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The last few weeks could be called organised chaos. With a deadline looming, the GeePee team dashed across the province at breakneck speed, accosting GeePees on the streets for a picture and a chat, wandering into markets and stores for a feature and leaving with a new friend and my credit card dented. Discovering really great ways to spend Friday night in Tembisa township – not for the faint-hearted, but then we didn’t meet a lot of those. Marvelling at graffiti art under the bridges of #Newtown, with some uber-cool hipsters teasing the remnants of my Durban accent. Tasting mini-mountains of paella in #Braamies. Soaking up some sun outside The Bioscope in Maboneng (@bioscopetonight), and discovering the most styling backpackers accommodation I’d ever seen (thank you Bheki Dube @bhekidup at #Curiocitybackpackers). Quad biking through Soweto while stuffing my face with magwinya was special. Meeting a young lady with elaborate braids who taught me how to open a quart of beer on a chair – now there’s a life skill worth learning. Dancing our way through rooftop bars and weekends spent eating our way through vibing precincts, while learning how to salsa nogal. And I shall not forget capturing the portraits of some of the country’s hottest talent. Someone had to do it. These pages set out to capture this essence that is GeePee - the pulse, the energy, the face of the resident characters thriving in the many districts of Gauteng. It can be exhilarating, exhausting, never boring. And trying to translate that pulse and tangible high energy that we encountered in the faces of our GeePees was not an easy process, but a story we figured that could best be told by the GeePees themselves. I’ve gained weight but I feel lighter. I’ve made new friends and discovered old ones, living, working and playing in this mad metropolis, #ourJoburg. I’m happy to live here, with this eclectic mix. Thank you to all you citizens who shared with us. You left me feeling inspired. And way proud to be here #geepeeshotleft


Publication for Gauteng Tourism Authority


Taryn Gill, editor@GeePeeLife @whatfemaleswant




a Gasp

rile by She Images

MILI BONGELA Blogger, words, trends, uhairu By Taryn Gill

You can find Mili Bongela (aka Miss Milli B) on Facebook, sharing thoughts, history and ideas on everything from fashion to race to gender to hair. With a strong blog following and a corporate demand for her views on consumer trends, Mili bases herself between her cool office venue Coast Studios in Newtown, to the delectable Dahleas in #Braamfontein, to the comfort of her home office. Everything’s moving, evolving here in this city. “My constant state of being is my own edification – by talking, reading, exploring and sharing my way towards it.” One warm, late-summer Jozi evening, we were standing outside a salon, eating samoosas, sipping SA wine and discussing how amazing the energy is when a group of women get together to talk, to act, to trade, to get their hair done, to have some fun. Mili is one of those women I know to call when I want an opinion on something. To me, she’s a thought leader, and I want to make things happen with her. To quote her recent article on hair: “Why are we the only race that chooses to sew in the hair of other races onto ours in order to be beautiful, sexy, successful and desirable? When the time comes that our brothers and sisters of other races are wearing afros and braiding their hair the way we love weaves, then it will mean nothing to wear a weave as a black woman. But we’re not there yet. It’s not yet ‘Uhairu’.’’ For a sense of Jozi pulse on a Sunday, try out Mili’s favourite inner city rooftop The Living Room (, or flick through @missmillib on Instagram for a glimpse of GeePee Street Style, through Mili’s eyes. Your favourite hotel in Gauteng? The Winston ( Five-star, eclectic, modern colonial chic. Best dance venue? #Jozi #houseparties. Worth a drive out of the city limits:? Definitely #TheNirox, an arts centre just 40 minutes outside of Joburg. It’s one of the most beautiful places that Gauteng Arunt lab ipsa sam facerum iusfavourite et et doloreiunt. can claim ( Another is The Cradle of Serumque- aoccus molor magnis et odi blaut pedi as Humankind grounding experience. For a pretty little town, and it’s quiet, head to #Dullstroom rehenimin reperibus. ( Solesciet et officti solum sapelles ad molor ma accabo. OrUtfor tranquil at its best, I really love Magaliesburg ea volumnature fugit vernatiorum fuga. Et the pratet et alique dis mountains. #geepeeshotleft or for great deals. exceaturi quidus.

Mili bongela

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Shot by Chrisfacerunt Saunders on location @ Studio Studio asinum ventis quati nosa aut #maboneng 011 614 6117





“This city is built on dreams” By Taryn Gill

We are family

A man of many talents, Kojo is doing a lot of things. Media man, consultant, entrepreneur, speaker, and if I remember correctly, a poet back in the day.

By Taryn Gill

Meet @stefjason and @lrjason I have met few hipsters on my travels through Jozi who didn’t know these two – LeeRoy’s a photographer, his sister Stefanie is a writer. It was too tempting not to ask them to collaborate on our chesa nyama and Joburg nightlife feature for GeePeeLife. If anyone was going to be able to give you a glimpse of the colour that makes up this city after dark, and slightly off-thebeaten-track, I figured we’d be in good hands with this duo. “I think Johannesburg is unique. Since the gold rush, its citizens have been in search of a home and forging an identity for themselves in this crazy metropolis.” “For me,” says LeeRoy, “it’s the people, the opportunities, the work ethic.” StefANIE Loves: Everything visual art and music Johannesburg’s best kept secret: #ZooLake’s swimming pool in the summer Cocktail or beer? SA wine Your inspiration? A visitor should not miss: Museum Africa and @WitsArtMuseum LeeRoy Loves: Anything honest and pure, I am a life student Johannesburg’s best kept secret: Play everywhere Cocktail or beer? Beer please Your inspiration: Local photographers and Your best Sunday afternoon would be spent: At a chesa nyama anywhere local Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location at #GandhiSquare, a key transport hub in JHB city centre and a great place to people-watch 6

“Like other ‘Thabo-come-latelys’, it was the business drive that permeates Joburg streets which attracted me here,” says @kojobaffoe. “I was already doing business in Jozi before I moved up so it was the best place to build on those relationships. I believe this city is built on dreams – some still being dreamt, some fulfilled, and sadly, some broken. With the willingness to work hard, there is much you can achieve here. For those looking from the outside, Jozi can seem chaotic, but here you can create the life you want to live.”


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If Kojo’s diary opened up for a miraculous 24 hours, he’d head for Delta Park in Victory Park. Or simply hang with family and friends at his favourite spot: his patio. “If you head to a Joburger for lunch, ask everyone round the table to introduce themselves and say where they are from. You might find two born and bred in JHB. But we’re all GeePees.”


BestArunt kid’s outing: The train trip to #Cullinan. lab ipsa sam facerum ius et et doloreiunt. Midday snack: High tea at #MichelangeloHotel, Sandton. Serumque occus molor magnis et odi blaut pedi as If you’re travelling through Gauteng, don’t miss: Mash rehenimin reperibus. BraaiHouse in Bryanston for the energy and Jozi’s best Solesciet et officti solum sapelles ad molor ma accabo. mogudu. @mashbraaihouse Ut ea volum fugit vernatiorum fuga. Et pratet et alique dis That moment you realise you’re a GeePee: Before my children exceaturi quidus. were born, driving through Parkhurst on a warm Sunday Quia everyone expello rporum idesequ isquatur sitae going moluptat morning, out in the sun having breakfast, to in accum reperepudi net fugit thecorepel carwash,inctias gettingevelit the papers, I realised I was con one of them.

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Follow Kojo on: Gendus eatatat re maio temporit, comnis aut volut @kojobaffoe asinum facerunt ventis quati nosa aut re pere que cus

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Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location @Constitution Hill.


Adriaan Hugo & Katy Taplin Being an entrepreneur in GeePee is like… “being a cowboy in the Wild West” – Adriaan

WISAAL ANDERSON “I love living in Jozi CBD, and yes I still enjoy the look on people’s faces when I tell them that”

By Trisha Harinath By Taryn Gill

Husband and wife team, self-starters, product and furniture designers and manufacturers, owners of @DokterandMisses, Adriaan and Katy create cutting-edge furniture, lighting, inventive interior accessories and ceramics, all known for their strong modernist lines, graphic patterns and a sense of humour that runs throughout. And just as inspiring as their product range is their workshop and showroom at 68 Juta Street in #Braamfontein, where you will experience a real sense of appreciation for this creative duo and the unhindered talent they invest in their trade. It’s easy to see why Adriaan loves working in Braamfontein and this is how he recommends spending 24 hours in this bustling area: breakfast at @overheardatPOST; shopping at @DokterandMisses; inspire your inner artist by visiting @ Stevenson_ZA, @WitsArtMuseum and #kalashnikovgallery; pop in to @lovefood_cafe for lunch, and end the day off in style at “Jozi’s trendiest bar since 1906”, @BarKitcheners…phew… maybe 24 hours isn’t really enough time to take in all that @BraamVibes has to offer. You are inspired by Jozi’s…? Creative pace. Your top decor and design destinations in and around the city? Dokter and Misses to be a little bias. At #44Stanley you find some nice places – check out Anatomy Design if you there. Then the Modernist in Parkhurst always has great stuff. And 3 Desmond Street in #Kramerville has the Tonic showroom.

Meet one of Johannesburg’s foremost hair bloggers, Wisaal Anderson aka @wisaal, who lives on Anderson Street in a beautiful rooftop apartment that boasts a lekka (South African for really nice) city skyline sunset. Kinky curly coily Wisaal is a proud inner-city dweller. “The cliché that the city is a melting pot is simply true. There’s something for everyone.” The city is where she lives, works and plays. From her membership at Eloff Street’s luxe Pyramid Day Spa ( @Pyramid_SA) which should not be missed, to the street food at Fordsburg’s Burhan’s Butcher and Kebab (79 Church Street, Mayfair), according to Wisaal, there is so much choice that resides in between the popular hubs like Maboneng and Braamies. Wisaal’s top tip: Start with a leisurely ride on Jozi’s Red hopon hop-off bus tour to mark out your own favourites - bus commentary comes in 16 different languages. #geepeeshotleft Favourite drive out of the city limits? Dullstroom and Clarens are packed with charm and the drive is scenic for an easy weekend getaway. I’ve been really late in discovering the bush but my recent find is the wonderful seclusion of the #Klaserie region, #KrugerNationalPark. At Africa on Foot, try the walking safaris. Who knew that was possible? Being in the hair game I would recommend... A visit to the city’s L’Oréal African Salon Institute 66 De Korte Str Braamfontein. Follow Wisaal on:


Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location @Wisaal’s rooftop apartment, Anderson Street, JHB


Kenzhero & Osmic Influencers, entrepreneurs, with hip-hop and #Newtown deeply rooted in their hearts By Trisha Harinath

It’s all happening in #Newtown, Johannesburg , the pulsating heartbeat of downtown Jozi. It is here where the hip and trendy gather to celebrate the arts, from music to poetry and everything in between. And it is here where you will find Kenny aka @djkenzhero and Osmic Menoe – two of Newtown’s favourite boys and ambassadors for this vibey location. For Osmic, founder of @SA_HiphopAwards (South Africa Hip Hop Awards), organiser of @BacktothecitySA, and entrepreneur, amongst other things, Newtown is etched in his soul: “I’ll never leave Newtown… you see round that corner there, that’s where I’m going to be buried,” he says and you immediately sense the love that he has for this place. “It’s like the cousin of Joburg CBD; it also has a rich history and an interesting, never-die, artistic and industrial edge to it,” says Kenzhero, DJ, owner of venue @CoastStudio, owner of SwitchBox, a communications agency, and a curator of things. In fact, to encourage more people to experience Newtown’s charm first-hand, Kenzhero’s Coast Studio is a white blank canvas used for exhibitions, pop-up shops, photo/video shoots and events. Kenny, what would a visitor to one of your music events expect? Eclectic...everything. Favourite place to DJ and why? #Braamfontein (@BraamVibes) and Newtown – there’s always new faces, ‘cos not many people dwell here. It’s a place you come to experience the arts and whatever else you sign up for. Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location outside Kenzhero and Osmic’s offices, Gwigwi Mrwebi Street, Newtown. 10

I am Suede™ By Taryn Gill

@RollingStoneSA writer, and with a twitter description that places him in all three cities, JHB, LA and NY, we like Suede. Not just because he is simply that cool. We found him simply professional. Spotting @ iamsuede™ crossing the road in his hood #Braamfontein on a sunny mid-week morning, going about his business, we thought we’d (literally) jump at the opportunity to talk to this guy. So we stopped him dead in his tracks, stuck a camera in his face and said “Please!” He obliged a short interview and photo shoot right there on the pavement with the professionalism of someone who knows how the game is played. He also took the time to share with us one of his favourite GeePee moments, played off his iPad: a flock of birds flying over his city apartment with the sunset turning the skyline a lovely pink-orange. A daily occurrence, apparently. Suede says: “I’ve spent a decade on the continent working in the African film, television, music and entertainment Industries. Africa is the future.” Best quote: “Holidays don’t exist for entrepreneurs.” Best place to eat? Love Food Thank you Suede, and please keep bringing great artists like #ErykahBadu to African shores. @iamsuede @indistarafrica Shot by Sherilea Gaspar on location @ Juta Street #Braamfontein 11


Buyology major

shopping with zoe molapisi

Zoe’s ultimate, luxe, lust-have list Sourced by Hasmita Amtha


Paige Denim is passionate about delivering highly addictive, trendsetting pieces that are sure to provide you the grand entrance at your next event, like these sequined Emily jeans, R3 750.


