made from rice batter and black lentils and usually served with a range of fragrant fillings and side dishes. There has been a good response to the restaurant’s new direction, with bunny chows amongst its most popular dishes. The restaurant’s bar has kept its original identity and there are still grill items on the menu, along with Chinese dishes. However, the general consensus is that if you come to Kalimambo it’s a waste not to try the curry. Shop 15, Kamogelo Tourism Centre, Hoedspruit, 015 793 0079,

Other dinner options in Hoedspruit: The Safari Club offers a mix of menu items, ranging from ribs to steaks and salads. It remains a popular Friday night hangout amongst the town’s younger crowd. 082 789 2608, Three Bridges, about 15 kilometres out of Hoedspruit on the Phalaborwa road, features a similar menu to Sleepers, with the added bonus of a beautiful view over the Olifants river. 079 912 9416 Hippo Pools does Tuesday night sushi evenings, subject to demand. You need to confirm your order on the Monday before. 015 793 2088, Madhams hosts themed evenings and events that are about serious food, but also serious fun. They’re characterised by delicious, locallysourced food and entertainment. 015 001 7087. See page 75 for more on Madhams.



chef, potter, artist, author, wife, mother Most of us manage to excel at one or two aspects of our lives. Mellissa Bushby is talented in so many ways that her biggest problem is choosing which direction to send her energy


he author of the best selling cookbook, The Vegetarian Kitchen (Struik Lifestyle, 2012), is not only a full-time mom to her sons, eight year old Rayne and baby Gelyn, but is also a successful artist specializing in pen-and-ink drawings. She has designed her own range of gift stationary, sells her hand-thrown porcelain homewear to customers all over the world via her Etsy online shop, is studying Ancient World Classics through Unisa (just for fun) - and somehow manages to pull it all together with Zen-like grace. Melissa is a Fine Arts graduate with a

‘We subscribe to the notion of good food made slowly, preferably with a glass of wine in one hand and lots of conversation going on’ major in ceramics from the Vaal University of Technology. Clay has always been her great love, “I miss it terribly if I don’t work with it for a while,” she says. But it’s her pen-and-ink art that thrust her into the limelight recently. In May this year a drawing she donated to a charity auction



to help raise funds for the care of an orphaned baby rhino was sold for R86 000. She is self-effacing about her work. “I’m very disorganized,” she says. When asked how she would describe her career she says, “I’d say I’m an artist and author. I can’t claim to be a chef – my husband Lorne is the real chef. He loves preparing food. Every meal is an event in our house. We subscribe to the notion of good food made slowly, preferably with a glass of wine in one hand and lots of conversation going on.” The couple has been vegan for 13 years. “Lorne is lactose intolerant so although I was already a vegetarian I had to find replacements for dairy and other things he can’t eat. My cookbook is a product of all my experimenting with ways to make food delicious without using the normal ingredients.” The first print run of The Vegetarian Kitchen flew off the shelves. It sold out in South Africa and abroad. She is currently working on her second book, the title of which is still undecided. It will feature more vegetarian receipes

and simple home remedies that can be made using household ingredients and indigineous plants. There will also be a chapter devoted to vegetarian braai meals. This is guaranteed to set off a chorus of loud cheering from vegetarians who get short shrift from most South African braai meisters. One of the great misconceptions about vegetarian eating says Mellissa, “Is that you have to stick to a boring, limited range of foods. That is so far from the truth.” Her recipes will enlighten anyone thinking about adopting a vegetarian lifestyle and are a must for hosts who’d like to dish up something more interesting than a salad roll for the vegetarians they invite to their next braai. Visit Mellissa’s online shop, Vanilla Stone, at or contact her via email

lowveldflavours Ingredients Mellissa’s eggless 375ml cake flour 125ml sugar chilli-chocolate 45ml cocoa powder 5ml baking powder cake 5ml bicarbonate of soda 7,5ml ground cinnamon 5ml cayenne pepper 15ml vanilla extract 15ml grape vinegar 250ml water 80ml vegetable oil (sunflower or canola) 30-45ml icing sugar to decorate

Method Preheat oven to 160°C. Grease and flour a 20cm round cake tin. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and spices. Make a well in the centre and add the vanilla extract, vinegar, oil and water. Stir until combined but be careful not to overmix. Spoon the batter into the cake tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool before using a fine sieve to dust the cake with the icing sugar.

When they were house hunting, Mellissa and Lorne knew they’d found the right place the moment they saw the giant Paperbark Thorn in the garden.

Mellissa’s portrait of Timbi the rhino calf was sold on auction where it raised R86 000 to be used towards her care and rehabilitation. The image is now on a range of ‘Timbi T-Shirts’ sold to raise funds for anti-poaching.



well and good Your ‘green’ winter guide to health, wellness and beauty Saving face If you’re concerned that your monthly facial is not doing the environment or your conscience any favours, look no further than the Organic Bliss Salon at Earthwise, I’langa Mall. Their Esse anti-ageing treatment facial (a bargain at R370) is 90 minutes of pure relaxation, using Esse’s certified organic, and endorsed cruelty-free skincare range. Esse is a local SA product, created by KZN chemist Trevor Steyn ( The Salon also uses Dr Hauschka products (, which have garnered a global cult following thanks to decades of ethical production values – no product or ingredient has been tested on an animal since 1967. They also utilize organic and bio-dynamically grown plants. or call


Lounge about

Good news for travelers who like to arrive at their destinations feeling refreshed and looking good – the Shongololo VIP Lounge at OR Tambo International Airport – voted the best lounge in the Africa/Middle East region in 2012 – has been given a revamp. Owner, Menzies Aviation, says the facility was improved to keep up to date with global standards. Upgrades include the showers and bathrooms, new tiling and lighting. The lounge also offers the usual refreshments, plus satellite TV, free Wi-Fi, Apple iMac workstations, drinks and buffet meals supplied by a top South African restaurant group. You can find the VIP Lounge at international departures towards gates A7-A18.

Hair therapy

Pure Beginnings Organic Skincare is an ethical, Proudly South African range, containing no petrochemicals, parabens, synthetic fragrances, aluminium or animal products. They carry the Beauty Without Cruelty endorsement, ensuring that none of the ingredients have been tested on animals. Their Certified Organic ingredients are grown without the use of synthetic fertilisers, insecticides, herbicides and fungicides and are approved by international organic certification organisations. The range includes great baby care and hair products. Try the shampoo, R85 for 250ml, with ylang ylang to stimulate the scalp. Selected health shops and online




Cruelty free make-up

Make up is probably one of the trickier cruelty-free products to source. Head to Woolies, where they stock the most affordable and widest range. Make up brands that claim to be cruelty free (but are not locally endorsed) include LA Girl and Palladio, both available at DisChem, while Ofra Cosmetics are available online at

Ofra Baked Bronzer R499.40, BB Cream R285.28

Air affair

Earthsap’s air fresheners are made from natural oils and contain no petrochemicals, artificial dyes or preservatives, synthetic fragrances or sodium laureth sulphate. They come in lavender and rosemary, peppermint and eucalyptus, citrus valencia, and Madagascar vanilla bean. R28 for 150ml at selected Pick ’n Pays and healthshops.

