Maboneng – Jozie’s New Downtown

Am catching up on my Jozie experiences (even though we are now safely in Port Elizabeth)  and can say that if you ever want to experience a real bustling African city – go to Johannesburg! There is so much happening here and it oozes creativity, energy, and contrasts. Although I have visited this city many times, I have usually just spent my time hanging out with my friends in these wonderful coffee shops where there is a playground (and usually a childminder) on site. I do really love these places, but this time we went on a few more adventures as G is finally old enough to enjoy seeing new places.

Maboneng was the first area we explored. It is an area in downtown Joburg that has been revitalized. Apparently, one guy decided to make the area more hip and interesting and the idea took root. Growing up, we were always told that the downtown area was unsafe and nothing much to look at – this certainly isn’t the case anymore. We saw a number of trendy restaurants serving food from all over the globe, food trucks with makeshift eating areas using old walls or parts of the sidewalk as seating, a guy selling pineapples out of an old shopping cart which he was pushing around, buskers, people selling crafts, art galleries, provocative graffiti and even an old cinema where the seats are taken from old cars. One particularly fascinating building was made out of old wrought iron shipping containers stacked on top of each other with doors and windows cut in appropriate places. We had lunch at this amazing restaurant called “The Living Room. ” Phenomenal.  It had walls of greenery with plants everywhere and located on the top floor of an industrial looking building which looked out over the city rooftops. To Genevieve’s delight, the lift even had a door! Tina and I really enjoyed the Aloe Cocktail and the Mediterranean mezze

platter – G’s chips came in a flower pot.

Altogether a great experience! I bet it pumps in the evening…will be top on the list for next time. Thanks to Tinibopper for the experience.

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