Sexy in black, these Burberry leather boots are essentials for this winter. Price on request. 011 325 5923. Shop at Hyde Park Corner.


Businesswoman and jetsetter Zoe Molapisi may divide her time between the lively city of #Lagos and her home in SA, but her heart definitely lies in Joburg. And shopping in Jozi is one of her favourite pastimes when she’s back in #Mzanzi. The fact that so many visitors to SA come here for the shopping doesn’t come as a surprise to Zoe. “There’s a sense of vibrancy to the shops in Joburg. It feels like you could be shopping in Hong Kong or Dubai. Our shops are centralised, open and inviting.

Even though autumn has nestled in, this Huffy heel, R1 739, with gold detail is a must-have. Shop at Dune, Sandton City.


Perfect for when you’re travelling and shopping, this leather Santa Monica Mabery hobo bag from TUMI, R9 999, can be slung across you so that you can dash around easily. 011 783 4636. Shop at Sandton City.


Celebrate your body and treat yourself with beautiful and elegant lingerie, like this Safari matching set, R598 from Satin Candy.


Elegance on your wrist, this TAG Heuer Aquaracer (Automatic) watch, R59 995 is dying to be bought for a special occasion. Available from Picot and Moss. 011 669 0500.

Whether it’s her favourite shopping hot spots including #SandtonCity, #RosebankMall, #HydeParkCorner or #ClearwaterMall, it’s the mixture of must-have international and local brands that gets Zoe excited. “I love African designers,” she enthuses and says she heads straight for Rosebank Mall when looking for local brands including one of her favourites, #SunGoddess, now based in Sandton Square. “Joburg truly is a world-class city – it blends the best of the West with the best of Africa. We travel a lot and when we do, we can’t wait to get back home.” Follow Zoe on: @ByDesignAfrica Shot on location by Sherilea Gaspar at Rosebank Burgundy Fly. Rosebank Mall is home to a number of locally-produced fashion labels and is the perfect stop when looking for something uniquely South African.


An absolute necessity – Spanx! Now available in SA at Luminance in Hyde Park Corner.


A must-have for your winter wardrobe – Lucky Brand’s Charlie Skinnies, R999.95. Available exclusively at Edgars. Try the Melrose Arch store.


Absolute lust-have, we’re in love with this RIVE leather jacket, R11 399 from Tiger of Sweden at Melrose Arch. 011 784 0561


If you’ve seen Kim K strut these and have been dying for a pair of Adriana heels, look no further, available in a variety of colours from red and black to beige and white. R999, from Classic pieces last a lifetime, these Pandora Lovepod rings are definitely pieces you’ll be passing on to the next generation. Price on request., or head to Cresta Shopping Centre.


If you’re on your way to island holiday, don’t forget to pack a bather like this strapless one-piece in a sweet polka dot, R650 from Utique.


Graphic print dresses are hot for winter, like this Anna Scott dress that can be paired with a pair of bright leggings, and you’re sure to have everyone’s attention in that boardroom, R1 899. Available at Stuttafords, in Rosebank. 021 674 6091


Designer eternity rings in yellow, white and rose gold set with diamonds and sapphires from the Jenna Clifford Fine Jewellery collection, from R33 900., or visit Cedar Square Shopping Centre.


There’s nothing like red nails to boost your confidence, we love this Tate red from Nails Inc, R110. Available from Edgars nationwide.


You can never have enough LBDs! This one from Sissy Boy, R649 is perfect for a night out on the town with your bffs. Available from Sissy Boy in Rosebank.


A dress for high tea with the girls, or perfect for date night with your man. This sheer star dress from Diesel, R6 199 will make you feel like a girl in summer. Available from Diesel in Rosebank.



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Local is best! These ballerina pumps from Cinnamon’s autumn/winter 2014 collection are to die for, and so heavenly on your feet especially for those that run around. Prices vary from R800. Shop online at, or head to their store in Parktown, JHB.





In one word – FREE. Cartier’s La Panthère is free to love and full of passion. At the heart of the fragrance crouches the panther, poised to seduce with the sensuous supremacy of a sun-drenched wake. Price depends on size. Shop at Sandton City.




There’s something truly rustic and beautiful about a leather bag, and we adore this Hugo Satchel from Missibaba, R6 250 – it’s perfect to store your tablet and essentials.


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Designs on trendy shopping

BY maria mccloy Images by Sherilea Gaspar


Forget standard furniture stores that bore. Rather get something distinct from Dokter and Misses. This shop is fittingly located in the 73 Juta Street complex in Jozi’s hip hood of #Braamfontein, which is home to Saturday’s #neighbourgoodsmarket as well as coffee shops, fashionable clothing outlets, cool bars like Kitchener’s Carvery Bar, Great Dane and the very glossy and glam new kid on the block Anti Est. Dokter and Misses is a South African design brand known for its strong modernist lines, graphic patterns and clever combination of function and humour. Walk into the modern space, home to the label established by creative husband and wife couple Katy Taplin and Adriaan Hugo and check out tables, lights, storage solutions, highconcept furniture and art-design as well ceramics, mirrors and other conceptual work that supports the current range. Highly desirable items of theirs like the LA LA Drinks Cabinet and Kassena Server have been shown at the annual design exhibition Southern Guild who described them as being “Inspired by the idiosyncrasies of their surroundings, their modernist furniture pieces with angular lines have a boldly upbeat energy that makes them immediately desirable and very, very cool.” Just like #Jozi. Katy says their items “show a common theme: pieces can be best described as modernist, with strong construction lines and bold colours that form graphic shapes and spaces. The work is conceptually smart – juxtaposed ideas that would usually clash come together to form innovative wholes.” 68 Juta Street, Braamfontein I 011 403 1024 I

Warm & Glad & Rad

Located in a place so random, between bathroom, furniture and car stores, in Randburg (well Craighall) of all places, Warm & Glad is an unexpected treat. It’s an awesome Wi-Fi’d space that attracts a cool, laid back crowd who want a coffee or to eat delicious food, buy cool books and vinyl or set up office for the day in an inspiring space. Owner Jonathan Shaw who has been running #warmandglad for the past two years says he opened it because “I needed it. I wanted a place like Warm & Glad in which I could hang and couldn’t quite find it.” Now it exists and he suggests you “pop through for amazing breakfasts, sandwiches, salads, pastas and small plates for lunch. We have a cracker wine, whisky and craft beer list as well.” What’s even better is that it isn’t just a restaurant, it’s a retail location. And their product offering is so unique you’ll make it a shopping destination: “The imported books, magazines and vinyls are our passion. We have some of the greatest books and magazines in town.”

Joburg’s thriving fashion scene has spawned a number of must-have brands and Maria McCloy is definitely one of the city’s favourites. Like many people shaping Jozi’s style aesthetic, Maria isn’t a native. This Lesotho-born accessories queen has forged her way from being an unknown to being adored by the city’s trendy fashion editors, celebs and fashion-lovers alike. Catch Maria every Sunday at #marketonmain at #artsonmain in the city’s trendy #Maboneng Precinct. Until then, read on to check out some of her favourite shopping destinations.

Last year they diversified even further by opening RAD next door as they noted there was appetite for great menswear. “We had some success selling SUPER sunglasses and Converse sneakers in our bookstore space, so when the shop down the passage became available, we jumped at the opportunity of splitting the retail and opening a clothing and accessories store. We sell sunglasses, grooming and beauty products (Baxter of California and Lulu & Marula), high-end sneakers from the likes of Nike, Converse and Adidas, plus denim, and more recently a range of women’s apparel.” 357 Jan Smuts Ave, Randburg I 011 781 0455 I @WarmGlad

Follow Maria on: @MariaPodesta Picture supplied by Maria McCloy




By Kelly Fung Images by Sherilea Gaspar

Marianne Fassler Leopard Frock

When you walk past the ceramic cow and leopard-printed car outside and into the stained glass doors of the Leopard Frock workshop and retail space in the tree-lined high-end neighbourhood of long established mansions, Saxonwold, you’ll be dazzled by the variety of rolls of textured materials which will be soon made into something magical, the sparkles of saris and chandeliers, and by the colourful walls that host a mixture of art legends like #Tretchikoff and indigenous African art.  All of the above belong to a charismatic, super creative, inspired, inspiring fashion legend, the redhead dreadlocked SA fashion icon #MarianneFassler. “I live my brand; I am my brand. My identity is reflected through my brand,” says Fassler who makes clothes suitable for a busy woman as well as items for special occasions and, of course weddings. “When you buy Fassler, you buy into a well-developed sense of self and identity, the exuberance of colour and print and the global appeal of the brand.” She may be a regular feature on the fashion scene and in the pages of all the glossies, but boundary-pushing Fassler is no fashion flash in the pan, having been in fashion for more than two decades. Africa may be all the rage, but wax prints, bead work and #Seshoeshoe have long been part of her repertoire. No wonder ELLE South Africa’s editor Jackie Burger said she has long admired Fassler as a pioneer of a signature aesthetic that pays tribute to our cultural heritage. You can purchase the designs for yourself. As Fassler says, they are “superbly-crafted, interesting and comfortable. I appeal to a wide spectrum of women who love individuality, identity, craftsmanship and diversity in their wardrobe.” 011 646 8387 I I


What Makes Maboneng? It goes without saying that a stop in at the rapidly transforming #Maboneng Precinct is on everyone’s to-do list when they visit Jozi. One can’t help but marvel at the ever-growing village-like area that lies to the east of inner city Johannesburg. But what is it that makes this privately-developed urban neighbourhood so intriguing, multilayered and different from any other regeneration projects? We think it has something to with the juxtaposition between large, well-known businesses and the little ones that are just starting out, both mutually benefitting each other. The clever mix is what makes the precinct textured and continually fascinating. Here is our guide to stops that should definitely be on your itinerary. 17

To Market We Go

One of the draw cards that keeps people coming back for more is the Sunday @MarketOnMainJHB (open from 10am to 3pm and also at night every first Thursday of the month), a hit for anyone who drops in. A hypnotising collection of stands and products with sellers offering locally produced clothing, accessories, furniture and every kind of food your heart could desire. Make sure you stop by the Pappou’s Chilli stand where a family of beautiful Greek girls have bottled their grandfather’s age-old recipe (instagram: pappous_chilli I 076 671 3224). Next make your way to Li Cuisine where a mother and son offer a great range of Chinese cuisine: spring rolls, dim sum, buns and a new kind of sushi. Then, if you can make your way past the #JHBCulinaryandPastrySchool stand (011 024 5277 I,without wanting to gobble up everything in sight, head to the upstairs section where you’ll find rails of locally made and vintage clothing. Visit Second Attitude Vintage Fashion for a cool mix of second-hand gems, leather boots and sunnies. 011 447 1881. @MOON_Collection by Maxine Tromp is another one for the fashion lovers with a range of trend-based clothing at great prices.