Ethical luxury

Africology is a homegrown story of Renchia Droganis’ desire to create gorgeous spa-worthy, fair-trade wellness products that place the environment first, while celebrating Africa’s medicinal knowledge of flora. For winter, try the Vitamin Skin Boost Serum, R 264. It’s a vitamin and mineral cocktail enriched with grapeseed extract, calendula and arnica. For men, try the Shaving Cream, R435, a cream-based, hydrating product that softens the hair follicle. Marula oil creates a protective barrier and its naturally fraganced with essential oils and contains no harsh chemical foaming agents.

Get Eco-friendly online

From make up to baby care and hair colour, to food and home care products – this website is a one-stop shop. Plus delivery is free for purchases over R250. This online store offers a complete lifestyle, from pet care and deodorant to LED lighting and water saving gadgets. A comprehensive list of eco-aware people, products and places in SA.



Natural Beauty Photos: Louise Meyer


Miss USA 2013, Nana Meriweather, is a Lowveld-born beauty with a deep love for the land of her birth. Dianne Tipping-Woods spent time with her on her recent homecoming visit to Hoedspruit

he sun set quietly, without the exuberant traces of gold and amber that typify winter evenings in the Lowveld. Miss USA, Nana Meriwether, didn’t seem to mind though, as her game drive vehicle returned to the River Lodge in Thornybush. Accompanied by her parents and members of the Miss USA team, she’d spent the last few hours watching a playful group of four white rhino enjoying the cool grey weather. She’d witnessed the sleek focus of a pride of lions on the hunt and seen the confident stalking of a young female leopard, its senses completely focussed on an unseen prey.



Dressed down, with minimal make-up, she points to the bush around her. “Nature has always taught me about beauty,” she explains. “It’s about diversity and difference and it takes on many forms.” South African born Meriwether was in the Lowveld for her homecoming tour, a tour that each Miss USA makes, usually to their home state in America. Her mother Nomvimbi is from Soweto and her grandparents, Ephraim and Elsie Kumalo, still live in Diepkloof Extension. She was born in Tintswalo hospital in the heart of the Lowveld, where her father Delano worked for nearly a decade as an American missionary doctor. Although she’s a self-

confessed city girl who loves her life in New York, Meriwether travels frequently to South Africa and so does her mother. “Even when she’s in the States I have to be careful when I call my mom; she never gets off South African time.” While Meriwether ticks all the conventional boxes for beauty, she’s reluctant to categorise the concept. “The Miss Universe tagline is ‘confidently beautiful’ and if you look at the other women who have shared the Miss USA title, the one thing we all have in common is confidence, although I wouldn’t mind my gogo’s cheekbones,” she says with a smile.


Throughout her visit to the area, that confidence has been clearly on display as she’s talked, laughed and hugged her way through Acornhoek, visiting a number of projects and facilities that the Meriwether Foundation, which she co-founded in 2005, supports in the area between Hoedspruit and the Kruger National Park. “People have a lot of stereotypes about pageant women, but I’ve met the most intelligent and driven women through this forum,” she says. One of the biggest advantages of her title is the platform it gives her. “Even after my reign, I’ll always have the title and the international voice that goes with it,” she says, describing her plans to raise the profile of causes that are close to her heart. Her parents are her inspiration for her on-going work with the Meriwether Foundation. “I only realised just how special my parents are when I was in my twenties because they have always been so humble and led by example. It’s kind

of scary how I am turning into them,” she laughs. While Meriwether has always focused on the human side of philanthropy, this trip has introduced her to the plight of South Africa’s rhino, something she hasn’t heard much about back in the states. “They are so beautiful and neat to see and it’s so cruel how they are killed for their horn.” Launching the Rhino Revolution/ Blue Canyon Conservancy Black Rhino Relocation Project on her final day in the Lowveld, our own ‘South African Miss USA’ confirmed she has a new cause to speak to, and will carry the message about the plight of South Africa’s rhino back to the states. “The threat of losing a species is scary; it’s hit me hard,” she says, her words another reminder that for her, beauty lies in diversity and it can take many, many different forms.



the price of beauty

While the EU took landmark steps to eliminate the practice of animal testing in the cosmetics industry this year, South African policy makers are notably inert. Melanie Reeder-Powell spoke to Beauty Without Cruelty national chairperson, Beryl Scott, about what this means for South African consumers


n March this year, the EU announced it’s ban on the sale and manufacture of cosmetic products and ingredients tested on animals in EU countries. The decision was a monumental move, and a longfought battle spearheaded by the Humane Society International (HIS). The organisation has publicly commented that India looks to be the next big industry to follow suit, while Israel has already banned cosmetics testing and the sale of animal tested products. Japanese skincare brand Shiseido has announced its intention to cease using animal testing, while Brazil and South Korea have both indicated a willingness to buy in to the ban. This sounds well and dandy, but according to SA’s Beauty Without Cruelty Chairperson, Beryl Scott, it’s not clear who will be monitoring cosmetics companies to ensure the ban is carried out. “It’s also unclear about the criteria that will be used,” adds Scott, whose organisation is the only monitoring body and method of crueltyfree endorsement in South Africa. “At this stage, animal testing is legal in South Africa,” she explains. “Since cosmetic manufacturing plants outside of the EU may continue to test on animals providing they don’t bring their products into the EU, the local market will still contain tested products. BWC’s procedure is to impose a fixed cut off date for companies to comply



with BWC guidelines, and it’s unclear whether this EU ban will be enforced with a similar deadline.” Medical practitioner and creator of Dr Gobac Cosmeceuticals, Dr Robert Gobac pinpoints the USA and China as the two countries that come to mind when it comes to animal testing. China in particular actually requires that products entering the country be tested on animals, while the USA doesn’t necessarily require it, but it’s certainly still common practice. If a cosmetic ingredient comes from the pharmaceutical industry, as is the case with many so-called ‘cosmeceuticals’ or ‘dermaceuticals’, (the new generation of skincare which claim to contain medicalgrade ingredients), you can be certain the ingredient has been tested on an animal. In 2004, Scott and the BWC circulated a petition for government to change the status of animals under SA law to be considered as sentient beings – characterised by being able to respond to sensation and having a level of consciousness. Animals are currently classified as “movable property or things” according to Scott. Despite the petition being signed by over 100 000 individuals, the matter was literally laughed out of parliament, with one notable minister asking what was next – animals going to school and voting?

The tests

Scott explains that there are three main animal tests that BWC identify as inhumane. -The LD50, or “Lethal “Dose” test requires a selected number of animals ingest, inhale or are injected with an increasing controlled amount of the raw material being tested. The test evaluates a substance’s acute toxicity level, by achieving the result of killing 50 percent of the sample group. “This is a very primitive way of testing having been developed in the 1920s,” explains Scott. - The skin abrasion or Draize test checks for dermal irritations by applying the substance to abraded skin over a period of time and monitoring the reactions. The entire trunk of the animal is wrapped in an impervious material such as rubberized cloth for a period of 24-hours, to keep the test patches in place and prevent evaporation of volatile substances. -Also named after its founder, the Draize eye irritant test is the infamous image of a rabbit receiving a substance in its eye to monitor levels of irritancy. Rabbits are most often used as they have no tear ducts and cannot naturally flush the substance. Dogs and primates can also be used. Where long-term damage is done, animals are often euthanased. Go to for a full list of skincare and make up brands that are endorsed by BWC. The site also has the Leaping Bunny list, which is internationally accepted, but is not necessarily approved by BWC.




A Place in the Sun Childhoods were once made of this; A world where it was safe to explore the open spaces of the neighbourhood, go off alone on your bike for a few hours, or camp out under the stars with your buddies. This luxurious, designer THREE-bedroom family home on Nelspruit’s Shandon Estate recreates that world





he house is as close to the beauty of the bushveld as possible while being just a few minutes drive to every necessity, including access to top-class health care and leading schools. The property, with its 3,5 bathrooms and double garaging, invites buyers who will appreciate the home’s position on an estate with an established reputation as a secure environment in which to enjoy the best of the Lowveld’s good life. This crisply modern home makes the most of its prime position on the 780ha proclaimed nature reserve by drawing the outdoors effortlessly into its interior. Spacious, sun-filled living areas have large aluminum stacking doors that lead onto the entertainer’s patio where the magnificent pool and gardens with a viewing deck look over the uninterrupted mountain vista towards the Mara Conservancy. Quality, style and professional design are evident throughout the house. Upstairs, solid Rhodesian teak floors compliment the three spacious, airy bedrooms. The master bedroom boasts a private patio, while a further two full bathrooms complete the upstairs layout. Extra features in the house include a full guest suite with both indoor and outdoor showers, full live-in domestic employee

facilities and double automated garages. The house belongs to a well-known Lowveld couple who are setting off for new horizons as they enter a different chapter of their lives following the happy years in their Shandon dream home. With a professional chef in the family, the owners gutted the kitchen five years ago. After rethinking the use of space, they installed a walk-in cold room and stateof-the-art Siemens appliances to reflect their gourmet style. The Master Chef kitchen is equipped with gas hob, three eye-level and convection ovens and top quality storage with built-in lighting. The kitchen complements the contemporary architecture, which gives the home a timeless appeal that will see it through the decades to come. This is a property that will mature beautifully. It’s a home for the discerning, long-term investor; someone who looks forward to raising a family here and recognizes the potential of realizing the property’s investment value in every way. For information and to view this investment property please contact the Property Agents: Greg Bisaro 082 854 2910 or Ivan Parnell 084 504 2021 and visit Property Reference number 3072202 Visit

The Shandon Lifestyle

An established, high-end luxury eco estate in pristine bushveld 780 Hectare private reserve Managed by professional wildlife management Unspoiled 1.8 Hectare stands Uninterrupted mountain views Variety of free-roaming plains game Top-level security including electric fencing, patrolled boundaries, access control Environmentally conscious lifestyle with recycling facilities and indigenous gardens Upmarket architectural guidelines 30 minutes from Kruger National Park 25 minutes to Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport 6.8 km from Nelspruit CBD Close to leading schools and private healthcare



the stuff of dreams Your dream house may be literally under your feet and in your hands. Michelle Thomas, a sustainable building consultant, who lived in Barberton for many years, told Lowveld Living how people are increasingly turning to ancient earth building methods to make beautiful homes and shared some guidelines on how to get started

‘If you can build a sand castle on the beach you can build an earth house’





ecades ago, earth built homes were very much the domain of earth mothers and lentil eaters with lots of hair and other anti-establishment types. Happily, sustainable earth building is experiencing a comeback, not because it sends a political message, but because earth built homes are more sustainable and are often very beautiful. Michelle Thomas of Build It Green will tell you they seem to have more soul and make more humane dwellings than conventional houses. Best of all, anyone with a pair of hands, a dash of savvy and plenty of vooma, can build their own at a fraction of the cost of a brick and mortar build. However, Thomas warns that cost saving is not always a given. “Your saving in the cost of building material can be consumed by the cost of labor unless you plan to do the build yourself over a longer period of time, or can call on family and friends or a community to help you build. Earth builds take much longer than conventional building.” If you do have the necessary time and labour, she insists that it’s remarkably easy to build your own home using timehonoured methods and easily available materials. “It is very, very simple. Most people don’t try because the idea challenges their preconditioned thinking too much.” “The way to build your own

awesomely beautiful house is to first throw away every fear and totally embrace the realization that it is within your ability,” she says. “If you can build a sand castle on the beach you can build an earth house.” That said, it’s important to follow guidelines to ensure your build is sustainable as well as natural. “It’s no good going off the grid if you then use hundreds of litres of diesel to fuel generators,” says Thomas. The same goes for choosing your building material. “If you’re building on ground with a lot of stone, it makes more sense to use the stone as your building material than to import straw bales from a thousand kilometres away. Look around at what is in your immediate environment within a reasonable radius and work with what you have.” For first timers her advice is, “Just relax. Look around and say ‘ok, what have I got around me that I can use to make a shelter that meets my needs and after that my wants - in its look, size, lifestlye and costs’. From there you can start to formulate a workable plan.” There are websites, books, courses and thousands of years of history to help. “We are so lucky now,” says Thomas, “humans have never had as much access to the information, tools, equipment and technology as we do today.”

Imagine a magical building material. It’s cheap, perhaps even free. It’s plentiful and strong enough to hold up under extreme weather conditions. it’s cool in summer, warm in winter and so easy to use that workers can learn the skills in a few hours



Natural Building Methods An earth house can be made in a variety of ways: adobe, rammed earth, cob, straw bale or an underground house. All these methods involve the use of earth as the primary building material.

Earth Sheltered

Adobe Adobe is a term widely used in the southwestern United States and Spanish speaking countries to describe an architectural style, but adobe is actually a building material. Adobe “bricks” are usually made with tightly compacted earth, clay, and straw. Sometimes an asphalt emulsion is added to help waterproof the bricks. A mixture of Portland cement and lime may also be added, while in parts of Latin America, fermented cactus juice is used for waterproofing.