Street Buzz

If you can peel yourself away from the market buzz, exit the area and make your way past Canteen (011 334 5947), the little cafe hiding behind the olive trees and galleries towards the entrance on Fox Street. You may want to make a stop at the guys selling coconuts. They skilfully cut off the top and hand you a straw to drink the tasty juice. Once you leave the Arts on Main building and re-enter Fox street, you’ll find yourself smack-bang in the middle of the neighbourhood action with artists at work graffiti-ing walls, shoppers, bike-riders and kids learning to play the guitar as part of the Sidewalk Sessions (@sidewalkjhb) run by Kelly Grevler. 072 545 0462 Dotted along this road are multiple little cafes and restaurants, each bringing their own flavour to Maboneng. If you’re after something a little different, look for #LittleAddisCafe a tiny, almost passable room that has become a local favourite. Owner and cook Kassa, serves up his well-known and sought after trays of traditional and hearty Ethiopian specialities. Little Addis is open from Tuesday to Sunday. 082 683 8675

What’s In the Box?

If you haven’t visited the Maboneng Precinct in a while, or have yet to step foot in the streets, you’ll notice a whole lot of shipping containers piling up in along the sidewalks. No, they aren’t used for storage as one would initially think. Instead, they’ve been cleverly used as retail space. This means, don’t just walk past these giant boxes, have a look inside... The Whippet Cycling Company (@WhippetCycles) utilises their limited container space in a brilliant way: a little store with a big passion for cycling run by Emile Kruger. It’s all about re-purposing and customising bicycles. 074 842 2012 Look out for Soul Souvlaki, a new spot and one of our favourites. The tiny restaurant sells traditional Greek pitas with lamb, chicken or halloumi and the energy is contagious. Chat to owner Dino to book the roof section of his re-purposed container for parties and private functions. 072 714 2390 Right next door, dessert is served. @CocobelDesserts offers frozen yogurt and granitas from their customised food truck located on the corner of Albrecht Road and Fox Street. 084 692 8366

Curious About Curiocity

Our favourite story of the neighbourhood has to be the brand spanking new @Curiocityhostel. Maboneng’s go-to guy, Bheki Dube’s (@bhekidup) latest project is the opening of this backpacker hostel that offers affordable accommodation. The cool and carefully-designed #Curiocitybackpackers offers a comfortable stay from as little as R150 a night, where guests have the option of both dorms and private rooms. The guy is passionate about giving tourists an authentic Johannesburg experience and is a shining example of the young entrepreneurial minds the precinct possesses. Curiocity, always filled with young travellers, is really like a community with artlined walls, pool tables in the common room area, a garden to grow veggies and an adjoining shisa nyama stand, the second branch of the well-known Sha’p Braai stand that makes for an added true Joburg experience selling braaid meat, chicken, chakalaka and pap. 011 592 0515 I

A sweet new-comer to the road is Yogiberry, yoghurt bar and curry cafe. At first, an odd combination but on closer inspection, the combo works! 072 636 2876

Before you’ve spent all your cash, remember to look out for art deco-inspired furniture makers at @Brakfurniture, again designed and produced locally, which gets them a thumbs up from us. 011 123 4567 I In amongst the retail spaces, offices, foot traffic and larger gallery spaces, the small Rubixcube Gallery and collaborative studio can be accidently missed but is worth seeking out, as young artist and music producer, Fred Clarke’s creative projects and collaborations can be viewed and appreciated. 072 117 2946 I

Not Forgetting...

Don’t forget to make a stop at Smack! Republic Brewing Company (@SMACKRepublic) to see the process of making #artisanalbeer. It’s open Saturdays and Sundays to the public but look out for info on their special brewery tour Saturday,s and food pairing evenings. 084 491 0779 I Johannesburg’s only truly #independentcinema, The Bioscope is definitely worth a visit. Check out their scheduled listings for what’s on, usually screening different local films, independent films and documentaries. If you’re lucky, you can also catch local musicians performing in the intimate space. @bioscopetonight is open every night of the week. 011 039 7306 I


Get Walking

Learn more about the inner city of Johannesburg with Main Street Walks (@mainstreetwalks), a cool walking tour concept that leads an interactive exploration of the area. #AREA3 have also teamed up with the Precinct and offers free public art tours each Sunday where people can get a free education on the beautiful artworks that line the streets of our complex city. 072 880 9583 I

How to get there: From the M1 Highway, keep left where the M1 forks onto the M2 towards the City, Durban and Selby. Follow the signs for M2 Durban and take the Joe Slovo turn off. Keep right and then take the first exit on your right into Market Street. As the road joins Market Street, keep right until you reach a set of traffic lights. Go over the intersection and join Commissioner Street (you will see signs indicating Arts on Main here). Turn right into Albrecht Street and then your first right will be Fox Street. For more information on this up and coming and ever transforming district, visit or follow @mabonengevents

the jozi

By Kelly Fung Images by Sherilea Gaspar

SCENE t of beautiful galleries tha Joburg boasts an array y’s cit to stop and admire the provide ideal places Preston artistic talent By Sharon MY FAVOURITES WAM ntein, close to the iconic rtMuseum in #Braamfo The newly-built @WitsA rdinary collection of , is home to an extrao Nelson Mandela Bridge st and Central Africa We from rks wo l substantia African art, including e to the lively WAM hom o als th African art. It’s as well as historical Sou d enjoy a bite to eat. congregate to chat an Café, where students o – Migrant Journeys yaw ezin July 2014: Ng On show 10 April to 20 rant labour in mig e fundamental role of Focusing on the uniqu modern South Africa. burg | 011 717 1000 Braamfontein, Johannes 1 Jan Smuts Avenue, useum @WitsArtM RY EVERARD READ GALLE commercial art where I live is the oldest Round the corner from ous for its fine fam It’s y. ller Ga d Rea rard th African artists. gallery in Africa, The Eve Sou y rar po tem dern and con rnational works by prominent mo inte of n o boasts a fine selectio of local artists. Although the gallery als rs ree ca the p elo dev ains to artworks, its mission rem 1970s and is a k was erected in the late The building in Roseban design. th African post-modern celebrated icon of Sou | 011 788 4805 ebank, Johannesburg 6 Jellicoe Avenue, Ros d ea erardR @Ev GALLERY MOMO wn North, this Read Gallery in Parkto Located near the Everard porary African tem rs a selection of fine con trends, and world-class gallery offe new g itin exc ting mo itself on pro en artists twe art. The gallery prides be s tion ora logue and collab encouraging artistic dia from around the world. obeni May, 2014: Blessing Ng On show 10 April to 19 ess – In his State of Madn 7 I wn North | 011 327 324 52, 7th Avenue, Parkto RY STANDARD BANK GALLE exhibition space tional non-commercial I enjoy visiting this inspira s by local and ion ibit exh file pro h hig CBD. Its llery is one of located in the vibrant ga The . hile ke the trip worthw of the local art international artists ma am cre venues and hosts the ist of the Year Jozi’s principal fine art Art ng You k Ban ard eted Stand acclaimed). world as well as the cov ally tion rna winners are now inte 20th Century by Award (many of these l works ous for bringing origina asso to Pic The gallery is also fam lo Pab d an o Chagall, Jean Mir exceptional se European artists Marc tho of s. I’ve enjoyed every one South African audience exhibitions, too. annesburg d Frederick Streets, Joh Corner Simmonds an dardBankArt tan @S m 011 631 4467 | Stand


Daleahs Eatery | This tiny cafe is as cute as the owner, right across the road from Post, Daleahs makes you feel at home instantly. We like her varied menu and smoothies. 6 De Beer Street Braamfontein | 011 403 0243 | @DaleahsEatery

W WHAT’S TRENDING NO CIRCA Gallery in Rosebank, this site the Everard Read Located directly oppo beautiful building! st to explore. It’s such a iconic art gallery is a mu ce of South African pie ing nd sta ed as an out Internationally recognis aluminium fin ised in feature is an anod architecture, Circa’s ma s just as much, if ate ner ge n sig de d us form an display inside. façade. Its conspicuo on s form the magnificent art al artworks not more interest than tion ep use there are always exc porary art tem But do go inside, beca con of s ion ibit intersperses exh gnificent ma on display. The gallery The ns. atio y and scientific install with human technolog look at even a ing tak rth wo o als apex is Darwin Room at Circa’s tures. And if you can d for workshops and lec though it’s mainly use s, the view from the g here when the sun set spend an early evenin taking. upstairs deck is breath a | ebank | 011 788 4805 2 Jellicoe Avenue, Ros @CIRCAonJellicoe RY THE GOODMAN GALLE st famous art galleries, unts is one of Jozi’s mo ha ite our fav my of e On g works by artists from It is famous for displayin The Goodman Gallery. age in dialogue eng t tha d other countries South Africa, Africa an n 40 artists including t. It is home to more tha with the African contex entridge and mK illia #W ries SA lumina internationally-renowned ally-based South tion rna ll as a number of inte #DavidGoldblatt as we nt as it wishes to help y also supports new tale African artists. The galler al contemporary tion rna inte ation of local and a regular basis. create the next gener on ce to pop in and explore artists. So it’s a great pla 788 1113 , Johannesburg | 011 163 Jan Smuts Avenue ry alle _G an dm @Goo

Post | On your walk through Braamfontein (and yes, we said walk) stop in at Post, the original coffee shop on the famous Juta Road for a flat white and a bit of breakfast, we recommend the chocolate chip flapjacks. 70 Juta Street Braamfontein | 072 248 2078 |

Love Food | Walk on further a few blocks to Ameshoff Street where you can peek in to Love Food, an adorable deli-kitchen that serves a delicious, freshly prepared harvest table with a different menu every day. The restaurant is open from Monday to Friday 7.30am to 4pm but get there early – food is usually cleared out just after lunchtime! 4 Ameshoff Street, Braamfontein, | | @lovefood_cafe Father Coffee | The coolest roastery and espresso bar around, Father Coffee offers the perfect cup to get you through the day. We love their attention to design and friendly baristas. And while you’re there, get the full Joburg experience and try the Skhotado; Ultramel custard, espresso and a shot of Redbull. Shop no. 2 73 Juta Street Braamfontein | | @fathercoffee

Crucial to visit in the area are the art galleries showcasing work by both master and young artist. Stop by the contemporary Stevenson Gallery at number 62 Juta Street where you’ll be able to see many of the greats. A few metres away you will find Room, part of the Urban Art Projects ( and the Kalashnikovv Gallery, which prides itself on showing the young artists of the city and regularly holds events and initiatives to support them ( Then, while you’re at it, head to the WITS Art Museum which houses a brilliant collection of historical and contemporary African Art. Just a few blocks before the Nelson Mandela Bridge, the grand building can be found on the corner of Bertha and Jorissen Streets.



Braamfontein has become the hub, go-to destination for party-goers of all ages where you’re bound to find the right razzle for you. For the best experience of the night life here, we recommend you take a quick cab ride to and from the area to avoid drinking and driving. Kitcheners | the second oldest pub in Joburg, this age-old haunt, famous or rather, infamous bar, should be your first stop. It’s become tradition to experience the one-of-a-kind energy of the place where some of the country’s best DJs and bands continue to perform every weekend. Corner of Juta and De Beer Streets, Braamfontein | 011 403 0166 | @BarKitcheners Great Dane | Right next door to the cornerstone of inner city nightlife is Great Dane, another local favourite. The bar is best known for its hotdogs served all night and its dance-till-you-drop music. Entrance fees range depending on the party but well worth it when you get to witness regular champagne showers and dancing on the tables. Did we mention the floor is made up of 5 cent coins? 5 De Beer Street, Braamfontein |011 403 1136 | @fknGreatDane

TRACK A LITTLE OFF THE BEATEN KIM SACKS GALLERY offers a selection of on Jan Smuts Avenue This commercial space ican tribal and folk Afr ing lud s and crafts, inc contemporary local art iture and more. amics, basketware, furn art, wood carvings, cer 5804 , Parkwood | 011 447 153 Jan Smuts Avenue

Anti Est. | New to the Braamfontein area is Anti Est a sophisticated, upmarket bar that is all about forgetting everything you already know and un-learning. Sound fun? It’s a great alternative to the other more casual bars of the neighbourhood serving cocktails and craft beer. De Beer Street, Braamfontein | 074 187 2421 The Orbit | The hottest new find in the city, The Orbit Live Music and Bistro Club finds its roots in a small Jazz Social Club born in Troyeville, Johannesburg, in the early 2000s. The venue was an intimate place where musicians and jazz aficionados could hang out and listen to live jazz performances and recordings till late at night over a drink. Now, the concept has been brought back, this time in Braamfontein, as a one-of-a-kind and much-needed platform for jazz musicians and lovers. Check out their website for upcoming concert and programme information. 81 De Korte street, Braamfontein | 011 339 6645 | | @JazzOrbit

ART AFRICA e trove of African in Parkview is a treasur Hidden in Tyrone Avenue y recycled items rar po ing stunning contem arts and crafts, includ nt to stock up on wa I en wh e her d ups. I hea from local self-help gro rics. fab n ica Afr tues and bright sculptures, wooden sta

And | Situated right next to The Alexander Theatre, another well-known nightlife spot, the venue makes its debut as the new club to hit on in the party circuit. It’s underground, gritty and nothing like the glitzy clubs you may be used to. The focus is its music where it aims to produce a platform for SA’s best electronic musical talent. With their special, imported Void Acoustics Air Motion Sound System, you can’t help but want to check out the hype. 36 Stiemans Street, Braamfontein | 011 447 7996 | | @ANDClubZA

| 011 486 2052 62 Tyrone Ave, Parkview In the mood to drop a bit of moola? These places can help you out...

Neighbourgoods | A market made famous by its inner-city energy and synonymous with the Braamfontein lifestyle. It’s open every Saturday from 9 am to 3 pm and sells a great mix of delicious food, vintage and locally branded clothing, jewellery and chilli tequila. Not only a place to spend a bit of money, it’s also become somewhat of a meeting point for the weekend ahead. Expect to find it bustling and bursting at the seams with all kinds of people, young and old. 73 Juta Street Braamfontein | 011 403 0413| | @NeighboutMarket


The Oriental Plaza | It may not be new or trendy, but The Oriental Plaza, slightly off the Braamfontein path is an ageold and significant shopping experience you have to try when in the area. The centre, just over the Nelson Mandela bridge, oozes rich, cultural heritage and it’s easy to spend the entire day getting stuck in each and every store finding things you didn’t know you needed. Go here to find fabric, clothing, shoes, and the best samoosas in the city. 38 – 60 Bree street, Fordsburg | 011 838 6760 |



Graffiti and Street Art in the City of Gold Jo Buitendach, Inner City lover and guide tells you more about her passion, graffiti and street art in Johannesburg. Book an inner-city tour at Images supplied by Derek Smith

A skateboarding budgie, a small blue dog, and a menacing orange bunny watch me from the walls of timeworn industrial buildings. Words snake their way over the city scape, around lamp posts, repeated over and over again, like a multi-coloured wave. This may sound a little crazy, but this is my Joburg: A city full of vivid and complex street art and graffiti. Cities can be grey, dreary and monotonous, but not Johannesburg, now home to a thriving and fast growing graffiti culture. Perhaps it was the degeneration of our city a few decades ago that left a creative void for graffiti artists to fill, or maybe it is the popularity of graffiti internationally. but in recent years the graffiti scene in the Inner City has exploded. We are fast becoming known as a graffiti destination with some of the world’s top artists coming to paint our walls, and visitors coming into Johannesburg are doing so, just to experience our amazing painted city. Often found in the grittiest parts of the city, graffiti isn’t for everyone, but if you do decide to leave your comfort zone to explore you will not be disappointed. Johannesburg has some amazingly talented artists who have decorated our streets with colours, imagery, stickers, stencils and so much more. Graffiti is pretty subjective and everyone has their own favourites. My pick of Jozi artists are Rasty, Bias, Mars, Tapz, Love and Fin. Once you start to know and understand the graffiti scene, it opens up the city on whole new level. You start to recognise certain artists, their style, preferred colours and tags (specific signatures and a huge part of the graffiti subculture). My interest (now obsession) with graffiti grew from doing graffiti tours. I run a company called Past Experiences that does walking and public transport tours of the Joburg Inner City. We aim in everything we do to show the real Joburg, its people, culture and art. We also try to always include the communities that we work in on some level. Sometimes they provide a meal, or we support their businesses but in the case of the graffiti we really try to work with and benefit the local graffiti community. Probably one of the most unique facets of Past Experiences Graffiti and Street Art Tours is that they are done with the involvement and support of the local graffiti industry. They let us know when they have new artworks or pieces done, they join as guest stars on public tours, sharing with us what it is like to be a graffiti artist. We also try to promote their art, act as a contact point for interested people and we have even done a few graffiti workshops where you get to try your hand with a spray can, taught by some of the city’s most talented artists. Graffiti tours are the perfect way to experience graffiti for the first time, learn more about the history of it internationally and locally and hopefully start to understand the subculture. Kids and families love it and we have even had a number of school groups join us. If you are interested in graffiti, one of the top spots to visit in the city is definitely Newtown under the highway. A fantastic place to photograph, the area is covered in graffiti. Famous for the pillars that are painted yearly in the Back to the City Hiphop festival (@BacktothecitySA) the graffiti is now also moving down the nearby alleyways due to construction work in the area. Newtown is also home to the Two by Two Graffiti Studio, an art gallery that does graffiti workshops, shows graffiti inspired work by top artists, sells spray paint and some great art supplies and books. Another option is Braamfontein which boasts some fantastic graffiti by local and international artists, centred around the Grayscale Gallery, a supplier of an extensive range of imported spray paint. Graffiti brings colour to areas, forgotten by many. It takes art to communities that don’t have easy access to art galleries and it adds another dimension to an already fantastic and intricate city. My advice: start looking at your city and graffiti in a different way, appreciate its colour, imagery and dialogue. Start your graffiti adventure now.




On the 16th floor of The Reef Hotel right in the heart of Johannesburg’s original urban environment and business district, you’ll find this noteworthy rooftop spot, an ideal mix of old-architecture and modern urban living. Elevate opens for sundowners and on Friday’s and Saturdays depending on the event being held. The bar offers all of the glitz and glam you’d want from a night out with its illuminated details and art-deco finishes and also throws in a hard-to-top 360 degree view of the city, we can think of nothing better. How to find it: Find Elevate bar on the 16th Floor of The Reef Hotel in the heart of Joburg’s old CBD. 58 Anderson street Marshalltown, Johannesburg 011 689 1010 | @elevate_rooftop |

Studio Studio

Although not a bar, this rooftop studio space was founded by two young photographers and definitely worth a visit. It’s really more like a hub of creativity with photographers and like-minded, young creatives working together on exciting projects and events. The best thing about the space is the large, outside rooftop area that has been used for many a music video and hair-raising party. It may be one of the coolest rooftops to visit but you’ll have to keep your ear to the ground on this one as the studio space isn’t open to the public on a regular basis; its Joburg ‘underground’ partying at its best. Make sure you catch one of their gatherings when they do come up; usually an assortment of the city’s best young musos kicking it back. They always come loaded with stories and are not to be missed. How to find it: Slightly further up than Arts on Main, Studio Studio can be found on the 4th floor of 308 Fox Street Maboneng 2001, Johannesburg. 011 614 6117 |

ROOFTOPS Living in Joburg means embracing the busy city in work and in play, and what better way to appreciate our surroundings than to sit and enjoy a cocktail or two in a sky-high venue overlooking the city’s beauty. These rooftops are our pick of the best... By Kelly Fung Images by Sherilea Gaspar

Katy’s Palace Bar

From one CBD to the next; the latest edition to the rooftop series is Katy’s Palace Bar, an exotic new spot that overlooks Joburg from another side. Once you’ve stepped inside this cool warehouse space phenomenally decorated in wooden arches and a collection of fine art and objects from around the world, you will never suspect that you’re in the right in the middle of Sandton. The rooftop is available to hire for private functions but diarise the first Sunday of each month as it also opens for lunch from 10am to 6pm. How to find it: Set in the middle of Sandton in the interior decor hub of Kramerville, you can find Katy’s on the top Floor, 6 Desmond Street, Kramerville, Sandton. 072 607 4235 | @KatysPalaceBar |

The Living Room

Consider this venue the perfect place to hang out on a Sunday afternoon, this rooftop bar and Eco Cafe is a breath of fresh air with its sprawling hammocks, wooden decks and chilled music. Right in the heart of Maboneng, this multifunctional space overlooks the city’s marvels but simultaneously promotes a ‘green’ lifestyle. The Living Room is an urban-eco oasis and open from Thursday to Saturday from 12pm – 9pm and for their famous Sunday sessions till 8pm. How to find it: To get to The Living Room, enter The Main Change building on 20 Kruger Street, Maboneng, and catch the elevator right to the rooftop on the 5th floor. 061 402 2843 |


The only word to describe this illustrious rooftop venue would be; sexy. With its luxurious day beds, glittering lights and glass walls allowing you to look over the city of gold and in turn, making you feel like gold, you can’t help but refer to the place as sexy. Placed at the highest point in Braamfontein, this roof top bar shows Joburg in its sophisticated form and truly celebrates the spectacle that is the inner city skylines. The exclusive bar is available to rent for private functions but also opens to the public for special events. Make sure you catch one and head on up for a magical sunset and then continue to party away as it comes alive at night.


How to find it: 41 De Korte Street, South Point Towers, Braamfontein, Johannesburg. 011 403 1833 | @randlords |

NIGHT LIFE #ourtop8 By Stefanie Jason & images by LeeRoy Jason

Babylon the Bar

Beefcake Burger Bar

Studio Studio


Hei Café

The Orbit Jazz Club

King Kong

Jo’anna Melt Bar

The first time I stepped onto Babylon’s dancefloor a couple of years back I was met by a burly, vested man in sequin booty shorts. He was on the floor - gyrating with his legs in the splits - I was motionless, enviously staring down at him. Two years later, as Jozi undergoes immense changes like its skyline (think Sandton and Jeppestown), Babylon’s atmosphere is still as raw and in-your-face as I left it. Based on the successful gay club in Pretoria, the disco ball-lit nightclub - which opens from Wednesday to Saturday - also throws lesbian parties once a month, with Babylon’s manager Michael Botha insisting that “it’s open to all: gays and straight people - everyone can come.” 198 Oxford Road Illovo Muse Centre Illovo Gauteng, Facebook: Babylon The Bar,, @BabylonTheBar.

If you’re a fan of glam, OTT drag shows and good food, then Beefcakes Burger Bar’s just right. Don’t be fooled by its baby pink and white flamingoes and sweet looking topless men, the 1950s style bar is a fierce joint. Besides the pricey food menu, the location – in a mall – and the bunch of straight women who at times make it the venue of choice for bachelorettes, Beefcakes is fun for #drinksnight. Keeping in line with its retro rollerskate diner theme, the sassy venue serves up dishes with names like ‘Muscle Mary Burger’, has Tuesday’s dedicated to Bitchy Bingo and the drag queens might offer some stiff competition if you’re trying to #serveface on Instagram. Address: Illovo Mews, 198 Oxford Road, Illovo. Facebook: Beefcakes Joburg

What I like about Studio Studio is that it doesn’t only exist as a work and event space, it’s also a reflection of Maboneng Precinct once grimy, urban past. “It’s industrial, unscathed by the general aesthetic of the mass renovations occurring in the area,” Studio Studio pioneers Chris Saunders and Justin McGee once said to As it currently the undergoes a metamorphosis and changes ownership, the venue started up in 2013 by the two photographers as an office and photo-studio space. Studio Studio has since then grown to become a venue for some of Jozi’s most popular events like the monthly brunch party The Wknd Social and house-music gig Butterfly Culture. 308 Fox Street, 2001 Johannesburg. 011 614 6117, Facebook: Studio Studio,

Zen Night Club was around before revered and outlandish musicians like Spoek Mathambo, BLK JKS and legendary DJ Felix Laband, and more, descend on its stage for the LimPOP event in late March. But ever since then this metal surfaced, industrial-like dance hall has gained an eccentric indie following while maintaining its loyal student audience that tend to frequent the precinct. This 100% black owned establishment also plays host to its regular features like the monthly hip hop and R&B party Reverse Sessions, hosted by DJ Papercutt, a reggae night on the first Saturday of every month and the weekly Carrot Funk Sundays, where bands like soul outfit Impande Core perform. 293 Fox street, 2000 Johannesburg, @ZenNightclubRSA, Facebook: ZenNightclubRSA,

To be honest, I only recently heard about Hei Café. A publicist friend added me to her one of many plus ones to check out new acoustic band 8 Bars Short’s listening session at the neatly tucked away venue in a Braamfontein alleyway. And let’s say that ever since that warm April’s evening, I’ve branded the quirky nook – with its clowder of cats, secondhand clothing rail and stacked books, as well as delicious fresh food and Sunday market – my new home. Selfbranded as “Africa’s first social cafe”, Hei Café hosts parties and gatherings thrown by an eclectic mix people, musicians and DJs, and might be a breathe of fresh air (literally) from the overcrowded clubs just around the way. 10 Melle Street, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, Facebook: Hei Café, @hei_cafe