Earth sheltered houses are dug into a hillside and lie mostly beneath the ground surface. The surrounding soil provides natural insulation, making them inexpensive to heat and cool. Some underground houses depend entirely on the natural insulation provided by the walls and floors. Some have tubes that are channeled to the surface to allow air into the building. Earth sheltered homes are typically made of concrete and construction costs can be higher than those of conventional building. However, enthusiasts say they save on lower maintenance and energy costs in the long term.

Rammed Earth Rammed earth construction resembles adobe - both use soil mixed with waterproofing additives. Even so, adobe requires dry weather so that the bricks can harden enough to build walls. In rainy parts of the world, builders developed “rammed earth” construction in which a mixture of soil and cement are compacted into forms. Later, the forms are removed and solid earth walls remain. Other names for rammed earth are pisé, jacal, and barjareque.




Straw Bale In Africa, dwellings have been made from a mixture of straw and mud since Paleolithic times. Eons later, architects and engineers are exploring new possibilities for straw bale construction. Building with straw bale instead of conventional materials can cut construction costs by as much as half. The techniques of straw bale building vary, but the fundamentals call for straw bales to be set on dry foundations, secured in place with wood skewers or metal rods. The walls are then covered with mesh and plastered.


The word cob comes from an Old English root word meaning a ‘lump or rounded mass’. Cob building calls for labour using their hands and feet to form lumps of earth mixed with sand and straw in a sensory and aesthetic experience similar to sculpting with clay. The method is easy to learn and inexpensive to build with. Because there are no forms, ramming, cement or rectilinear bricks, cob lends itself to organic shapes like curved walls, arches and niches. Cob is the most durable of all natural building methods. Even in Britain’s rotting damp climate, thousands of picturesque cob homes have been continuously occupied since Henry VIII ruled England.

You don’t have to build a whole new house to reduce your impact on the planet, save on utility bills or make your home healthier Install ceiling insulation to bring down heating and cooling costs Studies show that air quality inside homes can be more seriously polluted than the air outdoors, even in large industrialized cities. Harmful chemicals from construction materials, insulation, furniture, carpeting, padding, paints, solvents and household cleaners are drawn out by the moist atmosphere. Changing to low VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint and environmentally friendly cleaning materials is the first step in improving the air quality in a house Seek out natural building and décor materials that are formaldehyde free. Formaldehyde seeps into the atmosphere from pressed fiberboard (particleboard, MDF) and plywood Use VOC-free paint. VOC’s are pollutants used in paints, lacquers, and paint strippers. They find their way into the atmosphere and into our bodies Capture rainwater and household grey-water to irrigate the garden – and grow some of your own food Replace traditional incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs Switch conventional geysers to solar power Replace conventional showerheads and toilets with pressurized low-flow alternatives Reuse old building materials such as roof tiles, wood flooring, window frames and doors First repair - refinish your bathtub or shower, reface your cabinets instead of replacing them, have equipment repaired instead of buying Use eco building cement. Green building cement costs the same as the non-green alternative Buy local - avoid the cost of importing Info: Michelle Thomas, Build It Green, 074 182 5092,



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Just over a decade ago the opening of Sabi Sabi’s Earth Lodge caused a stir when its dramatic minimalism heralded a new look in game lodge architecture and style. Ten years on, and the winning combination of luxury hospitality within a sustainable conservation framework has garnered it global acclaim


Words: Bev Tucker Photos: Courtesy of Sabi Sabi




he lodge has been variously described as “a cross between a Hopi cave dwelling and a medieval keep, but with modern luxury,” and, “the most ecologically-sensitivelydesigned lodge in Africa”. It is not easy to describe, and is certainly not the sort of place that neatly fits one’s preconceptions of Out of Africa safari style. There is nothing typical about this place. On arrival, all that’s visible is the wild bushveld of the Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve. A stone path leads you a short distance through the bush until it opensh suddenly to reveal a foreground of river and boulders. This gives way to a vista of African bush, leading the eye to the blue-grey haze of the far-off horizon. Like the wildlife whose habitat the lodge shares, the building reveals itself only when you are almost upon it. True to its name and architectural origins, the lodge is virtually folded into the earth and hidden from view. Architect Mohammed Hans drew inspiration from the earth shelters of the Middle Ages, where sites were excavated into the slope of the land and the soil and plants were packed back onto the roofs of the buildings. Although Earth Lodge’s design is organic from its foundations to its muddarkened walls and up to the grassed-over roof, this modern take on earth building is unmistakably contemporary. It offers no hint of the surprise waiting behind the massive wooden front door. The interior décor is the work of designer Stephen Rich and Sabi Sabi owner Jacqui Loon. It cleverly fuses earthy elements with luxurious finishes. Their concept combines the earthy language of wood, soil and natural fibres with metallic finishes that pay tribute to Africa’s mineral wealth.



lowveldspaces Sisal rugs are given silver or gold trims and flung over simple, ivory-coloured floors. Elsewhere, Nguni hides shimmer with flashes of copper and platinum. Chandeliers that look exactly like tree branches are really cast in metal. Made using twigs from the bush and replicated in gold, bronze and silver, these immensely large chandeliers are works of art - each branch had to be painstakingly re-assembled after being brought to the site. Throughout the lodge, furniture-as-art made by sculptor Geoffrey Armstrong has been fashioned using salvaged tree limbs hauled in from the surrounding bushveld. The final effect is at once straight from nature and impossibly glamorous. It creates a mesmerizing alchemy of utter, man-made indulgence under a guise of raw nature. Earth Lodge makes you think of a barefoot supermodel wearing a perfectly cut, haute couture garment hand-stitched out of organic cloth. However, beneath the lodge’s luxurious exterior is a greater purpose. As a member of the Sabi Sabi group, Earth Lodge and other properties in the company stable have wildlife conservation at their core. Sabi Sabi was one of the first hospitality companies to recognize the role the private sector can play in conservation through a fragile balancing act between sustainable ecotourism that supports conservation and in turn allows for community involvement. Sabi Sabi was one of a handful of properties - and only five star lodge - to receive South Africa’s first Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) trademark in 2004. FTTSA is an independent initiative of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which works towards equitable and sustainable tourism growth and development in South Africa via high-value, low-density tourism. It seems this supermodel of a lodge does indeed have a heart of gold.

The Amber Presidential Suite boasts a sitting room, study, steam room and kitchenette. A grand, amber bead chandelier is the focal point (see cover).



Guests can view the parade of animals drinking at the waterhole overlooked by the day-bar or can doze on white, muslin-enclosed salas




the lodge has been described as ‘a cross between a Hopi cave dwelling and a medieval keep, but with modern luxury’



Earth Lodge makes you think of a barefoot supermodel wearing a perfectly cut, haute couture garment hand-stitched from organic cloth




Habitat management is part of the eco tourism sustainability model. At Sabi Sabi, this includes:

Waste management: Sabi Sabi separates and recycles much of its solid waste. Some is incinerated while plastics are recycled and wet waste is used for compost. Specially constructed wetland systems at all Sabi Sabi lodges allows for the recycling of sewage and other wastewater via a series of interconnected dams. The water is purified until it is completely clean Controlled burning: Various sections of the reserve are burnt on a four-year cycle. Controlled burns clear areas encroached by vegetation to encourage the growth of fresh grass and assist with nutrient recycling Water rotation: An important aspect of habitat management is rotating the available man-made water sources. Most large herbivores need to drink daily and therefore concentrate around the pans and dams. Many of these animals’ home ranges overlap around these waterholes, and therefore the vegetation in these areas is heavily impacted. Rotating water points reduces grazing pressure and allows affected areas to regenerate Road maintenance: The road network on the Sabi Sabi reserve is managed to minimize negative impact on the environment. This entails constructing and placing roads in ways that reduces water run-off, which causes erosion and damages sensitive soils Alien plant removal: Aliens are non-indigenous plants, which, if not controlled, severely threaten the survival of indigenous plant species. In some countries, alien plants have been identified as the largest threat to indigenous biodiversity Rhino Conservation: Sabi Sabi participates in various rhino conservation initiatives such as educational programmes and active anti-poaching

Dinner by starlight in the boma fashioned from roots and branches



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Open House


Words: Bev Tucker Photos: Sven Musica




When it was built, this White River home was an iconic statement house bearing the distinctive signature of Peter Hattingh, a famously daring architect of the 70’s. It had a rough life, but thanks to sensitive renovation and loving care, it has safely transitioned from ageing rockstar to timeless classic




y the time Richard and Karin Goss saw it, the house at Matopo Ledge looked as dated as a pair of tight white flares. Unsympathetic refurbishments had left it with an ill-suited roof and tiling that made their eyes water. “But the moment we walked in we were sold,” says Richard. “We could see the potential of the place.” This potential was perhaps more evident to a man who is trained to truly look than it may have been to other people. Goss is a renowned wildlife filmmaker whose eye for line, angle and structure immediately alerted him to the beautiful skeleton beneath the building’s unfortunate exterior. And then there was the setting. The Goss family of four had been more accustomed to living in the remotest reaches of Africa than in suburbia. Finding a sanctuary of space and natural tranquility in White River came not a moment too soon for them. “We had always lived in wide open spaces. When our kids were small we lived in tents in places like the Okavango,” Richard explains. “Living in a town, even one the size of White River, wasn’t easy. I tolerated it for five years,” he says. “When we decided to settle in White River we lived on a very comfortable and acceptably large property in town,” says Karin. “The trouble was Richard could see the garden wall which he just hated because it gave the sense of being closed in; and the barking of the neighbour’s dog nearly did him in.”




When they decided to get out of town, they went house-hunting in the countryside nearby and were shown Matopo Ledge rising from its granite koppie and facing the sunrise. Everything about the setting spoke to them. The house is built into the embrace of rocks and natural bush and flowers open onto a vista of hills and undeveloped land. Wall after wall of double volume glass floods the space with light and air. On the afternoon I visited, the open-air atrium in the centre of the house made the sky seem somehow part of its interior. The house feels as much a part of the natural environment as the koppie it’s built on. Again and again, you’re struck by the sense of being connected to nature because of the building rather than cut off from nature because of it. The views stretch over a garden more park-

like than conventional. It is dotted with huge trees, indigenous plants and natural water features and culminates in a pecan nut orchard Richard wryly refers to as “so organic as to be utterly unproductive.” The orchard and garden are almost entirely indigenous and totally pesticide free. Having realized what the house could be restored to - and having already fallen wildly in love with the setting - the Goss’s embarked on a six-month renovation, which entailed gutting anything that was not part of the original architecture, including the roof. Much to the architect’s credit the original layout called for virtually no improvements. A natural flow already existed between rooms as well as between the interior and the outside through Hattingh’s signature use of large picture windows and sliding doors. Everything about the house invites you to throw it wide open to the outdoors. The upstairs rooms are lit by skylights;

glass sliding doors let the constant cool breezes wander through the space. Upstairs, decks leading off bedrooms unroll views at your feet; verandas at ground level call you out to enjoy the garden and the natural rock swimming pool that appears to be fed by a real stream. “The obvious thing would be to have an infinity pool right in this spot,” says Richard standing where the garden plunges down to a rockery of aloes. “We prefer the authenticity of the natural rock pool, which is an original feature.” With its dignity restored, the house responded like a living thing. It proved to be everything the natureloving Goss’ could ask for in terms of lifestyle, family living and the Lowveld climate. It has been fifteen years since they first saw the place and says Karin “we absolutely love every second of living here.”



Eco Aspects

Water for domestic use comes from a borehole on the property The garden streams, water features and swimming pool are fed by Longmere Dam via the original canal system installed in the 1900’s to supply water to orchards in the area There has never been a need to install air conditioning: the design and layout of the house provides passive heating in winter and natural cooling in summer. It is east facing on high ground for cool summer airflow. In winter, the large windows gather the warmth from the sun. A fireplace with a double volume chimney pipe through the interior warms the house in very cold weather A wine cellar was built at the rear of the house against the koppie to make use of the naturally cool ambient temperature of the shady rocks The ample natural light in the house from windows, glass doors and skylights mean less need for daytime electricity






History of Matopo Ledge

After the Anglo-Boer war, Percy Cazalet - a wealthy Muscovite who fled Russia for England upon the outbreak of the Russian Revolution - acquired land in the White River area under a scheme initiated by Lord Milner. He built a home which he called Matopo Ledge, named for the family’s association with Cecil John Rhodes and because the land with its granite koppie is reminiscent of the Matopos Hills in Zimbabwe. This area of White River, named Yaverland by Cazalet’s wife, Molly, after a town in her native Cornwall, was the first to be settled due to its fertile farming soils and desirable microclimate. His sister, Noonie, taught preschool children from the neighbouring farms in a small cottage school at Matopo Ledge. It was from these humble origins that Uplands Preparatory School and subsequent College grew. There have been several homes built at Matopo Ledge; acclaimed architect Peter Hattingh designed the current house in the modern style.





You’ve dreamt of it, now own it!

True African bush living at the only Bush & Aero Estate in the world Life at Zandspruit is one of peace and tranquility - a home cocooned in wild life and bush, offering a tranquil getaway from a demanding world. The exceptional weather all year around gives you ample opportunity to explore your environment with wildlife walks, horse rides or game drives. View this tranquil setting from the comfort of your living room or pool deck.