Braamfontein is home to many things – cyclists, students and Kitcheners, and generally all things hipster – but in recent years it’s hardly been a home to jazz, until the Orbit’s arrival this year. With a line-up that impresses many a music lover and jazzophile, this twofloor venue might be what Jozi has been missing for a long time. It has so far featured musicians like the Brother Moves On – who have played a jazz set – and bandleaders Feya Faku, Mlungisi Gegana and many more. Besides a bistro with an impressive menu, The Orbit - which might be a bit pricey with its standard R100 cover charge to listen to music one the second floor - also has R40 jam sessions every Tuesday. The venue also hosts free midweek matinees where you can watch budding Wits University students play music. 81 De Korte St, Johannesburg, Facebook: The Orbit Home of Jazz,

Unlike the colossal gorilla from the 1930s blockbuster movie “King Kong”, the eponymous venue, in the heart of Jozi’s urban jungle, is perfectly perched on a Troyeville building. With its steel-framed windows, brick walls and tin roof, the factory-like feel to King Kong blends well into its industrial surrounds. From private parties to massive blow outs and intimate ones, like jazz drummer Tumi Mogorosi’s performance in 2013, King Kong’s events are diverse and attracts an equally diverse crowd. Having opened its doors only three years ago, the space has also hosted some of the city’s most memorable gigs, such as performances by US DJ Freddie Joachim presented by WeHeartBeat, and The End is the Beginning event, which featured The Brother Moves On, BLK JKS and Spoek Mathambo, and more. 6 Verwey street, Troyeville, 083 875 6386, Facebook: KingKong Jozi

This venue is new to me but advocates of the “Melville is making a comeback”, swear by Jo’anna’s nostalgic bar-jukebox culture. And I kind of see why. Chilled out in the afternoon but busy in the evening, this bar is a metaphor for the double life that Melville’s 7th street has led over the last decade. With its youthful crowd and trendy bar decor, Jo’anna works for after-drinks with friends or colleagues (okay, and even maybe for a young #turnup). But if you’re having a relaxed, grown evening, and don’t really want to get shoved around on a Saturday night, Jo’anna might not be right for you. Otherwise the barmen are friendly and the cocktails too. 7 7th Street Melville, 2195 Johannesburg, Facebook: Jo’Anna Melt Bar, 072 733 5966



POPPY RAJA Make your way to Melville and sample a taste of the melting pot that is Jozi cuisine By Taryn Gill

Recommended way to end a weekend in Johannesburg? Get yourself to the famous 7th Street Melville on any given Sunday. Take the corner at 2nd Ave, tip your car guard generously and head into Poppy’s. Sundowners of your choice will be served with a plate of peri-peri prawns, home-cooked lamb curry or heart-warming oxtail with all the trimmings. In fact, order it all and let the table tuck in. As the evening settles, so the jazz heats up and before you know it, the DJ has gone into R&B overdrive and the restaurant turns into a packed dance floor, ensuring that you don’t leave before midnight with sore feet and a happy heart. “Durban is the place I learnt to appreciate different spices, where I was exposed to good curry. Cape Town exposed me to Cape Malay cuisine,” says owner, Poppy Raja. “People say Cape Town is the foodie capital of SA, but for me it’s Jozi that is the gastronomic capital, the epicentre of great food experiences.” Many restaurateurs like Poppy thrive in the energetic culture of the city by simply understanding exactly what their clientele want and being able to deliver it consistently. If you want it fresh, simple and flavoursome, @poppysmelville can deliver a few Portuguese classics. Watch the chalkboard for additions like Durban curries and Cape Malay dishes, all coming together in a typically Jozi melting pot on the vibey pavement of one of the city’s most famous streets. Swing by anytime. Cnr 7th Street and 2nd Ave, Melville I 011 482 8775 @poppysmelville Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location at Poppy’s, cnr 2nd Ave and the infamous 7th Street, Melville



DAVID HIGGS “After getting off the Gautrain, it took me about 30 minutes to decide that I wanted to live here” By Taryn Gill

VICKY CREASE Award-winning caterer, TV show host and mover and shaker on the #Jozi food scene By Trisha Harinath

Instagram queen @vickycrease, visual genius, immensely creative, an eye for detail, superbly talented, intelligent, funny, generous, friendly and gorgeous… the list goes on. Add to that the oh-so-decadent dishes that are crafted by @VixCrease and her team, and it’s no wonder that this internationallyrecognised #Jozi girl is one of this city’s finest. Looking at the innovative menus and the plated dishes themselves, it is no wonder there is so much love for Vicky both at home and on an international scale. But don’t just take our word for it…the proof is in the pudding. Take one look at her Instagram profile to get inspired this fab Jozi foodie. Describe yourself in a sentence? Better still, a hashtag: #culinarystylequeen If the bunny chow belongs to Durban, what is Gauteng’s signature dish? Definitely the signature chesa nyama which is a traditional coal-burning braai prepared streetside with cuts of fresh meat, flamegrilled to perfection with a side of pap and chakalaka. Describe your 24-hour food journey in Gauteng: Wake up and head for a gourmet breakfast of flaky croissants and freshly ground coffee at the #44Stanley precinct, then onto the Chinese market and Oriental Plaza to source authentic ingredients for dinner. Classic Italian light lunch at Mastrantonio in Illovo and then high tea at @TheSaxonHotel, which is the ultimate gourmet treat. Signature cocktails and sushi at the new #LifeGrandCafe in Waterfall Estate where the view and vibe are phenomenal. Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location at Vicky Crease Catering and Events, at the heart of the Rosebank shopping district

Well-known molecular gastronomy chef, culinary wizard, Best Chef in SA, courtesy of Eat Out magazine, 2011… We could go on. @TheSaxonHotel’s executive chef David Higgs, who was given a carte blanche brief to change this prestigious hotel’s entire food and beverage offering, also grows a herb and vegetable garden at the hotel to supply the fresh food needs of his highly-desirable dining destination, 500. In his spare time he has completed his first gruelling @AbsaCapeEpic, the Tour de France of mountain biking in SA, lasting eight days and covering a harsh 700km. David is MTB verskrik (South African for passionate) and his energy for anything food and cycling is palpable. When we meet him, he’s rushing between appointments and we are standing in the midday sun perched above Jozi in his garden, one of the best I have seen and I’m green with envy. The shot is taken in under five minutes. He is leaner now, funny and frank, talking quickly about what he thinks. We discuss his acquiring one of our famous GeePee T-shirts, and my impression of the chef is one of a man passionate about this place, his vibe distinctly similar to that of this pumping city. Lucky for us Joburgers, David’s move from Cape Town to head up the team at the Saxon is working superbly, and what I want next is to book a highly-coveted seat at David’s chef’s table, in the heart of his kitchen. “You can really see and feel what’s going on, it creates a lovely vibe.” Yes, we believe you. What’s your food philosophy? Clean flavours, you must be able to taste what it is. Spontaneity is very important in my style of cooking. I cook from the gut. Too much planning kills my spirit. What’s the plan for your herb garden? The garden supplies #fivehundred with especially-chosen varietals of herbs and veg, which change all the time, ready for the plate from morning to evening. Food markets you don’t miss on the weekend? Definitely @Maboneng Precinct, @ArtsonMain for its diversity, so much going on with roof top bars, exhibits... and of course, the food #davidhiggs The Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa I 36 Saxon Road, Sandhurst 011 292 6000 | | @david_higgs Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location at David Higgs’ food garden.



the great

Cooking meat out on an open fire is a national pastime in South Africa – and it’s taken very seriously. Two seasoned Joburgers face off on the ultimate chesa nyama spot

FACE-OFF By Stefanie Jason Image by LeeRoy Jason

Ariane Besson “I have very little guilt about food. I like to have a good coffee and something sweet in the morning…” By Trisha Harinath

Anyone who can openly admit to indulging in a patisserie, a croissant or an Indian doughnut for breakfast is the type of person we love. #ArianeBesson is that person – a real individual, creating her own path along the way. Everything about her is bright, bold and exciting, from the tales of her travels to India, her fashion line #BombayBabe, a capsule collection inspired by her stay in India, to her eclectic choice of food. She is a travelling star and a free spirit with a personality as vivacious as Jozi. When she is not in India, directing commercials or sourcing pieces for BB, Ariane heads over to #Fordsburg for an authentic I-feel-like-I-am-in-India experience. “I love the way that Fordsburg has become a Little India and branched out. There are night markets and shops where I find items that I see in Bombay. Fordsburg has a sense of familiarity for me. Plus I find the crossover of cultural references always interesting.” How would you describe yourself? Inspiration above aspiration. What’s your favourite Indian Restaurant in Gauteng? Shayona in Mayfair ( for low key, Alexis Kriel ( for upmarket Indian, and for the adventurous, the street stalls in Fordsburg. To experience Ariane’s food journey in GeePee, which is as fun and adventurous as she is, take a #GeePeeShotLeft to #Cyrildene for Chinese, grab some Italian in the Northern suburbs, indulge in Portugese cuisine in #Troyeville, take a tour of Fordsburg on foot for authentic Indian, or enjoy a scrumptious Sunday brunch at the @TheSaxonHotel. Shot by Andrew McGibbon on location at Shalimar Delights #Fordsburg


Lesiba Langa

PR manager for cellphone company and lives in Ruimsig. @Leslanga

Isaac Teka IT at a banking group and lives in Fourways. @IsaacTeka

What’s your favourite chesa nyama in Gauteng? Isaac: Industrial Shisanyama in Pretoria. Lesiba: Imbizo Shisanyama aka Busy Corner in Tembisa Why is it your favourite spot? Isaac: The angelfish is amazing, they use a special marinade. Wow! Also, the fact that I can walk in with my cooler bag filled with drinks makes it cooler. I pay about R20 for corkage to bring the cooler bag in after 6pm. Lesiba: You can’t bring a cooler bag of drinks to Busy Corner [Lesiba laughs]. It’s a mature hangout spot with a great selection of meat. Also the music is laid back and it has a car wash. Chilling out, having your car washed and eating is a great combo. Busy Corner, unlike Industrial, is more high-end. What special events take place at the chesa nyamas? Isaac: There’s a nice vibe at the place, they play house music and there’s a live DJ every Friday and Saturday. Lesiba: There are screens at Busy Corner so it’s a great place to watch soccer games like the Soweto Derby. How about the diversity of each chesa nyama? Isaac: There’s a fairly good mix at Industrial. Sunnyside is traditionally a student area, but at the chesa nyama there are a lot of people that come from the neighbouring parts of town. So I don’t feel old when I’m there. Lesiba: It’s strictly black people, now and then you see the odd tourist. It’s mainly a spot for guys to hangout and drink. What don’t you like about the other’s favourite place? Isaac: They don’t have the angelfish ... in fact, Busy Corner has no fish at all. Also, Busy Corner is a place where people who are loaded come to hang out, you can’t even bring in a cooler bag. It’s not for people like us [laughs]. Lesiba [Agreeing with Isaac]: Yeah it’s high-end. Here you’ll see a lot of people drinking Glenfiddich and Johnny Walker, or pinot noirs.