Contact: +27 15 793 1192 Email:

Sunset views are magnificent treats! This is an investment sure to keep your health and living experience a notch above any other.


KEY FEATURES  Estate size: 1000 ha game farm  200 full title stands. Sizes range from 4 000 m² to 15 000 m²  House designs are in 3 different styles being  Farmhouse  Pavilion  Thatch  650 ha of untouched wildlife reserved exclusively for owners game viewing pleasure  Safe environment and close to retailers, doctors and recreational facilities  1 km hard surfaced private runway, for aviation enthusiasts  Park and hanger your plane next to your bush home









go see what’s new

try this who’s who buy some hot Spots taste it visit now

Wakaberry, Nelspruit

What: At last, Wakaberry, the frozen yoghurt craze that makes everyone smile has found its way to Nelspruit. Go get you some o’ that there sweet happiness. Where: P’nP Entrance, Ilanga Mall

Earth Sense, White River

What: Grow your own greens in this clever pyramid planter made out of upcycled pallets. It comes with a bag of premixed potting soil. Think of it as a tiny veggie farm that you can take with you when you move. Where: Direct from manufacturer, Allan 072 126 9933, Gustav 078 566 6607

Lemon Treez Pizza Take Away, White River

What: A new pizzeria with proper pizza ovens and a nice list of topping options, started by the same folk who run the ever-popular Gumtreez family pub next door. Weekend cooking : sorted. (Psst! They deliver in White River!) Where: Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre White River 013 751 3166 When: 7 days a week, 11h00 - 20h00

Mad Hams Art Café and Food Emporium, Hoedspruit

What: A fresh fabulosity in happening Hoedspruit where owners Clare Wilkie-Girardin and Bianca Black serve seriously yummy deli-style grub and excellent coffee in an arty atmosphere piled to the rafters with South African crafts. Where: Rock Fig Centre, Hoedspruit, 015 001 7087 When: Mon-Fri 07h30-16h30, Saturdays and public holidays 08h30-13h00, closed Sundays

Transfit Training Studio, Nelspruit

What: A brand new place to sweat out stress and get gorgeous under the guidance of qualified trainer Ruhan Koekemoer, owner of Adventure Bootcamp for Woman and Run Walk For Life Nelspruit. Where: Lowveld Country Club, Steiltes, Nelspruit, 072 402 1852, When: Mon-Fri 05h00 to 19h00. Check with the gym about opening times when the seasons change.

Mink Hair AND Fashion, White River

What: A new hairdressing salon that you’ll love spending time in because of the décor and nice staff. They also stock a small fashion range. Where: Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre, White River, 082 332 3501

Sorbet Spa and Salon, Nelspruit

What: A slick new day spa and spoily place for picture perfect face, hands and toes. (Beauty tip: vouchers make a welcome gift for your gal pals). Where: Shop 6A, The Grove, Nelspruit, 013 757 1014



The Lion Sands team, in kit sponsored by the private game reserve of the same name, setting off in early morning mist

The Lion Sands team being led out by Louis van der Merwe in a vintage car

PANORAMA Now in its 8th year, the MTN Panorama Cycle Tour took place over four days in April. Each day’s racing began and ended at the Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre in White River and was seen off on the first leg by Louis van der Merwe driving one of the vintage cars from his museum collection. The first kilometer of the tour was dedicated to the memory of two White River residents, Nic More (the owner of Lions Sands private game reserve) and Lance Cooper, who died in a tragic helicopter crash shortly before the race. Both were keen cyclists. Lance had never missed a Panorama and the two had entered as a team in this year’s event.




Alex Asman, Audrey Ford and Bev Tucker Ceri-Anne Mos and Cage Abell


Mpumie Lephoko, Nozipho Zee and Claudia Qwabe

Thank the fashion gods for business-savvy Destiny magazine founder and editor-in-chief Khanyi Dhlomo’s Luminence Pop Up store, which opened it’s glorious doors at La Villa Vita guest house in Nelspruit for a few days in anticipation of the lifestyle brands’ pending opening in Jourg’s Hyde Park. We got to ogle Alexander McQueen patent peep-toes and caress classic Diane Von Furstenberg dresses while networking with Mpumalanga’s most well-coiffed and clothed. Local media and VIPs sipped mock mojitos and nibbled on salmon blinis while marvelling at the array of sparkling designer gowns, bared-down basics, and classic Mulberry bags.

Naledi Zwane and Mona March

Jimmy Tembo, Seipati Mokhuoa, Monwabisi Mugxaso, Viwe Dyasi

Kimkatso Mdluli and Nombulelo Ngomane

Khanyi Dhlomo and Tsidi Lebenya



whiskey & wine Volvo & Standard Bank Nelspruit invited some of their valued clients to an evening of wine, whiskey and fine food tastings on Thursday the 30th of May at the AutoTec Motor Dealership. At night, the dealership transforms into a glistening playground for Volvo lovers with blue and white mood lights shining in between vehicles, creating a feeling of absolute luxury! While guests mingled on the floor, they enjoyed a selection of Boschendal’s top wines which were paired alongside gourmet taste dishes prepared by Jaco Myburgh from Kruger’s Gold Restaurant in Graskop.




paragliding in barberton Paragliders from across the country converged on Barberton in June to take part in the 2013 Barberton Paragliding Open. This event forms part of the South Africa Para Cup. Weather permitting, pilots compete for points on a pre-set course. This year almost 50 pilots took to the sky in a 40km race ending at the Barberton Golf Club. The winner, Ant Allan, averaged just over 25km/hr completing the race in 1hr 26min.

Francois de Villiers

Ant Allen

Christo Herbst

Herbe Hauptfleisch



adrenalin fest The Graskop Adrenalin Festival saw petrolheads from far and wide gather to celebrate everything fast and furious in a day filled with hot smoke, screeching tyres and roaring engines.




Springboks 30 – Scotland 17 The Mbombela Stadium was packed to capacity and the atmosphere was electrifying when this Four Nation rugby international came to the Lowveld. After an unconvincing first half, South Africa came back with a vengeance after half time to record a satisfying win over the Scots.


marketplace DECOR









Dr Karen Kromhout and Dr Auke Van der Meulen TANDARTSE – DENTAL SURGEONS Shop G4-5 , Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre White River

Tue-Fri 08h30–16h30

For all your Wildlife Property needs

Tel: 013 751 3144

Safe Breast Screening Engel & Völkers · Lowveld Tel. +27(0)15 793 0793

•No compression •No radiation •Safe in pregnancy •Safe with implants Thermal Health Centre - Nelspruit Russmed Medical Centre - 18 Russell Street Booking essential: 073.665.4956 |



marketplace DECOR









LOWVELD L I V I N G Don’t miss Lowveld Living’s upcoming bridal edition - Plan your special day - Gift registry wishlist - Expert advice - Style files - Destination weddings

Bridal Issue September / October

To advertise in this bumper edition contact Audrey Ford on


marketplace RESTUARANTS






Tel: +27 (0) 13 737 6957 Shop 1, Perry’s Bridge Trading Post

Tel: 013 751 1947

Contact Audrey: 072 726 4660



marketplace RESTUARANTS DULLSTROOM Adega 013 254 0605 Authentic Portuguese Seafood Restaurant , all our dishes are made from scratch when ordered. Have won the best Portuguese restaurant award in the Best of Joburg for five consecutive years. All our recipes are unique. ‘We were voted by the public as being the best.’ Anvil Alehouse & Brew Pub 073 168 6603 We specialise in hand crafted European style beers, accompanied by traditional German sausages presented on a wooden platter with locally made cheese, mustard and relishes.



Harrie’s Pancakes 013 254 0801 Kloppenheim (Machadodorp) 013 256 9001


WATERVAL BOVEN Highway Man 013 256 9161 Stone Circle Bistro 013 257 0759

Legendz Café 013 254 0413

Travellers Coffee Shop 013 257 0444

Mayfly Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge 013 254 0332 084 619 4946 Situated on the main road in Dullstroom, is a modern and contemporary restaurant with great food and excellent service. It is fresh and clean with warm fires. Sporting events are televised and there is plenty of parking.

Shamrock Arms 013 257 0888

Milly’s Trout 013 254 0310

BARBERTON Co-co Pan Café & Pub 013 712 2653 Nestled beneath the Makhondjwa Mountains. Debonairs Pizza 013 712 6000

The Loco Pub & Coachman Grill 013 767 1961 The Edge Pub 082 412 7295

HAZYVIEW Blue Mountain Lodge 013 737 8446

Corner Shop Perry’s Bridge 013 737 6664

Pickles & Things 013 254 0115

Pioneers 073 124 9555

Plat du Jour 072 320 5370

Simply The Best 013 712 2028

Poacher Restaurant 013 254 0108 The Poacher serves hearty meals ranging from slow cooked oxtail to beef curry and pot pies. The restaurant sources much of its produce from local farmers.

Something Different 013 712 3124

Rose Cottage 013 254 0218


Fib’s Restaurant & Pizzeria 013 254 0059

Tasties 013 767 1758

Pappa’s Kitchen 013 712 4645 Phoenix Hotel 013 712 4211

Fernando’s Hideaway 072 151 2129

Steers 1 Main Street 013 737 7200

Casa Do Sol Restaurant 013 737 8111

Old Transvaal Inn – Restaurant 013 254 0550

Stonecutters Lodge 013 235 4225

Rozenkavalier Restaurant 013 767 1114

KFC 013 712 3720

Critchley Hackle Lodge 013 254 0149

Dullstroom Inn 013 254 0071 The Dullstroom Inn’s history can be traced back to 1912 and was Mpumalanga’s best kept secret for decades until the first ever Sunday Times ‘Finders Keepers’ prize of a million rand was hidden in the well known English pub.

Rissington Inn & Restaurant 013 737 7700

Bush Burgers & Takeaways 013 737 6668

Mrs Simpson 013 254 0088

Valegro’s 013 712 2931 Victorian Tea Garden 013 712 4985 Wimpy 013 712 6252

Bergwater Lodge 013 257 7081


Wild and Wooly 013 254 0202

Berlyn Peacock Tavern 013 767 1085

Wild about Whisky 013 254 0066

Canimambo 013 767 1868

Walkerson’s Hotel 013 253 7000

Graskop Pancakes 013 767 1366 Harrie’s Pancakes 013 767 1273


Koweni’s Lookout Restaurant 013 767 1760

Diggers Retreat Hotel 013 719 9681

Bergen Cheese & Wine Tasting Room 013 254 0084

The Duck and Trout Restaurant 013 254 0047 Dullstrooms authentic restaurant & pub. Since 1994. Home of The Duck and Cherry Pie, Traditional WoodBurning Pizza Oven, All Day Breakfast, Roaring Log Fires, Kiddies Playground, 2 Big Screens and multiple TV’s for live sporting events


Galito’s 013 737 7776 Big Five 013 737 8191 Hippo Hollow Restaurant 013 737 6624 Jungle Café 013 737 7298 Kuka 013 737 6957 Le Pattissier 083 647 9876 Nabana Restaurant 013 737 6954 / 0832685395 The Hotel Numbi (Olive & Vine) 013 737 7301

Summerfields Kitchen 013 737 6500 Umbhaba Restaurant 013 737 7636 Wimpy 013 737 6490

HOEDSPRUIT Ambri Africa 015 795 5107 Blyde Haven Restaurant 072 183 4396 Cala la Pasta 015 793 0452 Eden Tea Garden 073 403 8936 Josmac’s Restaurant 015 793 2951 Kalimambo 015 793 0079 Sleepers 015 793 1014 The Hat & Creek 015 793 1135 Three Bridges Restaurant and Pub 079 912 9416 Upperdeck 082 546 9969 Safari Club 082 789 2608 Wildebeest Lapa 015 795 5748

KAAPSCHE HOOP Bohemian Groove Cafe 013 734 4545 076 764 7625

Papa’s Pizzeria 013 737 7427

Koek ‘n Pan Restaurant 013 734 4580

Perry’s Bridge Brewery 013 737 7767

Silver Mist Country Inn 013 734 4429

Pioneers Butcher & Grill 013 737 7397


marketplace RESTUARANTS KOMATIPOORT Jackalberry Coffee Shop 013 793 8197 Lion & Leopard 013 793 7034 Parkview Restaurant 013 793 7708 Phumula Kruger Restaurant 013 792 4215 Tambarina Restaurant 013 793 7057

LYDENBURG Bistro @ 59 013 235 2579 Chicken Licken 013 235 2646 De Ark Restaurant 013 235 1125 Deco’s Restaurant 013 235 1145 Hops Hollow Brewery & Pub 013 235 8910 Kenchington’s Tea Room 013 235 4482 KFC 013 235 4853 Lallie se Plaaskombuis 083 375 7323




Hamiltons 013 790 3421

Cappuccino’s 013 742 2187

Kuzuri Restaurant 013 757 0907

Lions Rock 013 235 4245

Impala Restaurant 013 790 0140

Cicada 013 741 1751

Legends Café and Bar 013 754 6552

Ocean Basket 013 235 3202

Koos se Kroeg Kombuis 076 041 8649

Chez Vincent Restaurant 013 744 1146

Marlin Pub & Grill 071 111 1370

Okus 013 235 4187

Malalane Gate Restaurant 013 790 0470

Costa do Sol Restaurant 013 752 6382

Mediterranean Seafood Restaurant Riverside Mall 013 757 0170

Scooters 013 235 4023 St Pies 013 235 1529 The Heads – Barcelos 013 235 1549 The Trout Inn 013 235 1828 Vroutjie Coffee Shop 013 235 3016 Wimpy 013 235 3618