Industrial Shisanyama Despite the age of technology, some of the juiciest information has a tendency of arriving via word of mouth. That’s how I heard about Industrial Shisanyama and its succulent angel fish, which lives up to all its expectations. With a decent selection of meats and alcohol at a reasonable price, @industrialPTA’s no frills atmosphere adds to its appeal. But the dusty, grassless exterior can mean dirty shoes. Now one of two Industrials (the second one is in Centurion) the Pretoria branch in the heart of Sunnyside offers different types of parties but the same atmospheric climate. On Friday resident DJs welcome in the weekend with door-knocking house music, and on Sunday the tempo winds down with smooth jazz and soul. Having been around for three years, Industrial Pretoria, with its bricks and barn-yard façade, allows visitors to bring along their own alcohol, at a fee according to the size of the cooler box. 39 Jeppe and Steve Biko streets, Sunnyside Pretoria | 012 771 7673 @industrialPTA Joe’s Butchery Joe’s Butchery in Alexandra is a landmark on the chesa nyama trail. It’s been around for nearly as long as the country has celebrated its democracy - just one year short, says one of the managers. So not putting this venue on my list of top chesa nyamas in Gauteng would be sacrilegious. Despite our 20 years of freedom, high unemployment rates and poor sanitation are still rife in the township, and Joe’s setting seems to not aim to romanticise its location. It’s all about Alex, not forgetting meat, lounging out and music, especially on a Sunday. With its outdoor braai and smokey verandah where people mainly chill out and eat, Joe’s is known to feature some of the city’s liveliest events. In the past, this venue has hosted singer Zakes Bantwini’s CD launch and its guests have even heard Kenny ‘Sushi King’ Kunene play a house-DJ set. 11th Avenue Alexandra I 011 443 8943 | @JoesButcherAlex Mash Braai House, Fourways So sure, Mash isn’t your typical chesa nyama. It’s got all the workings of a high-end establishment: upmarket location, fancy alcoholic drinks and posh cars parked outside. But as I said, it’s not your typical chesa nyama. With its fully-stacked bar that holds bottles like Veuve Clicquot and Talisker, and it night-club feel, what makes this intimate, indoor venue a chesa nyama is the selection of meats on display and the open-grill fire where your meat is cooked. Despite this, Mash, located in Bryanston’s epicentre at Sloane Square, is great for watching soccer games on the TVs, unwinding after work to a live DJ and eating, of course. Unlike many chesa nyamas, Mash’s kitchen offers a decent selection of greens for vegetarians/vegans, but if you’re looking for meat, this place is the one. It serves traditional South African dishes, like skopo and dombolo, and reasonably-priced cuts of meat. 1 Sloane Street, Sloane Square, Bryanston | @mashbraaihouse


The Meat Lounge This chesa nyama is a baby on the braai scene. In existence for only three weeks, The Meat Lounge is a high-end, family-orientated joint. It even has a jumping castle for kids. Like Mash, this venue is also at a mall and hardly resembles your average chesa nyama. In fact, this is a restaurant that sells traditional South African food and a selection of meat patrons choose through a glass window, which then gets cooked. Maybe the emergence of establishments like The Meat Lounge and Mash are a comment on the commercialisation of township life - specifically chesa nyamas - around the country. Either way, owner of The Meat Lounge Peter Maponya says he’s always dreamed of creating an upmarket food market. “The Meat Lounge is not a conventional chesa nyama,” he tells me. “I was actually inspired by Mash.” The Core Shopping Centre, Leeuwkop Road, Sandton | 083 200 5789 Shisa nyama Midrand The first time I went to Midrand Shisa Nyama I did not want to leave! A parade of cars lined its street, the atmosphere was alive, and the sun beat down on those relaxing on camper chairs or dancing in this open-air venue. What a dreamy urban South African site accompanied by house music, a genre that’s become a soundtrack for many local scenes. Midrand Shisa Nyama is where people come out to look good, mingle, eat and dance. Surely one of my favourite chesa nyamas in the province, this Midrand joint is unpretentious. The best day to go is on a Sunday when you can bring in your cooler box of drinks for free until 3pm. But be prepared to wait in a line when selecting your meat and for it to be served to you. However, it’s worth the wait and part of the experience. 203 Alexandra Street, Halfway House, Midrand | 011 312 3121 Imbizo ShisAnyama aka Busy Corner Unlike some upmarket chesa nyamas that lack the vibe Busy Corner retains its energy while also maintaining its grandiosity. It’s so exclusive that on the day GeePee Life brought its camera to the venue, a Busy Corner manager asked us to stop taking snaps of the place and its guests. With an equally high-end selection of meat cuts, Imbizo’s decor beneath a thatched lapa roof provides an escape for its patrons, even if the establishment is situated at a busy intersection at the heart of Tembisa. Imbizo is great for watching soccer matches with friends, family lunches and even corporate events, but certainly not for those on a shoestring budget. Undoubtedly for the grownups. ERF 2975 Corner of Republic & Acacia Roads Ext 1 Ebony Park, Midrand 011 312 0630 | @BusyCornerJHB


Waking up

Even on days when it’s closer to midafternoon, there’s no skipping breakfast (with caffeine) for me. When I get out early enough, living in the inner city I’m spoilt for choice for coffee and the breakfast front is catching up. A short walk from home, @CramersCoffee is my default go-to for a good cup and they have a free delivery service for lazy days.

in Jozi…

By Wisaal Anderson

If its food I’m after I hop across Nelson Mandela bridge to Daleahs (Daleahs. for their salmon scramble. Over a year on, Daleahs is still packed on every visit. Options are slim but a breakfast is served all day - rare and appreciated.

Being a morning person and being a breakfast person are not mutually exclusive. Meetings aside, freelance life means I’m regularly not up before noon. Before you hate me, I’m also regularly not in bed before the sun’s first rays hit Jozi’s glorious skyline, so all’s fair really...

Follow Wisaal on: @Wisaal

Across the road, I’ve warmed up to pintsized Post’s ( breakfast lately. Grab a seat in the window and get lost in people watching over Juta Street. There’s an open, all-guy run kitchen entertaining to watch to the tunes from their old record player. After trying a few options off the menu I’ve now settled on my favourite: eggs, brie and crostini with tomato sauce. Post remains one of the best value breakfasts yet: two warm breakfasts (the other being salmon) with two flat whites for R107 - pretty phenomenal.

When I’m in #Braamfontein I always caution myself to leave space for a second cup from nearby @fathercoffee (you need to go just to see it), @doubleshotsa (also a great for tea) or artisan roasters #origincoffeeroasting (at the #neighbourgoodsmarket on Saturdays or at their #Maboneng store).




Deep in the inner city, a trip to Little Ethiopia was unlike anything I’ve seen before: total sensory overload. I sat down at Be-Ersufeked Restaurant on Jeppe Street where they poured me Ethiopian coffee with butter and spices, served with popcorn! I can’t explain it - you need to see, smell and taste this experience for yourself.

By Palwa Hlubi


Having lived in Gauteng for close to 11 years public transport has played a huge part of my life, just as it does for many GeePees. Our city has become so diverse with many modes of transport that form this fascinating web of how we move from place to place.


With complicated dietary requirements I’ve struggled to find breakfasts that are interesting and still satisfying. With a couple of substitutions I get by. Top of my list is Citizen Café (011 326 3339) in Blairgowrie for scratch-made sweetcorn fritters served with your choice of bacon or halloumi and balsamic baby tomatoes.

Very interesting and different is the mushrooms with croutons (topped with a perfectly-poached egg) at the Frenchinspired @tashascafe Tashas le Parc in Hyde Park (exclusive to this branch).



My first stop was revisiting my college taxi days. The challenge recalling the taxi signs that would get me from home to college and obviously chillers on a Thursday afternoon. Riding in taxis there are some unspoken rules, one would think that the most comfortable place to be is up front with the driver, yes it is but your basic maths better be on point because by choosing this comfortable seat you have volunteered to be in charge of the funds coming in. The driver is counting on you to provide him with his profits. As a passenger you must know where you want to get off once you have reached your destination. You can never go wrong with these phrases “short left” translation : driver please drop me off at the very next left turn. “After robot” Translation: Driver would you be so kind to have me get off after the very next robot”. “Bus stop” Translation: driver I will be getting off at the next robot. #GeePeeShotLeft My next travel experience would have me hopping onto a C3 Rea Vaya bus, Rea Vaya is Gauteng’s rapid bus transport system and translated means “we are moving”. This was fantastic, I got to experience moving through Joburg CBD effortlessly with just one card. I could load money onto a very snazzy card at an Absa and this card got me from Auckland Park into the heart of Jozi!



A recent (re)discovery was the creamy mushrooms on toast at Salvation Café at 44 Stanley Avenue (@mySalvationcafe). Both call for an early start if you want to beat the queues.



5 If you find yourself in Pretoria my vote goes to the Lucky Bread Company (@ LuckyBreadCo) in Brooklyn Mall.They may not have a kitchen but they serve one of my best finds yet: artisan sourdough bread, thyme pan-fried mushrooms, bacon (swopped for avocado – no extra charge), sliced boiled eggs topped with melted cheese.The coffee is Tribeca (who also supply all the WCafes) and is as top notch as it gets.


For the coffee connoisseurs I recommend you set aside a few hours for the likes of Bean There Coffee Company (@BeanThereCoffee) also located at #44Stanley, or Stil.Coffee (@ Africablack01) in Northriding. These are dedicated coffee spaces who take their craft very seriously. You can see coffee roasted on site and sign up for coffee cupping or barista courses. If its coffee paraphernalia you’re after, this will be heaven.


Getting off the Rea Vaya bus at Park Station, it was a hop and skip to the Gautrain station. What bliss, I could get onto the next leg of my journey that would find me on a snazzy train that would shoot me to Pretoria in less than 20 min and back to Rosebank in less than hour. How things have changed. I was impressed to see all kinds of people on the train, business people, tourists and people like me, the convenience of it all! | 0800 428 87246 Ever heard of a tuk-tuk? Well I had seen them used on the silver screen in my favourite Bollywood movies and was amazed that we have them in Gauteng. So I thought to myself “if not, why not”? Sitting in this three-wheeled mini car I set off to Parkhurst. | Arriving on 4th Ave as the sun was setting I had completely forgotten that I had left my car at the office in Greenside. Instinct told me to catch a ride with a friend who quickly prompted me to try Uber. Uber? Sounds like something my younger brother would use to describe an epic night out at a club. So I googled Uber (thinking I was seriously behind with GeePee lingo) and found that Uber is a driver service available in Gauteng. I downloaded the app, requested a driver at my location and hey presto - a luxurious Mercedes Benz arrived to pick me up and take me to my not-so-luxurious car.

Getting around the city I have called my home for all these years, was distinctly different now than it was five years ago. Take a short left, Rea Vaya, Gautrain, tuk-tuk or arrive like a champ with Uber you won’t regret it. #GeePeeShotLeft


Celebrate your GeePee moment with #GeePeeShotLeft and your selfie Gauteng, it starts here.


Download the Gauteng Travel Guide app, available at iStore and Google Play, share your travels, discoveries, experiences and favourite spots and be inspired by what GeePees recommend, by using #GeePeeShotLeft





The Gautrain The fastest, most efficient way to get to and from the airport or to explore further afield, Jozi’s modern underground train system has revolutionised the way the city commutes, and to be honest, I use the @TheGautrain whenever I get the chance. In fact, as I live near Rosebank, I take the Gautrain from there to Sandton as it’s the fastest way to get there especially when the traffic is heavy. The Sandton station is ideally located to get everywhere I need to go in Sandton’s CBD, whether it’s for a business meeting, or to shop or have a lunch meeting.

When the sun goes down, I take my pick of these hot spots where Sandtonites come to see and be seen or just to enjoy the buzz of big city night life.

Cabs To get around Sandton by day, take advantage of the little tuk-tuk cabs on the road. They will get you from one part of the golden mile to the other quickly and with little fuss, especially if you’re late for a business meeting. In fact, commuters often take tuk-tuks from the Gautrain station to their business meetings as they are cheaper than cabs. @SheshaTuks SANDTON’S MAJOR HUBS Sandton City Jozi’s most famous shopping centre @SandtonCity recently reinvented itself to keep up with the mini metropolis arising around it, and its offerings now include more than 360 stores, numerous restaurants and cinemas. I love shopping here as the array of international boutiques is stunning. This upmarket centre offers everything from Louis Vuitton, Salvatore Ferragamo and Cartier to Montblanc. Department stores such as Stuttafords, Edgars and Woolworths also offer a variety of goods at excellent prices. Cnr Alice Lane & Sandton Drive, Rivonia Road and Fifth Street, Sandton 011 217 6000 @SandtonCity Taking a break My favourite little restaurants in Sandton City day or night: Deli One for coffee, snacks and a great assortment of sandwiches, pastries and take-aways. Store L1A, 011 784 1897 JBs Corner for light meals, lunches plus some great healthy offerings. Store U311, 011 784 1810 The Bread Basket offers salads, sandwiches, deli delights, cakes and muffins. Store B28, 011 783 9053 Nelson Mandela Square Linked to Sandton City by a walkway, the popular @NelsonMandelaSq is the heart of Sandton’s CBD. This is where I head for lunch business meetings. The Square offers a selection of excellent restaurants and highend stores. It’s also home to four luxurious hotels, including the famous #MichelangeloHotel and @DaVinciHotelSA. Restaurants My favourites… Pigalle – I’ve had a number of excellent meals at this fine dining restaurant which is popular for business lunches and special dinners. Michelangelo Towers | 011 884 889 | @PigalleSA Annica’s Deli – The best place in town for high tea, champagne and caviar and everything in between! Michelangelo Towers | 011 884 9445 Montego Bay Restaurant, Sushi and Oyster Bar extends into the square and is my favourite night time restaurant on the Square. Shop 31, Nelson Mandela Square I 011 883 6407 | Piccolo Mondo is an ideal location for dinner and high tea. I’ve enjoyed both here. Decadent food, majestic atmosphere. Michaelangelo Hotel 011 282 7067 | Hotels in Nelson Mandela Square The Michelangelo Hotel, a member of Leading Hotels of the World, is an elegant, stylish establishment which offers sumptuous accommodation and world-class facilities. 011 282 7000 | DaVinci Hotel and Suites is the newest of the four hotels on the Square and offers every facility, including a spa, health centre, restaurant and lounge and its own luxurious shops. 011 292 7000 | @DaVinciHotelSA Raphael Penthouse Suites (011 245 6000) and Michelangelo Towers (011 245 4000) both offer luxury suites for long and short-term stays.