MALELANE Chicago Restaurant 013 790 1260 Duck ‘n Dive Saloon Pub ‘n Grub 013 790 1258 Pub & Restaurant – delicious pizzas freshly made to order - wood burning oven. Open 11am ‘till late Monday to Saturday

013.790.3421 |

Riverside Farm, Malelane Gate Road, next to Leopard Creek



Lerami Spur 013 235 1707

Laske Nakke Restaurant 013 235 2886



Marula Boma 013 790 1467 Ingwenya Parkview Restaurant 013 793 7708 Steers 013 790 1551

NELSPRUIT At Nature’s Gate 013 755 6173 Adega Restaurant 013 74 13978 Arkansas Spur Steak Ranch 013 745 8043 Bizie Ladies Restaurant 013 752 8518 Feast 013 741 4674 Bundu Country Lodge & Grill 013 758 1221 Capello 013 757 0560

Debonairs Express Pizza 013 752 4960 Detroit Spur 013 757 0330 Edelweiss Restaurant 079 684 2735 Europa Café 013 757 0961 Explorers Restaurant 013 757 4300 FishAways 013 752 4596 Food Fundi 013 755 1091 Galito’s Brown Street 013 752 5371 Greek Kouzina 013 741 5371 John Dorys Fish & Grill 013 757 0972 Jock Pub & Grill 013 755 4969/70 Kia Ora Restaurant 013 747 2128

Mediterranean Seafood Restaurant Ilanga Mall 013 742 2235 Montanas Garden Pavilion 013 741 3348 Mugg & Bean Riverside Mall 013 757 1036 Mugg & Bean Crossing 013 752 2250 Mugg & Bean Ilanga Mall 013 742 2206 Nelspruit Fish & Chips 013 752 6421 News Café 013 752 7680 Ocean Basket 013 752 7193 O’Hagans Pub 013 741 3580

marketplace RESTUARANTS


Orange 013 744 9507



Papa’s Kitchen 013 755 1660

Peach Tree & Diggers Restaurant 013 768 1100

Something Fishy 013 741 1708

Pilgrims Pantry Co-op 013 768 1129

Spur Riverside Mall 013 757 0330

Stables 083 454 4763

Squirrels Fun Food 013 752 5114

Scotts Café 013 768 1061

St Elmo’s Wood fired Pizza 013 755 1650

The Vine Restaurant 013 768 1080

Steers 013 752 8165

Country Kitchen Restaurant 013 764 1901

Stoep 013 741 2551 The Pub 013 755 4861 Trattoria Stefano’s 013 744 9310 Wimpy Riverside Mall 013 757 1036 Wimpy Ferreira Street 013 752 3650 Wimpy Halls Gateway 013 752 4824 Zest 013 742 2217


vegetables supplied from our own organic veggie garden. Open breakfast, lunch and dinner. Excellent food, great hospitality.


Petena Pancakes 013 764 1541

Big Fish 013 751 3737

Sabie Sports Bar & Pizza Den 013 764 1800

Brie Street Deli 083 678 8099

Silver Spoon Restaurant (Mac Mac) 013 767 1039


Tommy’s Pool Bar 013 764 2160

Jock Sabie Lodge Pub & Restaurant 013764 2178 Lone Creek Spur 013 764 3355

Wild Fig Tree Restaurant & Pub 013 764 2239 Wimpy 013 764 2281 The Woodsman Restaurant 013 764 2015

Merry Pebbles Restaurant 013 764 1502 Misty Mountain 013 7643377 0733751817 Situated on the spectacular Long Tom Pass overlooking the Lowveld with the best country cooking in the region, Misty Mountain offers an extensive a la carte menu. All dishes freshly made and


SCHOEMANS KLOOF Old Joe’s Kaia 013 733 3045

Alfresco 013 750 2808 Big Bear Spur 013 751 1419

da Loose Mongoose 013 750 0539 Fez at Bagdad 013 750 1253 A relaxed, intimate, owner run restaurant situated 2kms outside White River. Famous for the Fez Burger, Fez Gnocchi, Moroccan Lamb Tagine, the Fez Seafood Platter and the best Sushi ever! Specially selected winelist, trendy beers and a stunning Whisky collection.


Magnolia Restaurant 013 751 1947 Mahoi’s 082 788 5171 Oliver’s Restaurant 013 750 0479 082 328 8025 Spoil yourself with mouth-watering dishes from our a-la-carte menu complimented with the finest South African wines together with personalised and friendly service in a cosy atmosphere.   Trattoria Stefano’s 013 750 0300 Twinz Burger & Ribs 013 751 1361 Wimpy 013 751 3161 Zannas 013 750 0469

Galito’s 013 750 1981 Ganache Cafe 013 750 2102 Green Door 072 321 7750 073 329 9238 Gumtreez 013 750 0334 Lions Pub 013 750 1288

Jackalberry Coffee Shop

cnr of Rissik and Bok Street, Komatipoort

The unique Orange Restaurant defies imitation and offers an experience that is unrivalled in the area.

Joelene Caldeira 013.793.8007 / 082.772.7133

2 Du Preez Street, Nelspruit | 013.744.9507 | 083.628.7759

SCrumptiouS mealS, Delta Coffee anD relaxing atmoSphere - the gooD life!



best foot forward W

omen’s Day, which is celebrated annually with a national holiday on August 9th, marks the 1956 anti-apartheid protest lead by Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Albertina Sisulu and Sophia Williams-De Bruyn. In 1956, 20 000 women from all over the country including members of the Black Sash which was pivotal in this and future protests - staged a peaceful march to the Union Buildings, where they handed over petitions containing more



than 100 000 signatures. Afterwards they stood en masse in silent protest for thirty minutes. A song was composed in honour of their courageous act, Wathint’ Abafazi Wathint’ imbokodo! (Now you have touched the women, you have struck a rock). We found these photographs of the Lowveld Branch of the Black Sash. What better way to mark Women’s Day in 2013 than by honoring the Lowveld women of the past.

AMC 10001698CT/E

Just like Alek Wek, Amarula is world famous, yet truly African at heart. From Africa’s sub-Saharan plains where the unique marula trees grow freely, to the very hands that pick the exotic marula fruit once it has ripened, each aspect of its creation makes Amarula a true African Original.

Alek Wek Celebrity and Humanitarian

Enjoy Responsibly. Not for Sale to Persons Under the Age of 18.

Lowveld Living Issue 40 Eco Edition  
Lowveld Living Issue 40 Eco Edition