For sundowners Two my favourite Sandton’s hotspots are the spectacular San Deck, the outside deck of the San Bar at the Sandton Sun, and the Central One Bar at Radisson Blu Gautrain (@RadBluGautrain). Both offer spectacular views of Sandton at night, as well as a lively atmosphere and a choice of cocktails and drinks. When I’m at the Sandton Sun’s San Bar, I often enjoy dinner at the excellent restaurant adjoining the bar. San Deck, Sandton Sun I 011 461 9744 | I Central One, Radisson Blu Gautrain Hotel | 011 286 1000 I Fun and games The upmarket The Marco Polo at Legacy Corner Mall, located at @NelsonMandelaSq is a Venetian-themed gaming and entertainment venue where I have enjoyed some fun at the casino. They also offer comedy shows and salsa dancing, and I’ve had a meal at the restaurant and have spent many evenings at the bar. 011 783 4182 | The most popular and sophisticated nightclub in the area is also my favourite – it’s called #Taboo and is located at 24 Central (see restaurants above). I’ve enjoyed many a weekend at Taboo, both to listen to the house music upstairs and R&B on the lower level. Open Fridays and Saturdays 10pm till late, Sundays 4pm till late. 011 783 220 | @Taboo_jhb Movies Whenever there’s a great movie on circuit, I head for Sandton City, which boasts 12 Ster Kinekor Cinemas. @sterkinekor Theatre Theatre on the Square at Nelson Mandela Square offers nightly worldclass theatre performances and I’ve enjoyed my fair share of great ones there. @TheatreOnSquare WHERE TO LAY YOUR WEARY HEAD The Best of the Bunch These are the places I always recommend when friends and family come to town… • The Maslow – New on the block #TheMaslow is a luxurious hotel which offers exquisitely-designed rooms with sweeping views, an excellent restaurant and bar, and shuttle services to both @TheGautrain and @SandtonCity. Corner Rivonia Road and Fredman Drive, Sandton 011780 7800 | • Sandton Sun Hotel – A landmark on the Sandton skyline and an institution, Sandton Sun offers the ideal base from which to explore Jozi, do business in Sandton and shop up a storm. It’s an opulent destination with a glamorous atmosphere that makes a stay here a memorable one. Guests enjoy a variety of facilities, including a spa, various restaurants, complimentary Gautrain shuttle and a fitness centre. And, of course, both @SandtonCity and @NelsonMandelaSq are right on your doorstep. Corner Fifth and Alice Streets, Sandton 011 780 5000 | • Radisson Blu Gautrain – Just a short hop across the road to the Sandton Gautrain Station and a block from Sandton City, this modern hotel offers every facility for a comfortable trip, whether for business or pleasure. Facilities include a restaurant and bar, outdoor bar and sun deck, pool, fitness centre and event venues. Corner Rivonia Road and West Street | 011 286 1000 I • Hilton Sandton – Its beautiful garden setting offers a respite from the bustle of Sandton’s CBD, although it’s located in the heart of the magnificent mile. Ideal for business travellers, with a fully connected business centre offering every facility, it’s also a favourite with travellers because of its comfortable guest rooms and extensive facilities including a sushi bar, restaurant and cocktail bar. 138 Rivonia Road, Sandton | 011 322 1888 I @HiltonSandton • Radisson Blu Sandton – Obama’s home from home when the US President was in town and located a few blocks from the Gautrain Station, this luxurious modern hotel is located close to Sandton’s financial hub. It offers a host of amenities, including a plush gymnasium, well-equipped spa, dazzling outdoor pool, multiple on-site restaurants and eight meeting rooms. Corner Rivonia Road and Daisy Street, Sandton | 011 245 8000 |

Eating out

Whether you are staying in the #SandtonCBD for business or to shop and play, Africa’s richest mile has plenty to offer By Sharon Preston


24 Central Located behind Jozi’s Stock Exchange, this strip of restaurants is a great hangout for business lunches, and at night I come here for its lively evening buzz. My favourite restaurants at #24Central are Koi for superb seafood, Allora for Italian fare and the Gourmet Garage for great hamburgers and grills. I’ve enjoyed some great evenings at both The Baron and the News Café. Corner Fredman Drive and Central Avenue |



OUT OF THE CITY AND ON SAFARI Less than an hour’s drive from Jozi are some stunning reserves where you can go on safari and see wildlife in its natural habitat. My favourite spots… Dinokeng Lodge I have enjoyed an authentic bush experience just 30 minutes’ drive from Pretoria at this established three-star lodge located on the banks of the Boekenhout River. When we spent the weekend there, we do early morning and late afternoon game drives, as well as a sunset cruise and a bush walk. Some of our friends join us for the day on a Sunday as the lodge also accepts day visitors. They caught the @TheGautrain from Sandton to Pretoria and were picked up from the station.

*Sharon is a freelance travel writer and editor, who lives in Jozi with her daughter, Kelli and two cats.

Short trips outside #Jozi When I have 48 hours to spare, these are some of the getaways I enjoy outside of the city

The Lion Park Whenever we can get a day off, we enjoy getting up close and personal with a variety of lions including rare white lions in this famous sanctuary and breeding ground for selected wildlife. We enjoy going on safari in the grazing areas to see giraffe, antelope, zebra and varieties of deer, as well as visiting the camps where four prides of lion, a clan of cheetah, wild dog and hyena roam free. Cnr Malibongwe and R114, Lanseria | 011 691 9905 | @LionParkSA


By Sharon Preston*

BACK TO THE STONE AGE An hour’s drive is another of my favourite haunts, #TheCradleofHumankind, which is home to #Maropeng, a museum that houses early Stone Age tools, fossils and the skulls of early humans found during excavations in the area. The area is also home to the famous #SterkfonteinCaves, which we have also visited. When we go, we make a real outing of it, and spend the night there. Maropeng This is a great place to bring international visitors, so whenever friends or family visits from abroad, we take them to explore the World Heritage Site at #Maropeng, as well as the Maropeng Visitor Centre’s exciting exhibition that tells the story of the development of humans and their ancestors over the past couple of million years. Our first sighting is of the massive burial mound called the Tumulus and we also enjoy an underground boat ride to see the exhibits, view fossils and learn how humankind was born as well as stone tools that are more than a million years old. @MaropengSA Last time we visited, we spent the night in the countryside in Maropeng at the luxurious Maropeng Hotel, which offers regular overnight specials. This beautiful boutique hotel offers breathtaking views of the #Witwaterberg and #Magaliesberg mountain ranges. The food is great, and it’s close to all that we wished to explore in the Cradle of Humankind. 014 577 9100 | Sterkfontein Also on the same site as Maropeng, the world-famous #SterkfonteinCaves is where the extraordinary ‘Mrs Ples’ and ‘Little Foot’, an almost complete Australopithecus skeleton were found, dating back more than three million years. I enjoyed a tour through the cave on my last visit. These start above ground and then decend deep into the caves. We also strolled along modern walkways and a boardwalk past the excavation site where the famous fossils were discovered.

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Near the water The Vaal We have friends who have a house at the Vaal, so this is another popular spot to visit. #TheVaalRiver is a famous resort area popular for bass fishing, waters sports, boating and having fun. It’s located around 40 minutes drive from Johannesburg. We have also embarked on the famous #VaalMeander, a route that takes one past stores and galleries where local craftsmen display their wares. It’s a great place to pick up local arts and crafts. Where to stay: There’s a host of accommodation offered at The Vaal. I’ve stayed at both of these resorts… Riverside Sun Resort, right on the banks of the river, close to Vanderbijlpark. Riverside Sun offers a variety of sports facilities as well as Sundowner Cruises on the Vaal. 0861 44 77 44 or 011 461 9744 | Vaal River Lodge offers luxurious accommodation on the river. Facilities include a big screen theatre, deck areas for relaxing, tennis, gym, steam room and jacuzzi. 087 751 1371 |


INTO THE COUNTRY The Magaliesberg Less than an hour’s drive from bustling Jozi, this idyllic location is home to the #Magaliesberg Mountains, where an abundance of wildlife reigns supreme in a spectacular setting. I love coming out here to enjoy nature at its best. We’ve spent some glorious weekends here and enjoyed various outings, including taking a #hotairballoon ride at dawn, #microlighting, #horseriding and #hiking. My favourite pastime is relaxing in this magnificent setting and soaking up its magic.


Where to stay: These are my favourite places to stay in the Magaliesberg. I have visited both a number of times… De Hoek is a small five-star country hotel which offers every luxury for a country getaway. We’ve had some excellent meals at the #ConservatoryRestaurant, where elegant dishes are paired with wines from the Cape vineyards, and enjoyed more casual fare at the #BridgeBistroRestaurant. I’m very lazy, but some of the others in the group enjoyed archery, clay pigeon shooting and leisurely mountain walks. For me, leaving my room for a spa treatment was the highlight of my trip. 014 577 9600 | @DeHoek

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Mount Grace Country House & Spa is another of my favourite retreats. Mount Grace is located in a magnificent valley. It’s famous for its superb cuisine and excellent spa facilities, both of which I have enjoyed numerous times. The hotel has recently been refurbished and now offers even more rooms and amenities. 021 430 5302 | @MountGrace

Welcome home to This hand gesture will get you to Rosebank from Randburg or if you are in Rosebank or Sandton, you can travel to Alex, Lombardy East or Marlboro.

Going somewhere? Forget shouting to hail a cab. This is how you get around on the streets of Jozi.

No matter where you’re from, we all call Maropeng home

By Trisha Harinath | Photography by Sherilea Gaspar

You can almost picture it, right…you standing on the kerb, one hand stretched out in front of you, and you are shouting “Taaaxi!” Before you can finish the word, a yellow cab is waiting for you to get in. Whether or not you have been to New York City, you, like the rest of us, know that this is how you get a cab in the Big Apple.

By Trisha Harinath Use this hand sign if you are heading to #Soweto.

“Our ancestors have lived in this area for more than three million years. By coming here, you are coming to the birthplace of humanity. Welcome home!” – Maropeng Visitor Centre

Except, you are not in the Big Apple, and in #Jozi, this is definitely not how you get a taxi. Diversity in Gauteng is not strictly limited to its people and culture. In fact, just as there are at least 11 different ways of saying “hello”, there are as many hand gestures to get you from A to B using the city’s most popular mode of public transport. So if you are planning on experiencing GeePee the way the locals do, you should commit this Taxi Hand Signals Guide to memory – you’ll look like a pro and avoid ending up in #Midrand instead of #Sandton.

If you see a taxi driver doing this, it means that he has limited space in the taxi with just one more seat available.

Depending on your starting point, be that an official taxi rank or simply the side of road, using these gestures will get you on the correct taxi Fast facts: - Taxi fares are set according to routes and not kilometres or time travelled. - Payment is made while in transit using mainly R10 and R20 notes. - Let the driver know where you are going to by describing a landmark in the area. - The passenger in the front seat helps the driver collect taxi fares and gives out change if needed. - The passenger sitting next to the sliding door is responsible for opening and closing the door.

Your final destination is Halfway House, Midrand.

If you are in Jozi CBD and need to get to Orlando, Soweto, this is the hand gesture that you should use.

This gesture will take you anywhere that is local (ie. nearby) in and around Soweto, Alex or Randburg for example.

The cupped hand gesture lets the taxi driver know that you want to get off in Orange Farm.


This destination offers so much to do and see that you might just want to extend your day trip to an overnighter. And lucky for you, the four-star Maropeng Boutique Hotel tempts you to indulge in the finer things in life. The epitome of luxury, the hotel, which has its own restaurant, offers sublime accommodation set against a backdrop of breathtaking views – you would have never believed that all this is just a mere hour’s drive from Joburg or Pretoria, now would you?

This lets the taxi driver know that you need to get to the Jozi CBD.

The GeePee urban dictionary: Alex: #Alexandra Township After robot: Stop at the next robot (if you are not from SA, robot is our word for a traffic light) Bridge: Stop at the bridge Circle: Stop at the next circle  Four four mas’hlalisane: Four people per seat Sho’t left: Next stop on the left Sho’t right: Next stop on the right  Get around in Gauteng: Now that you’re hailing taxis like a pro in #Jozi, download the Gauteng Travel Guide app, available at iStore and Google Play, share your travels, discoveries, experiences and favourite spots and be inspired by what GeePees recommend, by using #GeePeeShotLeft

If this is your first time visiting #Gauteng, scratch everything off your bucket list and just write down #Maropeng, especially if your time here is limited.

If you are in Alex and need to get to Sandton or Rosebank, use this hand sign. You can also get to Sandton from Randburg or from Rosebank to Randburg with this gesture.

Use this sign to get to Fourways.

Did you know… • #TheCradleofHumankind World Heritage Site spans an area of 47 000 hectares. • More than 1 000 hominid fossils have been found here, more than at any other place on earth. • Maropeng is a Setswana word that means “returning to the place of origin”. • The Tumulus building represents the journey of humankind. From the entrance, it looks like an ancient burial mould. Looking back at the building at the end of the tour, you now see a silver, grey and glass building that is hi-tech and futuristic – a reminder that this is not the end of history, but rather the beginning of the future. • The official spokesperson for the Maropeng Visitor Centre is Harry. At about 14 million years old, Harry is a close relative of the modern human. Harry is clearly a shining example of evolution – you can follow him on Twitter (@ harrythehominid) and find him on Facebook ( says you can’t teach an old dog…err…hominid… new tricks! • There are various other activities in the area including balloon safaris, an elephant sanctuary, horse riding trails, and nature and game reserves. Contact details: Maropeng Visitor Centre 014 577 9000 | @MaropengSA

Why Maropeng… So, we all know the saying: “In order to know where you are going, you need to know where you came from”. Well this is in itself the very reason why a visit to Maropeng is a must. The centre will take you on a journey commencing some 14-billion years ago to present day and beyond, shedding insight into human development and more. Don’t miss… The Maropeng Exhibition is a self-guided exhibition that is highly interactive and enjoyable. Guided tours are conducted regularly, and at no additional cost, on weekends and public holidays. The Sterkfontein Caves, just over 10kms from Maropeng, is famous for some of the most important fossil discoveries ever made including ‘Mrs Ples’, ‘Taung Child’ and ‘Little Foot’ (an almost-complete Australopithecus skeleton dating back about three million years). There’s also a fascinating museum display of cave formations and geology, early life forms, mammals and hominid fossils. Tumulus is the building in which the Maropeng exhibitions are held. Reminiscent of an ancient burial mound, the architecture is indeed just the tip of this awe-inspiring iceberg. A highlight is the underground boat ride that starts at the present and continues on a trip back through time, retracing the various stages of the creation of earth. Stargazing with Vincent Nettmann, Maropeng’s resident astronomer, who welcomes you to an informative dinner talk, illustrated with spectacular astro-photo images. Don’t forget your binoculars – you don’t want to miss the chance to participate in a laser-guided southern sky tour.


Cyclists weigh in

The Cradle of Humankind

By Daniella Renzon

Ask any Gauteng cyclist where his favourite route is and no doubt he’ll tell you – #TheCradleofHumankind. This mystical place of origins holds more than just an interactive and fascinating history lesson. Due to the exceptional paleoanthropological wealth of the area, not much has been said about it being a biking haven for cyclists. However cycling lanes along the main road are wide enough for two cyclists to ride-abreast. It’s estimated that an average of 1 000 cyclists use this strip every weekend and it’s arguably the most popular cycling strip in the country. “Humankind has evolved from a tree-dwelling ape-like species to a superb bipedal walker, and finally to the sleek and streamlined speedster: the cyclist.” says Anthony Paton, content manager for #GautengTourism. He explains that millions have been invested in roads, infrastructure and new employment schemes which have supported the production of great tracks for cyclists, including a new project to create a mountain biking trail system located in the provincial road reserve. Many cyclists park at #Avianto, #KloofzichtLodge or #Glenburn and ride all the way to #Sterkfontein. For a 35km ride park at #ToadburyHall, for 60-80kms start at #Broadacres and enjoy Europa’s post-ride cappuccinos.

Hlubi Mboya, actress, activist and @AbsaCapeEpic rider, “We do all our training rides at The Cradle, especially when there’s a big race coming up. It’s amazing to cycle through a World Heritage site with such beautiful surroundings. It’s an awesome spot to wine and dine. We pour out in our numbers and start rides at Avianto. Kloofzicht Lodge must be the most spectacular venue to host mountain bike race finishes and a great spot to spoil friends and family after a training ride. I love riding past #Maropeng knowing it holds the secrets to the beginning of human civilization right here in Africa. The terrain is perfect for endurance training and working power-to-weight ratio. Then we’ll chill at the Maropeng coffee shop or Avianto getting to know each other.” @HlubyMboya Competitive veteran cyclist, Dave Rogers says, “There’s nothing like the peace and tranquillity mixed with the sound of spinning tires on the road. We ride in the most spectacular views on the #Highveld and because of the wider lanes it’s much more sociable. It’s like a cycling Mecca.” @RaveRogers @AbsaCapeEpic rider Martin Pienaar says: ”We’re so blessed to have The Cradle just 20 minutes from home. It’s great for both road and mountain bike rides. Traffic levels are low and wide cycling lanes make it unique. The restaurants, craft breweries and other places of interest provide a great incentive for loved ones to join the fun, even if they’re not cyclists.” @MartinPienaar

The Spruit

The bread and butter ride of any Jozi cyclist is along The Spruit or #BraamfonteinSpruit as it’s officially called. This green belt runs along the Jukskei River through suburban Joburg forging a circular biking route of up to 64kms in possibly one the longest inner city off-road rides. From Albert’s Farm, Delta Park, Emmerentia Dam, The Sandton Field and Study Centre into Bryanston you can catch endurance cyclists, novice riders and even families with kids spinning through the heart of Jozi. “Take in the spectacular view over the Melville Koppies before hitting @vidaecaffe in Greenside before breakfast. Not a bad way to start the day before work,” says Mike Renzon, multi-stage MTB racer.

The cycling Big Five

Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve Named after the prolific Transvaal sugarbush, this exquisite Nature Reserve is 11 595 hectares of flourishing flora, fauna and wildlife. “It’s a one way road, very quiet – with brutal climbs. It’s The Cradle, but harder. Plus it’s awesome to be able to ride in the middle of a game reserve.” says Rogers. #Suikerbosrand

Want to know where the most beautiful spots in the Gauteng Province are? Just ask a Jozi cyclist. Who needs Table Mountain when you’ve got #TheSpruit, #Groenkloof, #TheCradle or #Modderfontein? While Jozi is home to a plethora of beautiful historic and cultural concrete structures ablaze with urban activity and excitement, it’s also extremely green and surrounded by the most magnificent natural environments. Hard-working, competitive and highly sociable creatures, Joburg cyclists are addicted to the freedom of the open road, making it their business to maximize their urban experience by seeking out the most breath-taking outdoor spots in the province. Think exquisite scenic havens, in close, easily accessible areas with inner city rides that’ll blow your mind.

Modderfontein Just 8kms out of Sandton, The Central Park Trail system offers mountain bikers and trail runners a scenic rollercoaster ride through forests that circumnavigate six dams. You’ll spot game and birds too. The longest loop offers a rider a 480m climb. @ModderReserve @CentralParkTrail

Diarise • 16 November is a highlight on every Jozi cyclist’s calendar for Momentum’s 94.7 Cycling Challenge. It hits the cycling sweet spot, blazing through the city streets unperturbed by traffic. @momentum947 • Critical Mass is an electrifying night ride through Jozi’s inner city at 7pm on the last Friday of every month. @CriticalMassJhb • See Soweto by bike. Check out historical and cultural hotspots and enjoy the local burger stop at Kota, with traditional beer from the local shebeen. @SowetoByBike • Try Cycology Bespoke Electric Bicycle Tours that take you through either the suburbs, market hopping in Braamfontein or on a cultural Inner City Rejuvenation Tour on their amazing electric bikes. @CYCOLOGY_ZA

Groenkloof Nature Reserve This spectacular game sanctuary, only 30 minutes out of #Jozi is a cyclist’s paradise and a well-kept secret. It offers awesome offroad terrain, loads of zebra, giraffe and birds to spot, family picnic areas, hiking trails, 4X4 routes, camping, night drives and horse riding. Access Fountain Nature Reserve for a challenging crosscountry playground, too. #GroenKloofNaturesReserve Krugersdorp Use to find countless routes in and through Krugersdorp. Also check out the Dome 2 Dome, Telkom Satellite Classic, Val Verde Cradle Ride and Breedt’s Nek. Kings Kloof is great for endurance and strength training showcasing kloofs, valleys, mountain climbs, river crossings, natural water pools, trees, vistas and wildlife. and @KingsKloofmtb The Parks For a lovely early morning or Sunday ride through the suburbs, road riders love the tranquillity and lush stretch through Emmarentia, Greenside, Saxonwold, Westcliff, Zoo Lake and the Parkview Golf Course. Cyclists say they’re enveloped in a canvas of trees and can get fast-paced stretches without worrying about big traffic intersections. @JoburgParkZoo @CityofJoburgZA #TourDeJozi “It’s so cheesy to say cyclists are taking back our streets. They always were our streets, we were just too scared to go out and see them,” says ex-journo, photographer, and adventurer-cumphilanthropist, Shayne Robinson. Passionate about exploring Joburg in new ways, he hosts awesome night rides, family rides in the suburbs, a kid’s ride and an inner city cycling tour. @TourDeJozi

Introducing Gauteng: Mecca for cyclists. 48




Joburg artists challenging city stereotypes April 8, 2014 — A new project in Johannesburg seeks to challenge the narrow mindedness that plagues the city and instead represent it in its many different dimensions. Rendani Missblacdropp, a graphic designer and photographer, is the curator of the project, 30 Days and a City.


Rendani Missblacdropp View all posts

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“Femme” – Andile Buka

A man scoops a handful of smelly storm water with his hands and splashes his face with it. He takes off his pants and submerges them in the water. The usual morning traffic passes him by. A pedestrian stares and shakes their head. Another pedestrian looks away in disgust. The buildings circling him begin to grow eyes. Pairs of eyes peek through curtains. Another man, across the street, is taking a hot shower. The smell there is a combination of a good night’s rest and an abundance of hope. This is a tale of two cities. Both cities exist within the bigger city, Johannesburg. But all cities, African and foreign cannot be told in a single narrative. Such narratives are a result of naivety and hubris. A new project in Johannesburg seeks to challenge the narrow mindedness that plagues the city and instead represent it in its many different dimensions. Rendani Missblacdropp, an illustrator, graphic designer and photographer, is the curator of the project, 30 Days and a City. “The idea came out of frustration. I was frustrated with the stereotypes about Johannesburg. People come into the city but don’t really interact with it. I think that at some point I was having some kind of internal breakdown,” Rendani explains. All the six contributors on the project stay in Johannesburg. They had 30 days to interact with the city and then tell a story about it. Their interaction, unlike most days when they go about the city not thinking of it, had to be intense. The work was then blogged for public consumption over a period of a month. The work was consumed individually because the project was never intended to be a single body of work. Any familiarity in the work is purely coincidental. The contributors did not receive a brief of what to put out or an ideology that they had to speak to.


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